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Old 11-20-2014, 10:40 AM   #1
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Trailer Brakes stopped working

I purchased a new 37' Jayco and the dealer installed a brake controller in my 97 F250. When I left the dealer the brakes worked. The first time I towed the trailer (2 months later) the brakes didn't work. I couldn't adjust the level and the brakes would not engage when applied. I returned to the dealer and they worked on them. They connected a test assembly and when I press the manual slides on the brake controller the truck tail lights come on. The brakes still don't work. Any ideas?

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Old 11-21-2014, 07:39 PM   #2
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Location: New Hampshire
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Luckily, since it's a new trailer, the brakes are under warranty. I blew the breaker under the hood of the truck once on the trailer brakes. I had left the Emergency brake on, and the trailer brakes were engaged the entire time I was lowering stabilizers and chocking the trailer wheels.

The ebrake caused a lot of current to flow through the brake controller, for too long of a time. Luckily, the breaker was an auto-resetting breaker once I shut down the ignition, and restarted the truck.

Craig T. Bailey
Hudson, NH
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Old 11-22-2014, 06:25 AM   #3
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Not knowing what type of truck you have, You need some good old fashioned trouble shooting to begin. First I would check the fuses under the hood of your truck. Some have separate fuses for braking voltage vs the light voltage.

Your dealer should be able to test this and quickly determine where the problem is located.
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Old 11-22-2014, 08:59 AM   #4
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Etrailer.com has some good troubleshoot info on trailer brakes.

My 2010 Ford F150 truck will not engage the trailer brakes by pushing in on the brake pedal unless I am moving at 10MPH. However using the BRAKE CONTROLLER LEVER it works fine. My FORD TRUCK has a separate RELAY and FUSE for the trailer brakes to be installed when you first buy your truck. These were in a plain unmarked plastic envelop in the glove box with no information as to what they were for... Without these two items installed the BRAKE MAGNETs don't work. It also means my FORD TRUCK ignition key has to be turned on before they work as well...

Each BRAKE MAGNET should draw around 3AMPs DC CURRENT when hit with 12VDC coming from the brake controller. You can measure this DC CURRENT with a clamp-on DC AMP METER (CRAFTSMAN SEARS) around the BRAKE CABLE feeding the BRAKE MAGNET.

Some Electric Brakes emits a low level TONE when being used. Others have used a campers compass next to the wheel and you can see the compass needle deflect when brake voltage has engaged the brake magnet.

Probably not a good idea towing your trailer without the required DOT BRAKE not working. Could drastically affect your insurance payoff if something happens....

Roy Ken
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