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12v house power outlets

Full-timers and those with more robust system will likely want to install 12v power outlets in their van. Doing this means one can move electrical items around and plug them in where you want them.

the cigarette outlet The most common 12v outlet is the cigarette lighter outlet. The version shown here has USB outlets built in, also.


  • universal1)


If you must use a ciggy port considering plugging in a wired extension/splitter as a sacrificial lamb. *When* the port dies it will be the replaceable extension and not the built-in port. The *wired* part is important, since it will flex and place no strain on the port.

breaking the 10A barrier

Ciggy outlet power is typically limited to 10A (~120w).

If you wanted to extract more power from the alternator you could wire in an isolator (plain solenoid or VSR). Instead of feeding an auxilliary battery this isolator would be used to pull more current into the living area. You could run 12v loads directly, or attach an inverter's input wires to the isolator's outputs.2)

further info

other connector types

Advanced users often cut off the ciggy plug and use something superior for their needs.

Anderson The most common non-ciggy connector is the Anderson Powerpole.


  • when assembled correctly, polarity is assured even when you aren't looking
  • slide together in pairs in different arrangments and directions
  • robust, especially for frequent connects/disconnects
  • power distribution blocks can be very neat and small


  • more $$$
  • need to be assembled3)
  • the different possible arrangements means you'll need to pick an arrangement and stick to it
  • a special crimper is recommended
although there are proprietary versions like the DIN Hella found in BMW motorcycles and some European vehicles, etc
positive to isolator, negative to chassis ground
pin on wire, pin into connector, neg/pos connectors mated together
electrical/12v/ports.txt · Last modified: 2023/02/06 12:32 by frater_secessus