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Old 08-08-2020, 10:41 PM   #41
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Name: Paul
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Interesting brake controller....

.....saw one advertised today that just plug in between your 7 wire plug and the TV. Adjust with your smart phone. Nothing under the dash. Donít know cost or how well it works, but could be used on multiple vehicles.
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Old 08-08-2020, 11:11 PM   #42
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Originally Posted by oldharry2006 View Post
.....saw one advertised today that just plug in between your 7 wire plug and the TV. Adjust with your smart phone.

The question being, how do you manually apply the brakes on the trailer in an emergency? Texting and driving is bad enough, and against the law in BC and many other jurisdictions.
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Old 08-09-2020, 05:03 AM   #43
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Mike, I am not able to see the photo you attached showing your Tiguan install. Did it attach properly?

I would like to see that if possible.
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Old 08-09-2020, 05:33 AM   #44
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Originally Posted by oldharry2006 View Post
.....saw one advertised today that just plug in between your 7 wire plug and the TV. Adjust with your smart phone. Nothing under the dash. Donít know cost or how well it works, but could be used on multiple vehicles.
The Curt Echo. Its been discussed in this forum before. Among the shortcomings is that it could be stolen in 3-4 seconds, leaving you far from home with a trailer that does not have working brakes.
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Old 08-09-2020, 09:42 AM   #45
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Originally Posted by ChetC View Post
May seem like a silly question, but are you certain your vehicle isn't already equipped with a trailer brake controller? If it came with a factory tow package, that's usually installed. Modern cars feature a digital controller that is accessed through the menu screen on your dash. It's not like the old days when you had a physical controller mounted under/in the dash itself.
Many/most tow packages do not include a controller. It's a pet peeve of mine. Even in the case of the Ford F150, they have THREE different tow packages, and only one includes the brake controller. I'm not aware of a mid sized SUV that includes a brake controller with their tow package. Some at least include 7 pin wiring.

I had to go to the dealer to install my Ford brake controller on my F150. Even though I could have installed it myself, it must be hooked up to the Ford computer system so it recognizes the controller. Given the minimum charge threshold at my local dealer, it was the same price to install the controller and hook up to their computer as it was to just have the computer hook up (5 minute job). Yes, my F150 had the optional towing package, but not the right one.

According to VW website, the optional tow package consists of.... a hitch..
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Old 08-09-2020, 10:06 AM   #46
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VW does not have an option for the brake controller, but at least in the Touareg and the Atlas there is a plug provided to plug a harness into for the controller. It provides brake power, ground, Brake signal (+12 V on brake), and the blue wire to the 7 pin plug at the rear.
The brake module detects the trailer and modifies the CPU control of the engine, brakes and sway control for the vehicle.
I used this plug and made a harness for my Redarc installation.
By the way when you get ready to test the installation the brake signal will not be sent to the controller unless there is a trailer attached and recognized by the module. Ask how I know this...
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Old 08-09-2020, 10:26 AM   #47
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Originally Posted by thrifty bill View Post
According to VW website, the optional tow package consists of.... a hitch..
Poking around, it appears that the 5,000 lb rating requires a factory (not dealer) installed hitch. The rated capacity is apparently otherwise limited to 2,000 lbs.

I couldn't clearly determine precisely what else is provided by VW to get the 5,000 lb rating other than the fact that the higher capacity is limited to V6 models with a factory-installed hitch only, and the four-cylinders aren't rated above 2,000 lbs regardless.
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Old 08-09-2020, 11:10 AM   #48
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VW Usually VW and many other manufacturers require that the car has a trailer module installed (most from the factory) for the maximum trailer ratings to apply. The VW module affects the way the engine is operated, the cooling system, transmission and sway control reacts and is part of the system along with the wiring and programming. Ford also doe the same things and probably most of the others as well.
The moral to the story is buy one with the trailer prep and hitch.
Most of the time the wiring and the module is listed as "Trailer Prep". The hitch would be listed separately.
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Old 08-10-2020, 01:57 PM   #49
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Interesting

