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Can a Parking Brake or E-Brake Be Added to Dexter Electric Brake Assemblies

Question:

Is there anyway to add a e-brake to a dexstar electric brake axle assembly? Can you wire a switch for power to the brakes when parked? I have a small Offroad trailer which I installed a dexstar electric brake kit on with a new dexstar axle. And when parked its a bit unsteady and I would love to add a e brake of possible

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Helpful Expert Reply:

A parking brake system, also known as an e-brake, can only be used if the brake assemblies are already equipped with a parking brake. Dexter does offer electric brake assemblies with a parking brake, but their standard electric brakes assemblies cannot have a parking brake added to them if they were not already properly equipped.

You can tell if your brakes are equipped with a parking brake by looking at the backing plate. There will be an actuating lever at the top of the brake assembly that attached to parking brake cable (see photo).

If your brakes are not equipped with a parking brake feature, then you could wire a switch that would power the brakes when you are parked, however, this will drain a battery if you are using a trailer battery or vehicle battery.

Many people add a breakaway system to their trailer in case the trailer unhooks from the tow vehicle when towing, especially on rough roads. A breakaway system like the Tekonsha Push to Test Breakaway Kit, # 50-85-313, uses a switch that is connected between the breakaway battery and the trailer brake circuit. The switch has a pin that is connected to the tow vehicle. If the pin is pulled, power is sent to the brake circuit from the breakaway battery and the trailer brakes are applied. One thing to keep in mind is that a breakaway battery will not last forever and once the battery dies, the brakes will be released.

There are advantages and disadvantages to using a parking brake or a breakaway switch. To use a parking brake, you may need to change your brake assemblies and install a parking brake lever, but this will apply the brakes at all times. Using a breakaway switch will not require you to install new brakes or a parking brake lever, however the power being applied to your trailer brakes will only last as long as the power source that is supplying the power.

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helpful expert reply by:
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John H

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