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Old 03-24-2014, 03:23 PM   #1
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Diode wiring

I have an '11 Jeep Grand Cherokee and recently wired it to flat tow behind our class a. When connected to MH all is well, when driving all is well brake lights turns etc., but when I try to set up the Blue Ox aux. brake I don't have any brake lights. What is up???
According to the dealer no ignition required and the very same set up worked on my '06 JGC.
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Old 03-24-2014, 03:29 PM   #2
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Not sure that i can help you directly, but I'm towing a 2009 Jeep Wrangler, and I use a BlueOx. I wired my lights using the CoolTech harnes that taps directly into the Jeep's rear, driver's side brake assembly. No diods.

When I gently tap my RV brakes, I do get the brake lights in my Jeep, but not the THIRD brake light above my spare tire. That light works only from the brake petal. So when hit my RV brakes hard enough to trigger my Patriot brake box (also sold by Blue Ox) to hit the brakes in the Jeep, it does, and that third brake light comes on.

Most people following me don't know the difference, because they see brake lights either way. I kind of like that there's an additional light when I'm hitting the brakes harder... :-)

This may be useful to you as you troubleshoot?
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Old 03-24-2014, 03:31 PM   #3
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Donaldb View Post
I have an '11 Jeep Grand Cherokee and recently wired it to flat tow behind our class a. When connected to MH all is well, when driving all is well brake lights turns etc., but when I try to set up the Blue Ox aux. brake I don't have any brake lights. What is up???
This might be a dumb question but, do you need to have the Ign on to have brake lights?
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Old 03-24-2014, 04:43 PM   #4
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On many older cars you did indeed have to have the ignition on to have brake lights work.

However on modern cars I do not believe that is the case.. I believe it is mandated that the brake light circuit NOT run through the ignition switch.

However the key word is "Believe" I could be wrong.

However it is easy enough to test.. Step on the brakes, both ig on and ig off and see what the light happens.
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Old 03-24-2014, 05:08 PM   #5
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I think what Donald is saying is that all the lights on the Cherokee work fine off the motorhome connection until the Blue OX braking system applies the brake pedal. At that point the motorhome is sending 12V power as well as the Cherokee sending 12V power to the brake lights. This normally should work fine and the diodes prevent a 12V feed back into the Jeep electronics. It sounds like a defective diode to me.
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Old 03-24-2014, 07:01 PM   #6
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Gang,
Whether or not a vehicles brake lights come on with or without the key/ignition on, is really not a matter of age of vehicle. It's more of the manufacturer of the vehicle. In all of our older jeeps, (3) CJs, (2) YJs and (2) TJs, all different model years but, still Jeeps, ALL of them would activate the brake lights without the key in the ignition.

On many of my '60s cars and trucks, the brake lights activated without the key. I'm pretty sure many of my '70s did too.

Our last toad, an '11 Honda CRV EX-L, it also activated the brake lights without the key in the ignition. But, our present toad, an '11 GMC Sierra 1500 Extended Cab 4x4, does NOT ACTIVATE the brake lights without the key. The ignition must be "on" for the brake lights to be active.

That worked out well for me because I'm one that always uses the stock tail lights/bulbs as toad lights. I'm not a fan of drilling into the housings and adding bulbs. Just a preference thing. I've put this same subject out on the net and it came back as there were many different manufacturers of toads and or, regular drivers (cars/trucks) that do and do not activate the brake lights without the key or, ignition on.
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Old 03-24-2014, 07:22 PM   #7
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Donaldb.....You leave more questions than answers with the information you posted. After reading it several times, it sounds like you have brake lights when you apply the MH brakes and the lights are powered by the MH plug and wiring to diodes.

When driving the Jeep, the lights are powered by the Jeep's power through the OEM wiring and then through the diodes.

Now, when you use the Blue Ox, and it presses on the pedal, no lights. If this is the case....then you have a vehicle that does not power the lights when the key is off. This is simple to test.....step on the brake pedal of the Jeep when the key is off.

No matter what the outcome, if the lights come on when you depress the MH brake, who cares about the Blue Ox system unless it needs to see the lights on to function.
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Old 03-24-2014, 08:11 PM   #8
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Donaldb.....You leave more questions than answers with the information you posted. After reading it several times, it sounds like you have brake lights when you apply the MH brakes and the lights are powered by the MH plug and wiring to diodes.

When driving the Jeep, the lights are powered by the Jeep's power through the OEM wiring and then through the diodes.

