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Danny
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123 Posts
Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I kinda want to add a powered USB port for friends charging phones and so on... I considered just tapping into the cigarette lighter circuit, basically adding a second cigarette lighter and getting a cigarette lighter USB port converters. After some thought, I figured it couldn't be that easy. The car is 12V and USB is 5V. What kind of safety precautions should I take? I found this that has "patented circuitry" but for $6, i am skeptical. How should I protect both my ride and the device? And for the curious, I think I'll add it to either the punch out by the shifter or in the glove box.
 

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887 Posts
i would suggest to just get a small power inverter that has a usb port on it also.
insall it under the seat or under the dash using a relay for power. then run a usb extension and ac plug extension to where ever u want. can be flush mounted in the dash
 

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Danny
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123 Posts
Discussion Starter · #4 ·
i would suggest to just get a small power inverter that has a usb port on it also.
insall it under the seat or under the dash using a relay for power. then run a usb extension and ac plug extension to where ever u want. can be flush mounted in the dash
An inverter seems inefficient to me. That is converting from DC to AC then back to DC. I suppose it is doable, cause then I would also have a plug for whatever I may need. But I also have an amp under each seat :/ I like that if I find a small inverter.

---------- Post added 12-08-2012 at 07:43 PM ----------

Like this one I suppose
 

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Danny
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123 Posts
Discussion Starter · #6 ·
Yes. I understand that there are cheapo converters with the most basic circuitry. But I don't think those protect either the car or the device. There is no protection against voltage variation. No surge for fused protection. Not enough power for heavy draw devices like tablets (which are ~2000mA not 500mA). If I am going to do it, I am going to do it well.
 

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Danny
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123 Posts
Discussion Starter · #7 ·
I am having an issue getting on the right circuit. The power wire on the cigarette lighter itself is grey the best I can tell without taking the big plastic cover off. I tapped into what I thought was the same wire but I got no power. Any thoughts or tips? I can't take that cover that hold the cigarette lighter in place, cant take that off. I am afraid I will break something/it is super hard. I want to run it off the correct circuit and it draws 2.1 amps at most. Thoughts? Help?
 

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Most of those devices have replaceable fuses built in to them. That's what will protect your devices and your car. If the power draw gets to be too much, the fuse breaks and no power will be transferred anymore. That's how all electronics are kept under control.

I am not entirely sure where you are stuck. In your first post, both of those devices should have fuses built in. When you install a cigarette lighter, you should fuse that as well, which is an added layer of protection.
 

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Danny
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123 Posts
Discussion Starter · #9 ·
Well, my original plan was to basically splice into the current cigarette lighter and add a second one. Then get something to bring the voltage down to 2.1 amps. I was having a problem wiring into the original cigarette lighter. I couldn't find the stupid wire. The one that it was supposed to be didn't give me any power, so it must have been the wrong wire (I was guessing at the wire by sticking my head under the dash and looking at the back of the cig. lighter.
I ended up (just now) using an Add-A-Fuse on the Accessory circuit. Not really what I wanted to do or the way I wanted to do it, but it works.
But for my future knowledge and for others, suggestions as to what I should have done are appreciated.
This was the Cig. Lighter adapter I used. I trust this company and was getting impatient and didn't really want to spend $50 on an inverter.

This is the usb cable I used so anyone and everyone can profit from my struggle.
I love Monoprice
 

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Boxed Lifestyle
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2,292 Posts
been usin my one port usb lighter charger since forever and had no voltage variation problems. Been used with a wide range of phones. iPhone, blackberry, evos, ect. Plus it dont find myself using it too often and it should help for resale if/when you do cuz it doesnt look like a homebrew thing.

just my 2 cents.


http://www.newegg.com/Product/Produ...la-_-NA-_-NA&gclid=CJWflvX8yLQCFZGPPAodHCAAXw


^^^think this one is nice than mine and im pretty sure it sits pretty flush if you wanted an OEM look.
 
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