Brake controller recommendations

rsdata

Active Member
Oct 3, 2011
341
N. KY
I would definitely suggest you contact etrailer dot com... they can advise you which controller and wiring harness will fit your vehicle and 7 pin plug you will need to install. They will also have the parts to put electric brakes on your current trailer. Etrailer dot com is an excellent online store to deal with... lots of info on their website plus a phone number to call to discuss your concerns and questions.
 

JaycoEagle

Member
Sep 7, 2014
25
While sort of off topic here is a link to when I converted my 2000 Jayco 12ST from surge to electric brakes. Scroll thru it as it has pics of the conversion. It is not hard at all and requires no special tools. It was the best upgrade I’ve done to my popup. The truck I had at the time had a Prodigy controller installed by the previous owner and worked great. Since then I got a new truck that had a factory installed controller which has been great too.

https://www.popupportal.com/threads/jayco-brake-conversion-hydraulic-to-electric.93821/#post-952563
 

CWiersma26

New Member
Jul 2, 2019
8
I have surge brakes on my Jayco and love them! Do you have them set up right? There are youtube videos explaining this. Also, it would be worth looking to make sure the drums and shoes aren't worn out. And, as it runs on hydraulic brake fluid if there is water in the line it will heat up causing air which means you will lose your breaks; a simple flush may be all that is needed.
 

AMC

Member
Apr 7, 2020
70
South Georgia
I'm so confused about what I need. I have brakes on my Fleetwood E3. My tow vehicle has the 7 pin as does the pop up. My tow vehicle is a 2004 GMC Sierra 8 cylinder and has a button on the gear that is for towing. You push the button and the tow light comes on. What else do I need?
 

tfischer

A bad day camping beats a good day at the office
I'm so confused about what I need. I have brakes on my Fleetwood E3. My tow vehicle has the 7 pin as does the pop up. My tow vehicle is a 2004 GMC Sierra 8 cylinder and has a button on the gear that is for towing. You push the button and the tow light comes on. What else do I need?

A brake controller. Unless you are certain you have one built in (a towing gear != brake controller), you probably have a dedicated socket somewhere under you dash. You buy the correct cord to plug into that, and then into your brake controller. No splicing or wire running needed.
 
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AMC

Member
Apr 7, 2020
70
South Georgia
So what is the button for on the gear shifter? The light that comes on has a trailer. Wouldn't that indicate a tow gear? Does the brake controller just give options for setting the brakes?? I'm still confused. LOL
 

eoleson1

Super Active Member
Jul 5, 2011
3,639
Macomb County Michigan
A brake controller will send an electrical signal through the 7 pin to apply the trailer brakes. No controller, no trailer brakes. You'd be stopping with the truck brakes only.

The tow button when activated will change the way the transmission shifts.
 

anothersmith

Active Member
Aug 24, 2018
104
While sort of off topic here is a link to when I converted my 2000 Jayco 12ST from surge to electric brakes. Scroll thru it as it has pics of the conversion. It is not hard at all and requires no special tools. It was the best upgrade I’ve done to my popup. The truck I had at the time had a Prodigy controller installed by the previous owner and worked great. Since then I got a new truck that had a factory installed controller which has been great too.

https://www.popupportal.com/threads/jayco-brake-conversion-hydraulic-to-electric.93821/#post-952563
Those are really killer instructions, I am tempted to give it a shot myself. in hours how long did it take you?
 

AMC

Member
Apr 7, 2020
70
South Georgia
A brake controller will send an electrical signal through the 7 pin to apply the trailer brakes. No controller, no trailer brakes. You'd be stopping with the truck brakes only.

The tow button when activated will change the way the transmission shifts.

Oh wow!!! Thank you! Makes sense now...I checked and I do see the place in my truck where the brake controller plugs in. So when do I push the button on my gear shif?....just on hills or mountains?
 

eoleson1

Super Active Member
Jul 5, 2011
3,639
Macomb County Michigan
Oh wow!!! Thank you! Makes sense now...I checked and I do see the place in my truck where the brake controller plugs in. So when do I push the button on my gear shif?....just on hills or mountains?
I would push the button anytime you pull a trailer. It will extend the life of your transmission.
 

Snow

Super Active Member
Jul 19, 2007
12,274
I would push the button anytime you pull a trailer. It will extend the life of your transmission.

Read the vehicles owners manual. Should tell you when to use tow mode. I only use this setting on my primary vehicle when climbing long up hills or if the transmission keeps hunting for a gear.. on my secondary tow vehicle I don't use it for my current trailer.
 

TheBlurb

Active Member
Mar 28, 2019
253
Swapping surge brakes to electric is a bigger job than adding brakes to an unbraked trailer, it requires additional work on the tongue and may require some welding. Find out what is actually included in the price and/or get a second estimate.

You don't need an RV dealer for this job, any trailer repair facility can do it.

It's possible that servicing and adjusting your 11 year old brakes will give you the improvement you want at a lower cost.
Agreed. Swapping the brake systems is a big project!
 

Fishduck

Member
May 8, 2020
20
SE Ontario, Canada
Does anyone use a Curt Echo brake controler?

I do. Towed all summer with it and love it. There are a lot of naysayers that speak against it but I have found it great. I wired a direct 12v line (with fuse) in to my 7pin which is plugged into my original 4 pin.

We did 8 trips this summer with 0 problems.
 

A-Ranger12

Active Member
Feb 25, 2020
264
Western NY
If your vehicle is not set up for a brake controller under the dash, I really like the Autowbrake I put on my Aliner. It just works. No issues in the one season it's been on there.
 

anothersmith

Active Member
Aug 24, 2018
104
While sort of off topic here is a link to when I converted my 2000 Jayco 12ST from surge to electric brakes. Scroll thru it as it has pics of the conversion. It is not hard at all and requires no special tools. It was the best upgrade I’ve done to my popup. The truck I had at the time had a Prodigy controller installed by the previous owner and worked great. Since then I got a new truck that had a factory installed controller which has been great too.

https://www.popupportal.com/threads/jayco-brake-conversion-hydraulic-to-electric.93821/#post-952563


Hi, I think I am going to take a shot at this myself, really doesn’t look too tough. how do I tell what size of brakes to get?

Anything to watch out for as I do it?

The receiver on my PUP is bolted on, do you know how to tell what size I would need as a replacement? This also looks like an easy replacement job.
 

anothersmith

Active Member
Aug 24, 2018
104
@JaycoEagle where did you find electric brakes to fit your wheel size? I have 13" wheels and E-Trailer does not have electric brakes for that small of a wheel. Any advice would be appreciated.
 

tiltshift

Member
Jun 23, 2019
63
Paisley, Ontario
Takonsha P3!

I’m happy with mine...

4 tow settings, adjustable force feedback, and reverse mode. Also manual brake lever, which I use for brake checking tailgaters when I’m not towing!
 

anothersmith

Active Member
Aug 24, 2018
104
So a variable i was not expecting. I have axel for 3300lb with 13" wheels. I cannot find electric brakes that fit this configuration, Etrailer didnt have them.
They have 13" wheel version for 2000lb axel, but not for 3300lb.... any thoughts on where to find electric brakes that would fit?
 

Snow

Super Active Member
Jul 19, 2007
12,274
Shouldn't be that hard.. look for ones that fit a 3500lb axle.. they are out there , my 3500lb axle on my Palomino pup had brakes with 13 inch tires..
 




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