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2003 Corolla LE
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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Hello all!

Took my new 03 Corolla down to see the inlaws 1000 miles away.. well.. I thought this would be a great time to take my laptop on the road an try it out on this little road trip. I bought a DC to AC inverter that stated it provides 90 watts. I know my laptop power only uses 75 watts. So go to uses it at a rest stop (with WIFI) and the inverter beeps and gives me the overload warning light. hmm.. no luck.. So I notice the DC plug n the car (cigarette lighter) had a sticker on it stating the plug only can supply 120 watts of power. hmm.. so why isn't it working? Has anyone else noticed the lack of power coming out of our 12 Volt DC plugs of thier corolla? Has anyone found a way to get more power from this plug? Just curios to know. I'd like to be able to use my laptop on the road in my new car.

Do you think that a more powerful battery will help or do I need to convert my new power system? what's up huh? cuz this really sucks that I couldn't charge my laptop while on the road.

Thanks for any help:) I did do 3 searches but had no luck..
 

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Guessing: the computer is drawing more power then you think, inverters are very inefficient and can draw twice as much power they supply. So, if the inverter is putting out 75W it may be drawing 150W. Does the laptop have a 12V DC power inlet? What make/model of inverter and computer.
 

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2005ToyotaCorollaS
05 Toyota Corolla S
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413 Posts
that 90W that is advertised there is MAX power.... effective power is much less, the inverter is shutting down to prevent damage to itself.... u need a bigger one, I would say 200W MAX power is the minimum to go with,....

D
 

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07 Corolla
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46 Posts
I have my radar detector in the cig lighter, and a 3 outlet converter in the consoul that allows me to plus my cell charger and a light and a dc to ac converter to run my laptop. Try using the one in your consoul, it runs all my shit.
 

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2003 Corolla LE
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Discussion Starter · #6 ·
daniel2002p said:
that 90W that is advertised there is MAX power.... effective power is much less, the inverter is shutting down to prevent damage to itself.... u need a bigger one, I would say 200W MAX power is the minimum to go with,....

D

Yeah, that's what I thought too.. so I bought a 500 watt one from Sams club. it didn't work neither. The fan on the inverter was running but the power LED was not on. my laptops AC adapter did not show any current neither.

I'll have to look at the manual for the newer one for any charts and sheets.. but the old one(smaller one) did not have much documentation. Yeah.. I'm pretty sure the numbers listed are max output, and and the the laptop probably draws more than listed.

The smaller inverter is a Cyber Power. I don't have model number with me at work. (almost tubelike with DC(another cig lighter plug) and AC output. The Larger one is a Rayovac. Sorry no model number neither, but it has dual AC outlet and a cooling fan. the input is switchable from cig lighter to alligator claps for direct connection to the battery. I have a Macbook Pro core 2 Duo 15.4".


I've tried the center console for the smaller inverter without luck, but have not yet tried the larger inverter yet. I'll have to try that.

Thanks for all the suggestions!
 

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maybe try the inverter with something small like a night light or cell charger just to see if there working at lower powers, basically if it says you can only get 120W from the lighter thats 10amps, if your needing more maybe look at installing a power plug straight to the battery..
 

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From the MAC specs the A/C adapter converts the AC power to 18.5 volts DC at 4.6 amps. This would be 85 watts which you stated. This is very close to the smaller inverters about. Cyber Power also has a 150W unit.

Might call these people up and tell them your problem (found it on the web, no connection to them). They seem to love MACs and sell inverters from them.

http://www.welovemacs.com/powerinverters.html

Or try to find a DC to DC converter that puts out required power. This might be move efficient energy conversion.

Don't know why the larger converter is not working. Try connecting something else to the inverter to see if it really works. If you have a voltmeter, might check output volts from inverter. There were some web posts about low AC voltage output on some inverters causing problems with the computers power adapter.
 

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2003 Corolla LE
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Discussion Starter · #10 ·
I've tested both with chargers in with other electrical items and in other cars. I used the smaller inverter with a cell phone. works fine. Also tried the smaller one in a 94 camry. works fine for both the cell phone and the laptop(but barely). I also used the larger inverter in a 94 suburban and the laptop charged fine.(of course I understand that's a much larger eletrical system but confirms the funcationality of the unit)

As far as dc to dc inverter, I'd love to get one, if they are available for my laptop. At least I've not found any.

Thanks though. :(
 

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07 Corolla
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I bought a cheap cyber power from best buy i paid $ 6 for but i had a discount, i worked there, normally about $ 19.00 they cost, it work great, it is cheap though so sometimes the fan is really loud and annoying.
 

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Discussion Starter · #13 ·
Just wanted to add also, when closing my power windows, if I hold the lever after the windows have closed I notice the headlights dimming a little.(noticed this the other night) anyone elses do that too?


another note, I did see a airplane power adapter that has another adapter that looks like a cigarette adapter plug at the apple store last week, but it was 59.99. a little too steep for my taste.
 
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the lights dimming after the window is shut is normal, has done it on every car I have owned with power windows. go to wal-mart to get an inverter. I got the black and decker for 29.99 and havent had any problems with it powering my laptop.
 

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Discussion Starter · #16 ·
ghost_ryder35 said:
the lights dimming after the window is shut is normal, has done it on every car I have owned with power windows. go to wal-mart to get an inverter. I got the black and decker for 29.99 and havent had any problems with it powering my laptop.
Thanks for the confirmation on the window effect. I thought it would be normal, but i'm running out of options and wanted to dispell that one doubt. As I stated I have a 500watt rayovac and it's still not working.

Thanks for all your help. I'll now have to try connecting the inverter directly to the battery. we'll see if that changes anything.:disappoin
 
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