Jeremy Laukkonen is tech writer and the creator that a well-known blog and video clip game startup. He also ghostwrites posts for numerous major trade publications.

You are watching: Where is the fuse for the cigarette lighter


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What a swollen fuse looks like.Tydence Davis / Flickr / creative Commons (CC by 2.0)

Cigarette lighter fuses, favor all auto fuses, blow as soon as the circuit draws much more amperage than the fuse is designed to handle. If the tobacco lighter fuse is 15 amps, then a draw of much more than 15 amps will reason it come blow. If you replace it with an additional 15 amp fuse, and something ~ above the circuit is quiet drawing an ext than 15 amps, then the fuse will just blow again.


It might seem favor the most basic solution would be to just replace the 15 amp fuse v a larger fuse, however this is actually an extremely dangerous. While the wiring in the cigarette lighter circuit might be qualified of taking care of a little much more than 15 amps, there’s no guarantee the it in reality is. And if the difficulty in her circuit is in reality some type of short, putting in a larger fuse may reason the wiring to warmth up to the allude where it can melt or even cause a fire.


While you deserve to buy a circuit breaker together a direct replacement for the fuse the keeps blowing, this is additionally a bad idea, particularly if over there is a quick in the circuit. These circuit breakers are helpful in part applications and also have certain diagnostic uses, but using one to intentionally overload a tobacco lighter circuit is no recommended.


examine for international Objects in Your cigarette Lighter Socket

There space a lot of reasons for a tobacco lighter fuseto repetitively pop, yet one that the an ext common, and often overlooked, is the existence of a international object in the socket. Because cigarette lighter sockets are designed so that the whole body the the steel cylinder is grounded, and the facility pin is hot, it’s surprisingly simple to quick the circuit.


Some vehicles have change holders, or catch-all trays, in the vicinity of the cigarette lighter socket, which makes it dangerously easy for a coin to fall in. If that happens, the coin may call both the base barrel and also the warm pin inside the socket and also cause a quick circuit.


Other metal objects, prefer paperclips, or also pieces broken off indigenous old phone chargers, can also become lodged in a cigarette lighter socket. In part cases, friend may uncover that such an item doesn’t reason a brief circuit all the time, however inserting the cigarette lighter or a 12-volt power adapter causes the fuse to blow immediately.


If friend look inside your cigarette lighter socket v a flashlight and see a international object, yes sir a an excellent chance that removing it will fix your problem. Just to be safe, you need to make certain that you remove the cigarette lighter fuse before reaching inside the socket to eliminate the foreign object. You can then download a new fuse and check to view if that still blows.


inspect the maker You want to strength From the tobacco Lighter

There is a hard limit ~ above the existing that friend can attract from a tobacco lighter socket or any type of 12-volt accessory socket. If the machine that you want to power up via your cigarette lighter draws an ext amperage, then it’s a simple fact that the fuse will certainly blow every time you plug it in.


In many cases, cigarette lighter circuits usage 15 amp fuses, yet you can inspect the fuse box in your auto to be sure. You’ll then want to check the device you’re trying to plugin to see just how much amperage that draws. Cell phone chargers room usually draft to work-related with cigarette lighter sockets without blowing a fuse, but other devices, choose cigarette lighter inverters, can conveniently overload the circuit.


Even if her 12-volt device, charger, adapter, or inverter is design to draw less than 15 amps, it’s still worth inspecting the plug. If the plug is broken, worn out, or has something grounding on it, plugging the in may reason a direct short between power and ground within the cigarette lighter socket.


If you’ve only ever before tried to plug one thing into your tobacco lighter, that may also be worth trying a various 12-volt charger or adapter simply to dominance out a difficulty with the one the you have been using. Or girlfriend could also use an ohmmeter to examine for one internal brief in her adapter.


troubles With the tobacco Lighter Circuit

Most that the time, a tobacco lighter fuse the keeps punch is caused by some outside problem. However, it’s always possible that you could be taking care of an interior problem. If the fuse always blows without even plugging noþeles in, and you have actually verified the there no a international object inside the socket, then there is a problem somewhere rather in the circuit.


In bespeak to entirely rule out a problem with the socket itself, you have the right to remove it check out if the fuse blows. This is an application where a circuit breaker fuse deserve to actually it is in useful, because blowing fuses over and over again to narrow down the source of your trouble could become expensive.


This type of problem will additionally be less complicated to diagnose if you space able to track under a wiring diagram for your specific vehicle because that will present you any type of components various other than the cigarette lighter the are likewise on the very same circuit. Disconnecting each of these materials in turn, if there space any, may additionally be beneficial in determining the resource of her short.


Another likely reason for this type of trouble is a shorted out power wire. That essentially method that the strength wire that connects to your tobacco lighter may have rubbed or burned through and also come into contact with metal somewhere behind the dashboard. You can lookfor this form of brief by checking because that continuity between the tobacco lighter strength wire and also ground.


Locating a quick Circuit

Depending on your specific vehicle, it may be exceedingly daunting to actually uncover the location of this kind of short. The short may be situated in a an overwhelming to reach a position that friend won"t have the ability to find without removing her radio, HVAC controls, or also the dashboard.


While there are gadgets for locating shorts in automotive applications, this isn"t the kind of tool everyone will have laying around. In part cases, the easiest solution might be to just leave your cigarette lighter fuse out permanently and run a new power wire to the tobacco lighter socket.


Rewiring a negative Cigarette Lighter Circuit

If you elect to run a new power cable to the tobacco lighter socket, it’s very important to use an proper wire gauge. That also an important to download an suitable fuse, in the occasion that you decide to walk this route. In some cases, friend may have the ability to use a empty spot in your fuse box, and in various other cases, the just option is to run a strength wire straight to the battery.

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In both of this situations, failing to usage an proper fuse can easily an outcome in an electric fire. And in any case, running a new power wire must be your last resort after you have ruled the end every other potential reason for your tobacco lighter fuse to blow repeatedly.