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Open Roads Forum  >  Travel Trailers  >  General Q&A

 > Trailer brake advice

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SailorGuy

WA

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Posted: 08/31/20 06:00pm Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

Hi

Just purchased a 2015 Outdoor RV 20FQ (4400 dry/6200 GVW). I need to tow it home (35 miles). I currently have a 2008 F150 V8 pickup which I will replace next month with a newer truck. Current F150 has factory tow package (hitch, 7pin, transmission cooler and 36 gallon gas tank) but no trailer brake controller.

I don’t want to tow the trailer home without trailer brakes but I don’t want to spend a lot of money on the truck since I will be selling it next month. One option I found was the Curtis 7pin plug in trailer brake controller which uses an iPhone app to configure the controller. Anyone have any experience with this product?

Alternatively I could have the local hitch shop install an after market controller at a cost of $300 to $400. I’m pretty handy. Could I buy a controller at Amazon and install it myself? How hard is it to install?

The trailer seller is including the WDH he used to pull the trailer so he and I will set this up when I pick up the trailer.

I rented a similar trailer last month for a week and used the rental companies WDH and wireless brake controller since my truck doesn’t have a trailer brake controller. The rental trailer towed fine.

Advice/recommendations?

TIA
SailorGuy

Lwiddis

Camping near Pearsonville, CA

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Posted: 08/31/20 06:04pm Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

“I don’t want to tow the trailer home without trailer brakes but I don’t want to spend a lot of money on the truck since I will be selling it next month.”

As long as you don’t hit or kill anyone on your way home, including yourself, it is a go to drive without trailer brakes. Glad to hear you’ll be level with the WDH. Form over substance.


Winnebago 2101DS TT & 2020 Chevy Silverado 1500 LTZ Z71, 300 watts solar-parallel & MPPT, Trojan T-125s. TALL pole for flags. Prefer USFS, COE, BLM, NPS, TVA, USF&WS, state & county camps. Bicyclist! 14 year Army vet - 11B40 then 11A - (MOS 1542 & 1560)


opnspaces

San Diego Ca

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Posted: 08/31/20 06:34pm Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

You absolutely can do it yourself, it's easy.

For a tow home buy the cheapest time based controller you can find. The install is pretty much plug and play. Here's a $37 controller plus a $15 pig tail to plug it into the truck.

Link

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Mark and Linda

Smyrna, Tennessee

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Posted: 08/31/20 06:57pm Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

My truck is a 2007 Chevrolet Silverado. I bought it used and later bought a Puma 25RS. I ordered a Prodigy P2 Brake Controller from Etrailer. I drilled the mounting holes in the dash and then plug it into the truck circuit board, no problem. I set the controller up myself...

On the WDH...when I bought my trailer they set up the hitch...when I got it home I redone it after I had my trailer loaded. I did have to tweak it after pulling it on the highway. I did it myself...several years ago.

guidry

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Posted: 09/01/20 05:14am Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

Another option is to ask your RV dealer if there is one you could borrow. When I got my 5th wheel in my new truck I had the old Prodigy and gave it to the owner and asked if he would give it to a young couple buying their first RV. Two years later I had work done and the tech mentioned putting in a Prodigy that an owner had given. Doesn't hurt to ask to just borrow one.

Seon

Lake Camanche, CA

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Posted: 09/01/20 06:08am Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

Prodigy sells a wireless controller that you can move from one TV to another.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=EL14jjqLB5g

* This post was edited 09/01/20 06:49am by Seon *

JRscooby

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Posted: 09/01/20 07:14am Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

Lwiddis wrote:

“I don’t want to tow the trailer home without trailer brakes but I don’t want to spend a lot of money on the truck since I will be selling it next month.”

As long as you don’t hit or kill anyone on your way home, including yourself, it is a go to drive without trailer brakes. Glad to hear you’ll be level with the WDH. Form over substance.


I hope this is tongue in cheek. Without trailer brakes, that 150 is likely to be overloaded by about 250-300%. And by the OP I would bet the driver has no experience driving with heavy load.

Am I the only one who's phone sometimes drops calls. Or who sometimes needs to push button more than once to turn down the TV with remote? What the sam hill is the deal with "got to have wireless" for everything? If I want to stop, I want the brakes to work. If I need to STOP!, truck any wireless snot in that system.
OP, get a good controller wire it up right. When you get your new truck, move the controller. Not brain surgery.

Fisherman

Angus, Ontario, Canada

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Posted: 09/01/20 08:06am Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

Am I the only one who's phone sometimes drops calls. Or who sometimes needs to push button more than once to turn down the TV with remote? What the sam hill is the deal with "got to have wireless" for everything? If I want to stop, I want the brakes to work. If I need to STOP!, truck any wireless snot in that system.
OP, get a good controller wire it up right. When you get your new truck, move the controller. Not brain surgery.

Amen, for things like brake controllers, I believe in hard wired. Most trucks have a connector prewired to attach brake controllers under the dash by the fuse box. You can also buy the required connector for newer trucks separately so you can move the controller from one truck to another like JR said. Its not brain surgery, but some need it.

soon2bexpat

roaming the South West

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Posted: 09/01/20 08:44am Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

I've been using the Curt Bluetooth since 10/19 and I am a full-timer. Works flawlessly.

If you were to lose signal, it still works your brakes at the last setting you used.


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Lwiddis

Camping near Pearsonville, CA

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Posted: 09/01/20 09:17am Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

"I hope this is tongue in cheek."

Absolutely tongue in cheek, JR. Driving a heavy trailer without brakes is CRAZY dangerous for everyone. An uncle tried pulling a boat and trailer without brakes...he was lucky not hurting anyone when he couldn't stop at a red light.

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