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Author Topic: EVERYTHING Trailer Brake Controllers  (Read 249272 times)

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mcauto

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EVERYTHING Trailer Brake Controllers
« on: 06/29/03 12:00 PM »

My brake controller comes with a option to hook up a wire to the back-up lights. This will disable the trailer brakes when backing up. Can anybody tell me an easy spot to hook this wire up to?   THANKS
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AVid

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Re: EVERYTHING Trailer Brake Controllers
« Reply #1 on: 06/29/03 12:54 PM »

If you don't mind my asking.....what kind of controller do you have? I have been at this for a while (non-professional) and I have never heard of that option.

Electric trailer brakes don't work in reverse very well anyways. All you get is some drag from the brake pucks but no brake shoe contact. Maybe I can learn something new here!  :)
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MrBill

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Re: EVERYTHING Trailer Brake Controllers
« Reply #2 on: 06/29/03 03:17 PM »

Paging SS, We need your CD on wiring.
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ShapeShifter

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Re: EVERYTHING Trailer Brake Controllers
« Reply #3 on: 06/30/03 02:44 AM »

Hmmm... This is unusual, I've never heard of this before on the controller end, but then again, that's not saying much.

My understanding is that it's more common to have the reverse lights signal go directly to the trailer, and the brakes are disabled there, locally on the trailer. This is especially used with surge brakes, where the act of backing up would tend to set the brakes.

But to feed it to the controller, you need a signal from inside the cab. mcatuo: you don't say what year truck you have. I only have information on '02 wiring, so if you have an '03 it's very likely that this information is wrong. Furthermore, I have not tested this to see if it works, this information is only from reading the service manual.

Down by the driver's left foot is a relay/connector block, covered by a black plastic panel. The panel is held in place by a large hex shaped plastic thumbscrew. This is where the socket for the trailer brake controller resides. That socket (along with the plug/harness from GM) should give you everything you need, except the reverse lights signal. Also in this block, at the lower left position, is a large connector with several wires. One of these is a small light green wire, which should be the reverse lights signal you are seeking.

I would test it out with a volt meter or a small test lamp before cutting/splicing that wire.

-- SS

mcauto

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Re: EVERYTHING Trailer Brake Controllers
« Reply #4 on: 06/30/03 07:56 AM »

 I got the controller about 3 years ago. It worked great in my old dead Ford. The name on the control is POWERSTOP model #500-PS.
 I am pulling a 25' long car trailer and it does not have back-up lights on it. Although I am thinking about installing some on it to help backing up at night.
 I do own a '02 So hopefully this information will help me.
 Thanks for the help SS I should be wiring this weekend.
Mike
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mcauto

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Re: EVERYTHING Trailer Brake Controllers
« Reply #5 on: 07/03/03 01:43 PM »

 Guess I won't be wiring this weekend, The shop called and said my stroker moter is ready for pick up, So I'll be working in the garage putting the moter in the 64 Chevy and of course breaking it in on the road.
 
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CraigF

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Re: EVERYTHING Trailer Brake Controllers
« Reply #6 on: 06/04/03 04:16 AM »

I did a search and couldn't find the answer...

I need to rent a Bobcat loader.  Bobcat of St. Louis will give me a trailer for transport free with the rental, but it has electric brakes.  

What do I need in my Av to control these brakes?  It's going to cost me $160 round trip to have the Bobcat delivered--I'd rather pick it up if I can.

Any ideas?

BTW, the two Bobcat's that I'm looking at are 2700lbs and 3700lbs...I may go with the bigger one of these.

Craig

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n8wrl

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Re: EVERYTHING Trailer Brake Controllers
« Reply #7 on: 06/04/03 04:24 AM »

Well, if your Av has the trailering package, there is a jack on the back of your truck. If the trailer has electric brakes (or any lighting at all, for that matter) it will have a cable with some sort of plug on it. My guess it will either be the 7-pin 'spade' plug or 6-pin. If it's the 7-pin you should just be able to plug it in. If it's the 6-pin you'll need an adapter.

As for brake controllers, I think your best bet is the Prodigy. They can be found for $100-130 and can usually be ordered with the harness you need (plug on one end for the controller and on the other for your specific truck - the year is important as 2003 and 2002 are different). You'll have to order it unless you have a local RV dealer that carries it.

My 2003 came with the fuse installed - not sure if the 2002's did or not.

Hope that helps...

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CraigF

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Re: EVERYTHING Trailer Brake Controllers
« Reply #8 on: 06/04/03 05:41 AM »

n8wrl,

Thanks for the info.  Where does the controller plug in?  Mine is a 2003 with trailering package...

Craig
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Alaska_AV.

