12 Volt Power for Un-Hitched Brake Operation - Escape Trailer Owners Community

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Old 08-20-2014, 04:23 PM   #1
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12 Volt Power for Un-Hitched Brake Operation

Greetings,

I purchased a Power Mover (powered trailer dolly) so I could pull my trailer into my driveway hitch first. The dolly is AC powered. It additionally includes a 7 pin connector wired to power only the trailer brakes. A 12 volt power source is required to power the trailer brakes. For the 12 volt power source, the power mover includes positive and negative spring clip connectors intended for connection to the trailer's battery. In my case that won't work as the battery in my 21 is inside at the rear of the trailer. So, I need to use an external standalone 12 volt battery.

Question: do I need an automotive 12 volt battery or can I use a smaller, 12 volt sealed lead acid battery? Do I need a particular "amp hour" rating or some other electrical feature I don't know about or is 12 volt the only requirement?

Thanks in advance !

Fletch "I don't do electrical, at least not very well"
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Old 08-20-2014, 04:59 PM   #2
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I would think a break away kit would do the job. Then you would have battery power for the brakes both when you are using the power dolly and as a safety feature when towing.

Go to etrailer.com and search 'break away kit'. You could tie in with the alligator clips to the break away battery when you need to. You might consider getting one with a solar cell mounted on the top of the battery box for maintaining the battery when not in use.

You would probably do well to call E-trailer and tell them what you are trying to do. They could point you to the most appropriate unit.

Clif
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Old 08-20-2014, 05:41 PM   #3
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For the brakes you only need a few amps - 7-8 should completely lock up the wheels. So most any starter type 12V should work - motorcycle, lawn tractor, generator, ...

OR - you could use the 12V at the break-away switch. I do not know where the connection is - but it needs to resealed well if you open it.
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Old 08-20-2014, 06:58 PM   #4
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Unless I have misunderstood the situation, there is no extra battery needed at all, since the Escape already has one. The dolly's 7-pin connector apparently only has wires to the brakes and to the trailer "ground", but another pin in that same connector goes to the battery positive: instead of clipping the dolly's wire to a battery, you connect them to the +12V or "charge" and ground pins of the 7-pin connector.

It seems strange to me that the dolly maker would provide separate battery clips, given that almost any trailer with electric brakes and that 7-pin connector also has power on the charge pin of the connector.

Other people have done this with their home-made dollies. It's essentially the same as pulling the plug on the breakaway switch (which also connects the trailer's own battery to its brakes), but easier to manage (and to turn off!).
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Old 08-20-2014, 07:38 PM   #5
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Hi Brian, I agree. The idea of clipping to an external battery didn't seem intuitively correct to me either but as I said earlier, I don't speak electrical. It would sure be helpful to have a wiring diagram that shows me how to wire the "male" seven pin connector such that it draws trailer power to apply trailer brakes, controlled by a switch on the puller. Maybe one of those weekenders with a home built can help?

Thanks again!!
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Old 08-20-2014, 07:39 PM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Brian B-P View Post
Unless I have misunderstood the situation, there is no extra battery needed at all, since the Escape already has one. The dolly's 7-pin connector apparently only has wires to the brakes and to the trailer "ground", but another pin in that same connector goes to the battery positive: instead of clipping the dolly's wire to a battery, you connect them to the +12V or "charge" and ground pins of the 7-pin connector.

It seems strange to me that the dolly maker would provide separate battery clips, given that almost any trailer with electric brakes and that 7-pin connector also has power on the charge pin of the connector.

Other people have done this with their home-made dollies. It's essentially the same as pulling the plug on the breakaway switch (which also connects the trailer's own battery to its brakes), but easier to manage (and to turn off!).
Absolutely right. I KNEW I was missing something.
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Old 08-20-2014, 08:19 PM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Pam n Fletch San Jose CA View Post
H Maybe one of those weekenders with a home built can help?

Thanks again!!
My dolly takes a lot of amps when it's really working hard. I'd be reluctant to use my 7 pin wiring without looking very closely at wire size and the amperage draw for dolly.

Ron
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Old 08-20-2014, 08:53 PM   #8
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He only wants to use the 12V power for the brakes - it is a 110V dolly - see post 1.

Here is the wiring: Trailer Wiring Diagrams | etrailer.com
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Old 08-20-2014, 09:33 PM   #9
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I'm thinking the clips might be there for someone who routinely removes the battery for winterization, but may want to move the trailer after doing so. Given the fact that many trailer batteries are installed on the tongue, I certainly wouldn't leave a battery on the trailer if I expected freezing temperatures. Disclaimer: just a guess.
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