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Old 11-16-2013, 07:40 PM   #1
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I Think My Brake Controller Wants Me Dead

Well, maybe not dead, but it sure likes to frustrate me.

I've been driving my mess around the country full time since July. I have an 01 All American Sport behind a 97 F350 dually. In general it's fine, except when it comes time to stop quickly.

I bought my truck used and it has a tekonsha P3 brake controller. However its operation seems to be completely backwards from what it should do. The most brake power I can get out of it with the brakes applied is around 4. This also only occurs when I'm at or near a stop. When I'm moving, I can't get any more than 1. This requires me to have to reach down and pull the lever should I need to come to a quick stop. My truck is a stick so I certainly can stand to have my hands freed up from this (extra) exercise.

What's really tearing my hair out is the brake controller's tendency to apply the trailer brakes when I'm climbing a steep hill. As if I'm not slow enough already, I have this to worry about. Having the boost feature turned on only seemed to amplify this problem, so I've generally left it off. The brake stay on even if I tilt the controller in its mount.

This is my first experience with a brake controller, but it just doesn't seem to do what I need it to do. Am I wrong in that assumption, or is there a possibility of something being wired backwards, or do I need to pitch this controller and replace it with a new unit?
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Old 11-16-2013, 07:45 PM   #2
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I suggest you call Tenkosa and discuss with them Could be a number of problems but continuing as you are can be dangerous.
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Old 11-16-2013, 08:06 PM   #3
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I had a P2 and got rid of it, I do not like porportional controllers. I feel the timed base stop better at least in my rig they pull the truck back better. if the p3 display is like the p2 it reads VDC at the brakes and a 4 would be only a third of the power available
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Old 11-16-2013, 08:10 PM   #4
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It's similar to your P2 display. If I pull the lever I can get 12.9 but I would think I should get that much if I stood on the brakes too.
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Old 11-16-2013, 08:18 PM   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by wantahertzdonut View Post
It's similar to your P2 display. If I pull the lever I can get 12.9 but I would think I should get that much if I stood on the brakes too.
when I used my P2 I had to keep it turned up all the way and boost 3 , never did I see max display readout (13) even on a panic stop . I talked to Tenkosa at length and they were real helpful. but in the end the reese activator timed base worked best. I now stop with authority and can feel the truck get pulled down really nice, it also helped that I adjusted the pads myself
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Old 11-16-2013, 09:08 PM   #6
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Did you adjust the sensitivity as instructed in your manual? This is using the thumb wheel adjustment.
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Old 11-16-2013, 09:13 PM   #7
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If it's braking when you're going up a hill, and you're not applying brakes, it is wired wrong or defective. No voltage should be applied unless you're also applying the towing vehicle's brakes. I'd check the wiring first.
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Old 11-17-2013, 12:30 AM   #8
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the very vast majority of Prodigy owners are extremely happy with theirs and the Prodigy is the most highly recommended brake controller out there.
i also suggest checking the wiring and calling Tekonsha's tech support.
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Old 11-17-2013, 01:06 AM   #9
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I had a Tekonsha voyager in my 91 Ford, and put the same old school controller in my Jeep. Never had issues with either. I would switch yours out and see if the controller has gone bad. As others have said, most people are happy with theirs.
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Old 11-17-2013, 04:37 AM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by wantahertzdonut View Post

I bought my truck used and it has a tekonsha P3 brake controller. However its operation seems to be completely backwards from what it should do.
Howdy and welcome to the forums. On the lower left hand side of your brake controller display, is there an E or a H displayed?

The part about climbing steep hills, and the controller applying brakes sounds like something wrong with the inertia sensor. The controller needs to be mounted fairly level side to side. How do you have the controller currently mounted in your truck?
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