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Install Garage & Help Desk You've got the radio, now which cable goes where? Got questions about factory installed radios in your car? Ask any installation or help questions here and someone will get to you soon.

 
 
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Old 01-02-2007, 04:15 PM   #31
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A lot of stuff is wired to constant power. Clock, alarm. Many car radios have two power cables, one constant and one switched. Some cars even wire the cigar lighter to constant power.

Do you any information as to what additional fire risk is present if a plug n play receiver is wired to constant power?



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Originally Posted by vikingjunior
Also it's safer to run it to power that is NOT constant. Wiring to constant power is how people's car miraculously catch fire all by themselves.
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Old 01-02-2007, 07:30 PM   #32
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Thing is your not removing the clock, alarm, etc. With the Sirius radio your removing it and exposing it's terminal.

Look at the RS adapter do you wonder why it has a plastic cover for the socket part. It's there to keep out dust particles and other foreign objects that may complete the circuit and draw power, if it was hard wired to a constant.

It might sound a little paranoid but I wouldn't endorse hard wiring to a constant and then removing the radio and leaving the terminal exposed. if you were going to leave the radio connected to the dock all the time that would be a different story.


Quote:
Originally Posted by lc
A lot of stuff is wired to constant power. Clock, alarm. Many car radios have two power cables, one constant and one switched. Some cars even wire the cigar lighter to constant power.

Do you any information as to what additional fire risk is present if a plug n play receiver is wired to constant power?
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Old 01-03-2007, 08:36 AM   #33
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I'm not an expert BUT

I always thought the plastic cover was to prevent a child from putting a finger in the socket. Does anyone unplug the power brick at home when they remove the radio? IPODs have a similar interface and I don't know anyone who unplugs the power when the IPOD leaves the dock. I thought the design of the docking cradle allows the cradle to be safely powered when the unit is removed.

I'm not sure if you're paranoid or if I'm reckless. My docking station is in the eye glass compartment above my radio. The compartment is closed when I'm not using my Starmate so I'm not worried.

My concern would be a person who leaves the radio on for a few days and runs down a marginal car battery.




Quote:
Originally Posted by vikingjunior
Thing is your not removing the clock, alarm, etc. With the Sirius radio your removing it and exposing it's terminal.

Look at the RS adapter do you wonder why it has a plastic cover for the socket part. It's there to keep out dust particles and other foreign objects that may complete the circuit and draw power, if it was hard wired to a constant.

It might sound a little paranoid but I wouldn't endorse hard wiring to a constant and then removing the radio and leaving the terminal exposed. if you were going to leave the radio connected to the dock all the time that would be a different story.
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Old 01-17-2007, 07:12 PM   #34
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Quote:
Originally Posted by vikingjunior
Thing is your not removing the clock, alarm, etc. With the Sirius radio your removing it and exposing it's terminal.

Look at the RS adapter do you wonder why it has a plastic cover for the socket part. It's there to keep out dust particles and other foreign objects that may complete the circuit and draw power, if it was hard wired to a constant.

It might sound a little paranoid but I wouldn't endorse hard wiring to a constant and then removing the radio and leaving the terminal exposed. if you were going to leave the radio connected to the dock all the time that would be a different story.
It DOES sound a little bit paranoid. Usually the cigarette lighters in cars are constant. And often, the actual lighter piece that heats up is not there and the socket is left unexposed. This is far more dangerous than simply hardwiring power behind the dash. And how often are the exposed constant cigarette lighters cause of vehicle fires? I'm not worried. In fact, the RS adapters are the only ones I could find that actually had the plastic casing. It's just a ground case and isn't crucial that it is covered.

I consulted several professional car installation shops and discussed this topic before I did my installation. And if hardwiring to constant is a problem, there's a LOT of problems driving around on the roads today.
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Old 01-17-2007, 09:37 PM   #35
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there's no risk of fire, just fuse the lead with a 1 amp fuse. As previously mentioned many cigarette lighters plugs (like in my 2003 f250) are always powered up and they are fused at 20 amps. I wouldn't lose any sleep about it. I for example am more worried about the constant powering up and powering down from a switched supply burning out my SP4 than a constant supply causing a fire.
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Old 01-17-2007, 10:34 PM   #36
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If you are handy with a soldering iron, cut off the cig. lighter plug and splice this piece in between your radio and switched power - it cuts the 12 volts down to a constant 5 volts for about $1.89.
http://www.radioshack.com/product/in...tId=2062599&cp
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Old 01-18-2007, 07:42 AM   #37
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I tried one of those.. It did work, but unfortunatley it ran HOT!

Most of the new 5V Stratus/Starmate/Sportster units draw 600 mA.. This is less than the 1000 mA this regulator can supply, but despite that they require a hefty heat sink. The metal tab on the device gets hot enough to burn your finger about 6 seconds after you turn the receiver on.

I mounted mine on a finned CPU heat sink that was about 2 inches square. The whole assembly still got way too hot for my liking. I didn't like the idea of something that got that hot tucked up under my dash.

The regulator they built into the factory plug is a switching regulator instead of an analog regulator. Switching regulators are WAY more efficient and run completely cool.

Space was at a premium behind my dash so I took the guts out of the power plug socket and transplanted the assembly into a little plastic box I had lying around. ... CLICK HERE to see how I did it.
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Old 01-18-2007, 04:39 PM   #38
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Thanks for the heads up on the heat! I guess shedding all that voltage would generate a good amount of heat. That was a project of mine for the weekend to get rid of the lighter plug, but now I'll have to figure out plan 'B'.
You did a nice job on yours, I may copy that!
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Old 10-07-2007, 11:49 PM   #39
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I second the thanks on the heat generated by the RS 5VDC regulator. I built one of these for anticipation of having to migrate from my Starmate 1 to a Starmate 3. I tested it tonight with your comments in mind and OMG, did that bugger get HOT!!! I'm going with your recommendation and using the OEM plug, which arrived broken in the box as my basis for my 5VDC power source on the motorcycle. On the car, I'm just going to use a Sirius power supply and go right to the fuse box to save time.
Thank you again - almost a year after your post. Great job...
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