You are here: Home > 2016 RV Accessories Articles > Completing a Towed Vehicle Braking System with Roadmaster
Super Steer motion control unitsTowing a vehicle behind your RV will most likely require you to use a supplemental braking system. When considering the safety implications, the necessity of using a braking system becomes clear. Trying to stop without a braking system for a towed vehicle can be an accident waiting to happen, especially in terms of momentum and stopping distance. Having to stop your motorhome suddenly for any reason can spell trouble if your towed vehicle does not slow down fast enough. Likewise in case of a breakaway, the right braking system can keep your towed vehicle from veering out of control. Roadmaster offers several versions to suit your needs, as well as the additional supplies needed for the system to work properly.
The Roadmaster EvenBrake is a proportional braking system, meaning it is made to stop the towed vehicle at the same rate as your RV. The amount of stress exerted on the brakes does not tend to favor either vehicle. It's a portable system, meaning it can be used in another vehicle. This is especially useful if you own more than one towable car, or if you plan on getting a new vehicle in the future. The EvenBrake contains a number of useful features, including a dashboard monitor to give you up to date information on the braking system's status, terrain sensing logic to accommodate for going up or down an incline, and the ability to compensate for an emergency breakaway.
Like the EvenBrake, the Roadmaster 9700 also brings the benefits of a portable system. In contrast, however, the 9700 uses preset adjustments to activate the vehicle's brakes. Braking can be set at light, medium, or heavy, and is applied when the towed vehicle's brake lights come on. Using a pre-selected setting promotes a simple operation, and like the EvenBrake, can be used in case of a breakaway. In fact, the 9700 can be set for use only if a breakaway occurs. Stress is reduced by releasing braking pressure after the vehicle's brakes have been activated for a certain period of time.
Besides the portable models, there are more permanent installations, which are ideal if you don't plan on changing vehicles. This includes the InvisiBrake and BrakeMaster systems. InvisiBrake boasts the feature of staying hidden once installed, whether it's underneath a seat or panel. This frees up space that won't be taken up by a bigger size system. It's completely automatic, there are no adjustments to be made once the unit is connected. Like the 9700, it works off the same signal that powers the brake lights. It uses progressive braking to apply pressure based your preset level, which can be changed if necessary. Brakemasters are direct braking systems that use the air or hydraulic system in your RV to operate. Like a proportional system, they apply the same type of pressure to the towed vehicle that is applied to the RV's brakes. However, because it is connected directly to the RV's brakes, it is able to respond faster.
Beyond the braking system, there are other components available to make sure the braking system functions properly. All of the Roadmaster models feature breakaway systems, which are used in case your towing system becomes disconnected, to help slow down the car. Keep in mind that a breakaway system should not be mounted to a baseplate or hitch, as this renders the breakaway useless if the hitch or baseplate is disconnected. Seat adapters are available for the BrakeMaster systems. Certain models of cars require a seat adapter for the BrakeMaster in order to ensure a proper fit. In the event that you want to switch vehicles, there are kits to make a second vehicle adaptable to a BrakeMaster or EvenBrake system. This saves the hassle of having to remove wiring from the first vehicle.