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Author Topic: Travelling through mountains... lost trailer brakes!!  (Read 1573 times)

SkateBoard

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Re: Travelling through mountains... lost trailer brakes!!
« Reply #30 on: June 07, 2017, 01:46:45 AM »
Even if your brakes are working fine you should be using what is called the stab method for braking. Lets say you want to maintain 55mph going down the hill. Keep yourself in a gear lower. Get up to 60mph then brake down to 50 and keep repeating. Keep an eye out for smoke. If you see some, stop and let your brakes cool off. There is a point where your brakes get so hot you can't stop anymore. Don't want to get there!!!

As a side note, you may see semi trucks flying down a hill. Chances are they are either empty or very lightly loaded. They can hit the jake and brake and stop pretty darn quick!

You DO NOT want to use a runaway ramp. You will probably total everything and possibly flip.

Bob???

lynnmor

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Re: Travelling through mountains... lost trailer brakes!!
« Reply #31 on: June 07, 2017, 08:37:19 AM »
Please don't jerk your brakes on and off changing speed by 10 MPH, that makes no sense and you will be a traffic hazard.  Brakes are a heat device and you either use them or not, doing crazy things with the brake pedal will gain you nothing.

Now go fix the wiring on that trailer.  One place to look is inside the axle tubes where wires often short to ground. Only an electrical problem will bring on error messages.


SkateBoard

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Re: Travelling through mountains... lost trailer brakes!!
« Reply #32 on: June 07, 2017, 01:14:28 PM »
Please don't jerk your brakes on and off changing speed by 10 MPH, that makes no sense and you will be a traffic hazard.  Brakes are a heat device and you either use them or not, doing crazy things with the brake pedal will gain you nothing.

Now go fix the wiring on that trailer.  One place to look is inside the axle tubes where wires often short to ground. Only an electrical problem will bring on error messages.

The stab method is the recommended braking procedure for anyone towing trailers and semi truck trailers per order of the Federal Motor Carriers Safety Administration.


SkateBoard

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Re: Travelling through mountains... lost trailer brakes!!
« Reply #33 on: June 07, 2017, 01:20:00 PM »
Here is the part from government on the procedure



2.16.4 Proper Braking Technique
Remember. The use of brakes on a long and/or steep downgrade is only a supplement to the braking effect of the engine. Once the vehicle is in the proper low gear, the following are the proper braking techniques:
Apply the brakes just hard enough to feel a definite slowdown.
When your speed has been reduced to approximately five mph below your "safe" speed, release the brakes. (This brake application should last for about three seconds.)
When your speed has increased to your "safe" speed, repeat steps 1 and 2.
For example, if your "safe" speed is 40 mph, you would not apply the brakes until your speed reaches 40 mph. You now apply the brakes hard enough to gradually reduce your speed to 35 mph and then release the brakes. Repeat this as often as necessary until you have reached the end of the downgrade.

Lynx0849

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  • Posts: 47
Re: Travelling through mountains... lost trailer brakes!!
« Reply #34 on: June 07, 2017, 01:23:13 PM »
Please don't jerk your brakes on and off changing speed by 10 MPH, that makes no sense and you will be a traffic hazard.  Brakes are a heat device and you either use them or not, doing crazy things with the brake pedal will gain you nothing.

Now go fix the wiring on that trailer.  One place to look is inside the axle tubes where wires often short to ground. Only an electrical problem will bring on error messages.

Never ride the brakes down a hill. Fastest way to burn them up.
Who cares what others think if you are being safe. Being safe is not a hazard.

As said, brake till below target speed, then off till a little over... rinse & repeat. It is what I was taught in tractor trailer driving school.

meternerd

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  • Posts: 124
Re: Travelling through mountains... lost trailer brakes!!
« Reply #35 on: June 08, 2017, 01:08:00 PM »
Now that is interesting.   

Im taking the trailer in tomorrow, bright and early, for inspection and repair.

