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Cigarette Lighter and Accessorty Outlet dead

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Old 12-20-2016, 10:06 AM   #1
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Default Cigarette Lighter and Accessorty Outlet dead

Yes, I've checked EVERY fuse. Twice in fact.
I drive an RV and when towing my Fit I power a Break Buddy from my 12V sockets. A Brake Buddy, if you're not familiar, provides emergency braking if the vehicle breaks free from it's tow bar. It uses a compressor and pneumatic piston to depress the brake pedal.

On my last cross country trip I found that my Cigarette Lighter outlet had gone dead and would not power up the Brake Buddy (or anything else). As I said, I checked all the fuses and found none that were bad. So as a test I plugged in the Brake Buddy to the Accessory socket in the console. It powered up and seemed to be working fine so I left it on for a while and went and had dinner. When I returned an hour later, the Accessory Socket was dead too. Again, I checked all fuses both inside and under the hood. None of them was open.

I suspect that perhaps a relay is bad, but none of the relays are labeled in the owners manual or the legends on the fuse covers. Any suggestions? Does anybody have a schematic that might point me to the correct relay to swap out?

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Old 12-20-2016, 03:28 PM   #2
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Default Re: Cigarette Lighter and Accessorty Outlet dead

What year Fit is this?
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Old 12-20-2016, 06:50 PM   #3
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Icon7 Re: Cigarette Lighter and Accessorty Outlet dead

While I was waiting for replies to this post, I decided to piddle around with it a little more. I realized when looking at the
"Cigarette" Lighter outlet "Cigarette" Lighter outlet
that the panel holding it could be removed with a
single screw single screw
. After taking it apart I checked for power at the connector to the outlet. I was surprised to see that there was power to the connector. That told me it was something in the socket itself. At first it didn't make sense that the socket could fail, but I dug into it and finally figured out how to take it apart. That's when I found the problem.

Inside the socket there is a ring that separates the dime-sized socket bottom from the terminal that hooks to the connector. That ring has a smaller circular center section that is offset so that it acts as a spring. (The spring action is required so that the bottom of the socket isn't continuously "hot".) This small center section has a plastic insert that acts as an insulator separating the spring from the dime-sized socket bottom. When you press a plug into the socket, the nipple pushes on the dime sized bottom, which in turn presses on the springy ring and makes contact with the 12 V terminal. That plastic insert appeared to have gotten hot enough that it deformed. It deformed enough that it didn't allow the metal pieces to all come together to complete the circuit. After fiddling with it for a while, I was able to find a way to reinsert the piece so that it operated properly again.

Seems to me that Honda selected the wrong plastic for this part or the have too large of a fuse selected (20A). The plastic should have had enough temperature range to handle the temperature rise caused by a high current device. Anyway, problem solved.
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