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car cigarette lighter power supply? Answered

I desperately want to install a electric car lighter into my coffee table, but am having trouble figuring out a proper power supply. I am a complete dummy when it comes to anything involving electricity, and would very much appreciate some ideas

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iceng

Best Answer 5 years ago

Benmurton is correct you need a 12volt power supply.

The car lighters I know were fused at 20 amps
So you need a 12v 20a TR Unit like this one $16
add an AC power cord and 10 AWG gauge wires to your smoking table.tighter.

Remember car lighters are mounted in metal that can pass excess heat to
a vehicle structures, unlike wooden  tables that can be fired !!!

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bobertsoniceng

Answer 5 years ago

Thank you very much for the link, and for the warning about excess heat!

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icengiceng

Answer 5 years ago

BTW that switching supply wont actually deliver 12VDC until it sees over a 15% of its load
Don't panic if you work with a voltmeter..

A

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tgferreira184

5 years ago

Just use a small car battery or two 6v flashlight batteries in series. Like so you also have the benefit of portability and no need to use wires to an outlet.

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iceng

5 years ago

bobertson may not understand this is a 4way conversation.

Did we help you ?

Someone here deserves a Best Answer from you..............

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Jack A Lopez

5 years ago

A cigarette lighter socket is essentially a cylindrical hole. Supposing the axis of that cylinder is oriented vertically, normal to the surface of your coffee table, then the lighter socket is a hole that stuff can fall into.

For that reason, I humbly suggest a cover of some kind for it, or just leave the lighter gizmo in it when the socket is not in use.

I also suggest putting a fuse
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Fuse_%28electrical%29
in series with this socket, so that in the event that a penny, or a paperclip, or whatever, does fall into the socket, then the fuse will blow and protect your power supply.

The way that trick works is to choose a fuse rated at a current in between the amount drawn by normal use, and the maximum of the supply.  For example if the lighter gizmo takes 10 A (amperes), and the maximum of the supply is 20 A, then use a 15 A fuse.   

That way normal current draw, at 10 A, does nothing to the fuse, but if someone drops a penny into the socket, then the current will (briefly) be the maximum the supply can produce (around 20 A ) and burn out the fuse, since 20 >15.

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benmurton

5 years ago

They are 12v so a 12volt battery, Computer power supply or a wall transformer, if you can find one that will supply the required current that you are likely to draw.