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Discussion Starter #1
Hi All,

Please excuse me if this question has been raised umpteen times before. And/or please direct me to some earlier posts and answers. Recently a colleague said that the 12v dashboard socket on our Insights can be used with plug-in 'chargers' made for 'cigarette lighter' sockets. Is this true?

Thanks for any and all help!
 

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2001 5S "Turbo"
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Yes!

Willie
 

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I've been using a 12VDC -> 120 VAC inverter, and then plugging my laptop computer's power cord into the inverter, for two years now. No problem.

Just keep in mind the amperage rating of the circuit. I overloaded it one day and went crazy trying to find the fuse.

(I pulled and checked the "accessory", and then all the other... fuses that were under the hood. They were all ok. I swung by a Honda dealer who let me in on the secret that there was a second set of fuses inside the car in the dashboard area above the driver's left foot).
 

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dberns said:
(I pulled and checked the "accessory", and then all the other... fuses that were under the hood. They were all ok. I swung by a Honda dealer who let me in on the secret that there was a second set of fuses inside the car in the dashboard area above the driver's left foot).
correct me if im wrong, but i believe different years have that 2nd fuse box in different locations
 

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Discussion Starter #5
Hi dberns,

What is a 12VDC -> 120 VAC inverter? Is that the plug-in end of a 'cigarette lighter' charger? Happy to hear if this works!!

Thanks All!
 

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rkitamata said:
Hi dberns,

What is a 12VDC -> 120 VAC inverter? Is that the plug-in end of a 'cigarette lighter' charger? Happy to hear if this works!!

Thanks All!
It's a small (or large...) box which has a "cigarette lighter" plug on one end, and a 120V AC outlet on the other. You plug it into your cigarette lighter and you can then plug a regular 120V appliance into it and run off your car's electrical system.

(The higher wattage ones hook up directly to your car battery [12V] so you don't overtax the cigarette circuit)

These are rated at anywhere from 50 or so watts up into the thousand plus watt range. Prices start at $25 or so, and they're at auto shops and electrical places and computer stores. Even at Staples, etc.

A couple of caveats:

a: these usually output a pretty messy form of 120VAC, namely a "square wave" with bad voltage regulation. (Normal house current has that nice up-and-down sine wave curve). This is _usually_ ok for small stuff, including computer power supplies, but make sure you check things out first. Do _NOT_ count on these for motors unless you've pre-checked.

b: efficiency is pretty abysmal, but for a light duty load such as a cell phone charger or a laptop, it's ok. (make sure to get a unit that can cover the wattage; a laptop can be pulling 100 watts...). It's going to affect your mileage.

c: the power drain seems to confuse the IMA circuitry, leading to more recalibrations. Hopefully that's not hurting anything.
 
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