Home Forums Modifications & Enhancements Replacing the DIN socket with a twin USB socket

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    • #686
      Maldwyn Roberts
      Participant

      Original DIN socket

      Wiring cover inside top cupboad

      New twin USB socket

      I noticed that quite a few people had queried what the extra DIN 12v socket (mine was positioned above the fridge/oven unit) was for, so I wondered if I could convert it into a USB socket as I had never used it as a 12v socket. This type of socket is used on BMW bikes and German motorhomes.

      A previous post mentioned that the Exsis’s sockets are based on standard C-Line sockets and my local caravan servicing centre in Porthmadog (Hamdden) stocked most of their range, so I purchased a twin USB socket for £19.99 (you can get them cheaper online) PO268 C-Line Twin USB socket, 2 x 5 volt 1.5 amp.

      After removing a plastic cover inside the top narrow cupboard I disconnected the two wires from the back of the DIN socket; using a narrow bladed knife or a hard plastic spatula carefully prise the metallic plastic surround frame away from the back wall; the socket is held in place with 4 screws; the C-Line USB socket has 2 small screwed inlets for the cables (old DIN socket had spade connectors); I found it easier to connect the cables before screwing the socket back in place; carefully push the silver frame back into place and replace the plastic cover inside the cupboard.

      Works perfectly and when connected to 12v it has a blue backlight – ideal to recharge your phones overnight.

      Original halogen roof lightbulbs

      Replacement LED bulb

      Whilst at Hamdden I bought 2 circular LED bulbs as replacements for the dim reading lamps in the ceiling above the bed – easy to fit, carefully prise off the silver surround and clean the glass, original lamps are a 2 pin fitting, fit the new ones and after carefully realigning the surround, push home.

      A lot brighter than the old bulbs – they were £5.99 each, but I’m sure one could find them cheaper online, 4304800 G4 Lamp 12 LED 12 volt.

      Both the C-Line products and the LED bulbs are from Pennine Leisure Supplies – lots of stuff on their website.

      Next project – replace the 2 downstairs spotlights with LED bulbs.

      • This topic was modified 3 years, 7 months ago by Maldwyn Roberts. Reason: Text editing
    • #693
      Barry & Maggie
      Moderator

      Great info, thanks Maldwyn.

      You really can tailor these ‘C’Line sockets to your individual requirements.

      My observations are that for frequently plugged/unplugged devices, or devices needed in the rear AND at the front, you are best using the cigar lighter plug/socket.  More-or-less permanently connected devices (like the TV) are better connected to the DIN-style socket, with the appropriate DIN plug of course! The reason is that cigar-lighter based sockets can allow the plug to vibrate loose, causing overheating cz whereas the DIN socket is a firm clip.

      I hadn’t realised that ‘C’Line USB sockets were available, so I have used cigar lighter USB plugs, and I also have a DIN to cigar lighter extension lead for versatility.

      It is also possible to add extra sockets to what is already fitted by Hymer.  The ‘C’Line range has a range of “frames” – single, double, treble, quadruple to which you can fit the sockets of your choice.  If you look in The Little Exsis Book, where I described moving my heating controls closer to the bed, you can see the ‘C’Line socket changes in action.

      Thanks again, Maldwyn, for letting us know about the USB sockets, and also the easy availability of these bulbs.  I’ve done mine the other way round to you… I’ve swapped the downstairs reading lights but not the gloomy ‘upstairs’ ones!

      Barry

    • #2254
      Tresjolie
      Participant

      For those challenged by DIY

      Tom

    • #2268
      Tresjolie
      Participant

      led

      • This reply was modified 2 years, 4 months ago by Tresjolie.
    • #2270
      Tresjolie
      Participant


      Amazon 4 for £9.99
      Tom

    • #2271
      Tresjolie
      Participant

      Thanks for the post on LED bought these 4 for £9.99. Clipped the terminals to get snug fit.

      Amazon link

      https://www.amazon.co.uk/gp/product/B00O6FMS64/ref=ppx_yo_dt_b_asin_image_o00_s00?ie=UTF8&psc=1

      Had a lot of problems trying to reply with photo and text

      Tom

      • This reply was modified 2 years, 4 months ago by Tresjolie.
    • #2278
      Happy Traveller
      Participant

      Thanks for this idea Maldwyn. I’ll be fitting one soon. In case someone doesn’t like the idea of losing this 12v 10amp socket and also doesn’t like the idea of using the van’s engine battery then don’t forget that many of us have another of these switches in our shower room cupboard. Mine’s out of normal lines of sight; and it is run off the leisure battery. In any case it may be more handy than the one in the cab.

       

      Keith

    • #2279
      Happy Traveller
      Participant

      Sorry – switch above should of course be socket.

       

      Keith

    • #2280
      Happy Traveller
      Participant

      Doubly sorry – for cupboard above please think not wardrobe but the shelved cupboard with the sliding door (where we keep our washbags), etc.

       

      Keith

    • #2281
      Barry & Maggie
      Moderator

      As far as I know, Keith, all the habitation ‘C’-Line sockets run off the leisure battery(ies) and the only sockets that run off the engine battery are those in the cab, which are not ‘C’-Line.

      It’s easy to test which battery any socket runs off.  Just disconnect the Earth from either the habitation or the engine battery, then try the socket… you’ll then know which battery is feeding it (or not!).