I ordered a Tekonsha P3 with wiring kit to replace the oem brake controlder so I can bypass the on board stuff.
So hopefully everything will sort out here shortly.

The link has good info, but...if you use contact cleaner, make sure it says "plastic safe" before you go shooting it onto any connectors.  Some cleaners will totally destroy the plastic.  Don't ask how I know!

SkateBoard

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Re: Travelling through mountains... lost trailer brakes!!
« Reply #36 on: June 08, 2017, 01:14:09 PM »
Don't ask how I know!

Lol.....If you chase a racoon and corner it, it will attack you. Don't ask how I know.

1down

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  • Posts: 23
Re: Travelling through mountains... lost trailer brakes!!
« Reply #37 on: June 09, 2017, 09:38:49 AM »
Lol.....If you chase a racoon and corner it, it will attack you. Don't ask how I know.

When I was a kid I cornered a cute, harmless, cuddly, wild, bunny rabbit.  I got a life long lesson that day. 
2004 Keystone Challenger 33' Fifth Wheel
2015 Chevrolet 3500HD SRW
Belen, NM

1down

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  • Posts: 23
Re: Travelling through mountains... lost trailer brakes!!
« Reply #38 on: June 09, 2017, 09:53:33 AM »
I took apart the connectors on the truck yesterday - at least at the rear of the truck.  The wiring harness plugs into the 7way.  I took this apart and noticed that the pins on the wiring harness had white grease on the pins.  A few of the pins had a nice thick coating of the white grease.  I would have thought that the pins would have been wiped somewhat clean by the insertion friction of the receiver.  I scraped up some of the grease with one of my VOM leads and gently touched the leads to measure resistance to see if the grease is dielectric.  It is.  No conductivity was measured.  I cleaned off the pins with electronic cleaner/degreaser and reassembled the 7 way.

From there I crawled along the bottom of the truck following the wiring but could not find any other connectors I could identify with the possible exception of part of the harness veered off to what looks to be a brake line component.  Brake lines go into this assemble and then off to the rear brakes.  I don't know what the function of this is.  I did not unattach the wiring harness until I can find out what it is. 

From there I went to the trailer and inspected the white wire ground to the trailer pin assembly.  It is a white wire approximate 12 gauge attached to a copper lug which is in turn attached to the pin box.  The ground is a little "iffy" as I checked the resistance direct from the wire to the frame.  I plan on removing the lug and then removing paint around the lug and then reattaching the lug. 

The battery ground is the same - it is a bolt attached to the frame over paint.  I plan on doing the same here as well. 

I have yet to follow the white wire to the brakes and check their grounds which I plan on doing today.

One item of much interest in my quest to find the disappearing trailer brakes if the actual trailer plug.  Looking at it, it is a little corroded and some what "gappy".  The connectors are somewhat loose especially the connector for the brakes.  I will replace this plug when Amazon delivers it Monday. 



2004 Keystone Challenger 33' Fifth Wheel
2015 Chevrolet 3500HD SRW
Belen, NM

RVRAC

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Re: Travelling through mountains... lost trailer brakes!!
« Reply #39 on: June 09, 2017, 01:40:45 PM »
I had the same issue a couple years ago.  I took it to the dealer and they discovered it was grease from the seal.  Manufacturer covered under warranty.  Never had the problem again.  Also, perhaps 400 miles in the mountains was too much.
2017 Leprechaun 311 FS
Toad: 2016 Jeep Patriot
American Dolly
Home: WI
Snowbird 6 months/yr.

SkateBoard

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Re: Travelling through mountains... lost trailer brakes!!
« Reply #40 on: June 09, 2017, 02:32:48 PM »
Broken seal is the worst. You get grease and oil over the brake shoes then heat them up in the mountains and your on fire. Saw it happen twice. Once on a semi trucks trailer and once on an RV. I had to run the RV off into the breakdown lane. They thought I was trying to rob them or something. It took my extinguisher and his to put the fire out.

 

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