Can You Charge a Laptop with a Car Cigarette Lighter?
If you have a car that uses a DC aux-in cable, you can also use it to charge your laptop. The cigarette lighter is the auxiliary port on a car’s electrical system. It is typically found in the centre console, or sometimes in the rear of the vehicle. A DC cable is the most common type of cable that connects a laptop to a car’s electrical system.
The idea of plugging a laptop into your car’s cigarette lighter has been around for years, but the idea has never caught on. Why? Well, it relies on your car having a cigarette lighter and not every car has one. But that’s all changing. A new product called the Plug-N-Charge will allow you to charge your laptop directly from your car’s lighter.
It’s easy to come up with a list of things that we wish our world was more like, but few of us ever stop to wonder how this wish is going to be achieved. For some, the answer is obvious: we need to plug in our cars, and charge our laptops. For others, it’s a little less obvious: we need to be able to recharge our phones while we are driving. The more our technologies grow, the more our needs grow along with them.
We spend so much time in the car and the laptop is almost always with us….. so, to keep it charged, can we just plug the laptop into the car’s cigarette lighter to charge it?
Of course you can charge your laptop in the car with the cigarette lighter, but to charge your laptop in a car or truck, you need special equipment.
This particular device is called an inverter, which uses the power from your car to charge your laptop. The good news is that an inverter for charging a laptop in the car is very cheap.
My favorite is this product from BESTEK (affiliate link) that easily plugs into the car’s cigarette lighter to charge a laptop. It also has two additional USB ports for charging your phone or tablet or for using products that require a USB connection. Excellent value for money and the best I’ve ever tried!
Now that we’ve covered the basics, we’ll get into any questions about charging your laptop from the cigarette lighter in your car or truck.
How do I charge my laptop in the car?
Simply plug the inverter into your car’s cigarette lighter. Its location depends on the vehicle, but it is usually located near the vehicle’s main dashboard, close to the stereo. On some vehicles, especially those with a gear lever, it is located next to the gear lever.
When the car is running and the inverter is plugged in, simply plug in your laptop’s charging cable and start charging. It’s so simple!
Remember to only charge your laptop with an inverter when it is on, otherwise the battery will run down much faster. And never let your laptop or any other device charge overnight, as it can completely drain your car’s battery.
Is it safe to charge your laptop in the car?
Yes, if you use an inverter, charging your laptop in the car is perfectly safe. Take all necessary safety precautions (keep your hands dry, for example) and make sure you use a high-quality inverter, such as the one recommended above, to charge your laptop in the car.
Can I charge my laptop in the car without an inverter?
Our recommended car power adapter.
No, you cannot charge your laptop directly from your car’s cigarette lighter. You need to use an inverter because it converts the 12V from the battery to what the laptop needs, which is about 20V.
Does charging a laptop in the car result in a flat battery?
Yes, charging your laptop in the car can drain the battery. However, to avoid this, make sure the car is moving and not stationary when you charge the laptop. This way the battery does not discharge because it is charged while the vehicle is in motion.
The battery will discharge faster, or completely, if you let the laptop charge overnight or for an extended period of time while the engine is not running.
Since the battery is responsible for powering the vehicle’s electrical system and the engine is not running to charge it, it discharges more or less rapidly depending on the amount of energy consumed.
So if you charge your laptop, mobile phone and tablet while turning on your headlights, the battery will discharge much faster, which may make it impossible to restart the car.
It is therefore advisable to charge the laptop in the car only when the engine is running and, ideally, while driving, as this is when the most electricity is produced and the car battery can be easily recharged.
How long can I charge my laptop with the car battery?
If you need to charge your laptop with the engine off, you can usually do it safely in one to two hours. This gives the laptop enough power to run smoothly and leaves some juice in the car battery to restart the engine.
However, doing this repeatedly will reduce the battery life. Therefore, you should only do this in an emergency and charge the laptop while driving.
Charging your laptop from the cigarette lighter in your car is easy and safe if you follow the tips in this article.
Make sure you invest in a high-quality inverter built specifically for cars, like our favorite available on Amazon (affiliate link). It converts the 12V of your car battery into the amount you need for your laptop and charges it easily. (Read how many watts laptops need to charge here).
Try to charge the laptop only when the engine is on and while driving to avoid discharging the battery. If you need to charge your laptop while the car’s engine is off, try not to charge your laptop for more than 1-2 hours and only charge one laptop during this time to reduce the risk of destroying the car’s battery.
But otherwise, as long as the engine is running and the car is driving, it is perfectly possible to charge the laptop without draining the battery.
If you have any questions about how to charge your laptop from the cigarette lighter in your car, feel free to ask them below in the comments and we will answer them as soon as possible.
Share this article!If you have ever tried to charge a laptop in your car, you know how difficult it can be. After all, you want to make sure you have enough charge so you can make it to work and back again. Or, perhaps you have been in an accident with no power for the laptop, so you have to wait till the next day to get your work done.. Read more about plug laptop into car cigarette lighter and let us know what you think.
Frequently Asked Questions
Can I charge my laptop with my car?
No, you cannot charge your laptop with your car.
Can you charge a laptop with 12v?
Yes, you can charge a laptop with 12v.
What can I use if I don’t have a charger for my laptop?
If you don’t have a charger for your laptop, you can use a power bank.
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