by Bill (Naples, FL)
Question: I have a Reese Brakeman Digital Controller, which I used for 8 years. It usually needs a setting of 3 or 4 to stop well. Now I need about 6 for lighter new trailer. Any thoughts?
Answer: We suggest you first contact the manufacturer of the Reese Brakeman Digital Controller to see if they can offer any help or guidance. Perhaps there are differences with the brakes on the new light trailer that have something to do with the change in setting.
We are also posting your question in case other RVers have input to share.
Trailer brake voltage
If your trailer brakes use electromagnets, then it is possible that the brake magnets in the new trailer need more voltage than the magnets in the older trailer.
Magnets are attracted to the inner face of the brake drum whenever the controller sends the voltage to them. This voltage increases as the brake pedal in the RV is depressed to actuate the brakes on the RV and sends a signal to the controller then to the magnets in the trailers brake drum. As more braking is needed, more voltage is sent to the trailer brakes.
Not all magnets are created equal. Again, it is quite possible the brake magnets on the newer trailer need more voltage to make the brakes work. If the brakes are working like they should then I don’t think I would be too concerned about the higher setting that you need on your controller.