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Hook Probe Circuit Tester

Hook Probe Circuit Tester

Item # PTW2993
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  • Reviews (17)
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  • Videos (2)
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  • Why etrailer?

Performance Tool Electrical Tools - PTW2993

  • Testers
  • Circuit Tester
  • Performance Tool

  • Circuit tester easily identifies shorts in 6V, 12V and 24V circuits, fuses, test connections, and wiring harnesses
  • Wire-piercing molded hook locks onto wires to free your hands while working
  • Extended molded hook allows for testing in confined spaces or with limited access
  • High-intensity light bulb
  • 4' Long cord is insulated and resistant to oil and heat

W2993 Performance Tool Circuit Tester

Replaces Draw-Tite 3808

California residents: click here

Video of Hook Probe Circuit Tester

Videos are provided as a guide only. Refer to manufacturer installation instructions and specs for complete information.

Video Transcript for Performance Tool Hook Probe Circuit Tester Review

Hi there, do-it-yourselfers. Today, we're gonna be taking a look and covering some of the features of Performance Tool's, hook probe circuit tester. A test light's a great object for verifying whether you've got power and ground at a specific location. It's also really useful if you're setting up lights on your vehicle for trailer lighting, so you can test your circuits and get those installed. So real quick, we're just going to show you here, how it works, one end needs to have ground, and the other end needs to have power in order to light the light. So we're gonna take the clip end here, we're gonna put this on the negative side of our battery for brown.

And then if we press in on the plastic sleeve here, that'll expose the probe at the end. We're just gonna touch this to the positive side. You can see there that it lights up our test light. This will also work if you we're to hook it up backwards. So if he's got the clip on power and you we're to use your probe and touch any ground point, it should also light up.

So you can see your ground on the battery or ground over here on anywhere on the vehicle frame or anything like that. Lets see if there's a bolt right down here. Look at that there, we got the power, it's lighting up our test light because that's ground and we've got power coming from the clip side. Our customers typically use these to check their circuits, especially if they're either setting up a four-pole connector on their vehicle, or if they've recently just taken their vehicle and they hooked it up to their trailer and they found, "oh no, the lights aren't working on my trailer." Well now you've got to figure out why the lights don't work and the test light can be a great tool to help you determine that. One of the first things that I would do if I had an issue with my trailer not working properly is I wanna verify is the issue with my trailer, or is it with my vehicle And I'd start here on the vehicle and check this out.

So we've got our four pole tester here which gives us all of our necessary lighting signals, in order to get these to operate without an assistant, we can go ahead and turn on our hazard lights that will operate both the left and the right turn signal. And we can go ahead and turn on our tail lights for our last circuit, the fourth circuit there is your ground and that's the exposed lug there. We went ahead and used the clip to clip it onto the ground side. So now we've got those lights operating. We should get some signals from the first one here next to it's going to be our tail lights.