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Re: EVERYTHING Trailer Brake Controllers
« Reply #9 on: 06/04/03 04:09 PM »

Another route to go is to tow it without the trailer breaks. I've towed this with my Z-71 with no problems. Go slow[er] and easy. Sure it takes longer to stop but nothing unreasonable. I went about 75mi with it. A double Axel trailer with just correct hit of tung weight, she will do fine. If she sways side to side move the bobcat fwd.

example [not a real example]

sway at 40 move weight fwd 1 foot
sway at 55 move weight  fwd 6 inches
sway at 75 kiss, ass good by  :4:

If you plan to tow allot, by all means get equipped.


« Last Edit: 06/04/03 04:10 PM by Alaska_AV. »
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CraigF

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Re: EVERYTHING Trailer Brake Controllers
« Reply #10 on: 06/05/03 05:52 AM »

Alaska Av,  thanks for the info.

What was the lifting capacity of that bobcat?  I was give a rental price on two different models that my truck could tow.  One could lift 500lbs , the other 750lbs.  He originally quoted me on the 1950lbs capacity 'cat, but said I'd need a 3/4 ton truck for it.

I don't think they'll let me use their trailer without the brake controller.

I may be taking another route anyway....I have someone coming out on Sunday to look at my yard and give me a quote to do the work for me.   I figure I'd be spending $300+ for bobcat rental with delivery, $230 for dumpster rental, plus all my own labor.  If he comes in around $800 for the job, he's hired, and my back will be thankful.  If it is much more than that, back to the drawing board....

Craig
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n8wrl

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Re: EVERYTHING Trailer Brake Controllers
« Reply #11 on: 06/05/03 08:16 AM »

Under the dash just above and to the right of the parking break is a 'black box' with a nut on the front. Unscrew it and plug the connector in. I don't recall exactly where, but there was only one way it would fit and the connector that came with the prodigy (ordered with it specific to 2003 Av) had a diagram. There may even be one in the manual.
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Alaska_AV.

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Re: EVERYTHING Trailer Brake Controllers
« Reply #12 on: 06/05/03 03:22 PM »

I'm not sure the lifting capacity, but I think it was rated at 95 horse power. The rental joint rented me the trailer also. With all the equipment I rent, I just about have the yard guy convinced his next truck will be an AV ;D
My old F-150 had half the towing capacity this AV has. about 3500lb.  that sucked

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First you'll lose your mind
and then any free cash laying around
Then mods will bloat your credit limits
You'll be like a crack addict, refinancing your home..
You'll cry yourself to sleep,stuff like, must get new rims.
Important questions like, polished or chrome. will shadow you daily


I'm Jon, and my Wife is an Avalanche widow..
Nationals 2007 and 2008 good times

http://alaskaav.mybru

Y-Guy

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Re: EVERYTHING Trailer Brake Controllers
« Reply #13 on: 05/20/03 06:18 PM »

Great brake controller for a great price, this was posted on PopUpTimes and few people have ordered them and said the company is a good company to deal with shipping was about $8.00 or less, one guy got it for $5.40.  So of course I had to share the deal with the Av owners too!

http://www.rvwholesalers.com/

If you are considering upgrading to one now is the time.  I know I love towing with my Prodigy wouldn't use any other controller now.
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Traz

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Re: EVERYTHING Trailer Brake Controllers
« Reply #14 on: 05/21/03 12:08 AM »

 I got about the same price recently from Rjays.  It was $106, but included shipping.  Actually a little cheaper for most if you add shipping to the other one.  Plus if you buy a harness the shipping is free on that also.  Was very pleased with service from Rjays too.
Traz
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Wiki

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Re: EVERYTHING Trailer Brake Controllers
« Reply #15 on: 05/11/03 07:11 AM »

A while back, I hooked up my brake controller and all was well.  I adjusted the brake sensitivity, and was off towwing without a problem.  I have been towwing for 4 weeks now without a glitch.  Well, now when I hit my brakes while towwing, I get nothing.  The display reads that the trailer is not connected.  I have all my lights, brake lights, blinkers......everything on the trailer works.  I went out and bought a new controller, and the same thing is happening with it....no brakes.  Does anybody have any ideas?   I never installed a fuse under the hood, but I did have brakes.  I could even lock up the trailer tires if I wanted to!  Any help would be appreciated.

Wiki
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MrBill

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Re: EVERYTHING Trailer Brake Controllers
« Reply #16 on: 05/11/03 08:08 AM »

Where do I start.

Lots of things can go wrong.
First I would start by checking all the fuses. I know which one? Well i do not have the layout, maybe SS can help.
Second I would look at the wires under your trailer for the brakes. I had one that was loose and I lost all the brakes on the trailer. Remember to make sure the contacts are clean. As for the trailer plug, I would use a test light to see if there is power to the plug. If there is power to the plug then your fuses are good. I would then look at the wiring on the trailer. Pull the wheels of the trailer and look at the wires by the brakes.

