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Is a Reverse Electric Lockout Needed on a Boat Trailer with Titan Model 60 Actuator

Question:

hello, i have a 1995 zemans boat trailer with a dico/titan model 60 actuator, and i have rebuilt/ restored the entire trailer with your help from all the parts to get it back to NEW condition. heres my question. The trailer never had reverse lock-out and i cant remember having a problem backing the trailer up, unless on a steep grade. i do remember having that problem 1 or 2 times. However, after all these years of trailer use i cant recall a time when i would have needed the lock out . Im sure it would be useful and needed in certain situations, but all boat ramps are graded on a downward slope, so im not sure if i should buy and install the cut out unit you offer or not. I am wondering why Zemans would not have installed it when they built the trailer in the fist place? Also, the brakes have always worked fine on the open road with no problems, it seems to me that this would only be a problem when confronted with a confined space and a grade which could not be avoided to get turned around. Am i missing something? It seems to be made to be an issue to address now while im doing the brake system now, but if ive never had a BIG problem in the past, i cant see where i might have one in the future. Please pass on your experience and clarification, thank you.

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Expert Reply:

The issue is that with the way a surge coupler works when backing up, normally up hill, the trailer is pushing the other way which will cause the actuator to compress in sending fluid back to engage the brakes. This makes it very difficult or impossible sometimes to back the trailer up.

There are 2 kinds of lock outs to prevent this, a manual which is built into an actuator and prevents the coupler from pushing in, and there is the electric type. It will energize when the vehicle is placed in reverse and essentially close the gate and not let fluid go back to the brakes.

If it is something you never think you are going to need then you do not have to have it. But if you think it might come in handy some time at all I would say its worth the expense and effort to install it. It will thread in at the back of the master cylinder and the brake line will attach to the back of the solenoid. One wire is grounded to the trailer frame. The other goes to the reverse light pin on the trailer connector. The vehicle side connector must have a working reverse light circuit in the connector for it to work.

Then you could add # T4835800183 to protect the solenoid from damage.

Something else to consider is the weight of the boat and trailer. If the coupler is rated for 6,000 pounds but the boat and trailer is much less than that it would have a hard time pushing in the coupler to actuate the trailer brakes.

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