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Old 09-12-2014, 11:23 AM   #21
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Originally Posted by cpaharley2008 View Post
Mine is a Hayes Energize III model, 6 years old. Gee time to think about a new one...
I wouldn't have any concern about the age, and this model has proper proportional functionality; however, it does use a pendulum as a sensor (all-electronic is easier to keep adjusted and generally behaves better), and it doesn't have the "boost" feature which some people like.
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Old 09-12-2014, 02:00 PM   #22
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Back to the origional question/concern sans speculation

Gary, the P3 controller voltage display should be 0.0V until you depress the brake pedal. The voltage indicated on the display is the voltage that is being applied to the magnets of the trailer drum brakes.
Do not know how your brake controller was installed, but I suspect an adjustment or wear problem with the brake pedal switch. If voltage is indicated while driving and the brake pedal is not depressed than there most probably is some brake application when the trailer is being towed.
I tow an Escape 19 with 14" tires and the brake setting on 5. The further the bake pedal is depressed the higher the voltage output from the controller.
The "confusing" P3 brake controller :
The display transitions from red to the color you have selected when the trailer harness is connected.
When the TV is in drive and the brake pedal is depressed varying voltage is output from the controller to the rear brakes.
The P3 controller is installed on the Tundra because I tow different trailers and the weight is variable. I appreciate the ability to set to the controller for different trailers and sometimes use the boost function.
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Old 09-12-2014, 05:35 PM   #23
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When I looked at the controler it was at about 1.2 even though my foot wasn't on the brake.
A Prodigy (and presumably the P3) has a "hold" feature: when you stop, it keeps the trailer brakes lightly applied, even though you are no longer decelerating. This could explain a low output setting when stopped (it should start at 10% power and then go up to 25%), but this should happen only when you are stopped, and the output should still go to zero as soon as you take your foot off the brake pedal. In fact, the output should always be zero unless either you have the brake pedal pushed, or you are using the manual lever.

It is possible that the P3 does not have the hold feature (it is not mentioned in the manual, but it would be strange to drop features in the newer product), but in any case there should be no output in this situation. I wonder if either
  • there is a fault with the controller (software, electronics, or the manual lever not going all the way back to off), or
  • there is a wiring problem in the brake switch connection to the controller, so it is being told the pedal is being pushed when it is not
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Old 09-12-2014, 07:52 PM   #24
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Answer: The shortest.
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Old 09-12-2014, 09:24 PM   #25
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Then, when climbing steep mountains the trailer felt like a huge load. When I looked at the controler it was at about 1.2 even though my foot wasn't on the brake. Was I trying to drag a trailer with it's brakes applied? When I stopped the trailer brakes were not hot. I'm confused.
This should not be happening. I would get a professional to do a diagnosis on your system. If the trailer brakes are not hot I suspect that they are not engaged when the pedal is not being applied and that there is a fault in the controler or the circuitry. I expect you checked the brake drums soon after stopping?
Good luck.
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Old 12-03-2014, 12:07 PM   #26
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pkgman51- did you get your problem resolved?

I have the P3 and can't seem to find the "correct" setting; either it feels too light or it seems to lock up one wheel on the passenger side. Setting at 6 is very strong, whereas 2.5(where it needs to be to not skid the tire) seems too light. Never had a problem with the Prodigy RF and usually had it set at 4.5 for my 17.

