What RV Trailer Brakes Are Capable Of

Pickup trucks are work vehicles, and these diesel-powered trucks have the horsepower, trailer hitches, and flat beds for all sorts of work. Many companies send pickup trucks to deliver supplies and equipment for a job, such as landscaping companies, and other owners are in fact using pickup trucks to tow personal items, such as a drum kit. But no matter what kind of cargo is being hauled, a pickup truck driver will want to make sure that their towing job is done correctly. How to tow safely? This involves using a wiring system for trailer brakes on an RV, as well as making sure to keep trailer sway under control. Electronic brake controllers can do a lot of good, and choosing the best model is important. What is there to know about a wiring system for trailer brakes, and how can trailer sway be prevented?

Preventing Trailer Sway on the Road

Some trailers are light and small enough so that the trailer only has very basic brakes, or perhaps none at all. But there are still some safety guidelines to keep in mind. Once a trailer is hitched onto a truck, the driver should make sure that the trailer’s cargo is closer to the truck, keeping the weight and center of mass close. And of course, no cargo should be sticking out from the trailer’s edges. During driving, the truck’s operator may realize that the trailer is starting to sway side by side, and if the swaying becomes strong enough, this may break the trailer free or even cause the truck to go out of control. This could even cause a traffic accident, and that’s not to be desired.

If such swaying starts, the truck driver should not slam on the brakes or make any sudden moves. Instead, the driver should let go of the gas and start coasting to slow down gradually, and this allows the truck to get below the speed where the sway started happening. That should take care of the swaying, but if it doesn’t, the truck driver can keep slowing down this way until they come to a stop. Now the driver can get out and check that the cargo is settled correctly, and adjust it as needed.

A Wiring System for Trailer Brakes

Meanwhile, a larger and heavier trailer such as an RV will certainly need a wiring system for trailer brakes, since these trailers have enough mass to cause some serious problems otherwise. Even when the towing truck uses its own brakes, the trailer will keep moving forward if it doesn’t have its own brakes, and large trailers will slam right into the pickup truck due to momentum. That’s not to be desired. So, RVs will have a wiring system for trailer brakes, and these trailers will be fitted with their own full-strength brakes for safe driving and stopping.

The idea is that the RV’s brakes will activate in unison with the truck’s own brakes, since the wiring system for trailer brakes will allow the two sets of brakes to communicate. There are two models for this: timing brakes, and inertia brakes.

Timing brakes are best used for lighter and smaller trailers going at a more moderate speed, and these brake systems can prove fairly simple and easy to install and program. So, when a driving pickup truck applies its brakes, this sends a signal to the RV’s own brakes, which will then apply themselves, too. The timing of those RV brakes are based on whatever the owner programmed into them, and this can allow for some smooth and secure stops on the road.

Timing brakes are not quite precise enough for heavier and larger trailers going at a higher speed, though. Instead, these larger RVs will use inertia to determine when and how hard they should brake, and this allows for tightly coordinated braking with the pickup truck in any circumstances, based on their programming. This even works if the truck and trailer are on an inclined plane, going up or down. Otherwise, if the brakes don’t adjust for this, the trailer might tug the truck back down a slope if going uphill, or shove it forward if they are going downhill.

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