Recommended Brakes For a 1997 22ft Galaxie Boat Trailer

Question:

I recently bought a 1997 22ft Galaxie boat. I tow it with a 1991 GMC 1500 half ton pick up truck. The boat weighs 4000 lbs. The trailer has no brakes. The truck has trouble stopping the boat and trailer. so I need to add some breaks to the trailer. Id perfer electric brakes, but I have some questions? Will submerging them under water harm electric brakes? Can you make any recommendations about which brakes to install? Id prefer disks over drums. What is your recommendation for a brake controller? Trailer: 2 axles with four hole brake flanges 15 wheels - 5 on 4.5 lug pattern 4000 lbs load boat Tow vehicle 1991 GMC 1500 No brake controller installed existing 4 prong trailer light plug Thanks for your assistance.

Expert Reply:

Using electric brakes on a boat trailer is not recommended. The reason is that electric and water do not do well together, and there is the potential for electrical issues. There is also the issue with corrosion, and complications with the brake magnets.

I would recommend going with a hydraulic disc brake setup. With hydraulic disc brakes, there are no issues with electrical shorts or complications, and some of the brake assemblies are covered in a corrosion resistant coating. You also have the ease of cleaning, and maintaining the brakes.

I would recommend the Kodiak Disc Brake Kit, part # K2R35D, which is a slip on disc brake set and will work great on your trailer with 5 on 4-1/2 inch bolt pattern and 15 inch wheels. You would need to order a set of 2 of part # K2R35D to install brakes on each axle. In addition to part # K2R35D, you will need to install the Deluxe Hydraulic Line Kit, part # 9579-2. Depending on how much stopping power is needed, you could just install one brake kit an a single axle brake line kit.

You could then use Titan Electric Hydraulic Actuator, part # T4813100, which will allow you to use an electric brake controller to control the brakes.

For a brake controller on your 1991 GMC 1500 1/2 ton truck, I would recommend the Tekonsha Prodigy P3 Brake Controller, part # 90195, which will work great with an electric over hydraulic brake setup. Since you already have a 4-Way connector, you will also need to a brake controller installation kit, part # ETBC7, which will give you a 7-Way connector at the rear of your vehicle.

Another option would be to install Titan Trailer Coupler, part # T4715420, which features electric lockout that will not allow the brakes to engage when the vehicle and trailer are moving in reverse. With this option you would not need a brake controller.

I have linked instructions for the Tekonsha Prodigy P3 Brake Controller, part # 90195 and the Brake Controller 7 and 4 Way Installation Kit, part # ETBC7.

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