Driver Knowledge Tests

What are Anderson plugs?

An Anderson plug is a way to connect higher amperage cabling and is often used on vehicles for:

  • Supplying power to a tail lift on a truck
  • Powering a trailer or caravan while being towed
  • Replacing cigarette lighter-style connectors with something more durable (e.g. for an internal fridge)
  • Connecting a solar panel to a battery

The moulded, heavy-duty male and female plugs will only connect one way so there’s no chance of reversing the positive and negative cables. They are sturdy and can carry at least 50 amps, and up to 300+ amps, depending on the model. The plastic housing of the Anderson plug contains two terminals which can be connected to the cable either by flood soldering or crimping.

Different colours are available to help you distinguish between different uses – usually black, grey and red. This is useful if you have one plug to power a tail lift and another to power a fridge unit, for example.

Anderson plugs sometimes come with a screw-in handle to help remove them, and dust boots to cover the connector when not in use.

Anderson plugs on the back of a prime mover. One has been covered in shrink wrap to make it more durable

Anderson plugs are capable of carrying more current than a 12-pin connector.

Darren is an expert on driving and transport, and is a member of the Institute of Advanced Motorists

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