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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Now I know this maybe a silly question, but if you want to use the auxiliary 12v power point in the dash, can it still be used while it’s rain, ie with a usb plug. The reason I ask, I watched a YouTube video of a guy riding I think a KTM, with a usb plunged in a 12v socket in his dash, charging his phone, in the rain! I thought that wasn’t possible, as it would short out, but I’m hoping it is, as I’d like to charge my iPhone, in its waterproof case!

Was he just chancing his luck, or is their a solution?
 

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It really depends on quite a few things. H2O itself is non-conductive. It's all the ions in the water that's the problem!

I can say from experience on KLR that my Garmin nuvi no longer works due to prolonged use in the rain, and that the 12v socket I used to power it also no longer works. The socket isn't from shorting out but from corrosion, and I think would be okay if I cleaned it up. In general, I think it will cause problems for you eventually unless it was designed for water and marine environments. Try carrying a power bank that you can charge when it's not raining, and use it to charge things when it is raining.
 

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I'm going to add a couple of USB ports to my bike, I've used them before to keep my phone charged while using GPS navigation. My phone will sometimes inform me that it has detected moisture in the plug and will therefore suspend charging, but I can still keep going for a couple of hours and swapping to another cable is usually enough to get it charging again.

My new favourite USB sockets: https://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B0772QD87Z/ref=oh_aui_detailpage_o04_s00?ie=UTF8&psc=1
My mounting system for 2 of them (while also having the accessory socket in the normal place: https://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B06XT3NFF3/ref=oh_aui_detailpage_o00_s00?ie=UTF8&psc=1
That USB socket is QC3, this means that my phone can charge faster than the GPS drains it. I've had a 2.1A 5V socket that the phone failed to charge fast enough from, causing the phone to die after 3-4 hours of riding, but this QC3 socket has been fine, with the phone holding solidly at 100% while navigating. The Voltage & amperage readout is really useful too - I can see the voltage of my battery and the amperage lets me know if the phone has stopped charging for any reason. I have had the phone stop charging due to moisture in the plug or a bad cable with a break, I can't always make out the tiny charging symbol on the phone.

BTW: It does pay to use a phone that is waterproof or at least weather resistant. My Samsung S7 Edge has been good in pouring rain and the display is still visible in strong sunlight. I am using a RAM Mount and X-Grip holder to mount the phone.
 

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Yes most of the time if you are riding and ride through rain, even if it's for several hours I'll get to the next fuel stop and the usb ports are all still dry. If I stop and I'm under rain (and not a gas station roof) I'll unplug and close the weatherproof rubber cover thing. If you live in a place where it does rain often the usb ports will die from corrosion after a couple seasons, but they're only like $5 on amazon and take 2 minutes to change out if you leave them semi loose in the socket rather than screwing them in from the back.

Edit: I don't have the 12v factory power outlet, I just use a cheapo "weatherproof" double usb port that I put in the factory 12v outlet location.
 

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I have the OEM 12v outlet installed. There is a rubber cap for when not in use. There is a small drain hole in the bottom of the outlet as well.
 
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