by Trina (Moncton NB, Canada)
Question: I bought a new 2013 Coachman Freedom Express 246rks. We have been out camping a few times now and we notice a lot of other trailers exterior body lights are on after they unhitch from their vehicle. I have never seen mine do that, but it is a feature I would like. Is there something I am not doing or should be doing in order for the lights to come on.
Answer: You might want to first contact Coachmen to see if your trailer has this capability already built in. If not, then you can buy an aftermarket plug that connects to the towing wiring harness of your trailer to make the lights stay on after you disconnect the trailer from the truck.
The down side is that if you are not connected to power and you use the plug, it could drain your battery. Another thought, although unlikely, is that depending on the number of marker/clearance lights and converter/inverter power available, you could tax the converter/inverter and leave less power available for your other electrical needs.
We’ve seen trailers with lights on as you describe and think the lights look cool. But we’ve also heard campers complain that they don’t like the lights if their neighbor keeps them on all night long.
If you feel comfortable working on 12 volt electrical systems, then you could rig up your own plug that would connect your battery and your marker/clearance lights. Just make sure you use a 15 amp fuse to protect everything from a problem.
By the way, here is a link for one of the manufacturers of a plug to make the marker/clearance lights stay on while not connected to your truck. Please note this is not an endorsement of the seller or manufacturer; just a company we found online and are passing along: www.rvglow.com