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Question for you fockers using cig plug lights

Discussion in 'Commercial Snow Removal' started by Bad Luck, Feb 28, 2005.

  1. Bad Luck

    Bad Luck Senior Member
    Messages: 741

    I picked up a Code 3 dual rotator today. The thing is that it was a perm mount instead of a mag mount, the last of anything the guy had. So me wanting it now, bought the thing and the guy threw in some magnets. So I run down to Radio Shack and pick up a cig plug adapter, 2 actually, one with bar ends that had a switch on it that I male female connected to the light wires, and one that used banana style connections where you unscrew a cap exposing a hole that you slip the wire through. My issue is that after running the light on for about 3-4 minutes the plug itself gets red hot if you pull it out. Is this normal? These plugs are fused and rated at 10 amps. 2 amps less than the lights draw.

    I plan on wiring it up the proper way switch, relay, fuse/distribution block somewhere down the road but for tonight I want to at least get through the storm.

  2. SnowyPennsylvan

    SnowyPennsylvan Junior Member
    Messages: 23

    This generally isn't normal on most newer lights. I used to get burnt pulling out my old light all the time, but my new one is fine.

    I think it's just more or less a problem with your home-made connection...
  3. johntwist

    johntwist Senior Member
    Messages: 415

    I'm a plumber not an electrician so my word's by no means expert.

    I have a mini bar with dual stobes, magnetic, cig lighter plug in. It never even gets warm, never mind hot. Red hot is a bad thing, something's not right there brother. I don't know if that's because rotating beacons supposedly draw alot more than strobes or not. Just be careful, you don't want the thing melting in the socket or worse, starting a fire :eek:
  4. Bad Luck

    Bad Luck Senior Member
    Messages: 741

    For some reason I'm thinking my 12v power outlet isn't rated that high. I may end up running a quick relay switch combo tonight...I really didn't want to have to do it that way just yet though. Damn....

    Any one else???
  5. brunosplace

    brunosplace Senior Member
    Messages: 282

    Hard Wire it

    Do it right and hard wire it with fuse, relay & switch. it has too much draw for the cig lighter, it could start a fire otherwise. :yow!:
  6. IndySnowPlow

    IndySnowPlow Senior Member
    from Indiana
    Messages: 214

    It should blow the 30amp fuse in your cig plug before it starts a fire. on the otherhand if your plug on the light cord is not fused thats a problem.

    Vehicle cig plug 25-30amp
    Light bar 8-10amp

    as long as both are fused properly your ok.
  7. Up North

    Up North Senior Member
    Messages: 921

    Bad Luck,
    Don't know if I can add any help to the situation but I run a ECCO single rotator with cig plug and it's just fine, doesn't get hot at all. No fancy switches or anything like that, just plug & play. Hell if I tried to rig up a switch I'd probably burn my truck to the ground.

    What about that Fisher plow, could that be your problem??? :D Just kidding you focker.

  8. motorider000

    motorider000 Senior Member
    Messages: 110

    I was plowing with my friend the other day when we realized that his plug melted. The light just stopped working. When we looked there was molten plastic all in the cigarette lighter and all over the wire. Yup that plug is trashed.
  9. Frozen001

    Frozen001 Senior Member
    from Rome NY
    Messages: 908

    Bad Luck,

    Although the plugs you got are rated for 10 amps, it is not enough head room for it not to get hot. Typically those ratings are MAX ratings, which means short durations, not constant draw. If you still want something temporary go you and see if you can find something rated at at least 20 amps, you will notice a definite difference.

  10. Bad Luck

    Bad Luck Senior Member
    Messages: 741

    You the man Lou. Never thought about that, I've got snow on the brain. Thanks.

    Buck -When you burn your truck down, make sure your Blizzard is attached. No use wasting a perfectly good fire!! :D

  11. DJDarknez

    DJDarknez Member
    Messages: 92

    Yeah, find a different way to hook it up.....

    One memorable time I used my FedSig highlighter (perm mount, using a cig lighter thingy) was on the 4th of July a few years ago. My then g/f had her car in the parade and everything. I had the highlighter on my XJ for tooling around the crowds since I was helping out.

    Anyways, I'm at the end of the route, when the cancel the parade. I make my way back to where the staging area is when the damn TORNADO sirens start going off. I go to plug in my highlighter...............nothing.

    Wiggle the cord............nothing.

    I look at th.e cord. The plug had gotten hot just like you said. It MELTED the cig lighter adapter thing.

    So.........yeah. Find a better way to wire it! :D
  12. Elsewhere

    Elsewhere Junior Member
    Messages: 14

    Code 3

    I have the same problem. The code 3 dual rotator, with eventually become hot at the plug and blow the cig fuse. I have increased the fuse to 30 amps and it will eventually blow if I leave it on. The plug will not fit into the power port. I just unplug when going to next plow stop. The plug will cool down and all seems ok. Was going to try to lube the rotators, but manual says not to.

    Will try to wire to battery directly next season.

    F-250SD Fisher 8' HD......
  13. Xtra

    Xtra Member
    Messages: 30

    Check to see what the current draw of the light is (the specs are probably printed on the bottom of the light) or check with the light manufacturer to see if they recommend the light to be powered by the cig outlet.

    It sounds as if the cig plug adapter should be able to handle he load, but if it isn't making good metal to metal contact it will heat up. Also there are different type plug adapters . . . those for cell phones and low load equipment and a heavy duty version (Radio Shack probably doesn't carry the high load version). Try a boating supply store for a fused high load cig plug adapter. Then with the power off - meaning the fuse is pulled or battery disconnected use some emery cloth or a brass brush and clean the inside of the outlet (this is especially important if you actually use the cig lighter to light cig/cigars).

    If you're feeling real handy while at the boating supply store pick up and install a new outlet connect to a 15 or 20 amp fuse at the fuse panel. Then you'll have two outlets.
  14. REAPER

    REAPER 2000 Club Member
    from 60050
    Messages: 2,230

    Make sure you are using the correct gage wire. Thicker the better.
  15. tawilson

    tawilson Senior Member
    Messages: 225

    The heat may be caused by a bad connection. Check the contacts on the plug and in the receptacle. Could be if you've used the cigarette lighter a lot the connection in the receptacle needs cleaning.
  16. Elsewhere

    Elsewhere Junior Member
    Messages: 14

    Code 3 Dual

    I also have a problem with cig lighter hookup. What vehicle is this on. I am currently working with Code3 with my unit. Possible truck problem.
  17. Bad Luck

    Bad Luck Senior Member
    Messages: 741

    My solution


    This is how I solved the problem. Considering I want to use this light only when I'm plowing, and will be removing it from the truck when the plow comes off, I wanted to be able to unplug it when I'm done.


    I mounted a switch next to my air bag turn off switch. Hooked it up to a 12v keyed source, and grounded it. Took 18ga wire and ran it to a relay mounted near the battery under the hood. Hooked the relay up to the batteries + and - terminals using 14ga wire with fuse protection on the + side. Ran a pair or wires through the cab under the dash near the center console (just to the right of where my plow control wire is mounted) so they can be out of site when not in use. Each has a female connector on the end. One goes to terminal 87 on the relay, the other to the battery ground.

    We'll see how this works out. I figure doing it this way leaves me with a place to hook up an accessory in the off season if I need to.