Recommendation for an electric brake controller? - Page 4 - Fiberglass RV


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Old 04-10-2011, 04:08 PM   #43
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Originally Posted by JaneM. View Post
Thank you all! I appreciate the information! I'm going to take the TV to the auto place this week and I'm going to take the Casita manual with me and point out what you all have and ask for a battery isolator. I don't know where I'd be without you!
thanks,
Jane
Jane,

For what it's worth, here's one last bit of advice...
There's a lot of variation among the "factory tow packages" installed on the 1999 Tundra. Check out the article at http://http://www.tundraheadquarters...efore-you-tow/, and then make sure that your particular vehicle has the equipment you think you need to do the job. You should be fine given the size of your rig, but it never hurts to check the "fine print"!

Happy camping

Francesca
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Old 04-10-2011, 04:24 PM   #44
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Originally Posted by Francesca Knowles View Post
Jane,

For what it's worth, here's one last bit of advice...
There's a lot of variation among the "factory tow packages" installed on the 1999 Tundra. Check out the article at http://http://www.tundraheadquarters...efore-you-tow/, and then make sure that your particular vehicle has the equipment you think you need to do the job. You should be fine given the size of your rig, but it never hurts to check the "fine print"!

Happy camping

Francesca
Thank you, Francesca! That article contained some great information. I can't wait to have it all ready to go and then GO!
Jane
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Old 04-10-2011, 04:35 PM   #45
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Jane
When you ask about the isolator make sure it's a "battery isolator" and not a "starter solenoid"...... they look exactly the same but the starter solenoid is not meant to have constant power and would burn out in a short time.
If you decide against an isolator just don't forget to unplug from the tow vehicle when using the camper for extended periods and you will be fine.
Joe
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Old 04-10-2011, 07:11 PM   #46
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Thanks, Joe. I'm writing all of this down!
Jane
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Old 04-10-2011, 08:32 PM   #47
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Jane,

For what it's worth, here's one last bit of advice...

Francesca
Yeah, right. Will I EVER shut up?

I double-dog promise that this is IT

Here goes:

Consider very carefully exactly where you want the controller itself located in your vehicle.
Many people mount them under the dash, which is where it's located in my husband's truck (about the same size as yours). This is not a good location for me. I don't know how tall you are, but I'm 5'4" (husband:6'0") and I have to lean over and grope for it if I need to manually operate it, which takes my attention away from the road at the very moment that I should be watching most closely-at the beginning or in anticipation of:
THE DREADED TRAILER SWAY
I almost hate to bring it up, as by doing so I'll probably launch a barrage of posts about sway control devices etc., all of which is exhaustively covered elsewhere in the forums.
ATTENTION GROUP: CAN WE HOLD OFF ON THAT FOR NOW? LET'S GET JANE SET UP WITH BRAKES ETC. FIRST, OKAY?
If you haven't already done so, you should read up on sway sometime, but for now, suffice it to say that it's a condition you will almost certainly encounter at some point. When you do, you'll need to be able to find your actuating nob quickly and smoothly without being distracted from what's happening on the road.
You'll also be making periodic adjustments as braking conditions change.
I recommend that you go out and sit in the cab and figure out where such an ideal-for-you location may be, before you take the rig in to have the unit installed. I think the unit you're getting has a thumb slide for manual braking, and that it should be installed within about thirty degrees of level. Bear that in mind when you're picking the place, too.

Francesca
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Old 04-11-2011, 03:02 PM   #48
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No! Don't stop sharing advice! I am reading all advice and taking it to heart. I would never have thought to think about where the brake controller should be installed and now, thanks to you Francesca, I will!

The original owner gave us the Casita sway bar and weight distribution parts, but I will read about sway when I get a chance. Thanks again!

Hoping to take the Tundra in on Friday to have the work done.

