Electric brake problem.

Submitted: Friday, Jun 19, 2015 at 22:31
ThreadID: 119237 Views:2894 Replies:5 FollowUps:22
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Would like some advice with an electric brake problem. The right hand brake shoes on our coromal 511xc were making contacting with the hub while driving. Initially i thought it was a bearing problem so repacked the bearing {which seemed fine} and backed off the tension nut one hole as i thought it was to tight. Wheel spun freely with only slight noise from the magnet . Drive 5klms hot again. Rang coromal who said it was the handbrake ajusted to tight , it wasnt {and they were no help at all } but i ended up diconnecting the handbrake and backing off the adjusment till it was completely loose. Drive 5klms , hot again. Jack up and spin the wheel and it spins freely. Drive 5klms hot again [ to hot ] . Ended up taking out the whole brake asembly on that side and no further problems . Not the best thing to do but we were a long way from any help . Drove a further 3500klms with no problem . Will be putting on a new backing plate with new brakes and magnet and see how that goes but would like to know what the cause was. Magnet energising somehow and pulling the brake on is the only thing i can think of. Van had done less than 5000 klms when the problem started. Left hand side working fine the whole time.
cheers Graeme.
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Reply By: itsdave - Saturday, Jun 20, 2015 at 09:30

Saturday, Jun 20, 2015 at 09:30
Hi Graeme

I had a similar problem a few years ago where one side was overheating, ended up being a faulty brake controller. I had been using a Tekonsha (not sure of the model) and ended up at a trailer place where they checked the bearings etc. Drove down the road a few klm and found I still had the same problem. Went back and they replaced the controller with a Hayman Reece one and have never had a problem since. That was nearly 8 years ago.

Cheers Dave
AnswerID: 556162

Follow Up By: Shaker - Saturday, Jun 20, 2015 at 09:46

Saturday, Jun 20, 2015 at 09:46
It was the Tekonsha Voyager with the grey label, the later models & warranty replacements had a burgundy label.
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FollowupID: 842290

Follow Up By: itsdave - Saturday, Jun 20, 2015 at 11:58

Saturday, Jun 20, 2015 at 11:58
Hi Shaker
The one I had was a Tekonsha Prodigy. Prior to that I had one of the grey labeled Voyagers where the brake lights would come on when the vehicle was not moving or attached to the trailer. It was replaced free eventually.
cheers Dave
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FollowupID: 842297

Reply By: Gronk - Saturday, Jun 20, 2015 at 10:06

Saturday, Jun 20, 2015 at 10:06
I can't get my head around how a faulty brake controller could only affect one side, when the magnets are connected in parallel ??
AnswerID: 556163

Follow Up By: Shaker - Saturday, Jun 20, 2015 at 11:13

Saturday, Jun 20, 2015 at 11:13
I can't get my head around why we continue to allow manufacturers of super expensive caravans & campers to keep thrusting these archaic & inefficient brake systems on us!
Would any of us buy a vehicle with these magnetic drum brakes?

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FollowupID: 842295

Follow Up By: itsdave - Saturday, Jun 20, 2015 at 12:04

Saturday, Jun 20, 2015 at 12:04
Hi Gronk
I'm with you. I could not understand why it only effected one side. All I know is that when the controller was replaced it fixed the problem and has been for a few years now.
Cheers Dave
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FollowupID: 842298

Follow Up By: Member - graeme W (WA) - Saturday, Jun 20, 2015 at 14:39

Saturday, Jun 20, 2015 at 14:39
Hi Guys. Certainly a very basic braking system. I suppose its cheap and until we buyers put up with it nothing will change. I cant understand how only one side was effected either but with the trailor plug out and no power it did not get hot.
Cheers Graeme.
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FollowupID: 842304

