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Old 06-08-2010, 07:10 PM   #1
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s. wood
towing lights

Last year I puchased a 79 Sunline 21' travel trailer and someone hacked off the plug that plugs into the truck. It took 45 min to get just tail and stop lights and no elec brakes. I was 55 miles from home going up and down a lot of hills in N.H.
My question is do i need the batt to complete the circut for all the lights and elec brakes to work properly? Thanks in advance to anyone that respondes to my question.
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Old 06-08-2010, 08:03 PM   #2
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The trailer's battery is not required to operate the trailers tail lights or the electric brakes.

The only time the trailer battery is used for the brakes is when the break away switch located on the trailer is activated.

I also live in Southern NH, actually Hampton.
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Old 06-08-2010, 08:59 PM   #3
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Quote:
Originally Posted by s. wood View Post
My question is do i need the batt to complete the circut for all the lights and elec brakes to work properly? Thanks in advance to anyone that respondes to my question.


Norm is correct, the battery only is on board during towing to work the emergency break away switch to activate the brakes when the trailer seperates from the TV.

The brakes, all body lights, directional and stop lights should work direct from your truck.

You could be fighting a ground problem. Common on older trailers where rust eats the connections and the circuit no longer works.

You can test ground a few ways but a simple way is just a long piece of wire. Connect one end to a good know ground from the truck. Turn on lights with the lens caps off. Touch the good ground to the light fixture ground that does not work. If it lights, then the ground for that fixture is bad. If no light then you may not be getting the hot signal. Be careful to not touch the ground to the hot wire.

If you have an ohm meter you can check the ground with no power at all. Do the same good know ground wire long enough to go to each non working fixture and check the resistance at the socket to the good ground.

Good luck and hope this helps.

John
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Old 06-08-2010, 09:40 PM   #4
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I assume from your email that your tail lights are working. Is that correct or are they intermittant?

I assume that you have a Prodigity Brake Controller or something like that. Is that correct?

On the Prodigity as so as you turn it on it shows whether you have a connection to the brakes by displaying a 'c' for connected. In addition when you step on your tow vehicles brake pedal a number should appear on the Controller's display. If you can provide that information it will help us figure out your problem.

As to grounds, we have an '82 Sunline and they all needed to be re -done, a relatively easy job.

Hope this provides a little insight.

As John
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Old 06-08-2010, 09:42 PM   #5
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Opps - cutoff somehow.

As John said grounds can be a problem in older trailers. I had to replace ours in our '82, a relatively easy job
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Old 06-09-2010, 08:43 AM   #6
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plug diagram

Quote:
Originally Posted by s. wood View Post
Last year I puchased a 79 Sunline 21' travel trailer and someone hacked off the plug that plugs into the truck. It took 45 min to get just tail and stop lights and no elec brakes. I was 55 miles from home going up and down a lot of hills in N.H.
My question is do i need the batt to complete the circut for all the lights and elec brakes to work properly? Thanks in advance to anyone that respondes to my question.
I know this post is old but in case someone runs across it like I did here is a diagram that shows the wiring industral standard.


In case the pictures does not show up here is the link.

It is on a site called
www.led4rv.com
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Old 06-12-2010, 06:54 PM   #7
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The tail lights don't work at all. I ran a 4 way plug & wire set over the roof & tied it into the exiting lights. I had totaly forgot that it could as simple as a bad ground. Will keep ya all posted. Thanks everone for responding.
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