A question for Tekonsha P3 brake controller users

Submitted: Tuesday, Apr 08, 2014 at 20:59
ThreadID: 107152 Views:2209 Replies:3 FollowUps:10
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I have just got a new car and a new P3 controller to tow my van.

I am finding that when I am slowing down to a stop it is very jerky unless I set the voltage very low around 3 if using boost. 1 or 2.

My question is does the jerky stop happen to you. In my previous car and P3 I did not notice it and I had it set to about 6.3 and boost of 1.

I have had the brakes on the van checked and they are ok.

Richard



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Reply By: fisho64 - Tuesday, Apr 08, 2014 at 21:46

Tuesday, Apr 08, 2014 at 21:46
obvious things first-is the controller solidly mounted facing in the correct direction? If it can move being inertia it could cause problems

When you brake, watch the voltage reading and see if it varies-this will tell you if its the controller telling the brakes to be "jerky" or something else.
If the brakes really are "ok" then look for a poor earth or connection which cant handle full current.
AnswerID: 530132

Follow Up By: richard - Wednesday, Apr 09, 2014 at 04:56

Wednesday, Apr 09, 2014 at 04:56
Hi
I do see voltage when braking, particularly when using boost.
If very low voltage I do not get the jerky stop.

The controller is not mounted horizontally but is mounted, I believe correctly. The guy who did it did not mount it permanently buy used the clip on option so it can be removed easily.

I had some one check the plug. I suspected this as well as it is I changed it ??

When I look at the diagnostics in the P3 it seems to have a low output current value, I think.

Does your van stop smoothly or does it jerk.
As mentioned I can stop the jerky stop by setting the voltage low and removing the boost. I guess this is just minimizing the van braking, which is not good.

Thanks again,

Richard
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FollowupID: 813010

Follow Up By: fisho64 - Wednesday, Apr 09, 2014 at 09:01

Wednesday, Apr 09, 2014 at 09:01
Mine is a completely different setup, being a boat trailer with elec over hydraulic system. But at 8volts setting it pulls up very smoothly.
The "boost" setting relates to the size of the trailer compared to tug and how quickly brakes are applied.
Perhaps check its set for elec brakes not EOH?
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FollowupID: 813017

Follow Up By: auzinomad - Wednesday, Apr 09, 2014 at 10:06

Wednesday, Apr 09, 2014 at 10:06
Check if the install uses a self resetting circuit breaker.
It might not be rated high enough.

On low power braking there's less power draw than boost 2 -3 and on more braking the CB could be opening and resetting causing the jerking brakes.

Cant recall the recommended amperage for single and twin axles but it's advised to go one size / rating up as they're not always 100% rating.

On my dual axle van I replaced the 30A with 35A as , from the discoloring on the case, the 30 was getting hot too many times.

Ron
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FollowupID: 813023

Follow Up By: richard - Wednesday, Apr 09, 2014 at 10:13

Wednesday, Apr 09, 2014 at 10:13
Yep had checked the settings. It is set to electric.

There is some thing wrong just to many variables at the moment.

Richard
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FollowupID: 813024

Follow Up By: richard - Wednesday, Apr 09, 2014 at 10:19

Wednesday, Apr 09, 2014 at 10:19
Ron,
I will check

Thanks,
Richard
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FollowupID: 813025

Follow Up By: richard - Wednesday, Apr 09, 2014 at 10:38

Wednesday, Apr 09, 2014 at 10:38
As mentioned I am unsure where the problem is
Car wiring. Which is new, in fact to car is new
Van brakes
Brake controller

Here is a bit more detail.

If is set the voltage to 3.6 and no boost I stop with smoothly. According to the display there is some Voltage going to the brakes.

If I turn on boost the stopping is not smooth

If I turn up the voltage setting to say 5 the stopping is also not smooth

This is a bit confusing.

My understanding is the voltage setting is a maximum.

When doing similar stops I would expect similar voltage is sent or is to the brakes if you never exceed or go near the maximum. So why should increasing the setting make a difference.

I can understand if you set the boost it would make a difference.

Or have I just got it completely wrong :)

Richard

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FollowupID: 813028

Follow Up By: fisho64 - Wednesday, Apr 09, 2014 at 12:31

Wednesday, Apr 09, 2014 at 12:31
If your boost is set to zero then there is no boost?
On a boat trailer where the load changes from 3000kg to 500kg zero boost is used so there is no braking when empty.
That is why yours goes fine when set to zero.
Do you get the jerking both using brake pedal and manual application?
My Dexter EOH system has a 20amp on the controller and 50amp on the hotwire to EOH, both self resetting.
The CB on yours could very well be the problem, set the unit to show the current being drawn, could also be a faulty CB.
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FollowupID: 813035

Follow Up By: richard - Wednesday, Apr 09, 2014 at 17:21

Wednesday, Apr 09, 2014 at 17:21
I believe I have a 20amp cb installed.

I will upgrade to a 25amp

Thanks I will try anything still he moment.

Richard
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FollowupID: 813056

Follow Up By: richard - Friday, Apr 11, 2014 at 06:39

Friday, Apr 11, 2014 at 06:39
I am following up on CB but one thing I have noticed
I ramped the voltage up to max 14 and went into diagnostic area in the P3

All looked ok except the output current which read about 6.

Not sure if this good or bad for a two wheel van.

Richard
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FollowupID: 813195

Reply By: Mogul - Wednesday, Apr 09, 2014 at 17:32

Wednesday, Apr 09, 2014 at 17:32
What type of car and what is the weight of what you are towing.
AnswerID: 530175

Follow Up By: richard - Wednesday, Apr 09, 2014 at 17:46

Wednesday, Apr 09, 2014 at 17:46
I am driving a 3 ltr discovery 4 and the van weighs around 1800, probably less

Richard
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FollowupID: 813059

Reply By: richard - Friday, Apr 11, 2014 at 22:24

Friday, Apr 11, 2014 at 22:24
I did some more testing. I turned all boost off as it should not effect the results
I connected the van to the car and started the car. Here are some results the P3 diagnostic feature using the manual lever
Output Volt. Output Current
13.01 6.34
8. 2.46
6. 1.49
4. .69
3.01. .41
3.6. .57

I have been told by Tekonsha support that the first result was reasonable for a two wheel van. I am unsure if this is true for other results.

Richard
AnswerID: 530361

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