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Old 08-12-2012, 09:34 AM   #1
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Palo Alto , California
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Intermittent Brake Short Solved

My prodigy controller started showing an intermittent brake circuit short message at the very end of a trip back from Yellowstone.

After reading here, I guessed the problem was that I had burned through a magnet.

I took the trailer in for service, and it turned out one of the magnets was severely worn and all of the brake shoes were cracked. I also had them repack the bearings at the same time, and they also replaced the leash on the breakaway switch.

I picked the trailer up and left for Yosemite. About 100 miles into the trip, the dreaded SH message showed up on the brake controller again. I took it easy and slow on the rest of the drive, and spent time going over the wiring inch by inch at the campsite.

I found that one of the leads to the breakaway switch was pinched under the aluminum propane tank cover. Over time, the insulation had worn away. Re-routing the wires so they were not pinched and about six inches of duct tape from the campsite host temporarily solved the problem. This week I will do a more permanent job.

So learning lesson is to make sure your breakaway switch wiring is not getting pinched underneath your tank cover... Seems like a design flaw that the wire routes that way where it can get pinched in the first place.

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Old 08-12-2012, 10:46 AM   #2
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1991 34' Excella
Princeton , New Jersey
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There are 2 wires to the break away switch.

If the supply side is shorted it will blow the inline fuse coming from the batteries and most likely burn a hole in the bottom edge of the tank cover.

If the switched side is shorted it will ground the trailer brake system and any voltage sent to the brakes will be grounded out and thus NO BRAKES.
2004 Excursion 4x4
1991 34 ft. Excella +220,000 miles, new laminated flooring, new upholstery, new 3200 lbs axles

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