Well I hope this helps. I know it can be a pain, but you have to go on with a plan of attack.

Sorry i wrote this quick because i am leaving on a trip.
« Last Edit: 05/11/03 08:10 AM by MrBill »
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Wiki

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Re: EVERYTHING Trailer Brake Controllers
« Reply #17 on: 05/11/03 08:38 AM »

Well, I pulled the emergency pin out of the battery on the trailer and the brakes did lock up like they are suppose to.  That leads me to believe that everything on the trailer is fine as far as brake wire connections.  My question is would I get power to the controller and NOT the trailer brakes if a fuse were blown?  I never installed a fuse, but had brakes before!!  

Wiki
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scubajeff

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Re: EVERYTHING Trailer Brake Controllers
« Reply #18 on: 05/11/03 09:56 AM »

Check the fuses. I believe there is one under the hood in the fuse box that has a major role with towing. I had a similar problem last week. Found out the metal pins (contacts) on the connector plug for the trailer were corroded (oxidized). I cut down a fine nail file to fit in the holes for the pins and used a q-tip and some rubbing alcohol to clean them. Once I did that all was well.
Hope this helps.

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Wiki

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Re: EVERYTHING Trailer Brake Controllers
« Reply #19 on: 05/11/03 01:54 PM »

Check the fuses. I believe there is one under the hood in the fuse box that has a major role with towing. I had a similar problem last week. Found out the metal pins (contacts) on the connector plug for the trailer were corroded (oxidized). I cut down a fine nail file to fit in the holes for the pins and used a q-tip and some rubbing alcohol to clean them. Once I did that all was well.
Hope this helps.

I will try this.  I looked at the pins and they did look a bit dirty for a new trailer.  The plug usually lays on the ground.  Thanks for the info.  

Wiki
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2M3Bill

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Re: EVERYTHING Trailer Brake Controllers
« Reply #20 on: 05/12/03 02:36 AM »

Check the fuse for the tail and brake lights.  If it blows it will cause your problem.  I had a Tahoe that did that so often that I put a circuit breaker in that circuit instead of a fuse.


Bill
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Wiki

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Re: EVERYTHING Trailer Brake Controllers
« Reply #21 on: 05/13/03 08:57 AM »

Well, the AV checked out just fine.  Everything on her is where she should be and working.  By the way, you don't need a fuse in std#1 to get power for your brakes like was previously thought.  

I have a Haulmark trailer, and all connections are done with those crip style connectors that have the flap of plastic that folds over the crimp and locks.  I hope you know which ones I am talking about.  Well, Haulmark uses about 100 of these things on their trailer wire setup and after checking about 20 of them......crawling back out and checking the brakes......crawling back under.....back out.....back under.....I finally found the one that had the bad connection.  

One crimp....



One freaking crimp....

:8:

Oh well, at least I know how my entire trailer wire system is run from the battery to the tailight of the trailer :4:

Wiki
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SovereignMgmt

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Re: EVERYTHING Trailer Brake Controllers
« Reply #22 on: 05/13/03 09:04 AM »

Wiki:

I to have a haulmark trailer.  I replaced all the crimp connectors with soldered connections then heat srunk the solder joints.

Think about it.  It is just going to get worse with age.
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kevare

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Re: EVERYTHING Trailer Brake Controllers
« Reply #23 on: 05/07/03 12:21 PM »

This may get long, please bear with me.  I hooked up a Tekonsha Sentinal brake controller (I know I know,shoulda got the prodigy).  I then connected the trailer up to test the wiring and everything seemed to work.  I haven't towed yet.  Anyway, since then, the lights on the Tekonsha seemed to flash different when applying the brake.  I looked it up in the trouble shooting guide and it says that I either have a direct short, excessive current request, or poor ground connection to tow vehicles battery.  I've checked the wires to see if they came loose and they haven't.  

Another thing that I noticed is that the headlight switch will not turn to the off selection.  It will only go as far as auto.  The other headlight selections work fine.

I'm guessing I need to check the ground.  Dunno how.

Any guidance will be GREATLY appreciated.
Sincerely, lost.
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kevare

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Re: EVERYTHING Trailer Brake Controllers
« Reply #24 on: 05/08/03 01:30 PM »

Please skip the part in the prior note about the headlights.  That's how it is supposed to work.  Duh! :2:  I did redo one of the wire connections but it didn't help.  Also checked the fuses and they are ok.  I'll do more checking tomorrow.  Maybe Sat I'll try to trade the electronic brake in for a Prodigy.  Who knows.  

Any other ideas? ???
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