Brakes are, without a doubt, considered as the most important part of any vehicle. When you hit its pedal, it pays to be sure that the whole vehicle stops. Vehicle brakes get the job done most of the time. However, it wouldn’t be enough for a heavy trailer.
It is the main reason why a braked trailer is a must. In this article, you will learn everything about electric and mechanical trailer brakes. Discover the difference between the two to decide which of two works for your trailer.
Mechanical Trailer Brakes
It was once believed that a mechanical braking system is difficult to control; that if you plan to have a smooth trip, this one’s not for you. Though this is the case in Australia for a very long time, the importation of the European overrun braking system changed it all.
Its concept is very simple: the trailer moves forward based on the speed of the vehicle. The mechanical brakes exist to prevent the trailer from going too fast in contrast with the car’s speed. It has a sliding spring mechanism piece that contracts the moment the trailer’s speed overruns the vehicle.
The brake drums are activated by the pulled brake cables to the axles when the drawbar contracts. The cables will then be disabled when the car stops, resulting to the trailing towing back to normal. This is applicable to a lawn mower trailer and the like.
Benefits of Using Mechanical Trailer Brakes
The mechanical brake system has a lot of upsides that makes it ideal for Australian users. Nothing much can go wrong with its overrun system as it is relatively simple.
The European braking system uses an overrun dampener that serves as a shock absorber. It is installed to prevent the brake from working immediately when the brake is released. As a result, it removes the bumpy feeling from the Australian mechanical braking system.
The overrun brake will also not take effect when reversing as it uses an auto-reverse mechanism, which is added in the brake drums.
Electrical Braking System
The electric trailer brakes were considered as the most preferred braking system of the Australians for a long time. It uses a brake controller which is located in the tow vehicle. It utilises electromagnets through the drums to activate the braking system. This brake controller, as well as the brake light circuit, regulates the electricity.
Whether you are towing a trailer or a caravan, its extra weight can slow down or stop the tow vehicle dangerously. Electric brakes lessens the chance of your caravan or trailer from smashing into your vehicle.
Electric brakes are highly recommended for heavy trailers exceeding 750kg. In fact, it is the only option in compliance with the breakaway requirements. Outside the requirements, they are the best for its increased brake power for safe towing.
Benefits of Using Electric Trailer Brakes
Using the electrical braking system has many advantages. It limits the pressure on the tow vehicle brakes. Aside from that, it can be adjusted manually through the brake controller to lessen the swaying; perfect for travelling on hills and in areas with high wind speed.
It will work perfectly provided that you the user knows how to configure it. Though most of the time users don’t know how to setup the brakes properly. This gives the mechanical braking system the upper hand in terms of simplicity.
How To Set Up Your Electric Trailer Brakes
Should you decide to use an electrical braking system, the first thing to check is its wire connections. Wiring system will be in different colours depending on the manufacturer. Use the manual for reference.
Next, you should setup the controller to the midpoint on the scale.
After that would be to test it by driving at a speed of 40km/h then apply the brakes. You should adjust the scale properly. You need more braking level if you feel that the trailer is pushing the towing vehicle when the brakes are activated.
Otherwise, you should reduce the braking power if the wheels of the trailer lock up upon activation. The correct configuration of the brakes will be set when braking at 40 km/h.
If you’re planning to buy a trailer, do not hesitate to get expert advice. Further assistance can help you decide on the right braking system for you.
Whether a trailer should utilise mechanical or electrical brakes, it pays to know what the market offers as well as the new innovations that Australian users are beginning to adapt.
There are a lot of beliefs by the Australian consumers regarding trailer brakes. Mechanical and electrical braking has both pros and cons. It all boils down to preference, quality and budget.
Get in touch with us. We can help you with all your trailer needs. U Beaut Trailers offers a wide range of trailer accessories based on your specific requirements.