Getting ready for first trip-brakes

Heartlandex

Member
Jun 21, 2022
31
We just bought a 2000 coleman fairview. According to the specks it has electric brakes, the seller didnt know anything about the brakes. I dont see a break away switch on the front of the trailer or a brakeaway cable also I dont have a brake controler in my truck. We are going out htis weekend to a site about 40 miles from home and I plan on working on other things. My QUESTION is, is it safe to pull the trailer without the controller until I can get a controler installed and set up? I assume that the electric brakes are not engaged so I can pull it without risk of damage? Also, how do I check and or know if it really does have brakes?
 
Last edited:

jmkay1

2004 Fleetwood/Coleman Utah
Oct 10, 2013
7,743
Northern Virginia
Well its not going to cause damage to the camper however not recommended unless you have a tow vehicle more than capable of stopping your entire setup. No way I would do it with my set up unless an absolute emergency. My vehicles breaks are just not that good to stop my setup In everyday traffic. Then comes the legality of it If something was to go wrong. Every state has different rules here. In my state all campers over 2000 pounds have to have breaks and all campers with breaks are required to be fully working and operational.

My 04 Fleetwood did not come with a break a way switch that was something I had to add after the fact however I did have a blue wire that Led from my breaks to the tongue. To verify your camper has breaks crawl under to see if you have any wires coming from your breaks. If so, try and trace the wires to verify Where they end.
 

Heartlandex

Member
Jun 21, 2022
31
Well its not going to cause damage to the camper however not recommended unless you have a tow vehicle more than capable of stopping your entire setup. No way I would do it with my set up unless an absolute emergency. My vehicles breaks are just not that good to stop my setup In everyday traffic. Then comes the legality of it If something was to go wrong. Every state has different rules here. In my state all campers over 2000 pounds have to have breaks and all campers with breaks are required to be fully working and operational.

My 04 Fleetwood did not come with a break a way switch that was something I had to add after the fact however I did have a blue wire that Led from my breaks to the tongue. To verify your camper has breaks crawl under to see if you have any wires coming from your breaks. If so, try and trace the wires to verify Where they end.
Thanks for the info. I will check under it today before we leave. I will need to get a brake controller and brake away switch after work and set everything up this weekend.
 

Heartlandex

Member
Jun 21, 2022
31
How do you feel about stopping about a ton of dead weight in a panic stop.
I know what you mean and really dont want to find out how much seat coushin can fit up my butt when I clinch. I will have to get under it and check everything out. Heck, I drove a semi for 27 years and those trailers where easy compared to these little things. For one they where a lot easier to get under.LOL
 
Last edited:

Dave2514g

Active Member
Sep 2, 2019
264
Ontario, Canada
Local laws where I am require brakes on any trailer >3000lbs. However, it also states that IF the trailer has brakes installed they must be functional. Meaning if you're pulled over you could face fines.

I don't want to make any suggestions of taking chances, but I have to say that I've forgotten to engage the brake controller before and haven't noticed it not being on. Our trailer GVWR is 3300lbs and about 3650lb when (over)loaded, but that's what it's scaled at when we weigh it with all our gear. I don't, or hardly, notice it back there even in a panic stop without the controller on... but it's up to you if you want to risk the ticket, lack of insurance coverage etc etc.
 

ccarley

Active Member
Sep 23, 2014
231




Latest posts

Top