looking for advice on surge brakes

Discussion in 'Tires / Brakes / Bearings / Axles' started by Andy285, Apr 14, 2018.

  1. Andy285

    Andy285 New Member

    Apr 7, 2018
    does anyone have a how to on rebuilding surge brakes? i just bought a jayco eagle 14 and the previous owner was having problems with the brakes so he just pulled them off. i'm pretty handy, but know nothing about this type of braking system. also wondering if i could just replace them with electric brakes
  2. Raycfe

    Raycfe Waterford Ct.

    Oct 3, 2007
    Waterford, Ct
    Well if the backing plates are gone or the lines and coupler/mastercylinder. Then the right coarse to take is get 2 new drums and backing plates and start there. I don't think you can use your old drums.
  3. SteveP

    SteveP Well-Known Member

    May 21, 2015
    The system is exactly the same as non-powered hydraulic drum brakes on a car except it uses a sliding coupler to activate the system instead of a brake pedal. So any reference on hydraulic drum brakes will cover the actual system. The experts at etrailer.com would be the place to start asking.

    A lot depends on what the PO did to the system. If he just pinned the coupler and left the system intact you might have a good chance at recovery. If he started removing parts it will be a little difficult for you to figure out what's missing. Look in the master cylinder right behind the coupler, if it still has brake fluid, not water, and the fluid is not reddish tinged you may not have a lot to do. If the system is dry or the fluid is red, then you have rust in the system and it will eventually require a complete rebuild, as the rust will wear the piston seals and cause leaks.

    I would estimate that a conversion to electric drum brakes would cost about $200 to $250 including a good proportional controller. You should be able to buy complete wheel kits, including drums with new bearings from etrailer. This would be a fairly simple bolt on replacement You do have to make sure the kits are installed on the correct side of the trailer, because right or left side does matter.
  4. Mr.SumSum

    Mr.SumSum New Member

    Mar 23, 2017
    Surge brakes are pretty straight forward. I think etrailer has some videos that would help you tackle the project. I rebuilt my surge brakes on the jayco, everything had to be replaced except for the steel brake lines. It would have been cheaper for me to convert to electric brakes, and if I had to do it all over, I would dump the hydraulic brakes and go with electric.
    soft 17 likes this.
  5. JimmyM

    JimmyM Well-Known Member

    Jun 5, 2014
    Franklin, MA
    I re-worked the surge brakes on my Jayco pup a few years ago. eTrailer has all the parts you may need. I ended up replacing the master cylinder due to water intrusion and rust.
    But, yeah. eTrailer is the go-to place.
  6. soft 17

    soft 17 Active Member

    Mar 14, 2017
    San Luis Obispo

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