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Old 01-30-2015, 12:43 AM   #1
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Issue with toad brake and turn signal lights

We have purchased a 2004 Jeep Wrangler and installed baseplate for towing with Roadmaster Falcon 2 towing hardware (on our 2014.5 Interstate EXT). When we hook up the taillights, only the left side brake and turn signals operate on the Jeep. Our installer believes that the problem lies with the Interstate. Has anyone else had problems with brake and turn signals for a toad for their Interstate?
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Old 01-30-2015, 06:08 AM   #2
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Originally Posted by andybree View Post
We have purchased a 2004 Jeep Wrangler and installed baseplate for towing with Roadmaster Falcon 2 towing hardware (on our 2014.5 Interstate EXT). When we hook up the taillights, only the left side brake and turn signals operate on the Jeep. Our installer believes that the problem lies with the Interstate. Has anyone else had problems with brake and turn signals for a toad for their Interstate?
Have your installer test the 7-way plug located on the hitch bar of the Interstate with a 12VDC test light. This will allow him to verify the signal coming from each pin on the plug as the turn signals are activated, tail lights on, brakes activated, etc. He should have already done this............but maybe not!

If there are any problems with the AI, it will show up in this test.
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Old 01-30-2015, 10:00 AM   #3
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Our installer tested with a device that he said showed power coming from the Sprinter. He said that when he hooked up the Jeep, the turn signals worked, but the brake lights did not. When we hooked it up at home, the left turn signal and brake light worked, but not the right ones.

We called the service guy at our dealership (300 miles away), and he mentioned that some people's issues hooking up lights to a toad stemmed from its difference from the computer-controlled LED light system on the Sprinter. He said this problem was handled with the purchase of an adaptor for conventional vehicle light system from Curt (part #C57003). Our tail lights do not appear to be LED, but we are baffled by the fact that some work and some do not.

Suggestions on where to go from here? Order adaptor? Take Sprinter and toad to nearest Mercedes service department?

Thanks for any and all thoughts and possible next steps to solve this mystery! 😕


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Old 01-31-2015, 07:16 AM   #4
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Originally Posted by andybree View Post
We have purchased a 2004 Jeep Wrangler and installed baseplate for towing with Roadmaster Falcon 2 towing hardware (on our 2014.5 Interstate EXT). When we hook up the taillights, only the left side brake and turn signals operate on the Jeep. Our installer believes that the problem lies with the Interstate. Has anyone else had problems with brake and turn signals for a toad for their Interstate?
I've never had a problem with the lights on my toad. They work exactly as they're supposed to.

As Lewster pointed out, the problem could be with the umbilical cable or the seven-pin connector on the Interstate.

It could also be a problem with the (probably six-pin) connector on the Jeep.

There are two generally accepted ways to wire a toad's lights to work through the umbilical. I don't know which was used on your Jeep.

1 - Drill the taillight housings to install separate bulbs wired to the umbilical. The separate bulb would be a dual-filament type that can work for both brake and turn signals. This eliminates the need for blocking diodes because the lights are completely independent of the Jeep's own lighting.

2 - Install blocking diodes in the existing Jeep wiring and then wire from the (probably six-pin) umbilical connector on the Jeep's front bumper to the blocking diodes. This allows the signal from the umbilical to control the existing Jeep lights without back-feeding the signals through the Jeep's electrical system.

Another thing to consider, if the problem affects the brake lights, does it also affect the brakes themselves? I ask because my Roadmaster Invisibrake system in my toad uses the signal from the brake lights to activate the toad's power brakes— the brake pedal in any motor vehicle is hooked up so the brake lights come on slightly before the vehicle's brakes do. If the brake light signal wasn't working properly on the toad, the toad's brakes wouldn't work either. But that may be unique to the Invisibrake, which doesn't require a separate brake controller in the tow vehicle.
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Old 01-31-2015, 08:21 AM   #5
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When we had our SOB Motorhome and towed a Jeep Wrangler two door around the US we did what Protagonist suggested in his number one. Not all that much work and it worked flawlessly.
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Old 02-04-2015, 04:29 PM   #6
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Wanted to get back to you all and let you know that we took our AI and Jeep to our mechanic. He hooked the tail-lights up on the Jeep and they worked perfectly! So we are all hooked up and have had a maiden voyage to a large church parking lot to practice maneuvers, followed by around some street and highway driving around town. We feel much more confident about our equipment, and about our ability to use it.

So now, any tips or cautions from those more experienced in towing a vehicle behind your AI?


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Old 02-04-2015, 05:26 PM   #7
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Issue with toad brake and turn signal lights

Have you towed a car before? Assume you know you can't back up - so be careful not to get into a spot you would need to back up. If you do you will have to unhook the car to get backed out of that spot.


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Old 02-04-2015, 06:20 PM   #8
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Have you towed a car before? Assume you know you can't back up - so be careful not to get into a spot you would need to back up. If you do you will have to unhook the car to get backed out of that spot.


- - Mike
2013 Lounge EXT on 2012 Sprinter

Boxter1971, thanks for that confirmation! We saw a video where the person was backing up and saying how easy it was, but everything else we have seen or read gives the same warning as yours. We try not to have to back up our AI by itself, so are most committed to staying out of situations that might require backing up with a toad!


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Old 02-04-2015, 06:30 PM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Boxster1971 View Post
Have you towed a car before? Assume you know you can't back up - so be careful not to get into a spot you would need to back up. If you do you will have to unhook the car to get backed out of that spot.


- - Mike
2013 Lounge EXT on 2012 Sprinter

BTW - we have not ever towed a car before, but noticed today that the way-back seat of our 2014.5 EXT seemed to have a somewhat less bouncy ride when the Jeep was attached - an unexpected perk.


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