Replacing Cigarette Lighter with USB Ports in Your Car

Replacing Cigarette Lighter with USB Ports in Your Car: A Comprehensive Guide

Replacing Cigarette Lighter with USB Ports in Your Car

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Replacing Cigarette Lighter with USB Ports in Your Car

If you’re looking to upgrade your car’s head unit with Android Auto and want to replace your outdated cigarette lighter with USB ports, you’re in the right place. In this guide, we’ll walk you through the process of replacing your 12v power receptacles with USB ports, ensuring a cleaner and more convenient wiring setup. Whether you’re a car enthusiast or a tech-savvy individual, we’ve got you covered.

Understanding the Need for USB Ports

In today’s digital age, USB ports have become an essential feature in our daily lives. With the increasing use of smartphones, tablets, and other portable devices, having USB ports in your car provides a convenient solution for charging and connecting your devices on the go. Not only does it eliminate the need for bulky adaptors, but it also allows for seamless integration with modern head units, such as Android Auto.

Assessing Your Car’s Compatibility

Before diving into the installation process, it’s important to ensure that your car is compatible with a USB port replacement. While most modern vehicles come equipped with USB ports, older models may still rely on traditional 12v power receptacles. To determine your car’s compatibility, consider the following factors:

  1. Head Unit Compatibility: Check if your car’s head unit supports Android Auto or any other USB-enabled features. This information can usually be found in your car’s user manual or by consulting the manufacturer’s website.
  2. Electrical System: Assess the electrical system in your car to determine if it can handle the additional power requirements of USB ports. If you’re unsure, consult a professional mechanic or an auto-electrician for guidance.
  3. Space and Accessibility: Examine the location of your current 12v power receptacles and evaluate if there is enough space to accommodate USB ports. Additionally, consider the accessibility of the ports for easy connection and charging.

Once you’ve determined that your car is compatible, it’s time to proceed with the installation process.

Installation Process

Replacing your car’s 12v power receptacles with USB ports may seem like a daunting task, but with the right tools and guidance, it can be a straightforward process. Follow the steps below to ensure a successful installation:

Step 1: Gather the Necessary Tools and Materials

Before starting the installation, make sure you have the following tools and materials handy:

  • USB port replacement kit
  • Screwdriver set (flathead and Phillips)
  • Wire strippers
  • Electrical tape
  • Wire connectors
  • Multimeter (optional)
  • Fuse puller (if necessary)

Step 2: Disconnect the Power

To ensure safety during the installation process, it’s crucial to disconnect the power from the 12v power receptacles. Locate the fuse box in your car and identify the fuses corresponding to the receptacles you wish to replace. Use a fuse puller to remove the fuses, ensuring that there is no power flowing to the receptacles.

Step 3: Remove the Existing Receptacles

Using a flathead screwdriver, gently pry open the flap covering the 12v power receptacles. Once exposed, unscrew the receptacles from their mounting brackets using a screwdriver. Carefully disconnect any wiring connected to the receptacles, taking note of their positions for future reference.

Step 4: Prepare the USB Ports

Take your USB port replacement kit and familiarize yourself with its components. Most kits include a mounting bracket, USB ports, and wiring harnesses. Follow the manufacturer’s instructions to prepare the USB ports for installation, ensuring that they are securely attached to the mounting bracket.

Step 5: Connect the Wiring

Using wire strippers, remove a small portion of insulation from the wires connected to the 12v power receptacles. Connect the corresponding wires from the USB port wiring harnesses to the exposed wires, ensuring a secure connection. Secure the connections with wire connectors and wrap them with electrical tape for added protection.

Step 6: Mount the USB Ports

Position the USB ports in the mounting bracket and secure them using the provided screws. Ensure that the ports are aligned properly and tightly secured to prevent any movement or damage.

Step 7: Test and Reconnect the Power

Before completing the installation, it’s essential to test the newly installed USB ports. Reinsert the fuses corresponding to the replaced receptacles and reconnect the power. Connect a device to the USB ports and ensure that it charges and functions properly.

Step 8: Finalize the Installation

If the USB ports are functioning correctly, it’s time to finalize the installation. Secure any loose wiring and ensure that all connections are properly insulated. Close the flaps covering the USB ports, maintaining the aesthetics of your car’s interior.


By replacing your car’s 12v power receptacles with USB ports, you can enjoy the convenience of charging and connecting your devices directly to your head unit. This upgrade not only reduces clutter but also enhances the functionality and modernity of your car’s interior. Follow the steps outlined in this guide, ensuring compatibility and safety, to successfully install USB ports in your car.

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