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How can I power my car from a standard outlet?

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  • How can I power my car from a standard outlet?

    First thread in this forum , I was wondering how I should go about powering my car computer from a standard 120 volt outlet when the car is parked and the engine is not running. I would like to do this for things like updates, file transfers, ext. My goal is to have a single cable I can hook to the car in the garage that will supply power as well as a wired network connection.
    Enter the LOTUS...
    (more info here)


    Pre-build thread


    Planning: ::::::::::::
    Parts: ::::::::::::
    Build: ::::::::::::
    Test: ::::::::::::
    Install: ::::::::::::

    Oh, yeah, and build the car... ::::::::::::

  • #2
    What about just finding a battery charger to keep the main battery full.
    My setup uses about 4amps so if I were to do this I'd look for a charger that could put out close to 4amps.

    That being said, I'd left my system on over night a couple times and was able to start the car in the morning.
    The battery is only about 1 year old so maybe an older battery wouldn't do as well.

    Comment


    • #3
      Presuming it's all 12V, you can either buy a regulated 12V DC supply (I'd suggest a ATX supply - the cheapest and usually big enough (like >12A at 12V) and plug the stuff onto that.


      If wanting to use a battery charger, then get one that can be used with the battery still wired to the vehicle. (Some can supposedly induce spikes or use voltages than can damage car electronics.) And some can indude noise, though I think later "smart" chargers with intelligent charging should be fine - like CTeks or my recent $25 Aldi 3.8A 4-stage charger.)
      The capacity will have to meet/exceed what your stuff drains.



      IMO the latter is the better option since a charger is useful equipment anyhow, and is good is recharging your battery whilst being used.

      OTOH, the ATX supplies can be bought for $10-$45 and are a simple reconnect solution.


      I have been thinking of looking into ATX voltage conversions - including extending the +12V or +5V rails as battery chargers )up to ~16V (change the voltage feedback scale and change caps to 25V types). Imaging a 20A batter charger for the price of an ATX supply (and maybe later add a chip to control the charge cycle and voltages...).
      Though some may be easily boosted to 14.4V for use on batteries in cars ((add 2.4V to the feedback - maybe four 0.6V diodes in series).

      Comment


      • #4
        Originally posted by OldSpark View Post
        Presuming it's all 12V, you can either buy a regulated 12V DC supply (I'd suggest a ATX supply - the cheapest and usually big enough (like >12A at 12V) and plug the stuff onto that.
        Do you mean a standard computer psu?

        I wanted to do this without breaking the bank, the only things I can find in my price range are meant for RV usage. I would like to mount the converter in my garage and run power cables to the car using a single cable and connector to run power ( maybe 8ga? ) and a network connection. How can I shield the network wires from the power ones?
        Enter the LOTUS...
        (more info here)


        Pre-build thread


        Planning: ::::::::::::
        Parts: ::::::::::::
        Build: ::::::::::::
        Test: ::::::::::::
        Install: ::::::::::::

        Oh, yeah, and build the car... ::::::::::::

        Comment


        • #5
          My personal advice would be to set up a regulated 120V -> 12V adapter with enough capacity to handle your system and set it up somehow to do a live switchover upon being plugged in. Theoretically this should be much easier on the network cable running alongside it. This would only power the Carpenter and it's peripherals btw. Less to go wrong. I

          Sent from my Droid using Tapatalk

          Comment


          • #6
            Originally posted by OldSpark View Post
            OTOH, the ATX supplies can be bought for $10-$45 and are a simple reconnect solution.
            Wouldn't this require the PC system be disconnected from the car power? So that would involve adding a transfer switch to the car.

            Comment


            • #7
              Originally posted by davekra View Post
              Wouldn't this require the PC system be disconnected from the car power? So that would involve adding a transfer switch to the car.
              I believe so... sounds like a lot of work
              Enter the LOTUS...
              (more info here)


              Pre-build thread


              Planning: ::::::::::::
              Parts: ::::::::::::
              Build: ::::::::::::
              Test: ::::::::::::
              Install: ::::::::::::

              Oh, yeah, and build the car... ::::::::::::

              Comment


              • #8
                Okay, I think I have an idea, but I don't know how to build it. I found a power supply that I think I can use, and its pretty cheap (link). But I don't know how to connect the the 12volt rail of the PSU to 10 gauge 3 conductor wire to run it to the car.
                Enter the LOTUS...
                (more info here)


                Pre-build thread


                Planning: ::::::::::::
                Parts: ::::::::::::
                Build: ::::::::::::
                Test: ::::::::::::
                Install: ::::::::::::

                Oh, yeah, and build the car... ::::::::::::

                Comment


                • #9
                  BoyRacer0013,

                  This is how I been using my carpc for garage/inside, and don't even use my car batt. This seems to work pretty well for me with the "M2-ATX" and the "Quick release kit- M2-MTR-5-PWR" from here @ mp3car. You have to buy (2) kits though. Never had a problem at all.