We should have a constant voltage it should light up our light and look at that, there we go. So we know our taillight signal is working properly on the vehicle. Next is the yellow circuit, which is our left turn signal. And we can see it's flashing, so we know that our left turn signal is working properly. And lastly is the green circuit that's our right turn signal and it's working as well. So we plugged this vehicle into a trailer and the trailer doesn't function, there's some issues on our trailer side, maybe there's a ground missing to the light that's not functioning or maybe there's just an open and the power circuit go into it. But we know, at this point that our vehicle is working properly and we can continue the diagnosis over on that side. And while we we're showing it off on a four-pole here, it's also great for testing out your six and seven-pole connectors as well. You just need to make sure you've got a way to activate the particular circuits to make sure they're working. For example, like your seven way, your auxiliary circuit probably is going to have 12 volts on it at all times, but some of those require the vehicle to be started in order to get that 12 volt output. Likewise, your brake output circuit for your trailer brakes aren't gonna activate unless you've got an assistant inside either pressing the brakes or activating the manual slider. But if you've got somebody to help you out, you can check all those circuits with this as well. So now, since we know that our problem is not with our vehicle, you can go ahead and plug your vehicle out to your trailer, or you could use a test box. We've gone ahead and plugged up and got our tail lights turned on and our light here is not functioning. So let's check our circuits and see if we can figure out the issue. I've gone ahead and clipped the wire there where the ground wire was attached. We could potentially just have an issue with our ground, but we're gonna go ahead and use that and see if we can get a reading here. So here's our two circuits coming from the front, you got a green wire there and a brown one. Brown is your typical color for your taillight circuit. So I'm just gonna push this away from the probe there. Gonna slide it over and then I'm now letting it return. And we're gonna stab into the wire. And with our taillights on, if we've got a good ground here at the back, we should get a reading. Now, even though brown is the most common color, that's not always the case though sometimes it can be another color. So we have nothing here. So we're just gonna go ahead and probe the other wire. 'Cause even though brown is the most common, it doesn't necessarily mean that the manufacturer, followed that particular color coding. So now we are on the other one, we're gonna probe into that one, and we've got nothing on that one either. So that probably leads us to believe that we either have a short from, other than just to believe that we have an open in our circuit here preventing current from getting to the back or that we've potentially got a bad ground here at the back. We're gonna take that clip off the ground circuit, where we had it, where it was getting ground from before. And we're gonna move it to a new spot here on the trailer. 'Cause we should have good ground just about anywhere on the frame, as long as the paint's not too thick. And look at that, we moved it over to the other stud there. We kinda rocked it around to clear up some of the rust on it and we've got power which we now know that from the vehicle all the way back to our circuit here is good. So the only issues that's potentially left is our ground or the bulbs could be burnt out. But since we moved our circuit from where the ground wire is here over to a different spot we got our lights light up. I suspect our issue is more than likely with our ground here. So we're just gonna go ahead and tighten the circuit up, kinda clean up that rust there and see if we can't get this light to come back on. And that's all it took, I just took that bolt loose. I knocked some of the rust off with a wire brush, re-installed it and now our light's functioning. So you can see our test light was able to help us determine that the issue was on the trailer side and also figure out where that issue was. And that completes our look at Performance Tool's, hook probe circuit tester..

Customer Reviews

Hook Probe Circuit Tester - PTW2993

Average Customer Rating:  4.8 out of 5 stars   (17 Customer Reviews)


Probe works really good

Tester has worked out really well, only used it a few times
Terry - 03/19/2022


Looks good, haven't used it yet


Works perfect


This will be very handy when working with circuits.


Nice tool to own!


I had a tester like this years ago and I broke the end off.
I really liked the tester as you can hook it over a wire and probe it to see
if you have voltage.
Been looking for one for a long time.
You can find cheap junk ones but this one is just like the good one I had years ago.
Glad I found it and is is very well built.
Should last me a long time.
Was shipped fast also.
Will try and not break this one.
Thanks e trailer.


Works Fine
Ricky L - 01/26/2022




Very friendly service, thank you Korren. Ordered on Tuesday, received on Thursday.









