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Old 06-10-2024, 07:43 PM   #1
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Join Date: Feb 2022
Location: North Newton, Kansas
Trailer: 2020 E21C
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Discovered: Root Cause of Broken Brake Wiring

Kosta, if you're listening, in addition to 2019, 2020 and some 2021 Escape trailer owners, this one's for you.

Much about broken brake ground wiring on 2019, 2020 and 2021 models has been written in this problem solving forum space.

Today in preparation for installing four new Dexter brake assemblies on our 2020 21C, I read the following on https://www.dexteraxle.com/Contact/F...or%20structure

"Do not ground each brake individually to the trailer frame or structure."

Therein lies the problem. For one reason or other ETI production in 2019, 2020, and part of 2021 decided each brake individually needs to be grounded to the main trailer chassis to the extent that holes were drilled into the chassis to which individual brake ground wires were snaked out of the brake wire bundles and connected. Additionally, and here is the main problem, these wires also served as suspension for each individual brake wire bundle resulting in broken brake wires from having to do double service as unneeded structural suspension in addition to providing electrical grounding.

I have personally laid eyes on a 2022 21C on which the above scenario was not the case. All wiring emanating from each individual brake on the 2022 model I saw went into a bundle which then connected to a common ground. No bundle suspension was actually needed, and none was provided, certainly not from a brake grounding wire doing double duty as a suspension wire.

Having read what I read today in the Dexter FAQs, I'll be installing and wiring our new brake assemblies the way Dexter and the pre-2018 and post 2021 ETI gods intended.

If this were an aircraft fleet discrepancy, it would have been addressed by an FAA Airworthiness Directive and the press would be all over it. In the US, it would have by now been treated by an NHTSA recall.

John
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Old 06-11-2024, 10:46 AM   #2
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Join Date: Jan 2014
Location: North Van., British Columbia
Trailer: 2014 Escape 19, sold; 2019 Escape 21, Sept. 2019
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Originally Posted by JohnK View Post
Kosta, if you're listening, in addition to 2019, 2020 and some 2021 Escape trailer owners, this one's for you.

Much about broken brake ground wiring on 2019, 2020 and 2021 models has been written in this problem solving forum space.


the way Dexter and the pre-2018 and post 2021 ETI gods intended.
Ah, negative on that one, no pun intended. The ground has always been installed that way and I posted photos in 2014 showing that and my common ground.

I agree, the free floating wire isn't good and neither is attaching it to the frame with a corrosion prone sheet metal screw.

Ron
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Old 06-18-2024, 09:57 AM   #3
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Join Date: Sep 2019
Location: Calgary, Alberta
Trailer: 2019 Escape 19
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Originally Posted by Ron in BC View Post
Ah, negative on that one, no pun intended. The ground has always been installed that way and I posted photos in 2014 showing that and my common ground.
I not sure about that Ron. I just repaired 2 out of 4 broken grounds on my 2019 E19 and found the wire harnesses on my trailer hang from the ground wire, which is screwed to the bottom of the frame tube. Putting it in the bottom of the frame gives higher exposure, loads the connection in bending, and puts a hole (although small) in the critical bottom cap of the tube instead of in the side. I improved the support of the harness which should help.

My brothers E19 is 3 years older, but basically the same trailer with a lot more miles on it, so I checked it out. First, the harnesses are properly routed supported and don't dangle like mine. second, the ground wired for the RH side rout across the trailer and ground with the LH side brakes and the ground was in the side of the frame tube so even if it did have tension on it (which it didn't) it would not load the wire/connector in bending.

My trailer has a few other "quality" issues that his doesn't. The floating grey tank and associated broken connections on mine verses the secured mounting of his being the big one.
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Old 06-18-2024, 02:35 PM   #4
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Join Date: Aug 2017
Location: McKinney, Texas
Trailer: 2018 Escape 21
Posts: 377
I have 2018 21C and just recently checked all 4 brake assemblies. 2 had disconnected wires at the splice from the trailer to the brake assembly. on one 2 wires were disconnected, the other 1 wire was disconnected. actually, I think possible was never connected or worked from the factory. the insulation on all 3 wires was not stripped to expose the bare wires, which I assume is necessary?

my trailer IMO doesn't have issues with wires dangling unsupported pulling on the wires. I thought ETI did adequate job in that regard with all wiring well protected and supported with corrugated protective wire conduit.

after a lot of work for me, I think all 4 of my brakes are working properly for the 1st time since picking up at ETI Jul 2018. I say better late than never haha.

also, I want to add my 2018 Escape 21C is a great trailer, it has been frustrating at times, but my Casita was too. overall, I have really enjoyed it, have no regrets. cheers
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