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Old 09-17-2013, 10:44 PM   #41
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How much trouble is involved on these newer trucks to use an aftermarket Brake controller In place of the OEM one? (If its even possible)

Ken
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Old 09-18-2013, 12:51 AM   #42
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If you do not use the factory controller, the vehicle computer is unaware of the load and may not automatically operate in towing mode. Cutting into the wiring harness for a different controller may give the vehicle's computer real issues and possibly void the warranty if damage occurs. I would check with the dealer to be sure that any contemplated modifications would not have a negative impact on the vehicle's electrical system or computer.

If a different controller is desired, one could consider the Tekonsa Prodigy which is wireless. I used it on my Mercedes as the trailer wiring harness for a brake controller would have required tearing out the interior to get the wires from the right rear to the left front. A month later in the production run they put the harness where it was needed.

That controller worked well for the trip home from the dealership. Due to overloading the axle ratings and GVW after loading the trailer for camping, a different tow vehicle with adequate capacity was required. The new Dodge tow vehicle has a built in controller that works well and would even handle an electric/hydraulic disk brake system.
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Old 09-18-2013, 05:26 AM   #43
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Attention SteveH

Interesting read.....

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Old 09-18-2013, 09:03 AM   #44
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Interesting read.....

Bob
Interesting info. I can see why computers help with engine performance. However I do not agree with the philosophy that every system in a vehicle needs to be computer controlled and integrated with one another.

I have looked at upgrading my 2003 Ram from time to time. On paper its looks to me that every "improvement" over the years has actually been a degradation in usability (or ease of use). When I finally do have to, I believe I will use a Max Brake or similar type controller that uses the TV brake hydraulic pressure to determine what the TV brakes are doing. I have one presently, but have not yet installed it, because the Prodigy seems to do the job adequately on my 2003.

I am certainly willing to give up a couple MPG to have a decent driving experience. That is what most of these "improvements" seem to be about (fuel efficiency). Before this thread gets off on a different tangent, I realize that all of this is being driven by federal mandates for higher fuel economy and by our society's obsession with automating everything.

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Old 09-18-2013, 09:25 AM   #45
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Ken,

2006 was the breakout year for me.
Retired, got a new to us TV, and started the lay-back portion of life.

The computers have really taken over vehicle management since 06.

Doing some good no doubt, but driving a lot of us a bit krazy.

Fortunately for yours truly....it was a rather short trip.

Bob
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Old 09-18-2013, 09:34 AM   #46
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Read Bobs link which is a little bit old news.

From what I have read that folks with the 2010 and 2011 trucks that were not satisfied with the brake controller had the dealer use the Star Scan and "remove" the brake controller. (There was also a flash update to the ecm for these years). Not sure the controller can be done on the 2012 and later trucks. Most folks (except for SteveH) have been satisfied with the newer controller.

AG&AU - if you drive a 4th Generation truck you like them. The creature comforts have greatly improved in many ways. Mileage on 2013's is supposed to be a little better.
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Old 09-18-2013, 10:03 AM   #47
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Read Bobs link which is a little bit old news.

From what I have read that folks with the 2010 and 2011 trucks that were not satisfied with the brake controller had the dealer use the Star Scan and "remove" the brake controller. (There was also a flash update to the ecm for these years). Not sure the controller can be done on the 2012 and later trucks. Most folks (except for SteveH) have been satisfied with the newer controller.

AG&AU - if you drive a 4th Generation truck you like them. The creature comforts have greatly improved in many ways. Mileage on 2013's is supposed to be a little better.

Agreed. Mileage has improved more than 10%(I also had a 2010 2500 ST) with DEF. The 4th Gen and specifically the model year 13 and above is fantastic. The truck regens very little in comparison to my 2010 and oil changes have been pushed now to 15,000 miles. The brake controller is fully integrated with the truck systems now, and all of the truck systems and sub systems now talk via their new high speed powernet bus. I am not a RAM fanboy, as I looked at the Denali and King Ranch trucks, but this one was the best of the three when I was shopping for a truck that could haul my TT, horses, cattle and ranch equipement:

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Old 09-18-2013, 10:10 AM   #48
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Read Bobs link which is a little bit old news.

---------------------------------

AG&AU - if you drive a 4th Generation truck you like them. The creature comforts have greatly improved in many ways. Mileage on 2013's is supposed to be a little better.
Hopefully a new truck is a ways off in the future. Our 2003 Dodge Diesel only has 71,000 miles and from 10 feet away looks like new. Some would say that its not broken in yet.

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Old 09-18-2013, 10:21 AM   #49
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Don't know, but I think the folks in the Ram forum having trouble with the brake operator is because the setup is so complex, and they probably don't have it set right.

The built in controller in the truck has 4 different types of basic settings, and then 10 levels of power on each basic setting. The basic types are 1, Light Electric, 2, Heavy Electric, 3, Light Electric over Hydraulic, and 4, Heavy Electric over Hydraulic. It actually feels like there is less delay on the HEOH setting, but it's still there enough to cause the problem, and power levels on the different settings only effect stopping power, not the delay.

Yes, I have tried all of the different basic settings, and while they actually all work to a degree with my trailer, they all have the delay that causes "the bump" and the PP hitch to loose adjustment. The delay is actually felt, and can be felt with my current simple Reese SC hitch, although of course there is no "bump" and loss of adjustment, just an uneasy feeling, and what I consider a safety issue. Someone with less towing experience and not using a PPP type hitch might not notice the problem until a "situation" arises.
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Old 09-18-2013, 10:36 AM   #50
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Delay or not enough initial braking force is definitely what is needed to cause the bump. If we forget to put our Prodigy in the boost 1 or 2 position when we get on the open highway, a hard stop at sufficient speed will cause a bump. However since I pinned the yoke in position, it of course does not move and nothing else has broken.

