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Old 08-21-2002, 12:59 PM   #21
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Disconnect

The disconnect is actually a typical 110 volt single pole switch that has been placed in line, (series), to one of the leads that goes from the Univolt to the trailer battery. This lead is a direct connection from the Univolt to the Trailer Battery.

I assume that this breaks the circle from the univolt to the trailer battery. I notice that when the switch, (disconnect), is open the lights are a little dimmer than normal and the new stereo that I installed will not operate correctly. The radio will light up as though it is working but the CD player will not play and the radio only emits static with no radio station output. I suspect that the univolt is not putting out a full 12 volts to the fuse panel.

The Univolt does seem to be charging the battery seeing that my battery has not gone dead.

When the "disconnect" is closed, everything seems to work well.

I will be looking for the leads that are supposed to be connected to the break away switch tonight. I hope to find the leads spliced as you have described and in turn find that the humm is due to my emergency brake being applied.

As usual I am getting much more eduacation than I ever anticipated from the grest wisdom and knowledge pool that resides here at the A/S Forum.

Many thanks,
Smily
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Old 08-21-2002, 01:06 PM   #22
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Smily,

If factory installed the disconnect you describe turns off the ac outlet that the univolt is plugged into. This would be the best outcome as running a univolt disconnected from the battery can damage it.

In reading your last post I think I see another clue! If the new CD player works with the univolt on, but not with it off, the current draw that is engaging the brakes could be dropping the 12VDC to the point that the CD player will not work. How much do the lights dim?

Let us know what you find tonight!
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Old 08-21-2002, 01:08 PM   #23
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Trailer Battery and Breakaway switch

Something occurred to me while writing my last post.

I have actually pulled the trailer about 150 miles to date. I did not have the seven way connector hooked up and I did not have lights,( I know, shame,shame), but the trailer pulled excellant without any problems. It was truly an airstream like day.

If the breakaway switch is fed from the trailer battery, why did I not have the humm and emergency brakes applied at the time of the pull? The break away switch was in the same state at that time.

I did not have Humm or brake concerns until I installed the seven way connector with 12 volts applied to the trailer.

I hope that you are correct in the breakaway wiring is the culprit but I will not be certain until I get to verify the wiring through the adapter cable and look for the breakaway wiring on the trailer shell end.

I dont know if I mentioned it but the wires that are connected to the breakaway switch are actually hanging exposed and stripped from the switch but I did not see any wires eminating from the trailer shell.

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Old 08-21-2002, 01:13 PM   #24
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Smily,

The ony reason I can come up with as to why you were not towing with the brakes engaged would be that the coach battery was dead, or the fuse from the panel may have been blown???
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Old 08-21-2002, 01:21 PM   #25
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Disconnect

New Kid,

The disconnect is definitely not 110 volts.

The disconnect is in series between the Univolt and the Trailer Battery. Therefore the disconnect is opening the circuit between the battery and the univolt.

Battery was low at time of the pull and maybe fuse was blown but I have not replaced any fuses. so if fuse was blown then it would be blown now.

I cant wait to get home and investigate.

I will make a post tonight and let you know what I see.

I am certain that I will need some more help tonight when I can put my eyes on it and let my fellow A/S r's know whatis going on.

Smily
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Old 08-21-2002, 01:29 PM   #26
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Check for a short

I had a short in my 7-way connector. Two adjacent wires strands were touching at the screws. Could be either side of the connector as you just re-wired the system. IMHO

Ciao, Brian
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Old 08-21-2002, 02:53 PM   #27
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Connector

S,

The last time you towed was the disconnect open? If so that is why you had no hum.

My brakes did not work on my last tow. I isolated it to the connection the wires made inside of the 7 way connector on the trailer. The brake wire had broken from the blade connector. I replaced the entire 7 way connector as it was beat up and butted in new blade connectors. Then I painted any exposed wires and connectors with liquid tape. The liquid tape will help with issues like Brian had.

You might take apart the 7 way connector on the trailer and see if all of the connections are good, tight and isolated from any other connections. And that they are on the correct lug for the tow vehicle.

