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Old 01-17-2019, 02:52 PM   #1
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Do I need an electric brake controller for truck??

I just bought a R-Pod 180, that I will pull with my 2012 Chevy Silverado, and am wondering if I need to install an "electric brake" on my truck. The person that we bought the camper from had an electric brake installed on his tow vehicle. I have never pulled a camper before, and am hoping to get some good advice. Thanks in advance for any response.
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Old 01-17-2019, 02:54 PM   #2
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I believe you do. The connector will be a 7-pin connection and your state will likely require it for something the size of the 180.
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Old 01-17-2019, 02:58 PM   #3
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To answer your "thanks" message - it wasn't a DIY job for me, but I'm not a "car-guy". I'm the guy who still has to think, "righty tighty, lefty loosey" when I pickup a screw driver. I think having one installed on my Durango was only about $300 and that included the Prodigy brake controller.

You might have a different level of proficiency.
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Old 01-17-2019, 02:59 PM   #4
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If camper has brakes than yes you need to install a brake controller on your truck
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Old 01-17-2019, 03:14 PM   #5
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In PA, any trailer over 3000 # needs trailer brakes and a way to make them work.
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Old 01-17-2019, 07:36 PM   #6
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Depending on the model of your truck, you may be able to find a Plug in brake controller. When I had my trailblazer, I had to slice into the correct wires for the brake controller, for my 2014 Silverado there was a module I was able to plug into (had a Prodigy P3 controller on both). Both had a 7 pin adapter in back already.
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Old 01-17-2019, 08:01 PM   #7
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I have a P3 brake controller with the plug in wiring harness for a GM truck I will sell. Drop me a PM if you wish.
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Old 01-17-2019, 08:01 PM   #8
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If the trailer has electric brakes, you need a controller. Don't skimp get a good one. Most of the good ones come with or have available a cable that will connect to the wiring in your TV without any cutting. Check your TV users manual it should identify the wiring color and location.
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Old 01-18-2019, 01:51 PM   #9
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Anything over 2000lbs I would want brakes, and many have brakes because some states have laws requiring trailer have brakes and you have a way to make them work. If your trailer has brakes decent add on electric brake controllers can be had cheap and labor to install isn't that much but worth it to have a professional install them. Some vehicles have the pre-wiring to the trailer connecter already there, you just hook up the control unit, while some are prewired but you have to wire on a pigtail connector for your type of controller.
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Old 01-18-2019, 03:42 PM   #10
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Many years ago, when I was an ignorant newbie, I had a truck camper and a VW bug I was gonna tow with the rig. I had a tow bar made by a local welder and actually figured out how to connect the wires so the bug had lights. I didn't give a thought to brakes. Until we were driving down a straight mountain road in Wyoming, and I tried to slow down. I don't know what my VW weighed, but what ever it was it was enough to make the truck brakes useless. The was a cross road at the bottom of the mountain with a traffic light. All I could do was lay on the horn and flash my lights. Fortunately there was no cross traffic when I blew through the red light. I then looked for a rest room. I also never towed anything heavier than a log splitter without trailer brakes and of course, a controller.
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