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Thread: carpc almost blew up my truck!!!!

  1. #1
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    carpc almost blew up my truck!!!!

    well not the actual computer itself but the power cord to my monitor started burning up. started my truck and after a few minutes smoke started pouring out from behind my dash. so i shut off my truck disconnected the power lines to my computer.. ripped my dash out in about 5 seconds disconnected my monitor and made sure nothing was on fire then let my truck air out for a few minutes. went back to investigate and turns out the monitors power cord melted down. this is the second cord it killed in a few months. the first one did not burn up tho just stopped working. That was the factory cord this was a generic one from radio shack. the monitor is hooked into the 12v cigarette adapter just to be clear. anyone have any ideas as to whats causing this?

  2. #2
    North of the land of Hey Huns
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    Is the line fused for the wire size? Eg: If the line coming out of the cigarette adapter is not big enough for the amount of current the cigarette lighter is fused for, you should have had a smaller fuse on it. If not.... well... you get zero sympathy for that one Fuses prevent things like this from happening.
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  3. #3
    FLAC
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    Somewhere along the way, the positive cable touched ground. Fuses are made for a reason. Use them.
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    if someone could please post up a quick diagram of how it should be propperly fused i would appreciate it. i was assuming the power cord i bought was fused from the manufacturer but i guess i was wrong

  5. #5
    FLAC
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    Quote Originally Posted by mm87 View Post
    if someone could please post up a quick diagram of how it should be propperly fused i would appreciate it. i was assuming the power cord i bought was fused from the manufacturer but i guess i was wrong
    Is it a cigarette lighter plug? If so, there should be a fuse in the tip of the cigarette lighter adapter. The metal tip of the adapter probably unscrews to reveal a fuse. If you chopped that end of the adapter off and hooked it right into the car's electric system, theres your problem. If the connector is fused and the cable melts, then the fuse value is too high. If you need to wire a fuse into a system heres the idea.

    Positive from power source (usually battery) to short wire (1 ft max) to fuse to wire (long enough to reach device) to the device.

    Then the negative from the device goes to negative of the electric system. In this case, the frame of the car, battery negative terminal, bolt screwed into metal which touches car chassis, etc.

    Make sure the wire is also thick enough to carry the demanded current. Google an AWG table.
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  6. #6
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    yes it is a cig lighter plug.. no i did not chop up the adapter. plugged it in and all was cool until today and poof she melted down. worked well for a while. have not had a chance to test my monitor and computer inside yet but i hope i didnt fry anything else. next time ill do my research when buying an adapter and make sure theres a proper fuse in there. thanks for the heads up

  7. #7
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    Now you know why you should fuse everything properly! Glad you didn't have your car catch on fire - they're real hard to put out if you don't have a fire extinguisher.

    Nevertheless, the fuse for your cigarette lighter should have blown. It's too large for your monitor. There's a fuse on the board of the monitor but if the short occurs before the fuse, it won't protect you. That's the job of the fuse in your fusebox that goes to the cigarette lighter.

    Solution is to get a fusable cigarette lighter, fuse it to the rating for the monitor (can't imagine it's much more than 1.5 amps) and relax. You might check to see if there's something in your install that is chafing the wire to the monitor and causing it to fail. Does it pass through any metal holes that don't have grommets around them? You're just asking for it if you don't use one.

    Watch the car pc 101 video in my signature to see how you fuse an install.
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    I was gung ho on building a PC [until] just recently. However, between my new phone having internet and GPS and all...and this kit...Im starting to have trouble justfiying it haha.
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  8. #8
    Neither darque nor pervert DarquePervert's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Bugbyte View Post
    Now you know why you should fuse everything properly! Glad you didn't have your car catch on fire - they're real hard to put out if you don't have a fire extinguisher.
    And sometimes even if you do have a fire extinguisher handy.

    I do believe this is the scenario that prompted this lovely bit of artwork:

    Have you looked in the FAQ yet?
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  9. #9
    FLAC
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    A week ago I recently had a similar situation as well...smoke pouring from the dash due to a shorted wire melting some sound deadening material. I still havent been able to get the smoke smell out of my car. Take it as a lesson to fuse EVERYTHING. Anything that carries power, including your main power lines, ACC signal lines, even the power from your carpc's psu to the LCD.

  10. #10
    Who am I? HiJackZX1's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by DarquePervert View Post
    And sometimes even if you do have a fire extinguisher handy.

    I do believe this is the scenario that prompted this lovely bit of artwork:

    HAHAHAHAHAHAHA, As I was reading the first post, I was asking where is that d@mn trade mark picture from Darque.

    I will tell my story that happened to me. Today I got into my truck, I have a 100% dedicated system strickly for monitoring drivers and my surroundings, without it I feel unsafe. I was sitting in a parking lot and turned on my truck, it kept saying no signal in the screen. I then tested the OPUS DC-DC 15W, and it was dead. I didnt want it connected anymore so I went with a 12V regulator, it handles upto 12V and 2 amps. This is perfect since I am only running 1.6 amps. Well next thing you know my fuse emitts a bright flash (I use the old school glass fuses). I was like damn the regulator must not be good. So I am going crazy because my car is big but parking spaces are small and I have to litterally be almost touching cars behind me to get out. I then remebered that I have a plug for the second DQP unit. I went to look for it, and to my surprise the plug was actually touching a piece of metal on the 12V and ground side.

    Point of the story is that if I had done this half a$$ed and not fused all my equipment, I would have most likely have blown my DQP and the special relay that sets it to 3 way view. Everything, and I mean everything that is not connected to the PSU should be regulated, fused and use the proper wiring for the project. Anything that is on the PSU should at least be fused and proper wiring used.
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