                  http://store.mp3car.com/ProductDetai...ctCode=CBL-081


                  http://www.batteryspace.com/connecto...connector.aspx


                  http://www.radioshack.com/product/in...ductId=3097458


                  "This might be a little tough on the pocket for some, but I also use this pwr unit for other projects too,...so this is a must for me.


                  http://www.powerstream.com/ac-EA11203.htm

                  Good Luck.
                  Attached Files

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    Originally posted by RAWPWR View Post
                    BoyRacer0013,

                    This is how I been using my carpc for garage/inside, and don't even use my car batt. This seems to work pretty well for me with the "M2-ATX" and the "Quick release kit- M2-MTR-5-PWR" from here @ mp3car. You have to buy (2) kits though. Never had a problem at all.


                    http://store.mp3car.com/ProductDetai...ctCode=CBL-081


                    http://www.batteryspace.com/connecto...connector.aspx


                    http://www.radioshack.com/product/in...ductId=3097458


                    "This might be a little tough on the pocket for some, but I also use this pwr unit for other projects too,...so this is a must for me.


                    http://www.powerstream.com/ac-EA11203.htm

                    Good Luck.
                    Thanks, but I would like to power not just the computer but the whole car (lights, horn, computer, ext.). So, I need at least 30 amps of 12 volt power. The cheapest way I have found to do this is to use a standard computer power supply (but only the 12 volt rail) to get that much power at 30 amps. but I'm not sure how to attach the wires to 12 volt rails of the PSU. Can I just solder all the 12volt wires into two 10 gauge wires ( one + and one - ) or should I remove the and solder directly to the board in one spot?

                    EDIT: More specifically can I connect the 12volt rails together, and only use those 12volt rails?
                    Last edited by BoyRacer0013; 12-08-2011, 04:22 PM.
                    Enter the LOTUS...
                    (more info here)


                    Pre-build thread


                    Planning: ::::::::::::
                    Parts: ::::::::::::
                    Build: ::::::::::::
                    Test: ::::::::::::
                    Install: ::::::::::::

                    Oh, yeah, and build the car... ::::::::::::

                    Comment


                    • #11
                      3OAmps?, ok,... how about these then?
                      ------------> http://www.sportsimportsltd.com/acto...Fcbc4Aod4HfJ9Q

                      Go about half way down the page to 30amps+ PWR supplies.

                      Originally posted by BoyRacer0013 View Post
                      EDIT: More specifically can I connect the 12volt rails together, and only use those 12volt rails?

                      I guess? not sure..., maybe "Oldspark" could chime in about this for U.

                      Cheers.
                      Last edited by RAWPWR; 12-08-2011, 04:53 PM.

                      Comment


                      • #12
                        Here is the one I would go for rawpwr, link, but these do not output a constant 13.8 volt power supply. Can I use a 4 pole car battery to act as a "filter"?
                        Enter the LOTUS...
                        (more info here)


                        Pre-build thread


                        Planning: ::::::::::::
                        Parts: ::::::::::::
                        Build: ::::::::::::
                        Test: ::::::::::::
                        Install: ::::::::::::

                        Oh, yeah, and build the car... ::::::::::::

                        Comment


                        • #13
                          Originally posted by BoyRacer0013 View Post
                          Here is the one I would go for rawpwr, link, but these do not output a constant 13.8 volt power supply. Can I use a 4 pole car battery to act as a "filter"?
                          13.8v +- 0.5v is considered constant in this situation.
                          Palm sized ainol MiniPC, 8" Transreflective PRO, Win10, Reverse camera, Dual 10HZ GPS RX's for Speed Display & Sat Nav, FM-DAB & Phone Modules, iDrive interface. T-Screen HVAC control, custom microcontrollers, microcode and FE.

                          Comment


                          • #14
                            They way these work is by switching on and off at the speed the input power alternates, so they quickly switch b/w off and 13.8v.
                            Enter the LOTUS...
                            (more info here)


                            Pre-build thread


                            Planning: ::::::::::::
                            Parts: ::::::::::::
                            Build: ::::::::::::
                            Test: ::::::::::::
                            Install: ::::::::::::

                            Oh, yeah, and build the car... ::::::::::::

                            Comment


                            • #15
                              Originally posted by BoyRacer0013 View Post
                              They way these work is by switching on and off at the speed the input power alternates, so they quickly switch b/w off and 13.8v.
                              Yes it's a “Switch Mode” supply like almost every SMPS supply available and this has nothing to do with load regulation or what you are using this device for.

                              The main problem with SMPS is the interference to RF devices if the SMPS is not correctly designed and filtered.
                              Palm sized ainol MiniPC, 8" Transreflective PRO, Win10, Reverse camera, Dual 10HZ GPS RX's for Speed Display & Sat Nav, FM-DAB & Phone Modules, iDrive interface. T-Screen HVAC control, custom microcontrollers, microcode and FE.

                              Comment

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