Electric Braking Systems for Caravans and Trailers in Perth
If you have never had an electric braking system on your trailer or caravan, the prospect of doing so can be overwhelming. Given how important it is that your brakes function perfectly, this is not something that you want to get wrong. After all, a minor installation mistake could lead to devastating results.
Fortunately, the team at Chamberlain’s Auto Electrics can help. Our specialists are experts in the installation of trailer braking systems. We know precisely which type of application is best suited to particular vehicles and trailers.
When Are Electric Braking Systems Necessary?
There are several situations in which an electric braking system may be necessary, and there are Australian road rules in place to govern this. As a general rule, all trailers with a gross mass of over 750kg must be fitted with a braking system. This should be installed on at least one axle of the trailer.
Trailers with a gross mass exceeding 2 tonnes are required by law to have an electric brake system installed on every wheel of the trailer. These brakes work similarly to those of your towing vehicle. When the brake is engaged, electromagnets in the brake system cause the brake shoes at each wheel to clamp down on the drum.
It’s also possible to install electronic disk brakes. In this case, a hydraulic system is activated through the vehicle’s electronic brake controller. The braking system works similarly to the manual system we mentioned above, but it’s engaged automatically when the vehicle operator touches the brakes.
Choosing the Right Brake Controller Box
The brake controller box will determine how the newly installed brakes will engage and operate. There two major types of controller boxes on the market:
- Time-activated brake controllers – Apply maximum brake pressure over a set time period, which usually lasts two to three seconds.
- Proportional brake controllers – Apply pressure to the trailer or caravan brakes in proportion to the deceleration of the vehicle.
We use and recommend the Redarc Tow Controller, this electric trailer brake controller features Active Calibration which constantly monitors the direction of travel, the unit will even calibrate with no trailer attached whilst maintaining the ability to mount in any orientation.
Generally speaking, time-activated braking systems are only suitable for vehicles towing lighter loads and travelling across easy terrain. Winding journeys through hills or mountains are too much for time-activated brakes to keep up with.
Proportional systems handle much more effectively across hilly terrain or under slippery or windy conditions. The fact that they reference the deceleration of the vehicle to determine how much pressure is appropriate means that they are essentially following the driver’s lead.
Contact Perth’s Electric Brake Installers Today
Not sure which system is best for your trailer? Stop in at Chamberlain’s Auto Electrics in Welshpool for a free consultation. And if you’d like to learn more, you can contact us through the website or by calling us on (08) 9362 6772.