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Old 12-08-2012, 10:17 PM   #15
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I know there are a few topics on this already but mine is a weird one that i havent seen before and its driving me crazy. I have a 2003 Fleetwood Discover with trailer brakes and a enclosed trailer. When I plug my trailer into my rv and press the brakes the brake light fuse blows instantly. My rv brake lights work fine when the trailer is not plugged in and the trailer works fine when its plugged into my truck. So i know the trailer wiring is right. I tried taking apart the tow plug on my rv and all the wiring looks fine. I tried unplugging the trailer brake controller to see if it was shorted and then stepping on the brakes but it still blows the fuse. When i bought the motorhome 2 years ago and brought it home the fuse was blown so i know the original owner probably had the same problem. I also found one of those towing power modules that was connected to the towing wiring so i tried bypassing that but it didnt change anything. I ran out of solutions so can anyone help me with any more things i can check? thanks
Had a trailer once that had the Brake Lights and Electric Brakes reversed at the plug.. took a bit to figure out..
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Old 12-09-2012, 12:35 AM   #16
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Does the truck you pulled the trailer with successfully have combined brake/turn lights like the trailer? It sounds like the problem might be in the wiring or function of the converter in the RV. If you disconnected the module, how did you wire the turn signals into the plug? Without the module, you can't wire separate brake/turn lights into the combined taillights on the trailer. You need the converter to make the lights blink while the brake lights are on.
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Old 12-09-2012, 01:06 AM   #17
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Just a thaught, If you disconnect just the brake lamp imput on your five to four converter box and see if you are still blowing fuses this might see if the diode box or wiring aft of it is the cause.
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Old 12-09-2012, 01:09 AM   #18
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As suggested and as an ET that deals with vehicle electrical every day I would start at the rv plug with a test light. At this point starting there will give you the best chance. It is apparent something is taking out a 20 amp fuse so the short is severe. IF the socket works as it is supposed to then open the plug on the trailer and find the wire associated with the pin that is losing voltage when the fuse blows. Using the test light check all of the wires on the plug to make sure they add up. I have seen the center pin used as the charge line before and also one of the other pins. You may have to select the correct pins and then make subsequent changes to your other towing vehicles.
Attached Files
File Type: pdf Trailer Wiring .pdf (1.78 MB, 24 views)
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Old 12-11-2012, 07:09 PM   #19
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**UPDATE**

So finally got to work on it today. I tore the plug apart and everything looked ok (no corrosion), labeled all the wires and pulled them off. Testing them, they all seemed to be in the right place. I found that when the brakes are pressed it hots up the left turn, right turn, and running light wires. Also i found that i dont have a seperate wire just for the brake lights going to the tow plug(i have seperate turn lights and brake lights on my MH). I assume this is the problem and that somewhere the run lights and brake lights are tapped together so i have to start working my way back and see if i can find it. Unfortunately it got dark so i called it a day and will get back at it tomorrow. Someone let me know if im on the right track or completely wrong. Also on a side note is my trailer brake wire supposed to be hot when i hit the brakes or is that only when its plugged into the trailer? Mine never became energized. thanks
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Old 12-11-2012, 07:22 PM   #20
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Originally Posted by mxrider131 View Post
**UPDATE**

So finally got to work on it today. I tore the plug apart and everything looked ok (no corrosion), labeled all the wires and pulled them off. Testing them, they all seemed to be in the right place. I found that when the brakes are pressed it hots up the left turn, right turn, and running light wires. Also i found that i dont have a seperate wire just for the brake lights going to the tow plug(i have seperate turn lights and brake lights on my MH). I assume this is the problem and that somewhere the run lights and brake lights are tapped together so i have to start working my way back and see if i can find it. Unfortunately it got dark so i called it a day and will get back at it tomorrow. Someone let me know if im on the right track or completely wrong. Also on a side note is my trailer brake wire supposed to be hot when i hit the brakes or is that only when its plugged into the trailer? Mine never became energized. thanks
Still sounds like the five to four diode box. Maybe wired wrong, may have a crossed wire turn/brake and running lamps. Just a thought.
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Old 12-11-2012, 07:25 PM   #21
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To continue, I would check with test light all wires going to diode box when disconnected on the coach side and make sure the wires are going to the right terminal on diode box. Have someone apply brakes, turn signals and running lights.
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Old 12-11-2012, 07:38 PM   #22
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If I remember correctly, on my 97 Discovery the plug did not have a separate wire for brake lights. It was like yours. Just a left stop, right stop tail etc. When brake is applied, both the left and right stops lights are energized, but not the tail light, unless they are turned on?

