Automotive Relay Is An Electronically Operated Switch


In the most simple terms an automotive relay is an electronically operated switch. The type most commonly used in the automotive industry is an electro-mechanically operated switch. They are found in all types of vehicles - cars, trucks, vans, trailers and boats.

They employ an electromagnet device to mechanically manoeuvre a switch to make or break an electrical circuit. The type of relay most frequently used in the automotive industry is the small cube shaped unit known as a standard relay or a mini relay.

The most common application of automotive relays is to switch a high current circuit using a low current circuit. This application comes into play whereby an in-line switch does not have the capacity to handle the current required to switch a high current electrical system.

For example, this scenario could be observed during the operation of a set of high powered worklamps. If the worklamps are wired to light when the headlights are activated they could exceed the capacity of the existing loom set-up. An automotive relay can solve this problem.