It would seem to me that design engineers should realize that it is important to have the trailer brakes deploy at the same time as the truck brakes. As long as they use brake light voltage and/or accelerometers to sense what the brakes are doing, they are always going to be behind the braking events. Measuring the brake hydraulic pressure seems like a no brainer to me.

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Old 09-18-2013, 10:48 AM   #51
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Delay or not enough initial braking force is definitely what is needed to cause the bump. If we forget to put our Prodigy in the boost 1 or 2 position when we get on the open highway, a hard stop at sufficient speed will cause a bump. However since I pinned the yoke in position, it of course does not move and nothing else has broken.

It would seem to me that design engineers should realize that it is important to have the trailer brakes deploy at the same time as the truck brakes. As long as they use brake light voltage and/or accelerometers to sense what the brakes are doing, they are always going to be behind the braking events. Measuring the brake hydraulic pressure seems like a no brainer to me.

Ken
Actually, to be ahead of "the curve", the electric trailer brakes need to be triggered by the stop light voltage, not hydraulic pressure in the TV brake system.
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Old 09-18-2013, 02:28 PM   #52
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Actually, to be ahead of "the curve", the electric trailer brakes need to be triggered by the stop light voltage, not hydraulic pressure in the TV brake system.
As I think about it, you are correct if the switch is actuated by pedal movement.
Where do you think the delay is coming from? Is it a delay of any braking action or is the onset of braking too shallow a slope?

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Old 09-18-2013, 03:06 PM   #53
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Yep...not too many pressure brake light switch's being used today...find this one from our 1953.


A switch mounted on the pedal would turn the lights on much sooner than fluid pressure.

Bob
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Old 09-18-2013, 03:13 PM   #54
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As I think about it, you are correct if the switch is actuated by pedal movement.
Where do you think the delay is coming from? Is it a delay of any braking action or is the onset of braking too shallow a slope?

Ken
I don't know for sure, but I believe it is a delay of any braking action. If the brakes are applied at a normal speed like you are coming up to a stop sign, the delay is not too bad. But, the faster you apply the brakes (as when some moron cuts in front of you from the Left lane to take an exit, and you have to get on the brakes very quickly to keep from hitting him) the delay is way too long, and will cause the PP to "bump", and it's yoke to slip.

Then, since the PP is actually trying to turn the TV, you feel it in the steering wheel, you can see the trailer tracking to whichever side it slipped to, and you have to find a parking place to readjust it.

I believe it would be a safety hazard if this scenario presented itself in wet weather even with a conventional type WD hitch.

I'm thinking of making a display of a couple of colored LEDS on a panel, one wired to the brake light switch, and the other wired to the brake output wire to display it to Chrysler. The last thing they told me was they wanted to test the system with my trailer attached, and I told them since I live about 40 miles from the dealer, and have made three vehicle trips there already for this problem, they would have to come to me to experience it. There's actually no way I could get the truck and trailer into the dealership's lot, much less the service area.
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Old 09-18-2013, 03:22 PM   #55
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Memories Bob, my first car a 1950 had the flathead V8. I was always tinkering with it, I don't know why, I just liked it.

On Steve's trailer brake delay problem, could there possibly be the brake switch out of adjustment, maybe too much pedal travel to engage it, causing the trailer brake delay?

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Old 09-18-2013, 04:46 PM   #56
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Yep...not too many pressure brake light switch's being used today...find this one from our 1953.


A switch mounted on the pedal would turn the lights on much sooner than fluid pressure.

Bob

Thanks Bob,

I see it in the lower right. It even looks familiar. I do believe that I'm older than I feel.

"A switch mounted on the pedal would turn the lights on much sooner than fluid pressure."

Only if the switch does not require any significant pedal movement before closing.

A heads up for everyone:

Tomorrow is International "Talk Like a Pirate Day"

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Old 09-18-2013, 05:47 PM   #57
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EOH Brakes

I love my eoh brakes on my 2006 30ft. Classic. There might be a minuscule second of delay but when the brakes come on they WORK!
I have a 2011 Ram and the factory controller works great with my trailer.
This my fifth Airstream and these a by far the best brakes I have ever had.
Hickory

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Old 09-18-2013, 07:52 PM   #58
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I love my eoh brakes on my 2006 30ft. Classic. There might be a minuscule second of delay but when the brakes come on they WORK!
I have a 2011 Ram and the factory controller works great with my trailer.
This my fifth Airstream and these a by far the best brakes I have ever had.
Hickory

.
However, do you have either a ProPride or a Hensley hitch? That is where the barely noticeable delay becomes a problem.

The design of the hitch is such that the nose of the trailer will move either left or right until it makes a forceful bump against a mechanical stop, whenever the TV brakes are actuated without the trailer brakes. If this is a abrupt braking at anything other than slow speed, the bump will be forceful enough to push the rear of the TV off of straight ahead. Obviously this will scare the heck out of you and can lead to loss of directional control.

Ken

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Old 09-19-2013, 03:57 AM   #59
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the bump will be forceful enough to push the rear of the TV off of straight ahead. Obviously this will scare the heck out of you and can lead to loss of directional control.


This is a big statement. Are you sure of it? The distance travelled by the trailer in the even of "linkage collapse" is pretty small.

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Old 09-19-2013, 04:22 AM   #60
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Thumbs up My experience.....

POI....I've never used the haha without the TruCrontrol. There is no delay.
The moment the pedal is depressed the display will show the amperage being supplied, well before master cylinder pressure.
The only time I've experienced the "bump" was when the struts/hitch head was loose or not centered properly.
Even on the lowest controller setting....no bump.

Bob
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