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Old 02-13-2014, 09:34 PM   #1
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Brake Light Issue when Tow Vehicle attached

I have an 02 Journey. When I press the brake pedal with a tow vechicle connected (electrically) the brake lights do not work on the tow vechicle, the R/H reverse light illuminates on the RV and the reverse monitor comes on as long as the pedal is depressed. Also, the turn signals and tail lights are weak on the tow vehicle. The RV lights and reverse monitor work normally when a tow vehicle is not connected. I have tried two different tow vehicles with the same results. I suspect a poor ground connection on the RV but have not been able to find it.

Any other ideas out there?

Thanks in advance.
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Old 02-13-2014, 10:00 PM   #2
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Check the wiring of the connecting cable, and outlet.

Also you might add your MH and Toad to your signature so we know what you are working on!
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Old 02-13-2014, 10:01 PM   #3
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Quote:
Originally Posted by wfrazier View Post
I have an 02 Journey. When I press the brake pedal with a tow vechicle connected (electrically) the brake lights do not work on the tow vechicle, the R/H reverse light illuminates on the RV and the reverse monitor comes on as long as the pedal is depressed. Also, the turn signals and tail lights are weak on the tow vehicle. The RV lights and reverse monitor work normally when a tow vehicle is not connected. I have tried two different tow vehicles with the same results. I suspect a poor ground connection on the RV but have not been able to find it.

Any other ideas out there?

Thanks in advance.
Sounds to me like you may have a shorted wire inside the electrical tow plug connector on the back of your coach. This happened to me before and I found where the wires come into the female plug connector, there was one wire shorted to one of the other wires. I ended up installing a new connector and was back in business.

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Old 02-14-2014, 11:59 AM   #4
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Quote:
Originally Posted by wfrazier View Post
I have an 02 Journey. When I press the brake pedal with a tow vechicle connected (electrically) the brake lights do not work on the tow vechicle, the R/H reverse light illuminates on the RV and the reverse monitor comes on as long as the pedal is depressed. Also, the turn signals and tail lights are weak on the tow vehicle. The RV lights and reverse monitor work normally when a tow vehicle is not connected. I have tried two different tow vehicles with the same results. I suspect a poor ground connection on the RV but have not been able to find it.

Any other ideas out there?

Thanks in advance.
wfraizier,

Well Sir, it surely sounds as if you've got a wiring issue with the plug/umbilical cord. If your coach tail lights act completely normal when no toad is connected, then it sure points at a problem with the wiring of the toad, any toad, if the wiring is bad in either of the plugs.

The first thing I'd do is, make sure that the wiring to the trailer plug on the coach, is in correlation with the normal wiring diagrams for that model trailer plug. That is, make sure the R/T/Brake, L/T/Brake, Running lights, Ground, etc. are all where they're supposed to be. You can check all those with a test light.

Then, and this might be a tad more complicated but, you can do the same in the umbilical with it hooked up to the toad, with the use of a small or, normal 12V battery. Just get a couple of leads, and clamp one from the negative of the battery to the toad some place that's a known, good ground. Then, clamp the other lead to the positive on the battery and then start touching the pins in the umbilical while it's hooked to the toad.

You'd be better off with a helper on this to tell you what's lighting up on the rear of the toad. Then, while you're doing this, make sure you draw a schematic so that, in the end, you can mate up what pin does what, in the umbilical and, the trailer plug on the coach to see if something's amiss. With this method of testing, you know EXACTLY WHAT'S going on in both your coach plug and, your toad plug.

One more thing, on the back of some of those trailer plugs, the wires can get seriously close to each other. And, sometimes a strand or two can actually break free or, were installed improperly and will touch and adjacent input on the back of the plug. When that happens, it can cause all kinds of headaches. Good luck and report back with your findings so that others may learn.
Scott
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Old 02-14-2014, 03:19 PM   #5
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When I got my current towed and had the LP-1 Lube pump kit installed I had issues with the light system too.. Suddenly if the head lights were on the left turn signal did not work, Cruise control acted weird and so on.

Turns out when they connected the six pin round jack to the motor home they used the Scotch Lock type connectors Remco provided with the LP-1... I did a much improved ground on that lead and fixed the problem.
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Old 02-14-2014, 06:04 PM   #6
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Got it.

Got it! Added an external ground from the ground pin on the RV trailer plug to the RV chassis. Evidently there is a bad ground in the chasis harness somewhere.

Thanks to all.
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Old 02-14-2014, 06:21 PM   #7
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Got it! Added an external ground from the ground pin on the RV trailer plug to the RV chassis. Evidently there is a bad ground in the chasis harness somewhere.

Thanks to all.
Glad you got it fixed! Those pesky ground connections can cause all kinds of strange problems. Thanks for getting back to us.

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Old 02-14-2014, 06:24 PM   #8
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Got it! Added an external ground from the ground pin on the RV trailer plug to the RV chassis. Evidently there is a bad ground in the chasis harness somewhere.

Thanks to all.
Same as me.. Like I said, I seriously upgraded the ground.

And in my case it was not a "Bad ground" it was just flat too much wire ... I suspect the actual connection is up front near the fuse box. instead of at the handy dandy frame point I used for the upgrade about 3 inches (Electrically) from the pin.
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Old 02-14-2014, 08:47 PM   #9
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FIRE UP,
That's a very good write-up. Those connectors can be a real pain.
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Old 02-15-2014, 03:27 AM   #10
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Since the discussion is on connectors, if you have the black Roadmaster 6 Pin connector, be aware that there are TWO key ways in the connector, allowing the cable end to be inserted in either direction. One way is correct, and the other will eventually push the pins out the rear. It's a completely stupid design! I filled the wrong key way with epoxy after replacing it at Quartzsite.
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Old 02-15-2014, 11:13 AM   #11
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FIRE UP,
That's a very good write-up. Those connectors can be a real pain.
ghutch,
Thank you Sir for the nice comments. I try and help when I can and, use whatever type of logic I think or, know applies.
Scott
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Old 02-15-2014, 06:20 PM   #12
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Got it... almost

Everything worked great with one exception... when I put the RV in reverse, even with the toad disconnected, the engine. Disconnect the ground that I added and reverse works fine but have the same lighting issue as before.
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Old 02-15-2014, 06:24 PM   #13
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Make that... engine KILLS when put in reverse. Disconnect the ground that I added and reverse works great but the lights are back to the original issue.
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Old 02-15-2014, 07:44 PM   #14
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White wire

Just found a schematic that shows the white wire (all others are yellow) is the ground. Mine is disconnected. I'll try that tomorrow. Wonder how that happened...
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