I think you are on the correct diagnostic path.

For your last question, do you have a trailer brake controller installed in the coach? If you don't, then that brake wire will not have any voltage ever. If you do have a trailer controller installed, then you should have voltage only when you press the brake peddle.
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Old 12-11-2012, 07:43 PM   #23
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A little confused here but it definitely sounds like you have a problem on the rv.

You should not have voltage on the "running lights" wire when you depress the brake pedal.

I am making an assumption that you were not plugged into the trailer during this time or all bets are off.

Step one is to get the plug functioning correctly. You are right in that the right and left "blinker" bulbs are lit up during braking. If you add in the blinker circuit it just interrupts that voltage. Running lights should only be on when your mh running light switch is on.

For testing purposes I would find the brake controller light ( not the brake light ) but the wire that is used to send voltage to the brakes, and tape it back until all other issues are resolved. No sense in muddying the water.

Also tape back the battery charge line if you have one.

Back to the first problem. If your RV has normal bulbs and you have some sort of after market device added you may just need to find it and remove it.
The easy way is to take a picture of the rear while the running lights are on and you are running turn signals. If the turn signals use a seperate bulb then the device is probably necessary. If you have conventional bulbs that have two filament then this should be easy to resolve. A conventional bulb should have one filament that is on with the running lights. It is lower intensity than the brake filament. Both functions are in one bulb.

If that is the case and you have some sort of box in-between take a picture of it and post. Or just remove it gently and give it a big heave. However, before removing it and getting great satisfaction check your trailer to be sure it has the simple two filament bulbs as described. If it has seperate bulbs for turn signals, take two beers and call me in the am.

If heaving the magic box is required then you will have to tap into the running light wire and connect to the plug of course.
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Old 12-11-2012, 08:02 PM   #24
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Right now i have the diode box disconnected, bypassed and nothing going to it at the moment. In the diagram for the diode box it shows the brake light wire connecting to one wire and then the turn sig wires going to the other two. I dont have a brake light wire to connect. The wires im testing are coming straight from the rear brake/turn/run lights. Im assuming there should be a dedicated brake light wire in there and im also assuming that the run light wire shouldnt be hot when im pressing the brakes. To clarify, the wire that was on the run light connector for the tow plug gets energized when I turn the run lights on and also when the run lights are off and i press the brakes. When i press the brakes the run lights themselves dont come on, only the brake lights are on and that run light tow wire is hot. I can have the brakes pressed and run lights turned on and no fuse blows and all the correct lights are on. Sorry i wasnt more clear on the first post

I just read yc1's post and yes i definitely need that diode box because my run/brake light and turn light are 2 complete different bulbs. I have a link to a pic of it in one of my previous posts. I also was not connected to the trailer while I did all this testing but like mentioned above even without that box my run light wire is getting hot when i press the brakes and i have no seperate brake wire. Am i right in thinking that i need to find where the run and brake light wires are tied together and seperate them? FYI at the fuse panel there are seperate fuses for run lights and brake lights
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Old 12-12-2012, 09:08 PM   #25
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I just read yc1's post and yes i definitely need that diode box because my run/brake light and turn light are 2 complete different bulbs.
On your RV on on your trailer?

Heck, post a picture of the rear of your rv with one of the turn signals running and the running lights on.
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Old 12-12-2012, 11:36 PM   #26
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Remember a neighbor had a problem with his car where the brake and running lights both came on when he hit the brakes.. One of the brake light bulbs was shorted internally connecting both filaments together.
Check the brake light bulbs or the sockets on the motorhome..It's long shot ..But....
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Old 12-14-2012, 04:54 PM   #27
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***Problem Solved***

There was actually 2 problems and then some bad luck on my side but I finally got it. After tracing and isolating wires I found out that there was, in fact, a bad bulb on the rear brake/run lights that was shorted out internally which was causing the problem of the run light wire to hot up when I pressed the brakes(good call Hooligan). Got some new bulbs and fixed that problem. 2nd problem was i found out my cheap 12v light tester had a loose bulb in it and wasnt always giving me accurate reads so I grabbed my voltmeter and went back and tested all the trailer plug leads on the MH side again. I found that the wire that was hooked up to the ground terminal on the trailer plug was actually the hot for the brakes which would definitely explain the fuse blowing issue. So i ran a new ground wire to that terminal, hooked the brake hot up to the diode box, connected everything back up and its running perfectly now. Time for the next project on the to do list. Thank you guys for all your comments and help.
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Old 12-14-2012, 08:13 PM   #28
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great!! thanks for the update..
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