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How to have my cigarette lighter switched off, when the car is off?


Topic starter

Hello Scotty! I want to do something simple, but the Youtube is full of nonsense. Help! 

I have a 2011 Ford Fusion and I've bought a dash/ backup camera. 

My cigarette lighter is always ON.

I want to have it switched OFF when my car is OFF and switched ON when my car is ON.

I would like to tap the fuses, cigarette lighter with power window. 

May you show us how to do it? There are so many nonsensical videos

what is the dash cam model please?

Wolfbox 840H. Ok camera, I guess. It all depends what do you expect.

Mission accomplished, like this:

4 Answers

I recommend having a professional install it.

No way! I've seen way too many "professionals" since I came to the US who were less competent than me. In each and every situation I did it myself.

This is a simple task, all that is needed is to connect two fuse "holes" together with a wire.

As I don't have the experience with US gadgets, I'm simply looking for some elegant and reliable solution.

Fuse taps with a pigtail with adapter for fuses will probably be my choice.

"all that is needed is to connect two fuse "holes" together with a wire."

I can already see this ending in disaster

@mmj +1


Well you're going to have to rewire it to accomplish what you want.

One approach would be to wire the hot lead of the cigarette lighter to a circuit that is powered on only when the ignition is on. A problem is this has the potential of overloading the circuit you connect to.

Another method is similar to what @Doc proposes, but automated using a relay. Connect the relay so it switches on the cigarette lighter only when the ignition is on. (Triggering a relay would take little current.) A solid-state relay would be preferable to a mechanical one to minimize impact on the car's electrical system, though they are more expensive.

This is the kind of thing I would do on the old clunkers that I drive. However, messing with the electrical system on modern cars is an endeavor fraught with peril so tread lightly or you could well wind up bricking the car.

Why putting the additional relay when there are already existing relays doing that same task?

All I'm asking is the advice what brand/ type of gadgets is the most suitable for fuse taping/

"messing with the electrical system" - all I want is to connect two circuits, not a big deal. It can be done "redneck style" for 0.1 $. I'm just looking for an elegant solution. I'm a foreigner and many things you are routinely using are something I've never seen in my life.

It's best to minimize impact on your vehicle's electrical system. I have never owned a car that new but from others' experiences I do have a healthy respect for the myriad ways it is possible to totally screw up a modern car's electrical system by doing something that appears to be trivial. In any event, there are many fuse taps and wiring taps on the market, not sure what might be readily available to you if you are overseas. For example here is one offered by Bussman for ATM fuses. If your vehicle has this type of fuse and these are available in your area this is a tap you could consider using. (Bussman is one of the leading brands for fuses and fuse-related products.)

Done, works:


Probably the easiest way is to disconnect the neg battery terminal, find the hot wire to the lighter, cut it and put a manual switch in line.  This way, you wouldn't have to mess with fuses or the wiring to the windows. 

No... There is no much of a difference to plug it out vs click the switch. I want it to work automatically.

Sorry I couldn't help but I understand your goal.

This is how I've done it:


I hate those fuse taps. But if you have your mind made up on doing it that way at least put a 7.5A fuse in it to power your cigarette lighter.

That's way more than your dash cam needs and if somebody plugs anything else into the lighter it may blow the fuse instead of melting the wiring behind your fuse box. (That's why I hate those things. They can create a very expensive mess)

@chucktobias is right. This kind of stuff used to be fine in the old days. If you want to do it now, at least use a micro relay (micro relay with socket around $10 on Amazon) and just use the fuse tap to energize the coil inside of the micro relay (when Key On). Let the original lighter fuse handle the load side of the circuit instead of that fuse tap.




I agree. This is very hacky and half-baked.