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Old 12-07-2010, 10:54 AM   #1
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New Owner Brake question

Greetings:

We have just purchased a 2011 DSDP 4086. Our previous Motorhome had an exhaust brake while the DSDP has the two stage Jake Brake. I have been told that it is not a good idea to run with the Jake on all the time. With the exhaust brake, I simple left it on all the time -- even in cruise.

What is the smart thing to do with the Jake ... only use it for hills?

Joe Paynter
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Old 12-07-2010, 12:40 PM   #2
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Firstly, when you put it on, the brake lights come on, so having it on all the time creates a potential danger. I use mine when I know I will be "riding" the brake otherwise (such as a long downhill, or hilly terrain). It will alternate with cruise control automatically, so in a hilly area (such as I-17 from Flagstaff south) you can leave both on. I find, however, that sometimes going downhill the rig gets going too fast, so I disengage the cruise control before the brake engages. I feel that it is a tremendous asset driving out west, particularly with the long, steep hills.
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Old 12-07-2010, 01:36 PM   #3
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Welcome JoeP to the Newmar forum.
Congrats on your Newmar DP.

Here is a thread that may help you plus if you go to the Quick Tips Link you'll find more.

This LINK TO YOUR COACH INFO just place your coach build number similar to mine 700963 and add CS. 700963CS.
You can find the build number on a cabinet door, closet or papers that may have come with your coach.
This link will give TSB's for your coach plus others for tech bulletins, coach paints etc,etc.
Enjoy your Newmar and many safe & happy miles.
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Old 12-07-2010, 02:13 PM   #4
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Here is what I posted on that thread;

Quote:
Spartan specifically recommends NOT to leave your auxiliary brake on all of the time, whether it is an exhaust or engine brake.

Excessive use of auxiliary brakes results in under use of the service brakes.

On an air braked vehicle, the rear brakes are applied before the front brakes which can result in the front brakes rarely being used enough to heat them up. This leads to glazing of the brake shoes and reduced stopping ability.

Glazed brake shoes are not covered under warranty.

I now leave my engine brake off except when it's really needed.

Many folks use the auxiliary brake to save wear on the brake shoes, but on a MH with air brakes, the brakes shoes last forever and we just don't hear about anyone having to have their brakes shoes replaced.
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Old 12-07-2010, 02:58 PM   #5
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Congrats on the new Dutch Star. I use mine only in the mountains and in heavy traffic. I find the low setting provides about as much as I need for those situations.
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Old 12-07-2010, 04:19 PM   #6
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Hi JoeP,
I use my engine brake only when necessary.
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Old 12-07-2010, 05:35 PM   #7
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JoeP - congrats on your new Rig -
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Old 12-07-2010, 08:10 PM   #8
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Thanks for the replies and the welcome. The trio south this winter will iron out, hopefully, any teething problems with the new Rig.

So, I gather it is personal preference that determines the amount of Jake Brake useage and not wear or tear on the Brake/engine?

Joe
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Old 12-07-2010, 09:33 PM   #9
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I have the Cummins Insite software and just reprogrammed my aux brake parameters. Default behavior: if switch is on, engine brake engages when you let off the accelerator, brake lights come on. I changed mine so the engine brake doesn't engage unless you tap the service brake pedal (switch must still be on) and the brake lights do not come on unless the brake pedal is depressed (I may change that behavior now though since I use latch mode)

Any Cummins dealer can make that change for you in 15 minutes.

I personally like the ability to leave the engine brake switch (almost always low) on yet have the ability to coast, hence the change.

You'll likely never wear out the brake shoes (and glazing is a very minimal concern -- it's a CYA disclaimer) nor the engine brake. Drive as you see fit. There are fire trucks, tow trucks and OTR trucks that never have their jake brakes turned off. Others only use them on downhill descents and in traffic. In this type of application, it's largely preference.

Enjoy your new rig - congrats!
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Old 12-08-2010, 06:00 AM   #10
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I should add, since I forgot to mention it, that below 15mph the engine brake disengages, so beware if you use it when stopping!
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Old 12-08-2010, 12:14 PM   #11
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In my opinion, another time to turn it off is when you are on super ugly slick roads. You know, the kind where you have to drive because it's too slick to walk on! The braking loads only on the rear wheels can cause the back end to slide, and drifting a coach (oversteer or loose, for us geezers) can be REAL exciting if you're not doing it on purpose.
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Old 12-08-2010, 04:30 PM   #12
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I might add that you do not use the exhaust brake or any other (Jakes etc) when driving on black ice in Canada (or the US northern states) - same goes for the cruise control......do not use it if hills + black ice
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