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Old 05-17-2016, 04:55 PM   #1
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Exhaust Brake

While driving in the Colorado mountains today I had the exhaust brake turned on and it works great.
There is a little green light on the dash that comes on.
My question is this =Do the brake lights come on when the exhaust brake is activated ?
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Old 05-17-2016, 04:56 PM   #2
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Yes they do
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Old 05-17-2016, 05:28 PM   #3
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They should...it's a brake.

Some coaches are not wired that way, however.
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Old 05-17-2016, 05:34 PM   #4
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So this could make the drivers behind you that don't know this think that you are riding the brakes?
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Old 05-17-2016, 06:25 PM   #5
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I don't think all units do this. Mine does but I've read discussions on toad braking and some were saying their brake lights did not come on when the engine brake is activated. Maybe something just wasn't working on their units. Maybe older units were not set up to activate the brake lights.
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Old 05-17-2016, 06:27 PM   #6
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do any gas motorhomes have exhaust brakes
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Old 05-17-2016, 06:40 PM   #7
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do any gas motorhomes have exhaust brakes
I am not aware of any gas engine with an exhaust brake, only overdrive -off and tow-haul modes.
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Old 05-17-2016, 08:04 PM   #8
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So this could make the drivers behind you that don't know this think that you are riding the brakes?
Not sure about others, but when I'm driving a downhill section of road that might require my exhaust brake to remain on for a while, I'm not processing the brake light signal coming from the truck in front of me the same way I would any other time. Here, we're more dependent on being in the right gear, or grabbing a quick brake jab to slow enough to drop into the next lower one.

I assume the guy in front of me is doing the same - brake light on or off. With the fact there is not 100% uniformity here, I'm not going to count on those brake lights to tell me a thing. That's me though...
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Old 05-17-2016, 09:02 PM   #9
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BOWWOW, can you please tell me more about using the overdrive switch? Still learning the best way to drive big hills or mountains with our new to us 2004 35' 8.1 Allison trans Winnebago Adventure. Thanks
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Old 05-17-2016, 09:37 PM   #10
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Exhaust Brake

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do any gas motorhomes have exhaust brakes

I don't believe so. The nature of the gasoline engine design is such that there is some inherent engine braking as soon as you take your foot off the pedal. Diesels don't do this, they just keep rolling, so some supplementary help is needed. Plus, gas engines produce far less torque than diesels, so if you were to try to back-pressure a gas engine for braking on a mountain grade you'd run good chance of overspeeding the engine.


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Old 05-17-2016, 09:54 PM   #11
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So this could make the drivers behind you that don't know this think that you are riding the brakes?

I'm not concerned with what he thinks of my technique, as long as he grasps that my brakes are on. If he's in a line of downhill traffic and he's paying so little attention that he's basing his operational decisions on my brake lights instead of his own vision and depth perception, then he's the weak link in the chain. If this guy saw NO brake lights, he might just roll into me before he realized what was going on.


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Old 05-17-2016, 10:10 PM   #12
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If your brake lights and turn signals share a common bulb, then the test for brake lights on with the exhaust brake , is to try the 4 way flashers while the exhaust brake is active , if the 4 ways won't flash , then the brake lights are on. That's how I found out mine were on.
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Old 05-17-2016, 10:22 PM   #13
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I was just talking to my 'New' mechanic yesterday morning. He said there IS an exhaust brake for gas coaches, and it was around $2700 bucks. That will buy a whole lot of brake pads, and since I got 12 years out of my first set, I think I'll pass. I believe CW sells them as well as many others.
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Old 05-17-2016, 11:16 PM   #14
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Originally Posted by BOWWOW View Post
While driving in the Colorado mountains today I had the exhaust brake turned on and it works great.
There is a little green light on the dash that comes on.
My question is this =Do the brake lights come on when the exhaust brake is activated ?
BOWWOW,
About 99.9% of most Class A diesel pushers out there that are equipped with either an exhaust brake or, a "Jacobs Engine Brake" otherwise known as a "Jake Brake", activate the brake lights during the use of either one of those. There are very, very few that don't. Obviously it's a warning to anyone following that you are attempting to slow down and therefore, reducing speed which, you, as a following driver, would want to know. And the only way to know that, is to see brake lights.

Some diesel owners on here are not happy that the E-brake triggers their brake lights. They think it provides a sort of "false" impression to following drivers since in many cases, you're not actually slowing down but, just keeping a steady descent.

To me, if I was following any motor home, towing anything or not, and, I see brake lights while descending a grade, it's a no brainer, this person is attempting to slow down. So, I make adjustments.

I cannot speak for a few zillion other drivers. I'm not in their mind. I'm glad mine works when the e-brake is activated.
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