Ask the Experts about this Performance Tool Electrical Tools

  • Troubleshooting a Brake Controller not Lighting Up When Connected
    Sounds like the problem is the new trailer. The wiring on the trailer could be loose or broken. This could also include a faulty ground connection. I would check the grounds first, then the 12-volt hot wires, and then check and see if there are any breaks or loose connections in any of the other wires. You might need a circuit tester like # PTW2993, to test the various components. If everything checks out you might also check to see if you have blown a fuse which is a possibility, especially...
    view full answer...
  • How do Two 6 Volt Batteries Wire on a Motorhome for 12 Volts
    There are two ways to wire up 6 volt batteries depending on what output voltage you are looking for. If two batteries are wired in parallel, the positive terminals of each battery will be connected together, as will the negative terminals. Assuming both batteries are 6 volt, you'll have a 6 volt output but there will be more capacity. If the batteries are wired in series, the positive terminal of one battery will be connected to the negative terminal of the other. This would double the...
    view full answer...
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  • Could Truck Battery Overcharge Trailer Battery While Towing
    The amount of amperage your truck battery could put on your trailer battery would not be enough to overcharge it. With battery setups like this what happens when they are connected is that they both try to find an equilibrium where they are both the same voltage. If somehow the truck battery did fully charge the trailer battery it wouldn't damage it.
    view full answer...
  • Where Does Trailer Wiring that is Brown/Yellow and Brown/Green Attach on Trailer with Solid Brown
    You do have the wishbone trailer wiring setup. What that means is that if you have a solid brown wire it attaches to the brown and green wire as well as the brown and yellow wire. Yellow goes to left stop/turn, green goes to right stop/turn, and white is ground.
    view full answer...
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  • All Lights Except Brake Lights Work on Trailer
    In order to determine why only the brake lights on your trailer are not working, I first recommend going to the vehicle side and using a circuit tester like # PTW2993 to test the trailer connector. You will test the pins while somebody sits in the truck and steps on the brake pedal. If you find that there is no power coming from any of the pin locations with the brakes applied, there is likely a blown or missing stop light or CHMSL fuse on the truck. If there is power coming at the connector,...
    view full answer...
  • Troubleshooting 5th Wheel Wire In Junction Box That Isnt Connected And Error Message
    On your 2014 Open Range 5th wheel trailer, the color of wire unfortunately doesn't help. You will need to test the wire for function. Because you have the lighting functions, you may have a ground or reverse function. You may also have a brake that is not fully functional. I recommend tracing that wire and using a circuit tester like # PTW2993 to determine the function. I recommend connecting that single wire to a battery to see if you can quickly determine function.
    view full answer...
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  • Troubleshooting 12 Volt Power Circuit of 2009 Chevy Silverado 2500 Not Being Active
    It's under the hood in the fuse box that's on the driver side. Pull the lid off and you'll see a fuse diagram chart. It sounds like your circuit maybe just isn't completed. If you check out the link I attached below and scroll down the underhood connections section you can see how to make all the needed connections to activate the 7-way.
    view full answer...
  • Should Ford Expedition Tow in 4WD or in 2WD
    For towing you would not want to have your vehicle in four wheel drive. Two wheel drive would be better and would be less hard on transmission components. The only time you'd want to put it in AWD or 4WD would be if you were losing traction. Otherwise it does not help anything else.
    view full answer...
  • Troubleshooting Trailer Brake Lights on Camper Trailer that Illuminate without Trailer Connected
    Something is shorting out in your trailer to the brake light circuit. If there is a battery on your camper what is most likely happening is that the 12 volt power circuit of the trailer wiring that is ran to the battery from there is shorting out to the stoplight circuit. Start at the connector looking for any shorts caused by exposed wire or corrosion and fix as needed working your way back to the rear of the trailer.
    view full answer...
  • Left Turn Signal Not Working on Trailer
    To determine the cause of the left turn signal not working on your trailer, I first recommend checking the vehicle side connector. You can use a circuit tester like # PTW2993 to test the functions on the connector with the trailer disconnected. Have somebody sit in the vehicle and operate the light functions while you do this. If the left turn signal does not work at the 4-Way connector, then you will want to test the yellow wire leading into the converter box from the vehicle. If it...
    view full answer...
  • Installing Trailer Lighting Reverse Wire To Add 5 Way Function To 4-Way Flat Connector
    Since there is a manual lockout, you are not losing anything except for reverse lights is you were to choose to use that feature. If you choose to install the reverse power wire, I recommend tracing the wire from your hatch to its location outside your hatch. You can use a circuit tester like # PTW2993 to test wires for signal. You don't need to start the engine for this feature, just set your parking brake, put the ignition to ACC and shift into reverse.
    view full answer...
  • Trailer Brakes Only Engage When Using Manual Override on Brake Controller
    If the brakes on your trailer are only engaging when using the manual override on your brake controller, the most likely cause is on the red wire/stoplight circuit. I recommend testing the controller to see if you can find exactly where the issue is. On the brake controller, you will want to sever the blue brake output wire near the brake controller (leaving enough room to reconnect it) and then apply the manual slide on the controller. You can use a circuit tester like # 3808 to make...
    view full answer...
  • 7-Way Trailer Connector Wiring Based On Wire Function And Not Color of Insulation
