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Old 08-18-2019, 08:48 PM   #71
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Federal Law trump state law

Trailer Brakes Required - Federal DOT law
This comes up from time to time, most recently in a thread about a homemade chain binder. Rather that continuing to hijack that thread I thought it more appropriate to post here and perhaps dispel some of the myths about the requirements for brakes on trailers:

USDOT FMCSA
Rules and Regulations current to Aug 30, 2012
http://www.fmcsa.dot.gov/rules-regul...spx?reg=393.42

Subpart C - Brakes

§ 393.42 Brakes required on all wheels.

(a) Every commercial motor vehicle shall be equipped with brakes acting on all wheels. This requirement also applies to certain motor vehicles being towed in a driveaway-towaway operation, as follows:

(1) Any motor vehicle towed by means of a tow-bar when another motor vehicle is full-mounted on the towed vehicle; and

(2) Any saddlemount configuration with a fullmount.
(b) Exception. (1) Trucks or truck tractors having three or more axles and manufactured before July 25, 1980, are not required to have brakes on the front wheels. However, these vehicles must meet the requirements of § 393.52.

(3) Any semitrailer or pole trailer (laden or unladen) with a gross weight of 1,361 kg (3,000 pounds) or less which is subject to this part is not required to be equipped with brakes if the axle weight of the towed vehicle does not exceed 40 percent of the sum of the axle weights of the towing vehicle. (emphasis added)

(4) Any full trailer or four-wheel pole trailer (laden or unladen) with a gross weight of 1,361 kg (3,000 pounds) or less which is subject to this part is not required to be equipped with brakes if the sum of the axle weights of the towed vehicle does not exceed 40 percent of the sum of the axle weights of the towing vehicle. (emphasis added)
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Old 08-18-2019, 09:43 PM   #72
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OP asked "How important is it" then some people want to justify why they don't put it on their rig. I know after I put my system in I could stop much better. They can save their money and not buy one then if they're just being cheap. Why try to prove that the law says you don't need one, when for most rigs (if not all) it really helps.
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Old 08-19-2019, 05:33 AM   #73
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It is law in the province we live in, and many of the state we frequently travel through. Always worried that our insurance would be void if we didn't comply. Love our airforce one sits under the seat out of sight out of mind.
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Old 08-19-2019, 07:32 AM   #74
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RVI brake

I use RVi brake . Easy to use and fits any vehicle. Made the mistake of thinking I could pull an forfeit explorer with out brakes and got very lucky. It was slightly down hill and a wuiclight. It pushed me clean into middle of the intersection. Scary. Get a braking system . Do the math. 4800 pounds needs a lot of force to stop. Now the road helps me stop in a panic situation.
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Old 08-19-2019, 07:34 AM   #75
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Old 08-19-2019, 09:12 AM   #76
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Everybody has an opinion on the use of an auxiliary braking system for a toad (I would NOT be without one, personally). Most states have laws requiring them for vehicles over a certain weight, so there's that.

But thinking this through, lets say that an average MoHo with a toad weighs in (conservatively), at 55,000lbs. What are the physical forces affecting that configuration?

Well now, here's that topic covered in mind numbing detail: https://library.ctr.utexas.edu/digit...ive/ms0867.pdf

And another, less mind numbing: Car Crash Example

And finally, the easy-reading section: https://rvlove.com/2018/04/12/our-to...g-up-jeep-tow/

The point being, the weight of a towed vehicle is added to that of the MoHo traveling at a certain speed. Why on earth would one not want additional help/equipment in slowing down/stopping in a crisis situation?

And that's not to mention accidental toad separation from the MoHo with no break away braking system... imaging your toad careening down the highway behind you at initially the same speed, out of control...

Anyway, food for thought.
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Old 08-19-2019, 09:57 AM   #77
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I tow a Hummer H-3 behind a 40’ DP on a Freightliner chassis. Ca. law (and I know a lot of other states) says any towed veh over 1500 lbs must have supplemental braking. ALSO, Freightliner requires the same. Anyone who’s ever descended a steep windy grade towing ANYTHING, knows the importance of brakes on a towed veh. Liability, safety, legality, why mess around?
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Old 08-19-2019, 10:10 AM   #78
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Required on all tows?????

