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Greetings from a new member w a ntu Coleman Cottonwood
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November 7, 2017
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November 7, 2017 - 3:43 pm
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I am a new owner of the 2002 Coleman Cottonwood.  I have many questions and you may see them later.  The most concerning one at this moment are the electric brakes.  As I had the trailer prepped for a virgin trip to Megunticutt in ME I asked that the brakes be connected to my new 'trailer ready' 2013 Highlander.  I have been told the Highlander must be rewired from the dashboard back to the hitch (I believe a 5 or 7 prong plug) before these brakes will work.  Ok, got that, but did not expect it (never had a camper before, tents don;t need brakes).

Off to Toyota, same information.  The clincher is they don't ever refit the cars, don't know how to do it and from them 'you do not want to pay us a
$100/hour to learn'.  I likely agree.  Others who pull trailers tell me I do not need these breaks for a trailer (unloaded) weighing 2200 pounds.

First, I would like any opinions on need and second, where would one go to have a car rewired for the brakes?

Thanks much for any input.  Work would get done in Saratoga Springs, NY (25 miles north of Albany).

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November 8, 2017 - 9:19 am
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Welcome from a fellow New Yorker. First anything above 2000 lbs needs brakes. And Acenorm is correct use a Trailer place and check out E-trailer.

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November 9, 2017 - 1:16 pm
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Welcome to the world of trailering. I have 2004 Viking Legend  2465st. I hitch it to a 2011 Toyota Highlander. When it came time to address braking, I contacted Weaver Industries. They sell everything that has to do with towing. I spoke with a rep over the phone and after talking year, make, and model he sold me the perfect hitch and electric brake controller with all the wiring. I took it to my regular mechanic who installed the whole package and it works perfectly. They even shipped it to me next day...free!  Good Luck.

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November 14, 2017 - 10:19 am
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wow, small world, I just had a 7 pin and brake controller installed in my 2013 Highlander!  I was very lucky to have a friend willing to help, but if I didn't I would have taken it to a local trailer maintenance place recommended by another good friend.  You're right about car places "learning at $100/hour".  My car threw some warning lights a few weeks after I had it installed.  I brought it in and they charged me $111 to tell me the trailer brake wire was rubbing against the steering wheel and that's what made the code come up.  We looked and the wires were like new.  They just guessed what might have caused the problem. 

As for if it's required or not, just look at any video of a vehicle crash started by sway, and you'll feel comfortable spending the money on a brake controller/brakes! I feel better knowing my car isn't doing all the work to stop, especially if I had to stop suddenly. 

Welcome to Canvas Campers!

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November 15, 2017 - 10:26 am
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