    You will need to test the wires by function since the colors aren't standard. I've attached a photo to help with the wiring locations based on function. To test, I recommend using a circuit tester like # PTW2993. I've also attached an article to help further.
    view full answer...
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  • Does Connecting Batteries in Parallel Damage Them
    If two batteries are wired in parallel, the positive terminals of each battery will be connected together, as will the negative terminals. Assuming both batteries are 12 volt, you'll have a 12 volt output but there will be more capacity. No damage would occur. I attached a picture that has a diagram that shows how running them in series or parallel would differ.
    view full answer...
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  • What Causes Trailer Brakes to Immediately Lock Up When Brakes are Applied
    Most likely you have a short between the brake light circuit of your taillights and the brake output circuit for the brake controller. This is a pretty common problem as the right turn circuit on a 7-way is right next to the brake output circuit. Try putting on the right blinker. If the brakes lock up with the turn signal then you know that's the issue. On the connectors look for either exposed wire between those two circuits or corrosion between them that would cause the short.
    view full answer...
  • Troubleshooting Trailer Brakes that Lock Up Immediately when Trailer Is Connected
    You somehow have a short between the brake output circuit and the 12 volt power circuit. Does the trailer possibly have a 6-way? There are two accepted methods of wiring a 6-way trailer connector. One method uses the center pin of the connector for the 12-volt accessory circuit, the other uses the center pin for the brake output circuit. If the vehicle is wired using one method, and the trailer is wired the other way, the trailer brakes will immediately receive 12-volts and lock up as...
    view full answer...
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  • Troubleshooting Trailer Wiring Where Blinkers Operate Backwards and Some Assemblies Dont Come On
    What you described sounds like a combination of a weak grounds for the lights and backwards wiring. For the assemblies that won't turn on try finding a way to improve the grounds. You can do this by running the wire back from the assembly to the main ground harness of the trailer. Then you want to make sure the correct blinker circuit is associated with the correct wire on the trailer. Starting over with all new wire is an option, but I think just running the ground wires all back to...
    view full answer...
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  • Troubleshooting Brake Controller Brake Pedal Function On 2007 Classic Silverado 2500HD
    The red wire should not have any power when the brake pedal is not being hit when checked with a circuit tester like # PTW2993. It should be connected to the cold side of the brake light switch so it should only send power when you hit the brake pedal. If there is still no power when you hit the brake pedal, then double check to make sure the brake light switch is working behind the connection point. Do not connect to the constant hot side of the switch or it will make the controller...
    view full answer...
  • Why Would Brake Light Signal for Brake Controller in 2000 Chevy Silverado Stop Working
    This is a very common problem for your generation of Chevy truck. Check the CHMSL or center high mount signal light (third brake light) fuse. It blows easily on your truck and it controls the brake signal for the controller as well.
    view full answer...
  • Troubleshooting Trailer Running Lights That Dont Work With Vehicle But Do With Friends Car
    It can be a grounding issue on your car, but it may also be a grounding issue on your trailer. Your friend's car may have a greater output to the trailer that can make a bad trailer ground not appear to be an issue. I'd start with cleaning all your trailer grounds and make sure they are clear of rust, corrosion, and have a bare metal to metal contact. If that doesn't solve your problem, then I would take a circuit tester like # PTW2993 and check the running light function on your trailer...
    view full answer...
  • Troubleshooting Delay in Brake Lights Turning On When Applying Brakes in Tow Vehicle
    Since all of the ground connections have been verified and secured on the trailer, I next recommend using a circuit tester like # PTW2993 to test the brake light function on the vehicle side connector. Check to see if you get immediate power when applying the brake pedal. If there is a delay on the vehicle side connector, then the issue is somewhere on the vehicle side. If the vehicle side connector tests fine, then I recommend simply running along the wiring on your trailer to make sure...
    view full answer...
  • Troubleshooting Right Tail Light on Trailer that Stays On with Vehicle Ignition Off
    When a trailer's tail light remains on when the vehicle is shut off, this usually indicates some kind of short in the wiring. I first recommend using a circuit tester like # PTW2993 to check the vehicle side connector. You will want to see if there is constant power coming from the tail light circuit on the connector (brown wire). While there, also check for any corrosion or debris inside both the vehicle and trailer side connector and simply clean out as needed. If you are in fact receiving...
    view full answer...
  • Troubleshooting Brake Controller that Shows Connection but Doesnt Work with Brake Pedal
    The issue is the red wire of your controller. It sounds like this circuit isn't seeing 12 volts when the brakes are applied like it is supposed to and because of that the controller doesn't know that it's supposed to be applying the brakes. Check the third brake light fuse of the tow vehicle. When we see this problem in most cases the issue is a blown third brake light fuse. Otherwise you need to ensure that the red wire of the controller is attached to a circuit that sees voltage only...
    view full answer...
  • Difference Between Wiring Trailer Batteries In Series Vs. Parallel
    We can help. There are two different ways to wire up batteries and battery banks to either keep the voltage the same or double it. If two batteries are wired in parallel, the positive terminals of each battery will be connected together, as will the negative terminals. Assuming both batteries are 12 volt, you'll have a 12 volt output but there will be more capacity. If the batteries are wired in series, the positive terminal of one battery will be connected to the negative terminal of...
    view full answer...
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