On my two axle open trailer I have breaks on the front axle only. I have two tow vehicles that are set up to pull this trailer. The (Hopkins Towing Adapter) plug-in is a seven (7) spade set up. One spade is designated for the electric break hook-up.
NOW FOR THE QUESTION: Is there a way of using one (1) break controller so I can utilize either tow vehicle, when necessary? Something that is mounted to the trailer, would not be a bad thing. I think???
Thanks, Harvey ....
Modern trailer brake controllers (hopkins is one) can be moved from car to car, since they have a plug on the back of them. However you will need to install the wiring harness with the plug in both vehicles.
There is no good reason you cannot install a connector in the brake controller wiring. The only caution is that there are 2 and/or sometimes 3 rather heavy wires in the brake controller harness that go to the main power (+12V), BRAKE POWER LEAD, and GROUND. Usually the ground doesn't really have to be heavy since the controllers typically supply a pulse width modulated power lead to the BRAKE POWER LEAD. What is important it your choice of connector for this job. You need a connector that is really heavy duty for at least those heavy wires. I would hope a connector would be rated at least 20 amps. MORE than that if you have 4 wheel brakes on the trailer at some point. When you apply heavy braking there is a lot of DC current that is going to flow from the main 12V power through the controller to the Brake Power Lead and you don't want to lose any power or have anything overheat by using low amperage rated connector. Make sure you put the female part of the connector on the car and the male part of the connector on the controller so that when not in use, the car connections are not going to bounce into something and short out. Just do a good job and make good connections at each point and it will all work just fine.
To clarify - I mean 20 amps PER CONNECTION WIRE - not total of all wires.
Harvey--your question is not really that clear. If you have an RV trailer dealer near you--they will know exactly how to hook it up.
In my experience--the controller is mounted on the vehicle dash so you can have manual control of the electrical power if necessary. That would mean that each vehicle would need its own controller. Talk to us some more.
You would need a bracket in each vehical to mount the controller to.You would need a heavy connector that could handle 20 amps for about 4 wires,and the harness would need to be the same in both vehicals.The female jack in the vehical,the male plug on the controller.The bad part about what you are wanting to do is the controllers have adjustments on them to compensate for the mounting angle in the vehical.Moveing it back and forth will cause you to have to change that adjustment,or possiabley in a hurry forgetting to,and that may make trouble later on.
Most controllers can be had for less than a 100 bucks,I think the last 1 I helped put in for a freind was 50.
In the long run,you might consider just getting a second controller.
I'm looking for a way to use one controller for two tow vehicles; if possible. I may check with an RV trailer dealer this week. Also the Hopkins Towing Solutions people.
Mr. Decker, I use one controller for two vehicles, I have a "Hayes Lemmerz - Energize III" that was touted as the best when I got it, all I know is it works for me. I have a very simple connector in the harness directly behind the controller ( mine is loose and sits on the arm rest when in use ) I used a flat trailer connector for this connector and to maintain polarity, works for me.
Thanks for the Hays Lemmerz information. Hopkins Towing Solutions have two controllers that will work for this application.