Follow Up By: Member - graeme W (WA) - Sunday, Jun 21, 2015 at 19:59

Sunday, Jun 21, 2015 at 19:59
Hi Gronk. Tested voltage to each side ( each side has a negitive positive plug) was 13.29 each side, voltage dropped to 12.9 when brakes applied which would be draw from the trucks brake lights. Power was split in the middle but dont know where the negitive ends up as yet. Left the magnet in when i took out the brake pads. Jacked up the left side again today and brake works fine on that side, when the wheel is turned back to green on the controller no brake and as its wound up braking becomes more severe as one would expect. Putting in and offroad backing kit brake and magnet tomorrow on the right side, and will adjust both sides the same. If that still does fix it im beat.
Cheers Graeme.
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FollowupID: 842345

Reply By: Member - Robert1660 - Saturday, Jun 20, 2015 at 10:32

Saturday, Jun 20, 2015 at 10:32
Hi Graeme, I am currently experiencing almost exactly the same problem with my Tvan with electric brakes an a Tekonsha controller. I had the driver side inner bearing collapse. Replaced the entire hub and drum, a one price unit, which fortunately I was carrying at Millstream in WA. Not overly close to civilisation! Travelled down to Norseman and had a repeat of the problem. This time I did not catch it in time and managed to destroy the entire brake pads an mechanism. Had to be traybacked into Norseman and just hoping the damage to the axle is not too severe. However, if axle is ok then will be driving back to the East with no trailer brakes. Also have an alignment issue with the same wheel, independant suspension, with quite severe tyre scuffing. Not absolutely sure what the cause of the bearing problem is.
Robert
Landcruiser 200 Altitude Diesel + Tvan Murranji

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AnswerID: 556165

Follow Up By: Member - graeme W (WA) - Saturday, Jun 20, 2015 at 14:31

Saturday, Jun 20, 2015 at 14:31
Hi Robert. I check the van bearings at every stop so luckely no serious damage also having difficulty understanding how only one side would be effected but i am certain that somehow the brakes were being pulled on. Drove the last couple of hundred klms to get to Karratha with the trailor plug disconnected. Its a techonsha not sure what model a voyager i think. Also agree that its a very old braking system and why vans dont have discs is beyond me.
Cheers Graeme.
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FollowupID: 842303

Reply By: Member - Robert1660 - Saturday, Jun 20, 2015 at 14:49

Saturday, Jun 20, 2015 at 14:49
Hi yet again Graeme. Just picked up the Tvan from the repairer in Norseman. The brakes have been disconnected so that is one aspect that will not be involved in any further bearing issues. I had an email from the makers of the Tvan and they said that bearing failure is extremely rare in this campertrailer and if a bearing is to fail it is the outer bearing. Well tomorrow we tackle the Nullarbor do just hoping that all is ok. It does appear that the brakes were the most likely cause of the problem. Only time will tell. Thanks for all your feedback and thoughts.
Robert
Landcruiser 200 Altitude Diesel + Tvan Murranji

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AnswerID: 556176

Follow Up By: Shaker - Saturday, Jun 20, 2015 at 16:17

Saturday, Jun 20, 2015 at 16:17
I read that on the Track forum about it most likely to be the outer bearing because of dust & water, but the seal is on the inside, which puts the inner bearing most at risk!
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FollowupID: 842309

Follow Up By: Member - graeme W (WA) - Saturday, Jun 20, 2015 at 21:38

Saturday, Jun 20, 2015 at 21:38
Hi Robert. Hope it all turns out ok. I actually took out the brake pads to make sure. Had the wheel jacked up at least 5 times and put in a new set of bearings on the side of the road before being sure what the issue was. At least the maker of your camper was interested. I rand coromal bunbury 3 times the first for any ideas, the second i think ive worked out the problem, the third, what should i do. There answer, on the third call, we are to busy you are on your own. Had two other friends buy vans (new ones) off them and there opinions on after sales service is the same as mine.

Cheers Graeme.
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FollowupID: 842318

Reply By: TomH - Saturday, Jun 20, 2015 at 15:15

Saturday, Jun 20, 2015 at 15:15
Have either of you checked the other side to see if it is working and the controller is not just sending all the power to one side.

As there is only one wire from the controller to just in front of the axle where it splits to either side it is illogical that one side will apply harder than the other due to the controller. Usual reason would be poor adjustment or a problem in the hubs.

