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Led indicator lights in tekonsha voyager electric brake controller giving odd readings when not connected to caravan .can you help me .?? thank you BILL DAVEY oldgrumpy193 55738 nlvvsx

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  • oldgrumpy193 May 25, 2011

    HI ZJ LTD.thanks for your response.your response however does solve my problem as i already

    have this info as set out in the installation instructions when the brake controller was originally purchased. in all previous transmissions i have carefully explained that the problems i am having

    are occuring WHEN THE CAR IS NOT CONNECTED TO THE CARAVAN!! the problems are/

    1..when turning on igtion green LED glows very very dimly green light should only show when

    plugged into caravan indicating power supply to brakes.

    2..with ignition on when brakes are applied RED flashes once then stays off..

    3..if the engine is started the RED LED FLASHES CONTINUOUSLY when brakes are applied.

    4..engine on. brakes on. RED flashing. if headlights are turned on RED will briefly stop flashing

    then continue to flash until everything is switched off.

    5..turning on the ignition again will cause GREEN led to light up very very faintly.



    thank you...BILL DAVEY.


  • oldgrumpy193 May 27, 2011

    As i am very new to computers, i do not understand the problem to which you refer in your solution 2

    opening paragraph re idenyifying data .could you please explain.

    In regard to your suggestions put forward insolution 2 please allow me to make the following response. would not be very simple to unplug the unit when not in use as suggested, as i am 73 years old

    and have had both knees totally replaced making it impossible for me to get under the dash to unplug

    the brake controller.

    2...i cannot comprehend your comment that i do not need the controller when i am towing anyway.

    i would then be towing without brakes.

    we are waiting to leave on a caravanning holiday but have delayed the trip looking for a solution to

    the odd LEDreadings when the car is NOTconnected to the caravan.

    QUESTIONS...1 can you suggest any possible reasons for the problems.

    ......................2given the problems that are evident is it safe to travel..

    thank you.



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Please do not post personal identifying data at this web site. Thank you.

If this was my situation, I would simply unplug the controller when not towing. It is a very simple procedure. You don't need the controller if you are towing anyway.


Thanks for your question @

Posted on May 25, 2011

  • A Miller May 27, 2011

    Mis typed, evidently ... you do need it when you tow ... you don't need it if you are not towing.

    The only solution I am able to see at this time is mine ... I don't know what others may have suggested and cannot make comment to their remarks.

    I am not at all familiar with the particular installation of the device on your vehicle. In my case, the controller in my tow vehicle is with in my easy reach from the driver position while operating the vehicle at highway speed. In my case, I COULD disconnect the plug at the rear of the unit while sitting in the driver seat. It is merely four more inches to reach the plug.

    Again, I am unfamiliar with your tow vehicle and its installation. If you are concerned about its proper operation and you are about to go on a extended holiday, please have it checked by a mechanic who is familiar with these types of devices to assure its operation is correct and proper in both TOW and NO TOW modes.

    Have a good trip.

  • A Miller Jun 04, 2011

    Much has been said about this question ... several 'solutions' have been offered; none have been accepted by you as far as I can tell. You ask is it safe (to have the controller in the car) with the trailer not attached to your vehicle. You ask the question because a light comes on when it is not suppose to. The purpose of the controller is to apply some amount of power to the trailer brakes based on conditions the controller reads from various inputs from your tow vehicle AND/OR your manual input. The output of the controller goes to the wire that applies this power to the trailer brake. There is no other "output" from the controller, only the signal to the trailer. The controller doesn't control your car, it controls your trailer. Should any indicator light come on? Probably not. Will it damage the controller? I doubt it. Can you "fix" it? Not likely. Reading your and others comments, it appears you have done everything you can or should do to assure proper installation and safe opperation. Is it dangerous? In My Humble Opinion (IMHO), the only danger you will be exposed to is it may take your attention away from other matters you should be watching - like driving the vehicle. What can you do to make it stop? Unplug it like I said some days ago. I think your fears are unfounded my camping friend.


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Keep in mind that the Tekonsha Voyager brake controller uses pendulum activation and is sensitive to the controller mounting angle.

This is one troubleshooting the Voyager Brake Controller:
1 Check that the front of the controller is level side to side and back to front. The controller must be positioned so it is in line with the direction of travel. Determine if the brake controller installation angle is between 70 degrees from horizontal with the controller nose pointing up and -20 degrees from horizontal with the controller nose pointing down.
2 Connect the trailer electrical connection plug to the tow vehicle and start the tow vehicle.
3 Check that the light on the top right of the controller is green. If the light is not green, the controller is not connected to the trailer or there is no power or ground to the controller. Check that the trailer's electrical connector is fully seated in the tow vehicle's receptacle. Ensure that the trailer's electrical connector wires are not corroded and there is power to the controller.
4 Operate the manual slide knob on the front of the controller. If the light on the top right of the controller is not red, adjust the controller braking power higher using the thumb wheel on the controller. If the light is still not red, the blue wire from the brake controller is shorted or the black and white wires on the controller are reversed. If the wires are reversed, the controller requires replacement.
5 Operate the manual slide knob on the front of the controller. If the light glows dim red or flashes red, the controller ground wire is not connected or the blue wire on the controller is shorted. Check for proper ground on the white wire and ensure the blue wire is not grounded.
6 Operate the manual slide knob on the front of the controller and hold the slide knob at the maximum setting. Decrease the braking power of the controller by using the thumb wheel. If the light gets brighter as the power is decreased, there is a short in the blue controller wire or the trailer's brake magnets are defective.
7 Drive the tow vehicle at 25 mph with the trailer connected. Apply the tow vehicle brakes. If the trailer braking is too aggressive or the trailer braking is delayed, the power is either set too high or too low, respectively. Adjust the controller braking power and repeat Step 7. If adjustment of the braking power does not resolve braking performance, repeat Step 1.

Also, Tekonsha Voyager model electric brake controller is a simple in-cab controller that allows drivers to adjust the power to their trailer's brakes from the comfort of the driver's seat. I suggest check adjust settings to the Tekonsha Voyager Electric Brake Controller (this will allow drivers to effectively stop heavy trailer loads).

1 Hook the trailer to the vehicle's hitch. Connect all of the wiring harnesses required for towing.
2 Turn the power knob, located on the right side of the Tekonsha Voyager brake controller, to the 12 o'clock position. Accelerate the vehicle to 25 MPH on a flat, dry surface and apply the trailer brakes by pushing the slider located on the front of the brake controller. Judge the feel of the trailer brakes and adjust the power knob accordingly. Turn the knob counter clockwise if the trailer brakes lock up, or clockwise if there is insufficient braking power when the slider is activated.
3 Accelerate to 25 MPH and apply the trailer brakes using only the manual slide to test the new settings. Repeat the braking and adjustment process until the brake controller has been set to provide sufficient braking power. Accelerate to 25 MPH one more time and test the automatic braking capability of the controller by making a few stops using the tow rig's brake pedal instead of the slider knob.
4 Fine tune the settings of the controller by making several slow speed stops, as if approaching a stop sign. Take note of how the brakes respond and adjust the level knob to increase or decrease the fine tuning of the brake controller. Turn the level knob, located on the left side of the controller, clockwise to reduce an aggressive setting if the brakes lock up. Turn the level knob counter-clockwise to remedy a delayed setting if the trailer feels like it is pushing the tow rig while stopping.

Additionally, this is some DIY about an application: BMW X5 Electric Trailer Brake (pdf)

Hope helps.

Posted on May 24, 2011


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