Help with controller box install - Fiberglass RV


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Old 10-08-2013, 09:18 PM   #1
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Help with controller box install

I have a 13 ft Scamp on the way to my house and I ordered it with electric brakes. Now, I need to install a controller box on my 2013 jeep Wrangler. The jeep has the tow pig but a 4 pin plug. I called Camping World today and told them I have the wiring harness and a 4 pin plug which needed to be converted to a 7 pin and I also wanted a Prodigy 2 controller box. They said I could get the Good Sam price $134 for the Prodigy 2 box, pay $94 for a new wiring harness, and with installation and taxes, it would cost $503. Now, I'm ok with the Prodigy 2 price but...1) do I need a new harness? Can't they re wire it to fit a 7 pin plug? 2) does about $275 seem nuts to install the box and to retrofit or install a new harness? I don't get why it is so expensive. The service guy did say he may be able to use my harness and save some money but, being clueless on this process, I need some advice. Thanks. H
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Old 10-08-2013, 09:42 PM   #2
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That price doesn't really sound unreasonable. I think I spent close to $500 to have my Blazer equipped with brake controller and charge line. Without knowing what your Jeep already has wired I can't really say much. If the Jeep has the full tow package there should be a 7 pin connector near the hitch receiver. If no 7 pin connector there could be wires back there. But it's really hard to say without looking. Their quote is probably without the everything there.

You might want to ask a couple other RV shops before committing to Camping World.
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Old 10-08-2013, 09:49 PM   #3
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That price doesn't really sound unreasonable. I think I spent close to $500 to have my Blazer equipped with brake controller and charge line. Without knowing what your Jeep already has wired I can't really say much. If the Jeep has the full tow package there should be a 7 pin connector near the hitch receiver. If no 7 pin connector there could be wires back there. But it's really hard to say without looking. Their quote is probably without the everything there. You might want to ask a couple other RV shops before committing to Camping World.
That makes me feel a little better. The jeep has the full tow pkg but with a 4 pin plug. CW thought they midnight be able to work with my harness.
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Old 10-08-2013, 09:51 PM   #4
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Seems a bit high to me. Sometimes the best place for this kind of stuff is your local U-Haul, especially if you can find a bigger one that does a lot of hitches. In any event, I agree that you should get a couple more estimates.
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Old 10-08-2013, 10:03 PM   #5
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Here's a video that shows everything that needs to be done. You may want to do it yourself. If not you'll have a good idea what the effort is worth.
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Old 10-09-2013, 12:06 AM   #6
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Here's a video that shows everything that needs to be done. You may want to do it yourself. If not you'll have a good idea what the effort is worth.
Doing it yourself is fine if you don't mind crawling around underneath. It's a whole lot easier if you have a lift. Another thing to consider for DIY is if you screw up the cost could be a whole lot more.
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Old 10-09-2013, 02:27 AM   #7
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Camping world is probably at least twice what you will pay U-Haul
They're trailer hitch and accessories specialists.
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Old 10-09-2013, 05:36 AM   #8
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Camping world is probably at least twice what you will pay U-Haul
They're trailer hitch and accessories specialists.
I went to uhaul as well- they had all the parts and the entire install bill was something like $200 IIRC.
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Old 10-09-2013, 08:11 AM   #9
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I've installed three 7 pin set ups. One was plug and play. The others I purchased the parts (less controller) for less than $75, from etrailer. The challenging parts to the installation are 1) finding a hole to snake the controller wires through the fire wall and 2) identifying and connecting the controller to the correct brake signal. Today all vehicles have a forum. If you go there and do a search you might find a detailed installation thread that will give you insight into what is involved. Good luck, Raz
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Old 10-09-2013, 08:45 AM   #10
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The video that was posted shows in painstaking detail how to do the installation. The vehicle shown is the same one as the original poster's vehicle. It even has the same factory 4-pin connector that is converted to a 7-pin connector. It's as if the video was made specifically for his vehicle.
Etrailer videos are great but sometimes you find some clever person comes up with a "better" approach or some detail etrailer missed. Also sometimes there is an oem harness that etrailer doesn't sell so they don't mention The more info you have the better. Raz
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Old 10-09-2013, 08:53 AM   #11
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I had a brake controller with wiring installed on my previous Dodge truck (Truck did not have modular plug in for brake controller and no trailer wiring ) for under $200 , They provided the controller ,all wiring and a 7 pin receptacle mounted to the underside of my bumper (Parts and Labor complete) This was 2 years ago but $500 seems rather high to me,
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Old 10-16-2013, 08:35 PM   #12
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Not sure about these numbers. The parts alone, prodigy 2, harness, 7 pin plug are over $200 off the internet. Labor is a bit time consuming. Just confused.
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Old 10-16-2013, 09:07 PM   #13
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I installed a 7-pin on my '07 wrangler essentially following the instructions from e-trailer. I think at some point I'll hard wire into my factory 4 pin instead of using the connector that plugs in to the 4 pin.
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Old 10-16-2013, 09:25 PM   #14
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Hey Paul...I've got another question for you. Scamp advised that a 2" drop should be good for my Wrangler but to keep it 17-18" from the ground to the top of the ball. I bought one today and it was over 21" to the top of the ball using the 2" drop. Heck, the center point of my hitch receiver is 19 1/4 from the ground. What's your experience?
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Old 10-16-2013, 09:30 PM   #15
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Not sure about these numbers. The parts alone, prodigy 2, harness, 7 pin plug are over $200 off the internet. Labor is a bit time consuming. Just confused.
The parts prices are about what I paid.... maybe a I paid a bit more as the controller was a bit more expensive than the more recent prices.