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Originally Posted by Glenn Baglo View Post
The question being, how do you manually apply the brakes on the trailer in an emergency? Texting and driving is bad enough, and against the law in BC and many other jurisdictions.
Iíve towed since 1976, and have never manually applied my brakes in an emergency. The distance between my hand and the controller, and the distance between my foot and the brake seems to make the brake a quicker choice when split seconds are important. Maybe I adjust my brake sensitivity different. The only time I could see I would use it is towing on snow covered roads and the TT pushing the TV. Those situations I try to avoid.
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Old 08-10-2020, 04:18 PM   #50
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Originally Posted by oldharry2006 View Post
Iíve towed since 1976, and have never manually applied my brakes in an emergency. The distance between my hand and the controller, and the distance between my foot and the brake seems to make the brake a quicker choice when split seconds are important. Maybe I adjust my brake sensitivity different. The only time I could see I would use it is towing on snow covered roads and the TT pushing the TV. Those situations I try to avoid.

Anytime I need to not kill someone cutting in front if me I use the lever and the more I drive the more often it seems to happen?

It is pretty reassuring to be able to grab that lever and stop quicker and straighter than without it and I cant imagine not having that as an option.
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Old 08-11-2020, 05:52 AM   #51
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Iím confused. The lever only applies trailer brakes. It could be useful in a sway or jackknife situation when applying tug brakes can actually make things worse. But in a full-on panic stop ďto avoid killing someone on front of you,Ē you want both trailer and tug brakes working together. Stomping on the brake pedal does exactly that without touching the lever. If the trailer still feels like itís pushing the tug, then your controller is set too low.
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Old 08-11-2020, 06:09 AM   #52
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Originally Posted by Jon in AZ View Post
Iím confused. The lever only applies trailer brakes. It could be useful in a sway or jackknife situation when applying tug brakes can actually make things worse. But in a full-on panic stop ďto avoid killing someone on front of you,Ē you want both trailer and tug brakes working together. Stomping on the brake pedal does exactly that without touching the lever. If the trailer still feels like itís pushing the tug, then your controller is set too low.
It does not always work out that way in my experience and sometimes it helps a lot to apply the trailer brakes manually too.
Not just to control sway in my experience.

I have not done this a lot but it can be really helpful at times.

More tools in the tool box.
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Old 08-11-2020, 06:45 AM   #53
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If the controller is set up to the usual specifications where the lever all the way over locks up the brakes at 25 - 30 mph then probably just hitting the TV foot brake would be best.
If you have time to use the lever you probably have plenty of time to react normally with slowing the rig with the foot brake and coordinated control.
Newer vehicles control sway with their onboard computers, even my VW (that does not come with a brake controller) will apply the electric brake as well as one or more brakes and perhaps power to an individual wheel. The VW applies the trailer brakes when the anti-sway kicks in.
In a real emergency it is unlikely that manual intervention will be applied as things happen fast. If you have time to react you probably should have just slowed down earlier.
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Old 08-11-2020, 10:07 AM   #54
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Originally Posted by redbarron55 View Post
In a real emergency it is unlikely that manual intervention will be applied as things happen fast. If you have time to react you probably should have just slowed down earlier.

I'm surprised that anybody would have used the manual lever often enough to form an opinion of how effective it is in various situations.

Properly set up, the brake controller should do the "thinking".
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Old 08-11-2020, 10:30 AM   #55
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I guess my coiled cobra like reflex is just not that common?
It is not too complicated or tricky but just instinct.
Probably helps too that I am not as smart as some of you seem to be too.
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Old 08-11-2020, 12:09 PM   #56
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Name: Lynn
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From looking at online info re: the autowbrake controller, it appears to be an electronic version of surge brakes. It should work well with any tow vehicle without interfering with newer electronics. The only downside would seem to be cost, which might be worth it to avoid installation headaches.
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