Quote:
Originally Posted by 2Newsomes View Post
Enough that every state and province in North America require it.
Could you please share your source for that information. I volunteer with my local Auxiliary Communications Service of the Office of Emergency Services. During exercises and deployments we have to be ready to deal with towing at any time. Many of the equipment resources available to us are trailer mounted. If there is some sort of universal requirement for brakes on towed vehicles we really need to get up to speed on that right away.

I would appreciate any reference you can provide.
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Old 08-19-2019, 10:22 AM   #79
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Quote:
Originally Posted by HORNETD View Post
Could you please share your source for that information. I volunteer with my local Auxiliary Communications Service of the Office of Emergency Services. During exercises and deployments we have to be ready to deal with towing at any time. Many of the equipment resources available to us are trailer mounted. If there is some sort of universal requirement for brakes on towed vehicles we really need to get up to speed on that right away.

I would appreciate any reference you can provide.
https://drivinglaws.aaa.com/tag/trailer-brakes/, some states show special requirements other than auxiliary brakes.
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Old 08-19-2019, 10:24 AM   #80
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Most if not all states require brakes by set weight being towed either flat or by dolly. Now if you go to Canada you best have brakes because they will check this at the boarder and there is nothing worse than being held at the check point since they now have the option to check for other items that you may not have thought of. The other thing is that I could be going in the opposite direction as your tow comes apart and I and my lawyers don't like that option and you best have a really high liability coverage and possible time for jail for being so cheap with brakes. As they say don't due the crime if you can't spend the time.
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Old 08-19-2019, 10:54 AM   #81
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Walt Graham View Post
Most if not all states require brakes by set weight being towed either flat or by dolly. Now if you go to Canada you best have brakes because they will check this at the boarder and there is nothing worse than being held at the check point since they now have the option to check for other items that you may not have thought of. The other thing is that I could be going in the opposite direction as your tow comes apart and I and my lawyers don't like that option and you best have a really high liability coverage and possible time for jail for being so cheap with brakes. As they say don't due the crime if you can't spend the time.
Check at Canadian border? I have been into Canada with my RV/toad about 5 times and never once checked.
Only seem interested in guns heading into Canada.
As far as toad total failure and complete disconnect, it is extremely rare. And toad brakes help little as to where that toad would end up in such a case. With or without toad brakes, a disconnected toad is just as likely to get struck by another vehicle. What do you think happens on a total disconnect? That the toad brakes are applied nice and the vehicle screeches to a halt and stays in its traffic lane? Wishful thinking.
Point me to one fatality please. Just one.
And don't confuse trailer brake laws with toad laws. They most often are not even related.
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Old 08-19-2019, 11:51 AM   #82
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Quote:
Originally Posted by cloverjoe View Post
what is the best breaking system to use with a spartan chassis?
We the M&G Engineering system from Athens, TX. Great guys, great system. We have had it on our last three MH's and three toads (two jeeps and a Ram).
Reasonable cost. Air Force one system is similar.
I would never tow a trailer or a toad without brakes. Not worth the risk. Plus the system considerably helps the stopping distance of the MH.
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Old 08-19-2019, 12:05 PM   #83
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Look, people who don't want to use brakes with a 4500 pound TOAD or trailer will continue to do so and there is nothing that anyone seems to be able to say to convince them otherwise. Fine. When I add 4500 pounds going 65 MPH to my rig I probably could stop under most circumstances without additional brakes. However, when there is a significant angle between the coach and the TOAD and a quick stop is called for, I don't want all of the inertia from that 4500 TOAD pushing the rear end of my rig in a direction that is perpendicular to the direction that I am steering. This isn't about pure stopping ability it is steering control as well.
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Old 08-19-2019, 12:17 PM   #84
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Quote:
Originally Posted by awol50 View Post
Check at Canadian border? I have been into Canada with my RV/toad about 5 times and never once checked.
Only seem interested in guns heading into Canada.
As far as toad total failure and complete disconnect, it is extremely rare. And toad brakes help little as to where that toad would end up in such a case. With or without toad brakes, a disconnected toad is just as likely to get struck by another vehicle. What do you think happens on a total disconnect? That the toad brakes are applied nice and the vehicle screeches to a halt and stays in its traffic lane? Wishful thinking.
Point me to one fatality please. Just one.
And don't confuse trailer brake laws with toad laws. They most often are not even related.
You continue to justify why you don't have an auxiliary braking system on your toad. This is not good advice for the average RV'r and I'm pretty sure we all heard you the other 15 times you've posted this.
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