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Old 02-14-2015, 12:50 PM   #1
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Question 13 Ford F150 - Trailer Brake Control - Testing communication without a trailer

I have a quick question. I have a 2013 Ford F150 that I plan to use to tow my first TT, a Jayco Jay Flight 23MB ( currently on order ). I have the tow package on my truck but it did not come with the OEM trailer brake control unit. After a little research, I found out that you can buy the units off eBay from Ford. I purchased the unit and installed it. The instructions then say to take the truck to Ford and have them activate the controller. I took my truck to Ford today and the mechanic said that he flashed the computer and setup the trailer brake controller but he didn't have a way to test it. He said to bring it back in once I got something hooked up to it if there were any issues.

The problem is I don't have anything to test it with at this point and when I go to pickup my TT it will be 2 hours away. I don't want to find out it's not working at the Jayco dealership. Here is my question. If any of you have the Trailer Brake Controller on your truck, is there any way you can check to see that controller is talking to the computer? I have seen some YouTube videos where you can set the gain but I don't know if they have a trailer hooked up. I just want to ensure that there is communication between the new TBC and the computer system. Any suggestions?
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Old 02-14-2015, 03:00 PM   #2
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I don't think that your Jayco Jay Flight 23MB will be ubsafe to drive home. Your truck with the toe haul package has a built in brake controller, not the same as the one you installed. When you push the button to activate the system it will assist you in stopping the truck and trailer. Be careful to adjust the new brake controller, not too much or too little braking You want the truck and trailer to brake together. I'm sure there are others who can explain this better then me. Good luck.
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Old 02-14-2015, 03:05 PM   #3
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I can't help you with the controller but I want to alert you that Ford does not install the relay and fuse necessary for the 12 volt charge line from the truck to the trailer. They do provide these items with a new truck. If they are not installed on your truck look for them in the glove box or other storage compartments. Your manual should show where these items need to be installed.
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Old 02-14-2015, 03:07 PM   #4
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ninjahbob View Post
I don't think that your Jayco Jay Flight 23MB will be ubsafe to drive home. Your truck with the toe haul package has a built in brake controller, not the same as the one you installed. When you push the button to activate the system it will assist you in stopping the truck and trailer. Be careful to adjust the new brake controller, not too much or too little braking You want the truck and trailer to brake together. I'm sure there are others who can explain this better then me. Good luck.
If you re-read his post his truck DID NOT come with the OEM controller. He purchased one through Ford on Ebay and installed it.
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Old 02-14-2015, 03:16 PM   #5
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I may be wrong but someone correct me if I am, I think you can take your truck to a local trailer place, maybe even U-HAUL, and they can plug a tester into your plug on the bumper. All it will do is test your brake and turn signal inputs to make sure they work. As far as setting your gain, you have to set that up with your trailer connected.

Just because your Ford dealer flashed the computer doesn't mean your good to go. Like Sailor said you still have to install a relay or fuse. With my Chevrolet 2500HD, When I purchased it new, I had the Heavy Duty Tow Package. The dealer still had to make one connection under the hood to get 12 Volts to the trailer connector on my bumper so my RV battery would charge while driving.

I believe "flashing" your computer just enables the display on your dash to now show the "Integrated Brake Controller" and its functions.

I hope I got this correct for you, if not someone will correct me.

Good Luck and Congrats on the new TT!!
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Old 02-14-2015, 03:45 PM   #6
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Squeeze the lever on the brake controller and a message should pop up on your dash stating that a trailer is not connected. This won't test the output but it'll let you know if the controller and the truck are communicating.
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Old 02-14-2015, 05:52 PM   #7
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Couldn't just use a volt meter to Brake of seven pin plug and see if it changes with the brake pedal and gain settings. Could also test the power Pin.
My Ford from the dealer was good to go, all pins in the seven pin plug worked properly.
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Old 02-14-2015, 09:17 PM   #8
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It is only the F150 that Ford does not install the relay and fuse for the charge line. The Super Duty comes from the factory with those items installed.
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Old 02-14-2015, 11:02 PM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by andrewe View Post
Squeeze the lever on the brake controller and a message should pop up on your dash stating that a trailer is not connected. This won't test the output but it'll let you know if the controller and the truck are communicating.
Excellent! This is what I was looking for!

I did install the fuse and the relay. Both came in the kit with the OEM controller.
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Old 02-15-2015, 08:33 AM   #10
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My 2011 F-150 came with the factory brake controller, so if your brake controller is from Ford, it should work the same as mine. If you insert the key and turn the ignition on (or to the "Accessory" mode), you should be able to access the dashboard screen display function, using the buttons on the steering wheel. Go to "Truck Apps", then scroll down to the "Trailer Settings" feature. It should say "Trailer Disconnected" (or something similar). If you press the "OK" button, you should be able to set up your trailer info even without the trailer connected. And if you can't set up your trailer info without the trailer connected, at least (if you can see the screen) you'll know the system is working.

Hope that helps!
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