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Guest Message by DevFuse
 

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2000 obw eating lighter plug fuse.


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12 replies to this topic

#1 987687

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Posted 17 December 2012 - 02:49 PM

My 2000 outback keeps eating the 20a fuse for the lighter plug/power mirrors.
When I bought it, there was a non-stock fuse in there, and it was blown.
That tipped me off to the fact there's probably a problem. And there is... Heh. It'll work for a while, then bam, blow the fuse. Sometimes it'll last a few days, sometimes it'll last 20 minutes.

Is there a common thing that causes this? Or do I have to just wire in a new fused line from the battery because I hate working on car wiring...

#2 Rooster2

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Posted 17 December 2012 - 03:40 PM

Your post is timely...........on my 99 OBW, just yesterday, I ran a hot wire with an in-line fuse directly from the battery to the back of the cig lighter socket. I also created a new ground, running a wire from the socket to a screw on the tranny shifter.

My problem started when my GPS cord plug shorted out in the socket. It smoked the cord plug, and blew the cig socket fuse at the fuse block, and ruined the cig socket. I don't know what else happened, but replacing the fuse still gave me no power at the socket, and also the ground wire no longer ground the circuit as it should have. I installed a new after market cig socket, and now all is well. The whole experience was a PITA that amazes me how a shorted cig plug could cause such a hassle.

Like you, tracking down electrical problems frustrates me in a short period of time, and I start loosing my temper.

I don't know of anything that would cause your problem. You are prolly better off rewiring as I have done. When you are finished you know you have it done right, and no longer concerning yourself with fuses blowing randomly.

#3 987687

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Posted 17 December 2012 - 03:44 PM

I make lots of money wiring boats. And I can find faults and do really pretty wiring on boats. But car wiring just infuriates me to no end. It's all done so poorly, hidden where it's impossible to access, etc, etc.

All my cars have had weird wiring issues with the lighter plug. My GL has horrible voltage drop. My 96 randomly didn't work. My 98 LGT blew the fuse with my GPS plugged in. I didn't know till my GPS said low battery.
But the LED on the GPS charger was still on, I just assumed the charger had died. NOPE. Turns out that the plug was somehow getting a bit of power from somewhere else even when the fuse was taken out. I put a new one in and it worked fine... I have no idea. It's now the issue of the new owner :lol:

#4 Fairtax4me

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Posted 17 December 2012 - 06:26 PM

There are some sharp corners in the dash right around the lighter plug. Might pull the panel out and check the power wire.
Are any aftermarket accessories installed in this car? A lot of people like taking power from the lighter plug circuits and they usually pull too many amps when something is plugged into the socket because of it. Could also be a stray wire from a previously installed something or other that was removed and they just left the damn wire hanging under the dash.

When I bought my truck (85 ranger) the previous owner had wired up god knows what and pulled all of it out before trading the truck in. Which is fine, except he left bare wires everywhere. One of those was attached to a light switch (single pole house light switch) laying on the floor, not attached at all, that was wired straight to the battery, through a sharp hole drilled in the firewall with no grommet, with NO FUSE! :confused: :banghead:

#5 Cougar

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Posted 17 December 2012 - 08:21 PM

I don't have access to my service data right now. The circuit may also provide power the transmission area possibly, I'm not sure. I suggest you visit Ebay and purchase a wiring manual for the car. You can get CDs that cover the entire car and are factory manuals for a very modest price. It will tell you everything the fuse is tied to (unless someone has modified it) so you can check the areas out. If any mods have been made I would check those out first for a problem.

#6 987687

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Posted 17 December 2012 - 09:03 PM

I do have an FSM. But I think it's just the lighter plug and the power mirrors.
Everything else seems to work just fine. I have a manual transmission. So I don't care what an auto would think.

#7 Cougar

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Posted 17 December 2012 - 10:00 PM

Glad to hear you have the factory service data. Not many folks have it but to me it is 'priceless'. If you haven't checked the power distribution of wiring and fuse panels yet in the manual I suggest you do that and verify what that fuse supplies power to.

#8 987687

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Posted 18 December 2012 - 03:36 PM

So as I was unplugging something from the plug today, the interior light flickered. Plugged it back in, and.... The fuse is blown. So it seems like the socket itself is shorting out. Which I think is the most desirable problem, I can just junk yard another one for a couple bucks.

#9 bratman18

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Posted 19 December 2012 - 05:22 AM

Come get the plug out of the Legacy I have here, I'm sure it's the same.

#10 987687

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Posted 19 December 2012 - 09:06 AM

I actually looked in it with a flashlight, and part of the positive thing was bent contacting the outer casing. I bent it in, and now it seems happy. We'll see.

#11 Rooster2

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Posted 19 December 2012 - 09:45 AM

I actually looked in it with a flashlight, and part of the positive thing was bent contacting the outer casing. I bent it in, and now it seems happy. We'll see.


If the "bending" doesn't fix the problem, then suggest you buy an aftermarket socket from Autozone store. That is where I bought mine. It is made slightly different from OEM, but works just fine.

#12 987687

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Posted 19 December 2012 - 09:53 AM

If the "bending" doesn't fix the problem, then suggest you buy an aftermarket socket from Autozone store. That is where I bought mine. It is made slightly different from OEM, but works just fine.


If I have to put in a new one, I'm using a marine grade socket. They're stainless steel and don't fall apart.
I get 40% off on Marine parts through work (shows you how much the mark up is...), so it's probably cheaper than a parts store one anyway :D

#13 Cougar

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Posted 19 December 2012 - 11:01 AM

I think you have solved the trouble.




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