Redarc Brake Controller? - Escape Trailer Owners Community

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Old 03-05-2018, 01:17 PM   #1
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Redarc Brake Controller?

Has anyone installed/used the Redarc Tow-Pro Elite Trailer Brake Controller? Looks like the control knob can be mounted with a nice, custom look. But that only counts if it works as advertised.
https://www.etrailer.com/tv-review-r...A-BraC-ManufSP
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Old 03-05-2018, 01:49 PM   #2
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I'm guessing they have a whole department devoted to adjectives.
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Old 03-05-2018, 02:59 PM   #3
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I haven't used it, so I can only suggest a look at the manufacturer's web site, and the instruction manual there. Straightforward information, rather than chatter.

The three-axis accelerometer and separate control knob allow mounting the main unit anywhere and in any orientation, which is a nice feature. The control/display knob is nice and small. On the other hand, just one LED for display and sequences with the knob and brake pedal to change modes seem awkward... sort of the opposite of the Prodigy P3. It also doesn't appear to have anything comparable to the Tekonsha (Prodigy) "boost" feature.

The operating principle of acceleration-proportional trailer brake controllers is straightforward, and effective accelerometers are readily available. It's hard to imagine how it could do anything other than work properly.
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Old 03-05-2018, 09:12 PM   #4
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The Ford factory integrated controller is excellent. I would suggest you try and find one of them for your 2016 ford. It works directly like your trucks brake pedal. The faster and more you push the faster and more the trailer brakes are applied. Requires no adjustment if your in town doing slow stop and go traffic or on the freeway. What I also like the ability to ease off the brake once stopped at a light so the trailer coils can cool.
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Old 03-05-2018, 09:27 PM   #5
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The Ford factory integrated controller is excellent. I would suggest you try and find one of them for your 2016 ford. ...
We already have the integrated controller in our F-150. And yes, it is excellent. I'm researching the Redarc for whatever we buy to eventually replace our 2002 Highlander when that day comes. Probably another Highlander or the new Subaru Ascent if their initial reviews come back positive. Seems like the Redarc would look integrated and less like an add-on in a new SUV compared to a typical controller dangling off the bottom of the dash.
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Old 03-05-2018, 09:30 PM   #6
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... What I also like the ability to ease off the brake once stopped at a light so the trailer coils can cool.
Any controller which produces a braking signal proportion to acceleration will go to zero (or nearly zero) output when you stop, because the acceleration stops. Some (e.g. Prodigy) do maintain a small "holding" current, but the coils should cool down anyway.

The old time-based controls would continue to drive maximum current regardless of acceleration, so they would heat up the brake coils.
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Old 03-06-2018, 12:42 AM   #7
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Seems like the Redarc would look integrated and less like an add-on in a new SUV compared to a typical controller dangling off the bottom of the dash.
The bottom of the dash can also be hard to see (to see the display for adjustments and troubleshooting) and to reach (for adjustments and for emergency manual application).

I mounted mine on a slide-out cupholder, and put it in a storage bin when not towing. There have been other not-hanging-off-the-bottom installations, too; some vehicles have a small bin which can work for this.

Finding a place for that small knob should certainly be easier than finding a place for an entire controller.
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Old 03-06-2018, 12:53 AM   #8
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The Australian branch of the Reese towing products line includes two similar units with small remote knobs/indicators:... but I doubt anyone sells them in North America, so buying one and getting support could be problematic.

Another Australian vendor has one very similar to the Redarc - GSL IRBC-12 - but in addition to the issues with the Australian source, the company looks marginal to me.
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Old 03-06-2018, 01:06 AM   #9
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There's also this Hopkins system, with separate display and manual overrides...

https://www.amazon.com/Hopkins-47297...dp/B00C5THYIK/
nSIGHTâ„¢ Flex-Mountâ„¢ Brake Control
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Old 03-06-2018, 04:17 AM   #10
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The nice thing about the factory integrated vs add on brake controller, is the ability to coordinate with the transmission both in shift points while using the tow mode and down shift braking when slowing down....
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Old 03-06-2018, 09:07 AM   #11
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The nice thing about the factory integrated vs add on brake controller, is the ability to coordinate with the transmission both in shift points while using the tow mode and down shift braking when slowing down....
Agree- but that only helps if the vehicle company offers a factory integrated brake controller. Last I knew, Toyota and Subaru do not (although it would be nice if every vehicle that has a "towing package option" would also offer an integrated brake controller option for the reasons you mention). Thus my search for something that works well and "looks" factory.
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Old 03-06-2018, 02:44 PM   #12
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The nice thing about the factory integrated vs add on brake controller, is the ability to coordinate with the transmission both in shift points while using the tow mode and down shift braking when slowing down....
Coordination is good... but how would it work?
The braking action applied to the trailer doesn't need to change with engine speed or transmission gear. If you are using only engine braking trailer braking isn't desirable, but neither an integrated controller nor an aftermarket controller would apply the trailer brakes in that situation. So what would he integrated controller do differently at shifts or under engine braking?
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Old 03-06-2018, 02:59 PM   #13
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Agree- but that only helps if the vehicle company offers a factory integrated brake controller. Last I knew, Toyota and Subaru do not (although it would be nice if every vehicle that has a "towing package option" would also offer an integrated brake controller option for the reasons you mention).
Toyota does offer an integrated trailer brake controller for its full-size pickup (the Tundra), just like Ford, GM, and Ram; Subaru doesn't make a pickup truck.
Toyota and Subaru do not offer integrated brake controllers in their mid-size and smaller SUVs, just as Ford and GM do not offer integrated brake controllers in their equivalent vehicles. That's the challenge.
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Old 03-06-2018, 04:14 PM   #14
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... Subaru doesn't make a pickup truck. ...
But I keep my fingers crossed they will come out with their next iteration of the Brat/Baja concept. I don't want one, but I think they were pretty cool....
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Old 03-06-2018, 05:05 PM   #15
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The nice thing about the factory integrated vs add on brake controller, is the ability to coordinate with the transmission both in shift points while using the tow mode and down shift braking when slowing down....
I coordinate my shift points with the clutch and stick shift :-p
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