Question regarding breakaway switch.....

Discussion in 'Etrailer.com Trailers and Towing Forum' started by shawn474, Mar 3, 2017.

  1. shawn474

    shawn474 New Member

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    Sep 5, 2013
    Hello again, everyone. Been a long time! I have searched and have a wiring diagram for my breakaway switch but am confusing myself and hope to get some help. I have a new to me 1995 coleman/fleetwood chesapeake cp pop up camper. The trailer has a 7 blade harness to connect to my tow vehicle. I have a bettery on the trailer tongue to power the 12V appliances like lights and water pump when boondocking. The 7 blade harness has a blue wire for the trailer brakes. But there is a separate blue trailer brake wire that is loose coming out of the trailer. My question is considering I have a tongue mounted battery, is it as simple as connecting the loose blue wire to the battery on the trailer for the breakaway switch or do I have to splice into the the towing vehicle harness? I am under the impression that since I have an on board battery on the tongue, I can wire a switch to that battery instead of having to but a breakaway switch and battery box. Am i Correct in that assumption? Thanks in advance for any help.

    Shawn
     
  2. mpking

    mpking Active Member

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    Jun 17, 2014
    Raynham, MA
    Pictures help, both asking questions, and answering. (Best picture I could find quickly)

    [​IMG]

    Now to try and tackle your questions:
    You'll have to get dirty, and trace the wire front to back, and see where they go.

    Don't know. Sounds like a bad idea unless you know where that wire connects (See previous question)

    Don't splice into the vehicle harness. That sounds wrong.

    Yes

    You can see from the picture, the breakaway switch, when the plug is removed, supplies 12 volts from the camper battery to the Brake wire (usually blue). That's what you have to make happen.
     
  3. shawn474

    shawn474 New Member

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    Sep 5, 2013
    Thanks a bunch for the response. I will try to get pictures up tomorrow for a visual of my explanation.
     
  4. Customer

    Customer Well-Known Member

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    Jun 5, 2014
    None of us will know what that blue wire goes to without testing but the breakaway simply has one wire to battery positive and one wire to the brakes.
     
  5. shawn474

    shawn474 New Member

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    Sep 5, 2013
    Yeah I am 99% sure that the blue wire is connected to the trailer brakes. I guess the easy way to test would be to hook up the breakaway switch to the battery and the blue wire and pull the pin to see if it locks the brakes. If I put the switch back in and it releases the brake, i should be good to go. No?
     
  6. tombiasi

    tombiasi Well-Known Member

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    Sep 1, 2012
    Northwestern New Jersey
    Yes but word of caution. Some brake controllers warn against testing the Break away switch with the controller connected.
     
  7. shawn474

    shawn474 New Member

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    Sep 5, 2013
    OK thanks. I will make sure my brake controller is not connected when I test it. Thanks again everyone.

    Shawn
     
  8. shawn474

    shawn474 New Member

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    Sep 5, 2013
    OK so I spent the day working on the pop up. Installed a new water pump, ran new lines, general cleaning, hooked up the battery, etc.

    My question regarding the brakes - I traced the blue wire through the frame and it simply ends at the back of the driver's side wheel. There is no termination or connection. It just ends. I am thinking this pop up doesn't have brakes. Is that possible? It is a 1995 coleman/Fleetwood Chesapeake CP model. It is pretty bare bones- no a/c, no fridge, etc. Could it be that there are no brakes on this trailer?
     
  9. mpking

    mpking Active Member

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    Jun 17, 2014
    Raynham, MA
    Yes, it's entirely possible it does not have brakes. Campers are somewhat like cars in that the assembly line does alot of the same things for economy of scale.
     
  10. tombiasi

    tombiasi Well-Known Member

    4,019
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    Sep 1, 2012
    Northwestern New Jersey
    One sure way to find out is pull the drum. If it doesn't have drums but instead freewheeling hubs then you definitely have brakes.
     
  11. tombiasi

    tombiasi Well-Known Member

    4,019
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    Sep 1, 2012
    Northwestern New Jersey
    I should have "definitely have NO brakes."
     
  12. roybraddy

    roybraddy Active Member

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    Mar 23, 2016
    King George, Virginia
    The laws governing the requirement for breaks is based on the weight of the loaded trailer...

    Check with your local DOT State Inspection station. This info should also be on your title...

    My 2008 OFF-ROAD POPUP trailer with a 12-foot box and a 5X8 front deck for hauling a ATV unit is listed for around 4200 lbs...

    Also if your trailer does have electric Breaks installed then the law says you are required to have an operating BRAKE system which requires a trailer mounted battery setup to operate the break away switch in the event the trailer gets disconnected from the truck going down public roads.

    Needs to be all checked out to be in compliance with the DOT laws...

    In our licensed State here we also have to satisfy yearly State inspections for the POPUP trailer and it has a nice State Inspection sticker placed on the trailer.

    Roy Ken
     
  13. shawn474

    shawn474 New Member

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    Sep 5, 2013
    Thanks again everyone for all the help. So assuming this does not have brakes, there really is nothing to benefit from a brake controller correct? I have ordered one and can still send it back and save $150. To the best of my knowledge, the controller only works to boost the trailer brakes. If it would help my row vehicle , I will keep it. Otherwise I will return it and save the money. Thanks again for all the help
     
  14. mpking

    mpking Active Member

    741
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    Jun 17, 2014
    Raynham, MA
    If there the trailer does not have brakes, then you do not need a brake controller.

    To answer the other point, no the controller does not "boost" the brakes.

    To oversimplify:
    Electric Brakes have a magnet in the wheel hub. 12volts applied to the magnet (the blue wire) is supposed to lock up the wheels (In practice this doesn't happen, but ignore that for now). A brake controller applies a smooth ramp of voltage from 2volts up to 12 volts, so you slow the wheel gradually, without locking up the wheel.
     

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