This blog has been truncated; see the original full blog at: Trail Tacoma
A STEP-BY-STEP DIY GUIDE TO ADDING CONSTANT 12V POWER TO YOUR 2ND OR 3RD GEN TACOMA
Camera Gear? Fridge? Blow-Dryer? Drone? PlayStation? All stuff that we need to keep fully charged!
The OEM power outlet in the bed and the cigarette lighter adapter in the cab isn’t always the easiest to use. I wanted to be able to power up a fridge and charge my essentials while I’m on a trip. Some other external batteries, power stations, and solar generators like Goal Zero, Dometic, and Jackery might not always be the best solution for everyone’s setups. They’re all solid products, but it ultimately depends on your personal needs, and, for some, constant 12V power is a better solution.
I needed to be able to charge my electronics off of my battery regardless of whether the car is on or off. How many toys you can charge at the same is also dependent on your battery, so make sure you know what you’re working with because I wouldn’t recommend charging stuff on the stock battery alone when the truck is off. That has the high potential to leave you stranded.
WHY I CHOSE THE WAGAN TECH PURE LINE 400
I wanted to be able to run my fridge efficiently, charge some items when the truck was off, and run a couple of lights while I was at camp. For anyone wondering, yes, I do have an upgraded group 31 AGM battery. This battery is much better than the OEM battery and it allows me to run my fridge for almost 2 days while the truck is off.
Wagan Tech is known to have great products across the board, and after talking with their representatives, they told me their Pure Line (Pure Sine Waves) inverter was going to be the best for my application.
The Wagan Tech Pure Line series offers a clean, pure sine wave while retaining a smaller size.
400 continuous watts means that you can run your appliances and charge items with ease. Pure Sine allows electronics to run cooler, due to less cycling, cleaner all with less noise. Additionally, not all electronics can run on a modified sine wave like they can on pure sine. If you want clean and smooth power, this inverter is for you!
For example, Wagan Tech inverters can run a full 24 hours on a full 400-watt load while cheaper competition will lose continuous wattage after 20-30 minutes. Wagan Tech builds its inverters with high peak surges that allow 3x continuous rating to support high surging appliances such as tools, microwaves, air conditioners, and refrigerators. Wagan Tech inverters also use top quality components and reliable MOSFET transistors; a key factor in reliable inverter manufacturing.
The Pure Line 400 Specifications
- (2) Three Prong ground fault protected AC outlets
- 2.1A USB Power Port
- Ground Fault
- Error Lights
- Solid Mounting Feet
- Negative 12V Battery Terminal
- Positive 12V Battery Terminal
- Cooling Fan
- Grounding Terminal
STEP-BY-STEP INSTALLATION GUIDE
The map to the installation is as follows:
- Battery > Circuit Breaker > Anderson Connectors > Inverter
We had so many leftover parts that we decided to simultaneously do it on two Tacomas! A 2nd Gen and a 3rd Gen.
The length of the cable is totally up to you, I just made sure that it was long enough to reach my back seat where the inverter is going to be mounted. If you need it shorter (front cab access) or farther back (like in the back of the bed), make sure you have enough slack on both sides to have room to work with.
Here is the backside of the inverter. Just like the battery to Anderson wires were created, you can connect the wires to ring terminals to now attach the wiring to the inverter itself.
You now have full-time 12V power!
FINISHED PRODUCT & FINAL THOUGHTS
As you can see here, the whole system is now connected and I will be able to use this inverter to power anything in the cab, even when the truck is off. I plan to mount it to a 40 percent Goose Gear Seat Delete that I am currently waiting for.
It might look a bit messy, but there is just enough slack to mount the inverter anywhere in the back. Once it is properly mounted, it will look super clean.
This is an inexpensive way for anyone to get power to a certain part of their vehicle. I decided to do the Wagan Tech Pure Line 400 because of the type of accessories I wanted to run in the back of the vehicle. If I ever decide to change the end device all I have to do is make another connector for that, I do not have to remove all the wiring from the battery to start over. Wiring is one of my least favorite mods to actually perform but this install was much easier than expected.
I often try to make sure what I install on the truck is simple and easy to troubleshoot, I think having disconnects on the main power source like this is definitely a plus.