I have not tested my results yet. However the installation looks much better.

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Old 08-22-2002, 06:23 AM   #28
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The evil within.......

I went home and took the adapter cable apart and boy what a mess.

The wires had been butt spliced and extended to the connector. A poor job at best! There were exposed wires that were shorted and loose.

I made entirely new cable and re-attached conductors.

All conductors had to re-configured to the Tow vehicle.

Amazing how much brighter the tail lights and turn lights are now.

The constant humm is gone now but there is a different humm that eminates from the wheel wells when the brake pedal is pressed. I assume that this is the brakes engaging on the trailer.

The humm is a low groan but uniform on both sides of the trailer.

It was obvious that the brakes had not been used in some time because the first application of the brakes emmitted a rusty sound of parts moving in the wheels. But the sound is a low groan now and increases in volume as the brake pressure is increased.

It was late before I finished the cabling and electrical testing so it will be today hopefully before I can actually road test the brakes.

I am having a little problems with the lights though but I will create a seperate post for that.

Thanks for all of the help,
Smily
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Old 08-22-2002, 06:29 AM   #29
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Lightbulb Breakaway switch wires

New kid,
There are indeed two conductors extending from the tongue of the trailer and there is 12 volts respectively between the two conductors.

when I short the wires, I can hear the "clank" of the brakes. Only problem is that I cannot tell if it is coming from all wheels. It seems to be coming from the rear wheels of both sides.

I have visually inspected all of the wiring at the wheels, (from behind), and everything seems to be in order. I was suprised to see yellow wire nuts on the connections but I have found the same wire nuts through out the trailer. I believe this is the manufacturer method. Any thoughts on that?

I have tandem axles. Are the emergency brakes only on the rear wheels?

I think that I am going to elevate trailer and test all brakes.

I will be splicing the wires back to the breakaway switch and I hope that is all I will have to do but could one be so lucky??????

getting closer
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Old 08-22-2002, 08:23 AM   #30
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Brake magnet test

You can test the magnets using a compass. I have to hold the compass very close to the hub but the needle will definitely move when the brakes are energized. I do this by pulling the pin out from the breakaway switch.

Remember that you should never pull the pin out from the breakaway switch while your 7-pin connector is hooked up to the tow vehicle as you will FRY your brake controller.

Ciao, Brian
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Old 08-22-2002, 09:23 AM   #31
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North and south

How ingenius,

Thanks for the tip. Especially the one about being disconnected from Tow vehicle.

Fortunately I have not actually tested the breakaway switch while the connector was in place. But that is by mere fortune because I wolud have tested it after I got all of my connector problems squared away.

I will get a cheap compass today and try the old pointer trick.

Thanks,
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Old 08-22-2002, 05:59 PM   #32
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Smily,

The yellow wire nuts on the brake wires seem to be the standard method of connections. I would always check mine when on a long trip as they did come apart on one of my trilers once. I would think a butt crimp would be more secure, but if they have held for this long who am I to argue???

I do not know if the breakaway only engages the rear set of brakes on your model year, but let us know how the compass test works out.

Prior to rewiring the breakaway switch in I would test it with a meter to be sure it is functional. The fact that it is disconnected may be due to it not working, or working when it is not supposed to!
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Old 08-23-2002, 05:41 AM   #33
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Pulling today

We are going to take a little trip this weekend to the lake and pull the trailer about 100 miles round trip.

This will be the first trip with all of the wiring in place.
I am going to leave the break away switch disconnected but I will probably give it a shot while I am at the camp ground.

I will get my trusty volt meter out and verify the operational ability of the break away switch.

Any way, wish me luck and pray that I dont leave my axles behind due to lock up. The trip is on flat terrain and I feel pretty safe with braking as long as I dont encounter lock-up.

Bon Voyage,
Smily
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Old 08-23-2002, 07:05 AM   #34
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In the instructions that came with your brake controller thate should be a step by step process for adjusting the gain that would cause lockup. Follow them and you should be fine.

Enjoy your trip!!
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