Electrical - Adding another 12v outlet | Ford Escort Owners Association (FEOA)
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Electrical Adding another 12v outlet

Discussion in 'Interior Modifications' started by Jaschiero, May 15, 2014.

  1. Jaschiero

    Jaschiero FEOA Member

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    I had seen a post here about adding a second outlet at the front but can't find it in the search. I am wanting to add an outlet to the passenger side kick panel for road trips (I use the lighter when I have the windows down and a Bic will not work). I was wondering if I could just run wires from the existing outlet to the new one or if I would have to make any modifications.
  2. denisond3

    denisond3 Moderator Staff Member

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    I have installed two 12 volt outlets in each Escort we use on long drives. I mounted mine in the part of the console under the radio, and just ahead of the cup holders. If you drill the holes on each side of that part of the console, you wont hit any electronics behind it; though installing the 12 volt accessory sockets is done with the console piece out of the car. I ran a ground wire to the metal strips near that part of the console, and ran a wire for each 12 volt supply through the firewall and into the engine compartment. There I installed an inline fuse, and connected those wires to the battery positive terminal. The hole in the firewall I used was the one for the cruise control. Its behind a round plug next to the brake vacuum booster at about the 10:00 position. With a Escort having an automatic transmission there is a cover plate where the clutch master cylinder would have mounted, and you can bring wires in through that.
    I unbolted the driver's seat, laid a chunk of plywood down, so I could lie on my back and work the wires through the firewall, and properly keep them from interfering with the gas or brake pedals, not to chafe on any sharp metal stuff.
    So my 12 volt accessory sockets stay on all the time; which is handy for recharging cell phones or ipads (or running the laptop in a motel parking lot) when we arent driving the car. They are the kind that wont work with a cigarette lighter. They have smooth sides, dont have the clips for the cig. lighter insert. The original cigarette lighter still goes off when the ignition is off.
    On my Saturn SL2 I put the 12 volt access socket on the passenger side panel (its the panel over the fuses) because there wasnt any better place to put it on the front of the console. Here is a photo of my installation:
    http://i262.photobucket.com/albums/ii114/denisond3/carhobby01/accesssckts.jpg
    zzyzzx and LariRudi like this.
  3. Jaschiero

    Jaschiero FEOA Member

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    I'm trying to avoid them being on all the time, I have a tendency to leave things plugged in and don't want a dead battery! I'm going to be making a long trip in August and will need to have my phone plugged in to use the GPS for some of the apps I will be running that drain my phone quickly.
  4. denisond3

    denisond3 Moderator Staff Member

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    Even with the two extra 12 volt sockets, we sometimes find ourselves using a "1 into 3" expander. On long trips we often have two gps plugged in, a CD player, my wife's smart phone, and maybe the laptop or the charger for my grandson's ipad.
  5. LariRudi

    LariRudi FEOA Donator

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    Are those sockets just like cigar lighter sockets? or are they something you get from an electronics store? or ????????

    IE, I'm trying to ask if our usual "cigar lighter" charger cords fit into "your" new sockets? the same?

    Really professional looking installation.

    LarryR
  6. denisond3

    denisond3 Moderator Staff Member

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    The the new accessory sockets I installed take all of the charger cords that fit into cigarette lighters, but dont have the two little clips on the inside, that would hold a cigarette lighter into position when you push on it to get it hot for lighting a cigarette. This means the side spring on the charger cords plugs wont get caught on the inside of the accessory socket if you insert them and twist them around. Since those side clips are not needed at all for charger plugs (or for mp3 players or gps plugs or for map lights or laptop car chargers or smart phone chargers,) I prefer not having them. And I dont smoke.
    I get the accessory sockets from auto parts places, like carquest, o'reilly's, autozone or advance auto, but it sometimes takes a little searching. Some of the counter personnel dont even know there is a difference, between a replacement cigarette lighter socket, and the 12 volt accessory sockets.

    I have a rusty ruin of a '28 LaSalle. On its dashboard is a cigarette lighter, on a retractable cord. You pull it out a foot to make it come on. You can also unscrew the cigarette lighter and screw in an adapter that turns it into a small flashlight. Then you can pull the retractable cord out far enough to walk all the way to the back of the vehicle and use the light to see while change a rear tire at night. I have a 12 volt light with a retractable cord (from a 56 Pontiac) that plugs into the 12 volt accessory socket, for changing tires and checking stuff under the hood after dark.
  7. LariRudi

    LariRudi FEOA Donator

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    Ha, that's another reason I like and appreciate this forum, sometimes I don't even KNOW what to ASK at an auto parts store; never did I dream that an ACCESSORY socket was even available, and that there is a "difference" between them and the usual cigar lighter.

    thx,

    LarryR

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