The old version Of any controller be it Tekonsha or Redarc should be upgraded to a proportional type like the Prodigy ,P3 or a Redarc Tow Pro
AnswerID: 556177

Follow Up By: Shaker - Saturday, Jun 20, 2015 at 20:02

Saturday, Jun 20, 2015 at 20:02
Although the brake wire should be split in the centre of the axle, some manufacturers still run the wiring down one side & just bridge across to the other side, this can cause a minor issue.
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FollowupID: 842314

Follow Up By: Member - graeme W (WA) - Saturday, Jun 20, 2015 at 20:38

Saturday, Jun 20, 2015 at 20:38
Hi Tom. Other side works fine. I am hoping its a faulty magnet but i doubt it will be. Will follow the wiring tomorrow and also get some voltage readings. The Alko web site says that each side draws about 3.5 amps which given the wiring size is hard to believe. At that distance the wiring would have to be a min of 6mm and better still 8b&s for no voltage drop to occur. Its tiny and no one with half a brain would try and run a fridge on it. Serviced the left side repacked the bearings etc and the magnets are not the off road model even though the van is, and the hole where the lever fits in the magnet had a fair bit of play in a van that has less than 10000 klms. The magnet face and drum had very little wear. The off road model brake has plastic insert to limit wear. Typical for coromal though they probibly dont even know an off road model exists.
Cheers Graeme
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FollowupID: 842315

Follow Up By: Gronk - Sunday, Jun 21, 2015 at 09:24

Sunday, Jun 21, 2015 at 09:24
If the 2 brake wires are connected properly and connected properly to negative as well, a faulty controller CANNOT cause only one side to operate (see below )....unless one side is not adjusted properly and not operating mechanically.

Graeme, I'll take a guess and say the faulty side is somehow dragging from bad adjustment or something bent, but now it is disconnected, it doesn't matter until you get home.

A faulty controller CAN cause some voltage to be applied, and if both sides aren't adjusted exactly the same, it can cause drag on one wheel and not the other..

Easiest way to see if the controller is playing up is to measure for voltage at the plug or brakes themselves....with no brakes applied obviously ..

Doesn't matter where they join the two brake wires,obviously down the middle and have each side the same is ideal, but voltage drop isn't a big issue with brakes...even 4mm wire will handle 20A..

Are you adjusting the brakes correctly ??.....adjust them up till tight then back off 8 to 12 clicks ??
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FollowupID: 842324

Follow Up By: Bushranger1 - Sunday, Jun 21, 2015 at 10:24

Sunday, Jun 21, 2015 at 10:24
G'day Graeme,
I cant believe the manufacturer doesn't know about off road magnets.
I bought an "off road" Trailer over 20 years ago & educated the builder about the off road magnets after a call to Alko when the internals of my electric brakes fell apart in the outback .
I will say though the trailer was well out of warranty & the trailer manufacturer (Outback Campers) replaced ALL the broken parts & upgraded to off road magnets Free of Charge & mailed them to me! Stripped out the broken internals & replaced the lot in camp in a few hours. Can't complain about that for great service.
I would hope Coromal would do the same.

So here we are 20 years down the track & still manufacturers are building off road vans without them!

Cheers
Stu
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FollowupID: 842326

Follow Up By: Member - graeme W (WA) - Sunday, Jun 21, 2015 at 10:29

Sunday, Jun 21, 2015 at 10:29
Hi Gronk. Thats the weird part. Hub to hot to touch, stop jack up back off the adjustment, in the end no ajustment left after doing at least 5times. Spin the wheel, all good nothing rubbing, drive 5klms hub to hot to touch again. Had no option but to take out the brake assembly which i did after driving the last couple of hundred klms with the trailor plug out.
Home now and will put in a new brake, magnet and backing plate, and check the voltage as suggested.
Cheers Graeme.
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FollowupID: 842328

Follow Up By: TomH - Sunday, Jun 21, 2015 at 11:08

Sunday, Jun 21, 2015 at 11:08
Back off 12 clicks Not sure about that after reading this

