Current output from Cigarette ligher

Discussion in 'The Projects Forum' started by neezzer, Nov 20, 2010.

  1. neezzer

    Thread Starter New Member

    Nov 10, 2010
    Typically a cigarette lighter will have a volatge output of approximately 12 to 15Vdc.

    Can anyone tell me what is the current output?
    I also trying to use th eligher to connect some heating elements. Can anyone recommend the best solution?
  2. hgmjr

    Retired Moderator

    Jan 28, 2005
  3. thatoneguy

    AAC Fanatic!

    Feb 19, 2009
    For older cars, there is usually a 15 or 20 Amp fuse on a standard lighter socket, but I wouldn't suggest running continually at that current, as there is usually only a 12 or 10 gauge wire to it. The fuse is to allow the high current and short duration of a cigarette lighter heating element.

    For anything over 200W continuous, Have a heavier wire and fuse installed. The occasional exception are the 12V "Power Jacks" usually found in pickups and SUVs. They are usually good for continual 200W-250W, which is enough for 150W (300W Peak/Surge) power inverters running continually.

    For heater applications that produce enough heat to be useful, the load will usually kill the battery or alternator fairly quickly if the system hasn't been upgraded. This is why the 110VAC "plug-in" block heater options are common cars built for northern climates.