Accessories to Improve Comfort in Your Vehicle

Now a days, modern cars come with many different accessories that in the past were not included. For example, GPS, Back view camera for when going in reverse, some come with integrated cooler/heaters, etc.

Some ad-ons you can buy separately are simple, but desirable enough to have them in your car. Examples are below:

GPS

The GPS is a must for everyday life. It takes you to any address anywhere without hassle. It even calculate the fastest route based on traffic and you can filter things like tolls to avoid tolls (as much as possible) in your way to your destination. GPS systems are integrated now a days in every cell phone and there are many applications for it, but if you want it fixed in your car and be able to use your phone freely you may get an automotive GPS system as an accessory and it comes with mounting kits and everything to make it easier.

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Heated Mug

Heated mugs for cars are accessories that keep beverages like coffee, tea or any other liquid at a desirable hot temperate. It plugs in your car’s cigarette lighter socket and heats liquids as long as the engine is running, unless your car has a cigarette lighter socket that is on all the time, as it happens in some Kia models. Some heated mugs have temperature control to suit even more your taste for the beverage.

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Coolers

A cooler for using in cars, or better yet, a cooler/warmer is an accessory which comes in many sizes. It comes as small as a lunch box and can cool or heat a couple of cans of beverages like soft drinks and it comes as large as a small fridge. It will depend on your needs. The small fridge sized one is excellent for picnics. Cooler/Warmers for cars can go as low as 45 degrees F and as high as 140 degrees F, which is great for a portable system. Like the mug mentioned above, these units also come with a plug for the car cigarette lighter socket. Many come also with a connection for charging your cellphone.

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Lights

There are a vast range of LED lights for cars, either for the interior as decoration or for the exterior, as the headlights, tail lights, license plate lights, etc. The thing about LEDs is first of all, their way lower electrical consumption compared to regular lights (incandescent or even fluorescent), their extremely long life, the many colors available and lately, LEDs can now out-power traditional light in luminescence.

For interior decoration, there comes the LED replacement light bulb for the courtesy and dome lights, for which you may choose different colors other than white. Also there are the LED strips that you plug into the cigarette lighter socket or hook directly with a switch to the car’s electrical system. Many models can change colors and patterns. Although these are merely for decoration, they are beautiful and the dome light replacements, for example, can illuminate the interior of your car more than the factory installed light.

For exterior lights, our favorites are the LED headlights. These are so bright that you can see the difference in the first night drive after installing it. These lights are commonly categorized in lumens (radiation power) and color-temperature (relative color of light produced).

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Power Inverters

Power inverters are equipment that converts the 12 vdc or your car to 120 vac for powering small domestic appliances. These are sold by how many watts it produces and that is an important number that you will need to have in mind when wanting to buy a power inverter or wanting to power an appliance in one of those.

There are two types of inverters when it comes to the signal it generates; the modified sine way output and the pure sine wave output. It refers to the shape of the wave of the current it generates and how much it resembles the current coming out of a wall outlet (high quality). The pure sine wave inverter is the best quality of those two (more expensive too) and are a must for powering sensitive electronics. While the modified sine wave are less expensive and the quality is somewhat less, as its wave is a combination of square levels to resemble a sine wave, it will not be a problem for the rest of the appliances (not sensitive). For example, a fan will power up with both inverter types, but you will hear a low pitched buzz when powered with a modified sine wave inverter. If the sound does not bother you, this will not harm at all the fan or the inverter.

Some inverters (low powered) come with a cigarette lighter socket plug to power it and some others will need to be wired directly to the car’s battery. Inverters up to 200 watts can be powered from the cigarette lighter socket. More than that will blow the fuse that protects this connection in the car. Inverters exceeding 200 Watts, like a 500 Watts inverters, it is common that it comes with both, the car cigarette lighter plug and wires for direct connection to the battery, depending on how much power you will consume out of it.

You may power up laptops, desktop computers, cell phones, coffee makers and many others. We have even powered up a microwave oven, but that was with a 1000 watts pure sine wave inverter, wired directly to the car’s battery.

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Some other ideas are scents, cellphone mounts, floor mats, dash cams, seat covers, steering wheel covers, sun shades and more.

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