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Live Power Outlets vs. "Unlive" Power Outlets

I’m curious, why do some cars have live power outlets when the car is running and some do not? Are there advantages or disadvantages of either one that would influence a manufacturer’s decision? I would prefer live at all times, but my 2005 & 2008 Toyota Ravs do not offer that feature.

It is simply a choice. People leave things plugged into their power ports. Failures in those things can cause a fire inside the car that owners will try to make warranty claims for. Makes for quite the argument between owners, insurance companies and car companies.

Those same devices can drain the battery to the point it won’t start the car. If the port powers down when the key is off none of that can happen.

Keep in mind people plug far more than just phone rechargers into these ports. Given the ports usually have 10 amp or larger fuses, that can kill a car battery in about 4 hours.

You can re-wire the ports so they stay live at key off if you chose. It isn’t that hard.

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Thank you for your response, it all makes sense. Sounds like more of an advantage not to keep them live, for sure. Thanks again!

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Certainly advantageous to the manufacturer!

I have one GM vehicle that leaves the power ports live all the time. Actually kind of useful at times. I can leave my phone charging in the car. I can plug a small battery charger into it to recharge the battery overnight. But then , I know what not to do with them!

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Exactly! You know, but the general pubic probably needs a lesson or two :wink: I was thinking of the many times I wanted to charge my phone but couldn’t. I would much rather have a low battery than a fire though!

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You can go to any establishment that installs alarms or stereos (if they even exist anymore) and ask them to make one of your ports live at all times. Like @Mustangman mentioned…it is not difficult at all, but best left to someone who has the tools and knowledge to do it properly…with a fuse or integrated into an existing live circuit.

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My 2006 Pathfinder has two ports on the dash: one “ever-live” and another one is “live-on-ignition”.
Very convenient to have solar battery maintainer plugged with no extra wires and keep the chargers in another port.

The “kids” port in the second row is “live-on-ignition”, which is also very logical, at least to me.
The port in the back is “ever-live”, which somehow I also find very convenient when using inflator or lights when camping.

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I agree, thanks for your advice!

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Perfect sense! Thanks for sharing.