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Facts about Trailer Brake Controllers that You Should Know

It could have been better if all towing companies have trailers installed with the best brake control systems. This is actually beneficial to towing companies because customers or clients will trust them knowing that their load will be safe. Therefore, a great advantage for towing companies to earn a good reputation.

A brake controller is an Original Equipment Manufacturer or an OEM device installed or mounted in a towing vehicle. Most of these devices are located under the dashboard, where it will be easier for the driver to reach. You will find them connected with blue wires for trailer feed, white wires for ground, red wires for brake switch and black wires for battery power.

Various types of previous and current Brake Controllers

Air-actuated Electric Brake Controller

An air pressure and pneumatic brake on the vehicle’s brake system is used, sending current that controls the trailer’s electric brakes.

Hydraulic Over Electric Controller

Hydraulic pressure with hydraulic brake is used on the trailer brake system, sending current and controlling the trailer’s electric brake system.

Pedal-Mounted Pressure Pad Proportional Controller

A sensor is installed separately on the pedal that leads to the controller.

Proportional Brake Controller

A device, such as a pendulum is used to sense the deceleration of the towing vehicle. And then, current is sent and applied to control the brake the trailer. Here, you control how soft or hard you make on your brake system. So, if you do it with more force, then it will be sent to the trailer’s braking system with force, too. The intensity is the same, so you have to be careful in breaking to keep the load and the trailer safe. This type is more efficient, but more expensive type than time-delayed brake controllers.

Surge Brake

When the towing vehicle slows down, the trailer is pushed and force is applied to the master cylinder. And then, a hydraulic pressure is sent to the brakes of the trailer.

Time-Delayed Brake Controller

The driver of the towing vehicle sets the time and level of brake current. This controller activates the brake system of the trailer that you are going to set. There will be a delay in time between the initial application of the brake made by the towing vehicle and the brake system of the trailer. You have to synchronize your setting for proper and matched power needed when towing. It is user-friendly and easier to install than a proportional brake controller.

How the brake works on the trailer

If you are driving the towing vehicle and stepped on your pedal brake, an electric current will travel from your towing vehicle to the trailer. When the current reaches the wheels of the trailer, electronic magnets will have energy. This will then force the brake pad of the trailer to press the brake drum. Therefore, friction is applied between the pad and drum of the brakes, allowing the trailer to slow down. The process of transferring and converting the energy is fast. So, you have to make sure that enough current is sent.

Setting and Adjusting the Break Control

It is necessary to set and adjust the brake controller to have a proportional power sent to the trailer. If you are sending less current to the trailer, then it would be difficult for your towing vehicle to break. And then, if you sent too much current on the trailer, then the trailer will stop or slow down the towing vehicle.

If the brake control is not properly set, then the braking system of the trailer or the towing vehicle will wear out. So, always check the instructions given by your manufacturer. Make sure that the power released will match each other.

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