thanks again!
Jane
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Old 04-15-2011, 03:43 PM   #49
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I need to VENT!!! I went to out local mechanic who can install the brake controller and change the 4 flat to a 7 pin round etc, but they don't 't keep the other parts on hand, and can get them, but then they'd mark them up so suggested that I to get them to save some money and they estimate 2 hours worth of work so a cost of about $200 to $250. Okay, fair enough. So I stopped by the local RV place to see if they had the parts and on a whim I asked them about installing the brake controller. They said it depends on whether our TV (a 2000 Tundra) is pre-wired for a brake controller and brakes and if it is, it's easy, but if it's not, it's 6-9 hours worth of work and will be $600-$900 or more. They told me to call Toyota and ask them if this particular vin is pre-wired or not. I trust my local mechanic, but now am afraid he might not know all the details and I'm not sure if the RV guy is ripping me off. Does anyone know what it should cost (ballpark, of course) if it is and is not pre-wired?
Thanks!!
Jane
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Old 04-15-2011, 04:14 PM   #50
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I just called Toyota and this particular vin does have a wire for the brake controller, but I need to buy their pigtail, and a wiring harness, but they don't make a wiring harness for the 2000 Tundra and suggested I go to an RV place. So, he said I can hook up a brake controller, I just can't use it. Is there an emoco tearing it's hair out somewhere that I can insert here?!!
Jane
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Old 04-15-2011, 04:37 PM   #51
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Jane, I can't add too much but hopefully this will help you vent off a little steam. That's good advice about asking Toyota if your Tundra is pre-wired or not. You should be able to give Toyota the VIN and Toyota can say if it was pre-wired. Try calling your local Toyota dealer or call 1-800-331-4331. I had to wire and install a brake controller in my Toyota Highlander. I also helped two other Highlander owners do the same. Based on these experiences and that the Highlander is a SUV and not a pickup truck, I would estimate that it would take a competent no more than 3 hours max to install the brake controller and additional wiring. Outside of the cost of the brake controller, other parts should cost no more than about $50. Good luck. If you have some free time, a large credit limit on a gas credit card and like rain, come on up to the Seattle area and I'll do the job!
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Old 04-15-2011, 04:43 PM   #52
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Jane, just remember that you can decode your VIN number by yourself, Try out this site,
Toyota VIN Decoder @ Motoverse.com
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Old 04-15-2011, 06:02 PM   #53
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I just called Toyota and this particular vin does have a wire for the brake controller, but I need to buy their pigtail, and a wiring harness, but they don't make a wiring harness for the 2000 Tundra and suggested I go to an RV place. So, he said I can hook up a brake controller, I just can't use it. Is there an emoco tearing it's hair out somewhere that I can insert here?!!
Jane
Jane i looked around and you say you have the four pin plug which is good and you stated you have a brake wire as per toyota.....if so that should be a blue wire up under the dash near the brake pedal or off to the left of it....this would be a big help but you still need to run a 10 gauge wire from the brake controller to the rear bumper for charging the camper and a 10 gauge wire run in from the battery to the brake controller in the cab with a 40 amp circuit breaker at the battery connection...... the kit from etrailer is everything that is needed and your prodigy will come with a standard plug for this procedure. The following link will outline the process and with you buying that kit the installation should be around $200 maybe a little more elsewhere but $600 is way out of hand and it looks like they priced it high because they don't want to do it as it is a pain in the butt for someone that doesn't do it all the time.... Read the article so you understand the process. etrailer is a good place to call for info if needed.
Joe
Link to installation process
Brake Controller Installation: Starting from Scratch | etrailer.com
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Old 04-15-2011, 06:17 PM   #54
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Jane, Toyota may not make the wriing harnesses themselves as there are a number of big manufactures of such items and probable sell them for a lot less than the car dealer would. A local RV shop should be able to get it for you or try a U Haul dealer most have a parts department and they can do the install as well.
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Old 04-16-2011, 03:07 AM   #55
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I've researched the 2000 & 2001 Toyota Tundra's quite extensively before buying my 2001 new 10 years ago, and I've never seen a factory pre-wired option for a brake controller. All V8's for those years have factory transmission coolers so you're ahead on that point. I would second the recommendation to get an additional estimate from a u-haul dealer to do the install. The other choice is to order everything off e-trailer and let the mechanic do the job, 2 hours of labor sounds fair. I would not use that RV dealer, it should not take a professional 6-9 hours to do this.
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Old 04-16-2011, 03:18 AM   #56
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Originally Posted by JaneM. View Post
I need to VENT!!! I went to out local mechanic who can install the brake controller and change the 4 flat to a 7 pin round etc, but they don't 't keep the other parts on hand, and can get them, but then they'd mark them up so suggested that I to get them to save some money and they estimate 2 hours worth of work so a cost of about $200 to $250. Okay, fair enough.
Jane
Hello again, Jane,

In your first line, do you mean "our" local mechanic?
If you've used this guy before and trust him, hire him to do the job.
There's no big mystery about the project- nothing that requires the "expertise" you'd be paying a premium for at the RV place.
It sounds like your guy's trying to give you a break by letting you buy the parts- I'd probably let him do it all, and pay his 10% markup. That way he's responsible for 100% of the job.

Soldier on!

Francesca
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