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Old 06-09-2015, 05:59 PM   #1
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Brake Controller on my TV

I have a 2013 Ram 1500. Last week I went to pick up our new (to us) 25' AS. We could not pick it up because the brake controller would not work (I wrote up the experience entitled "A Very Disappointing Day" last Friday).

I took my TV into the Ram dealer today and they checked out everything and could not duplicate the problem. They could find nothing wrong.

Has anyone with a Ram TV had a similar problem where nothing is "wrong" but it does not "recognize" that a trailer is attached (the EVIC says "No Trailer Connected" even though it is attached via the umbilical cord). The PO's truck, a F250, recognizes the trailer and the brake controller works when the trailer is plugged into it.

I really hate to drive another 4 hours from PA to NJ only to find out that the brakes still do not work on the trailer. Any ideas, suggestions, on what next steps to take.


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Old 06-09-2015, 06:11 PM   #2
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I have had problems with both my F-150 and my Ram where I had to REALLY force the 7-pin connector into the truck. The gauge I use to determine if I have a good connection is whether the flip up cover captivates the plug or not. That worked well with my F-150 but I have had one occasion where the Ram cover was holding the plug but I still had no connection. When you go back, make sure you really force the plug into the socket on the truck. Inspect the plug and the socket to see that no pins are bent. The other is to take a meter and be sure that the meter shows resistance (probably about 1-2 ohms) between the brake pin (blue wire) and ground on the trailer plug. I think that is how the controller knows that a trailer is there. If someone re-wired the trailer to match a non-standard truck that could be the problem. It would still work with the seller's truck but not with yours.





If you don't have one, you can get an inexpensive multimeter at Harbor Freight, Lowes, Home Depot, or maybe WalMart. Put it on the resistance scale and measure between the brake controller output and ground pin as depicted in the upper center of the above figure. Since the brakes draw about 2A each at 12 Volts, that's a total of 8 A at 12 volts so the meter should read about 1.5 ohms. If not, there is something wrong with the trailer wiring. Measure between the ground pin and the trailer frame. That should read 0 ohms.


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Old 06-09-2015, 06:41 PM   #3
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If this is a factory built in controller have them flash the computer with the controller codes. It is possible that it it dropped them or was never properly flashed in the first. That was one of the issues with my F150. After flashing all worked as advertised.
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Old 06-09-2015, 07:42 PM   #4
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And then there was this. Maybe you saw this already.

http://www.airforums.com/forums/f463...et-101058.html
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Old 06-09-2015, 07:57 PM   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Jukeboxfun View Post
And then there was this. Maybe you saw this already.

http://www.airforums.com/forums/f463...et-101058.html
Yes I did see and read this link. It doesn't seem to apply as my brake controller is not aftermarket but came with the tow package.

I think I'll take the truck to the local Camping World and ask them if I can hook up to one of their trailers to see how it reacts. If it still says "no trailer connected" then back to the dealership for more investigation. Maybe "reflash" the computer. If it can "recognize" the trailer than I'm not sure what the next step will be but I'll be a little closer to solution.

Why do things have to be so difficult?
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Old 06-09-2015, 08:48 PM   #6
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The nature of vehicles which are also homes is that the number of potential problems is large. One learns to not be dissuaded.

And that it happens when I am NOT on the highway at 60+ means it's not a big deal.

Go easy. Takes time to break in the owner.
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Old 06-10-2015, 11:52 AM   #7
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Update!

This morning I took my truck to the local Camping World. I started to explain my situation and the gentleman I was speaking to said, "Wait here and let me get the box". He came back with a box about the size of a laptop with a 15' cord on it. The "box" duplicates having a trailer hooked to your TV including reading for electric brakes. We plugged it into the receptacle, started the truck, checked for lights, turning signals, brake lights and finally for the electric brakes. The "box" had meters on it which showed how much current was flowing to the brakes.

The results; the EVIC said trailer was connected and the "box" showed current flowing to the brakes when the pedal was depressed or when the brake controller was manually operated. So, good news, as stated by the people at the RAM dealer as as verified with this test, the problem IS NOT with the truck.

So more investigation is needed but I'm one step closer to resolving my brake issue and getting my AS home!

BTW the folks at Camping World were fantastic to work with and extremely helpful, plus didn't charge me anything!
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Old 06-10-2015, 12:02 PM   #8
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I'm guessing you didn't have it plugged in good (it can be REALLY hard to seat the connector fully) or the trailer wiring was changed to get it to work with the PO's truck. Either way, a visit to the trailer is required to get it resolved.

Al
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Old 06-10-2015, 12:17 PM   #9
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I had an issue last week with my new tow vehicle. It recognized the trailer and then dropped it. We ended up changing out the connector of the trailer's cord.

