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Old 05-12-2014, 08:33 AM   #1
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No Trailer Brakes

After sitting for 2+ years, getting my '06 Jay Feather 29N road worthy- wanted to check the trailer brakes. Nothing, when manually working the brake controller. Brake controller display shows all ok, all trailer lights, etc, working ok as far as electrical connections go. The trailer battery is dead, but shouldn't have anything to do with the brakes while hooked to truck.
Any thoughts?
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Old 05-12-2014, 08:40 AM   #2
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Not sure where you have it sitting, but anything that sits for too long around my house draws critters that liek to chew through wires. Had a squirrell or mouse or something chew the wires on my utility trailer and my john boat trailer. Just a guess.
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Old 05-12-2014, 08:53 AM   #3
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yes, could be a chewed wire or a dirty connection. Make sure the ALL of the connectors are clean as well. A little corrosion will wreak havoc with things functioning correctly.

Also, most trucks have a fuse that sends power to the rear for e-brakes. Make sure it's not blown and even in the slot.
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Old 05-12-2014, 09:31 AM   #4
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This may seem silly, but do you have the gain cranked up on the brake controller?
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Old 05-12-2014, 09:44 AM   #5
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I need to check the paperwork on the controller, but haven't fooled with anything since it was last used. Another thing I need to check is when hooked up to my truck, if I hear the brakes 'click' when applying the brake pedal. If not, I've got an older vehicle I used to use that still has a controller in it- I'll try that one too to see if the brakes are getting the signal. If so, my controller may be the culprit.
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Old 05-12-2014, 10:00 AM   #6
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How are you checking your trailer brakes. The wheel have to rotate over 1/4th travel to engage the electric brake mechanism when activated.

A quick check using a compass will swing in the direction of the brake assy if you apply your brakes and see if the magnet coil is working. Each brake magnet will pull 3AMPS when 12VDC is applied if you have a clamp-on DC AMPMETER.

My brake magnets make a low tone when they working. I have to get my ear down pretty close the wheel to hear it.

I also squirt WD-40 into the 7-way connector on the truck and move it around to make to make sure my connections are being made. I do this everytime I hookup actually.

Keep in mind it is a DOT REGULATION to have a working battery on your trailer going down public roadways if you have electric brakes installed. This DOT safety feature is there to activate the electric brakes in the situation where your trailer becomes disconnected from your truck and will stop your runaway trailer.

Might also affect your trailer insurance coverage if needed...

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Old 05-13-2014, 12:44 PM   #7
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Hooked it up and drove it down a 80yd. long level gravel driveway while manually applying the controller all the way- didn't slow it down at all. I didn't use the truck brake except to full stop, back it up and try it again. Nothing, twice.
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Old 05-14-2014, 06:35 AM   #8
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IF not broken wires near the drums then check for corrosion on the trailer plug..
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Old 05-14-2014, 03:05 PM   #9
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Our 99' 242 would have intermittant brake problems after sitting the winter. It would sometimes take several miles of travel before they would start to work. I suspect that the magnet is about warn out in the brake assemblys and with a little rust inside the drum, it may not be able to engauge right away. Once i can get it to work, they seem to work fine the rest of the season.
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