Good Sam Club Open Roads Forum: Fifth Wheel Brakes Kind of Not Working
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 > Fifth Wheel Brakes Kind of Not Working

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buylow12

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Posted: 07/12/18 09:49pm Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

So I noticed my brakes are only engaging for a few seconds when I first press the brakes. I replaced the part where you plug in for the brakes and lights because it wasn't holding in well. Unfortunately that didn't fix it. Same thing, I can see it on the brake controller(It lights up when the brakes are engaged) and of course feel it? What could it be? Brake controller? I noticed turning up the power had no effect. Something else? I literally know nothing about brakes. Thanks for the help.


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romore

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Posted: 07/12/18 10:06pm Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

Pull out the receptacle on the tv and check for a loose/corroded connection. The cord on the trailer should go to a junction box, check the connections thre as well.

buylow12

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Posted: 07/12/18 10:24pm Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

What's the receptacle on the TV? I'll check out the junction box.

MitchF150

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Posted: 07/12/18 10:37pm Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

Have you ever adjusted the brakes?

buylow12

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Posted: 07/12/18 10:57pm Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

Yes if you mean with the controller, and I could tell a big difference adjusting it with the brake controller. I usually kept it half way up and I've got it cranked all the way up and don't notice any difference when it used to make a huge difference.I also looked at the connections at the junction box and break controller connections and they seemed really well connected. However maybe I should just redo one at a time as they're not marked. I'm getting about a second or two of brakes and then I feel them cutoff and the the light on the brake controller fades out, which it never did before. It was on, or it was off.

MitchF150

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Posted: 07/12/18 11:09pm Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

No, I mean jacking up the axles, crawling on the ground, pulling out the little plug on the back of the backing plate (on each wheel) and turning the adjusting star wheel to put the brake shoes closer to the drums... [emoticon]

That is how 99% of the trailer brakes work these days.. Now, you could have disk brakes and electric over hydraulic brake system, so that's possible too, but you didn't say either way..

buylow12

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Posted: 07/12/18 11:14pm Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

No never done that, I'll give it a go tomorrow though. How much should I adjust before I test again? Half turn, whole turn? It probably is that type, it's a 2004 Gulfstream Yellowstone...so nothing to fancy.

buylow12

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Posted: 07/12/18 11:19pm Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

Is that something that could have loosened up over the 4k miles I just put on it in the last two months headed to Alaska. Should I adjust each equally? Sounds like a bit above my pay grade but I'm going to give it a go, lol.

MitchF150

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Posted: 07/12/18 11:45pm Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

Brake material wears, so does the magnets that activate the brakes..

There is no set amount. Jack up wheel, put jack stand on frame, move star wheel while spinning the wheel. Once you hear just the slightest bit of scraping sound, but the wheel still spins freely, that's usually pretty good..

But, depending on wen the last time the brakes were adjusted or even replaced for that matter, it might be that you have no brake surface left, or the magnets themselves are worn too much?

I have a 2003 Prowler and I changed out the entire brake backing plate on each wheel about 7 years ago or so.. I've owned it since new..

When I replaced them, the shoes and the magnets were worn enough that I could not adjust them enough.

Once I got the new backing plates, with the entire brake assembly already installed, it was a night and day difference..

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2013 F150 XLT 4x4 SuperCab Max Tow Egoboost 3.73 gears #7700 GVWR #1920 payload. 2003 Prowler Lynx 722F #5000 GVWR and weighs every bit of it! "> Happy Camping!


time2roll

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Posted: 07/12/18 11:51pm Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

buylow12 wrote:

Is that something that could have loosened up over the 4k miles I just put on it in the last two months headed to Alaska. Should I adjust each equally? Sounds like a bit above my pay grade but I'm going to give it a go, lol.
As you move the brake tool down it will turn the star wheel and expand the shoes against the drums. You should be turning the wheel forward as you do this until you get some light friction. Repeat at all wheels. Test drive and repeat as needed. Yes this should be done periodically but at least once a year.

Also try manually engaging the brake controller with the hand lever while coasting about 25 mph.

To further check the electric connection get your DC clamp-on ammeter and measure the current to each wheel as a buddy manually applies the brake controller. You should see 3 amps at each wheel.


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