Towbar Electric Socket Types
After deciding which type of tow bar you want fitted, you then need to decide which type of towing electrics you will need
There are 3 types of towing electric socket used in the UK. These are Single 7 Pin electrics (12N), Twin 7 Pin electrics (12N & 12S) and Single 13 Pin electrics.
The type of socket that you need depends on what you are towing.
Whether you are towing a large caravan, or just using your towbar for a cycle carrier, you will need some electrics fitted with your towbar.
Single 7 Pin socket and electrics 12(N)
Single 7 Pin Electric sockets and electrics also known as 12(N), are fitted as standard with any towbar.
Whether you are towing a caravan,a trailer or using the tow bar for a cycle carrier we recommend you will need a single 7 pin socket.
If towing a caravan the interior functions like internal lights, fridge, heating etc will not be powered this way, an adaptor would be needed if your caravan supports 13 pin adaptors.
As for using your tow bar for a cycle carrier you will need electrics for a light board that would go over the bikes.
Single 13 Pin socket and electrics
Simply put the 13 pin socket and electrics is the two 7 pin sockets put into one socket and has the same capabilities as Twin 7 Pin socket.
It is commonly used with detachable tow bars where there is not enough room to put the the 2 7 pin sockets behind the bumper.
Twin 7 Pin socket and electrics 12(S)
Twin 7 Pin Electric sockets and electrics is a 2 plug system which combines the single 7 pin 12N electrics socket with a 12S electrics socket.
Twin 7 Pin Electrics 12(S) are required for towbars towing caravans built before 2008.
The additional grey socket makes it able to power the interior functions of the caravan such as the interior lights, the fridge and is also able to charge the battery while you are towing.
This type of socket is no longer used for caravans built after 2008 in the UK.
Newer caravans now use the 13 pin standard socket.