Now, when you use the Blue Ox, and it presses on the pedal, no lights. If this is the case....then you have a vehicle that does not power the lights when the key is off. This is simple to test.....step on the brake pedal of the Jeep when the key is off.

No matter what the outcome, if the lights come on when you depress the MH brake, who cares about the Blue Ox system unless it needs to see the lights on to function.
Don, I think his problem is when braking that his brake unit puts the lights out when the motor home connection has in fact put them on.
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Old 03-24-2014, 09:29 PM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Donaldb View Post
I have an '11 Jeep Grand Cherokee and recently wired it to flat tow behind our class a. When connected to MH all is well, when driving all is well brake lights turns etc., but when I try to set up the Blue Ox aux. brake I don't have any brake lights. What is up??? According to the dealer no ignition required and the very same set up worked on my '06 JGC.
I use the BlueOx Patriot as well. My hook up for my CRV uses the OEM bulbs. The Diodes were installed by the Hitch Shop that installed the Base Plate Etc.
When I am plugged in to the MH, all lights function from the MH thru the Toad. Now, when I install the Patriot, I always have the Ign. On during the set up and the brake lights do come on with each set up stroke of the Patriot.
I have not tried it with the Ign in the Off position, hence my question in my previous post.
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Old 03-25-2014, 10:54 AM   #10
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That is another thing.. If you are hooked up, then you are towing, and when you apply the brakes on the MOTOR HOME the brake lights should come on under MH power... It is actually a good thing if they do NOT come on under towed power.. Think about it and you will figure out why.
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Old 06-18-2014, 09:28 PM   #11
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Quick question about using diodes. If you have power going into the brake light from the motorhome on one side of the diode connection and have power coming in from the toad brake pedal at the same time on the other side of the diode connection; will that cause a problem? Or does that just mean both sides feed the light simultaneously without back feeding?

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Old 06-19-2014, 01:13 PM   #12
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Quick question about using diodes. If you have power going into the brake light from the motorhome on one side of the diode connection and have power coming in from the toad brake pedal at the same time on the other side of the diode connection; will that cause a problem? Or does that just mean both sides feed the light simultaneously without back feeding?

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If the diodes are working properly that will not cause any kind of problem.. A diode is like a check valve in a water system

Imagine your water system,, You have a supply tank and a pump in the pump are check valves, you have a city water inlet and inside it is a check valve.. NORMALLY if you hook to city water, pump on or off, no water back fills into the tank, and if you have the pump on no water is pumped into the city hose either.

This worked out well for me a couple of days ago... I had city water set to 50 PSI and the pump on (Slightly lower) park shut off water to repair a broken line and ... Only thing I noticed was the pump running when I drew water for kitty and katty (Amber and Alex my feline friends).

Lights work the same way. IF THE DIODE DOES NOT FAIL.

Many threads about "Water comes out the city water inlet when I turn the pump on" .. Well.... that means the Diode (Check valve) failed.
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Old 06-22-2014, 10:01 PM   #13
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If the diodes are working properly that will not cause any kind of problem.. A diode is like a check valve in a water system



Imagine your water system,, You have a supply tank and a pump in the pump are check valves, you have a city water inlet and inside it is a check valve.. NORMALLY if you hook to city water, pump on or off, no water back fills into the tank, and if you have the pump on no water is pumped into the city hose either.



This worked out well for me a couple of days ago... I had city water set to 50 PSI and the pump on (Slightly lower) park shut off water to repair a broken line and ... Only thing I noticed was the pump running when I drew water for kitty and katty (Amber and Alex my feline friends).



Lights work the same way. IF THE DIODE DOES NOT FAIL.



Many threads about "Water comes out the city water inlet when I turn the pump on" .. Well.... that means the Diode (Check valve) failed.

Thank you .. That clears it up..


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Old 06-27-2014, 04:54 PM   #14
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Quick question about using diodes. If you have power going into the brake light from the motorhome on one side of the diode connection and have power coming in from the toad brake pedal at the same time on the other side of the diode connection; will that cause a problem? Or does that just mean both sides feed the light simultaneously without back feeding?

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Not a problem unless the toad brake light works in tow configuration and you use a toad brake that pushes or pulls the brake pedal then if you have the left or right coach signal light on the toad brake light will override the signal lights unless you have a brake relay or bypass switch on the toad brake light switch, wont hurt the toad but the guy behind you cant see that you are turning until you let up on the coach and toad brakes.
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