Interesting, here is the procedure taken from from the following ALKO web site:

http://www.alko.com.au/uploads/2008/12/ ... ndbook.pdf

1. Brake Adjustment Procedure
The brakes fitted to an axle or independent rubber suspension system
supplied by AL-KO International are adjusted prior to supply. A brake
clean and adjustment should be carried out between the first 300 to 1000
kilometres and then at the service intervals recommended on Page 8.
Located in the back of the brake backing plate is a small opening covered
by a protective plug. With the trailer wheels off the ground, rotation of the
star wheel, (as shown in the diagram below), will result in correct brake
adjustment. With a screw driver rotate the star wheel until the brake drag
makes it difficult to turn the wheel. The star wheel can then be turned in
the opposite direction to allow the trailer wheel to turn 3/4 to 1 revolution
freely when spun.
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FollowupID: 842330

Follow Up By: Gronk - Sunday, Jun 21, 2015 at 11:24

Sunday, Jun 21, 2015 at 11:24
So, it did not heat up with the trailer plug out ??

That would indicate you have an electrical problem, possibly a short or similar to another wire in the loom somewhere ( or faulty controller ), although it doesn't explain why the other side doesn't get hot ?

You need to check all the wiring...plug at the back of the 4wd as well....and measure the voltage at each magnet, no brakes applied and with the over ride on..

The brakes will need to be adjusted the same both sides..

It hasn't got breakaway brakes fitted ??
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FollowupID: 842331

Follow Up By: Gronk - Sunday, Jun 21, 2015 at 11:32

Sunday, Jun 21, 2015 at 11:32
Just reading thru the stuff again and after you removed the brake shoes, did you also remove the magnet ?

That brake adjustment article is pretty vague and not one I would follow...I would like the wheel to turn more than 1 revolution after adjusting.
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FollowupID: 842332

Follow Up By: TomH - Sunday, Jun 21, 2015 at 12:12

Sunday, Jun 21, 2015 at 12:12
Better contact Alko then as its from their website. I would think it should rotate a couple of revs but thats what they say
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FollowupID: 842333

Follow Up By: Member - graeme W (WA) - Sunday, Jun 21, 2015 at 20:09

Sunday, Jun 21, 2015 at 20:09
Hi Tom. Other side works fine tested again today. Voltage with the truck connected and tested by disconnecting the plug near each side of the brake backing plate was 13.29 each side wich dropped to 12.90 when brakes applied i presume drop caused by brake light draw on the truck. New right hand off road kit going in tomorrow and i will adjust both sides the same and see what happens. Mate next door has discs on his boat, allround looks better and easier to adjust and maintain.
Cheers Graeme.
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FollowupID: 842346

Follow Up By: Gronk - Sunday, Jun 21, 2015 at 21:20

Sunday, Jun 21, 2015 at 21:20
You said there was 13.29V each side BEFORE brakes applied ?? Is this correct ??

There should be zero volts unless the brakes are applied..... and then if it's only the brakes applied sitting in the driveway, the volts should be fairly low...like 1 to 3 volts......have you got an over ride on the controller ?? with this fully over, you will get full volts ..
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FollowupID: 842350

Follow Up By: Member - graeme W (WA) - Monday, Jun 22, 2015 at 22:04

Monday, Jun 22, 2015 at 22:04
Hi Gronk. With the wires disconnected just short of the brake the voltage measured 13.29 and with the brake applied dropped to 12.90. The guy that installed the unit tested it again today and the truck side showed no faults. He said that voltage was feedback from the light on the controller and under load would not register. My mate next door connected his truck with hayman reece contoller and voltage was zero and when the brake was activated was 4 volts up to 12 volts as the power was wound up. This is how it should work. I replaced the right hand side backing plate, shoes and magnet today. Also adjusted both sides 6 clicks bck from lock up. Will test each side tomorrow to make sure magnets are working and the brakes the same. If all good will take a drive the next day and see what happens. Cant see where the earth terminates in the van as it goes through the chassis which will make finding a fault harder if the controller is not the problem.
Cheers Graeme.
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FollowupID: 842381

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