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Old 02-08-2013, 09:34 PM   #1
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Toad Braking System - Do I need it and if so Which One?

We have just purchased a good used 2007 Saturn ION (approx 2700lbs). We will tow behind a 2008 Forest River Lexington 283GTS RV on a Ford E-450 Super Duty chassis. We are looking at the different supplemental braking systems and would like some suggestions. I have seen the Roadmaster Invisibrake and the SMI Duo braking system. Does anyone have any experience with these braking systems for the towed car and do I really need a supplemental braking system for a 2700lb tow car. Thanks.
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Old 02-08-2013, 10:31 PM   #2
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You didn't say what state your from. It varries from state to state as low as 1500lbs in CA, 3000 in CO or higher in some states. Some have a performance standard, i.e. Must stop within 50ft at 20 MPH. Check your state laws. We don't have a brake system, toad weight is 2700lbs, behind a 29,000 lbs HM.
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Old 02-09-2013, 10:33 AM   #3
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IMO - You should have a supplemental braking system of some sort. For starters, try reading this article about the physics of towed vehicles and make your own decision if you need one or not... Physics of Towed Vehicles

In our modified '97 Jeep Wrangler, I used the Invisibrake and nearly bought another for our '13 Wrangler. Since I was starting with another complete supplemental install, I found a great deal on a US Gear Unified Tow Brake through ebay at about 1/2 the price of the Invisibrake, so I switched.

Once installed, both systems are plug in and go. No messing with a bulky Brake Buddy or similar system that goes inside the vehicle cabin. Additionally, many folks recommend a surge type brake system from ReadyBrake. It has a simple uncomplicated design that operates a cable from the tow bar/receiver to your brake pedal inside the towed vehicle. I personally don't like them as they don't boost the vacuum brakes and rely on brute force to activate the towed vehicle brakes. I feel you should have a break-away brake to go with it, and there are kits that provide that to work with the ReadyBrake.

If you are a DIY guy, the Unified Brake System is pretty easy to install but does take a full day IMO. Pretty much the same for the Invisibrake with the control box that goes under a seat or in the trunk.

Hope this helps!
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