I know the manual states to check the brakes after 500 miles, so am going to adjust all brakes along with an EZ lube for the bearings then roadtest.
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Old 12-03-2014, 12:57 PM   #27
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I have the P3 and can't seem to find the "correct" setting; either it feels too light or it seems to lock up one wheel on the passenger side.
If it's the same side locking all the time, I would suspect the brakes themselves rather than controller adjustment.
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Old 12-03-2014, 01:25 PM   #28
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That's my thought Brian, so am going to check adjustment and hope that does it. Can't be sure however it only seems to lock up at slow speed.
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Old 12-03-2014, 01:37 PM   #29
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I'm sort of late to this discussion, but you might check the total current when applying full braking with the lever to be sure all four brakes are being activated. If not, the one good brake would be likely to skid while the others are coasting. Probably not the issue, but an easy test to eliminate it from consideration.
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Old 12-03-2014, 03:09 PM   #30
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I'm sort of late to this discussion, but you might check the total current when applying full braking with the lever to be sure all four brakes are being activated. If not, the one good brake would be likely to skid while the others are coasting. Probably not the issue, but an easy test to eliminate it from consideration.
Good idea. The typical brake magnet (for a 10" brake) has a resistance of about 4 ohms so it uses 3 amps; so a single-axle trailer would be running two of them in combination for 6 amps (at 12 volts) and a tandem has four of them combining for 12 amps (at 12 volts). Substantially less current suggests a corresponding fewer number of working brakes, and a bad wiring connection or brake magnet.
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Old 12-03-2014, 05:25 PM   #31
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The nice thing about the P3 is that current reading is part of the built-in diagnostics menu.
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Old 12-03-2014, 06:57 PM   #32
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No, but I haven't used the trailer since the trailer pick up trip. I had some converter issues I was working through.
I'm intrigued by the brake pedal comments. I have a problem with my criuse control when the pedal doesn't return to fully dis-engaged. Sometimes, I have to pull up on the pedal, while driving, to get the criuse to work. I'm going to have my mechanic check it out when I take the vehicle in for some maintenance next week.
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Old 12-04-2014, 09:08 AM   #33
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Originally Posted by pkgman51 View Post
No, but I haven't used the trailer since the trailer pick up trip. I had some converter issues I was working through.
I'm intrigued by the brake pedal comments. I have a problem with my criuse control when the pedal doesn't return to fully dis-engaged. Sometimes, I have to pull up on the pedal, while driving, to get the criuse to work. I'm going to have my mechanic check it out when I take the vehicle in for some maintenance next week.
I''ll bet that is your problem. If the cruise control doesn't engage, it may mean the switch on the brake pedal is closed, which would cause the controller to sense the vehicle brakes are on (and, your brake lights would probably be on as well).
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Old 12-04-2014, 09:34 AM   #34
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See post 22
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Old 12-05-2014, 07:28 PM   #35
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it seems to me a lot of technical comments are flying around. my approach to the situation is take your trailer to a walmart or?? lot and drive the tug and trailer in a slower fashion in a straight line using the manual brake switch only, engage it and slow the tow down as you would like. take the numbers and set same on the unit. works for me.
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Old 12-05-2014, 07:44 PM   #36
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it seems to me a lot of technical comments are flying around. my approach to the situation is take your trailer to a walmart or?? lot and drive the tug and trailer in a slower fashion in a straight line using the manual brake switch only, engage it and slow the tow down as you would like. take the numbers and set same on the unit. works for me.
By this method you have chosen the setting which would be suitable if your tug had no brakes and you always used full trailer brake application. If that happens to come to the same number as required to have the trailer do its share of braking under real driving conditions, it's only a happy coincidence.

There are technical comments because it is a technical question (not, for instance, a financial question or an artistic question). Makes sense, right?
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Old 12-05-2014, 08:26 PM   #37
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My Prodigy P2 came with a manual that has the instructions on setting the brake controller. It also came with a card with the same instructions for the glove box.
Of note, is not to use Boost with a lightweight trailer like mine.
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Old 12-05-2014, 09:44 PM   #38
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Guess I'm lucky to live on a gravel road - makes it pretty simple to futz with the controller knob until the truck and trailer tires both skid at the same time!
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Old 01-28-2015, 07:55 AM   #39
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Well... I took the vehicle to GM and they replaced the "Brake Light Switch". Looks like the switch was still activated though my foot had released the pedal. This caused the brake controler to maintain braking to the trailer. When I would pull up on the pedeal prior to replacing the switch I could feel the trailer brakes release. Now, all is good! Thanks for all the comments.
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Old 01-28-2015, 10:56 AM   #40
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Thanks for the update, Gary. I'll bet that with the brake light switch not releasing, not only was your cruise control disabled, but your brake lights were staying on as well. Maybe it's a good thing that the effect on the trailer brake controller encouraged getting this fixed.
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