Since you've isolated the problem to the trailer, you should consider having them test your trailer's connection to another tow vehicle. We tried a few variations to isolate the program. My TV to another trailer. My trailer to another TV, etc.
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Old 06-10-2015, 12:29 PM   #10
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It's very difficult to get the umbilical plugged into my Dodge. Takes some effort and care to get it straight in. Jim
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Old 06-11-2015, 08:25 AM   #11
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Put some silicone grease on the exterior after spraying both interior ends with WD40 and cleaning. Ace Hardware carries Super Lube, which I prefer over plumbing supply grease. It's a common problem on big trucks as well. A rubber mallet is your friend; tap easy.
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Old 06-11-2015, 08:33 AM   #12
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Good point. Jim
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Old 06-14-2015, 03:18 PM   #13
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Angry 2nd Update!

With great optimism we went to pick up our AS this morning. At the suggestion of the PO we decided to meet about half way between his house and my place, which we did.

The first thing I did was back my truck up to the trailer, at an angle, beside his truck and plugged in the umbilical cord. Guess what? Even though no one (the Dodge dealers and the Camping World service department) could find anything wrong with the TV, the same message I received the last time appeared, "No Trailer Connected", (which means no brakes). We made sure the plug was correctly inserted, pushed it in real hard, moved it around, etc., all to no avail. We then took the plug apart to make sure the wires were connected properly. We found one that appeared loose, went into the Walmart (we met in their parking lot) bought a connector kit and repaired and reconnected the wiring. Still no go. We then reviewed the schematic of the Ford receptacle as compared to the Ram receptacle (which was difficult to do in the bright sun of the parking lot) and while they appeared to be the same we decided to switch the brake and ground wires. The Ram still would not recognize that the trailer was connected. We switched the wires back, and when plugged into his Ford everything worked as it should. This is a real puzzle.

The PO then offered to tow my AS over 200 miles round trip to my place. What a great guy! I called the local Camping World and we delivered it there. So at least the AS and my TV are now in the same town. I'll call them tomorrow morning and schedule a service appointment. Hopefully they can figure this out and get it fixed.

Since the PO has a Ford and the AS brakes work well with it, maybe a new TV is in the future?
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Old 06-16-2015, 02:00 PM   #14
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Since this is the busy season, Camping World service technicians, cannot look at the AS/TV interface until 6/30. I'm just itching to get my AS home and to use it.
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Old 06-16-2015, 02:45 PM   #15
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What a bummer - sorry to hear your problems. But then a Ford is not a bad thing.
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Old 06-16-2015, 03:45 PM   #16
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The worst possible solution to a bad trailer connector is buying a different truck. Change the connector on the trailer first, then the one on the truck. But clean them both first. That it works on one truck and not the other (and you know your truck is properly wired) is a distraction from fixing the problem.
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Old 06-16-2015, 04:51 PM   #17
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When I had probs with my controller, I bought one of these to make sure it was spitting out the right signals... I know you have had lots of testing done, but I thought I would mention it just in case.

http://www.amazon.com/Tekonsha-6562-...ailer+emulator
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Old 06-16-2015, 08:34 PM   #18
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A Ram dealer service tech told me last week that if there is any glitch in trailer wiring especially a ground issue, it won't work with factory controller. My son's 3500 dually deisel had that issue with a 5th wheel. Truck tested fine and everything else worked. Some other trailers worked but some not. Convinced small issue in trailer that may not be a problem with another TV with add on controller. Tech said it is a frequent complaint with recent models. We havent found the trailer issue but we will and so will you. Process of elimation.
Good luck.
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Old 07-09-2015, 06:57 PM   #19
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Update No. 3

After several tries (and several weeks) the issue with my brake controller not recognizing the trailer has been resolved. The folks at Camping World finally figured it out. The first thing that was done was to replace the plug as the existing one appeared to be corroded (even though it worked with the PO's F-150). After that was done at last we had intermittent connection. But the jubilation was short lived as the connection was lost as soon as you stepped on the brakes in the TV. Upon further investigation it seems as though a wire was pinched near the rear axle. They spliced the wire and the issue seems to be solved (I am somewhat hesitant, albeit hopeful, to say it's 100% solved as I've only driven about 10 miles since the repair). I still do not fully understand why the PO had no problems with his brake controller and the trailer brakes. Nonetheless it's now working correctly.

I had Camping World install a Blue OX Sway Pro hitch while it was there. In retrospect I should have installed it myself as I had to virtually reinstall it to get everything correct as per the instructions. But that's s different story. All in all I'm happy!

So I finally have my AS at home and can now make plans to get out on the road.
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Old 07-09-2015, 07:26 PM   #20
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Quote:
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So I finally have my AS at home and can now make plans to get out on the road.
That's great, glad to hear it worked out.
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