      One idea that I’ve had done is to connect the cab sockets to the hab batteries rather than the engine battery – that way, whatever is plugged into the cab sockets won’t ever deplete the engine battery – you’ll always be able to start the engine.

      Here are the various sockets, frames, surrounds in the ‘C’-Line range, where you can make up single, double, triple and more combinations…  https://tinyurl.com/wg4ykqb

    • #2282
      Happy Traveller
      Participant

      Hi Barry and everyone else

       

      Thanks for the excellent link, Barry. I shall take my time choosing after talking through my needs (potential and present) with my son.

       

      Returning to my point about the socket (mine is not C line) in my shower room cupboard. Of the 6 Exsis owners I’ve met 3 did not know of this socket. For each when I showed them they found a socket like mine – just a simple socket with a spring loaded cap. When I use it the friction of the cap on the plug keeps the plug in place even when it is slightly tugged.

       

      Wired to my leisure (your habitation) battery are these 2 sockets and all my lights bar one. My test to prove that they are wired to my leisure battery is easier than disconnecting an earth – I merely have to switch off the leisure battery circuits on the control panel Hymer fitted to my van!

       

      Again I can only reference my van but on it the 2 things that work without the control panel leisure battery switched on are the strip light above the side seat behind the driver and the step. The strip light switch is set beside the step switch low down just in through the door on the left. With the first production run of vans this was done so that having been away from the van all day and returning in the dark it would be possible to reach these 2 switches and they would work irrespective of whether or not the leisure battery switch is on or off. This was Hymer’s generous nod to safety. In later production runs a light was fitted above the entrance door which may have allowed them to wire other lights differently for those vans.

       

      I don’t want either to impress or bore anyone by constantly making references to my van. Some owners who are fairly new to their van may not know of the literally huge number of small changes made to these vans as Hymer strove to make them profitable. Thus it’s quite possible that some owners on reading of the 12v socket in my shower room cupboard will think that it could be useful to them and look in vain to find it should it have become part of Hymer’s cost cutting. This would be very frustrating. So I will always when referring to Hymer’s standard fittings on my van make it clear that that’s what I’m doing. It doesn’t mean it’s replicated on their van.

       

      Keith

    • #2283
      Barry & Maggie
      Moderator

      That’s excellent  thank you  Keith.  Yes, you’re right to be cautious about stating that anything is “certain” throughout the Exsis range!

      I’m not entirely certain that relying on the switch alone to actually disconnect the habitation battery is at all reliable.  I suspect that the light is connected alternatively to the habitation battery, just not via the switch.   But I could be wrong!

      Barry

    • #2286
      Happy Traveller
      Participant

      Hi again Barry

       

      Yes you’re right.

       

      I discovered the hard way about the strip light being connected directly to the leisure battery. At the 12 month point I took my van back to Brownhills for its first habitation service to protect the warranty. At the end of this service the strip light was left on and nobody noticed. Some time later I arrived to collect my van (it was necessary for my wife to be free as well to drive back our car – a round trip of 240 miles -hence not doing it immediately) and did the series of checks I do on my van after a service before I drive away. I found the leisure battery was flat. The panel switch for the 12v system was off. So why was the battery flat? I stayed with the electrician whilst he investigated. Very red faces when he found that this strip light was on. A sinking heart from me when they said “we will not replace your 2 leisure batteries” for we all know that running a battery absolutely flat shortens its life considerably. And that’s why this light is not connected to the engine battery  because one’s mobility is maintained when the leisure battery is flat but not so if it’s a flat engine battery.

       

      Keith

    • #2331
      Tresjolie
      Participant

      Step 1. Having problems putting multiple photos in one reply so going to do multiple replies 1 photo each

    • #2333
      Tresjolie
      Participant

      Step 2

    • #2334
      Tresjolie
      Participant

      Step 3. Problem: brown lead negative blue lead positive

    • #2337
      Tresjolie
      Participant

      Step 4. £12.99 from ebay. The web site won’t accept link with photo. I’m obviously doing something bad

      It’s a double socket 1 amp and 2.1 amp. Should I change the fuze from 10 amp to 5 amp ?

      Tom

      • This reply was modified 2 years, 4 months ago by Tresjolie.
    • #2339
      Tresjolie
      Participant

      https://www.ebay.co.uk/itm/12v-CBE-C-Line-Dual-Double-USB-Socket-Module-Charger-Campervan-Caravan-Motorhome/352504382096?ssPageName=STRK%3AMEBIDX%3AIT&_trksid=p2060353.m2749.l2649

      The spade terminals on the old socket fit the terminals on the usb module so very easy job. 1 Hour

      Tom

      • This reply was modified 2 years, 4 months ago by Tresjolie.
    • #2341
      Barry & Maggie
      Moderator

      Thanks, Tom – good info.

      I’m sorry, I don’t know what the problem is regarding posting multiple images in one post.  I’ll have to pass this over to my Son, Stephen.

      Barry

    • #2344
      Tresjolie
      Participant

      Hi Barry
      I’ve tried different browsers on my Mac and IPhone still can’t load multiple images and it restricts the amount of information I can post. I can’t determine whether the problem is your end or mine. It looks like a buffering problem to me.

      Tom

    • #2345
      Barry & Maggie
      Moderator

      I’ll pass that on to Stephen, Tom.  Too complicated for me!

      Thanks.

      Barry

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