The tow package on your trailer probable does not include the charge line (for charging the trailers battery when driving) so that needs to be run to the rear or the blue break controller line. Which as has been suggested needs to go through your firewall to the controller and then back to the rear of the trailer to the new seven pin harness. I paid about $175 in labour for having those items added - I live a big city where labour isnt cheap.

Camping World as others have suggested is often one of the more expensive places to have work done. Try a smaller RV shop or perhaps just a speciality hitch shop.
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Old 10-16-2013, 11:29 PM   #16
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Newer vehicles have a terminal block up under the dash where you can plug in a harness to the brake controller. The harness should not be more than $40.00. Most hitch wiring is plug and play now days.
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Old 10-17-2013, 12:40 AM   #17
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My experience is the same as yours. A 2" drop is not enough to get the tongue of the trailer flat or slightly nose down as recommended here.

Wranglers are sprung fairly softly though, so you'll be surprised the difference loading it up with all your stuff will make in ride height.

Our 16' SD has 290 lbs on the tongue, and the only way it is at level is to have a cooler or two, and a while week's worth of stuff in the jeep.

I'd imagine this situation is worse for the 2dr crowd with the shorter wheelbase.

My vote is I head down to harbor freight and pick up one of those adjustable hitches.
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Old 10-17-2013, 07:07 AM   #18
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The parts prices are about what I paid.... maybe a I paid a bit more as the controller was a bit more expensive than the more recent prices.

The tow package on your trailer probable does not include the charge line (for charging the trailers battery when driving) so that needs to be run to the rear or the blue break controller line. Which as has been suggested needs to go through your firewall to the controller and then back to the rear of the trailer to the new seven pin harness. I paid about $175 in labour for having those items added - I live a big city where labour isnt cheap.

Camping World as others have suggested is often one of the more expensive places to have work done. Try a smaller RV shop or perhaps just a speciality hitch shop.
I had mine installed in a city of 2 1/2 million people, not exactly a "small " town and the cost was under $200 total . The controller was a Tekonsha but not the P2 . The P2 was an additional $35 "Yes they installed a charge line" . It took less than an 1 hour for the install
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Old 10-17-2013, 07:45 AM   #19
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I expect the install time on a wrangler for someone who is experienced is probably 1.5 hrs. Took me about 3 hrs, and I had never installed one before.
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Old 10-17-2013, 08:10 AM   #20
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IMHO: Camping World = Rip Off Artists.

There is a 7 pin plug that Camping World, and almost all other RV stores, sells that has a pigtail on it that your existing 4 pin line you have just plugs into.
All you have to do is add the line for the brakes and a charging line.

When we have the same controller installed at my local RV dealership it was $85 and took about 30 minutes.

As everyone mentioned, find another dealer to do the install.....



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