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Hayes Syncronizer Trailer Brake Controller Installation - 2015 Toyota 4Runner

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How to Install the Hayes Syncronizer Trailer Brake Controller on a 2015 Toyota 4Runner

Hey everybody, Ryan here at etrailer. Today on our 2015 Toyota 4Runner, we're gonna be taking a look at and showing you how to install, the Hayes synchronizer trailer brake controller. So when it comes to these 4runners, awesome vehicles, you know, they're super capable SUVs. And people use them to do a lot of different things which does include pulling some, some relatively large trailers around, you know, whether it's a camper you know, utility trailer, something like that. And if those trailers have brakes, you're gonna need a way to apply the trailer brakes that way, you know you're not just relying on your 4runner to do all the stopping, you know, it'll help bring you to a, a more complete and predictable safe stop. And that's for a brake controller like this Hayes synchronizer, excuse me, is gonna come into play.

One of the things that I like about it is, it's simplicity. So it's kind of some older technology but nothing wrong with that, you know, it's tried and true and it, it gets the job done. And I say that because this is a, what's called a time delayed type break controller. So the way it works whenever you apply the brakes in your Toyota, it's gonna send out a preset power to the trailer brakes. All right, so, for example, with this one, you know, let's say if you kind of just are riding your brakes slightly approaching a stop light or something, the trailer brakes are gonna receive that preset power.

On the other hand, let's say if you really gotta lay onto the brakes, you know, mat 'em to the floor, the trailer brakes are gonna receive that same amount of power. And that's compared to some of the newer type brake controllers which are proportional type. And so what proportional brake controllers do is they apply the trailer brakes at the same rate that you're applying your 4runners brakes. So like we just talked about, let's say if you're kind of just halfway on the brakes coming up to stop sign, you know, the trailer brakes are gonna match that pressure. And let's say, if you had to stand on the brakes and really slow down quick trailer brakes are gonna do the same thing.

So, with the proportional style, it, you know, it provides you with a little more of a smooth breaking experience. But with that said, you know, it's not a huge deal by any means. You can, you can dial these things in pretty good and once you kinda, you know get some seat time and kinda play with it a little bit, you can definitely enhance that experience, you know, it'll be smooth still and, and everything else. So, you know, when it comes to time delayed and a proportional type break controller, I'm not gonna lie, usually lean more towards a proportional type just because they're a little more user friendly but that doesn't take away from the time delay at all. You know, it's still gonna apply the trailer brakes and it's still gonna get the job done.

With all that said let's kind of just check out some of the, you know the features of this brake controller itself. So you're gonna have an adjustment here called gain, so you can increase or decrease it and that's essentially gonna adjust more or less a power level that you're gonna send back to your trailer brake. So, for example, let's say if you had your trailer and it was empty and you we're going to pick up I don't know, a car or some heavier load on your way there when it's empty you could probably turn the gain pretty much all the way down 'cause you really don't need an aggressive braking experience with the light trailer. But then once you get loaded up, you can turn that gain up to increase the braking pressure that way, you know it's appropriate for that particular load. And if you find it coming on too strong you can always back it off or if it's not strong enough, turn it up. So, you have some adjustability there. This controller is gonna work with trailers that have single and double axles. So, one to two axles which is about right at home on the 4runner, probably not gonna be pulling trailers that have triple axles and huge ones. It's gonna have a manual override too. So whenever you hit this what's gonna happen is you're gonna apply just the trailer breaks, okay And so that would work typically in a situation where let's say the trailer kinda starts getting squirrly maybe getting away from you a little bit. You can hit that and apply the brakes and kinda get things back under control and tracking behind you. One of the advantages that a time delayed brake controller like this one has is you can mount it any which way. So you can mount it upside down, sideways, however you want really, that's not the case with all brake controllers, you know, a lot of the proportional type ones you have to mount in a certain angle and a certain degree which you know, on the 4runner, you don't have a ton of dash space here to, to, you know do a whole lot, mount it in particular ways and stuff. So, definitely a plus there, you know, it just gives you some, opens up your opportunity on where you can put this and what's most comfortable for you. If you don't want a traditional style break controller like this one here, even on the dash, I totally get that. One of the things you can do is pick up a Redarc brake controller and it does is really cool actually, essentially the box I guess you could call, gets mounted up under the dash where you can't even see it and then to make your adjustments and stuff, there's just a small knob and it actually works out really well on the 4runner, and I believe the Highlanders, a couple other Toyota SUVs. There's these factory knockout little panels here and they actually sell a replacements. So you could pop that out, it has a hole already in it, you put it in and then put your Redarc adjustment knob there. And it looks really clean. I've done several of 'em and they turn out really well. So that's always an option for you as well. But other than that, you know what At the end of the day, brake controllers gotta work. You know, there's, it's a really simple, not a whole lot to it and because of that, it's gonna make it reliable. So, should last you for, for quite some time, as far as getting these installed on the Highlander, or I'm sorry on the 4runner, really straightforward. There's a connector plug that essentially you just plug into and that's really about it. Obviously, you might do something, a couple other small things but really shouldn't take up a whole lot of your time or give you too many issues. But speaking of that, if you'd like to stick around and see how that's done, we'll go ahead and tackle that job now. To begin our installation, we're gonna be here on the driver's side of our 4runner and we need to locate a factory connector plug which should be right underneath the dash here towards the side in this area. So the connector plug, if we look, we're gonna have a wire right here, this one is loose and this is a connector plug we're gonna be working with. Sometimes it might be, you know taped up a little bit right here but it's gonna be in this general area, you know, the wire's only a few inches long. So whether it's taped up top, taped down here you can look right here in this area and that's the plug that we are looking for. So now we can grab our brake controller adapter plug and simply plug it right in to that factory connector. So this particular brake controller doesn't come with that adapter plug that allows you just to plug right into here. You can grab it here at etrailer. Our customer actually brought theirs in already kinda clipped together and wire them up real nice. So I'm not gonna undo it, but essentially, I mean you can definitely figure this out. That one end of the adapter plug plugs in the connector we just showed you the other end of the adapter plug simply just plugs in right to the wires coming off of the brake controller. So, super simple, now that we have this set up we can find a spot to mount it onto our dash. It kinda is what it is, I mean, it's really simple whenever you're mounting this up though, be sure that wherever you do decide to mount it you're not gonna damage anything behind it. You know, you obviously don't wanna drill into your airbag or other stuff. So this is pretty clear over here. We're gonna take the screws. We'll get these started it doesn't take a lot of, lot of pressure to snug them up. So, don't over tighten 'em then you'll strip the plastic and kinda have to redo it. So, get 'em snug and they'll be in pretty good shape. So the grid controller's gonna get mounted to the bracket. What I like to do with these 'cause usually, I mean on this vehicle, actually, you got quite a bit of space but this still gonna make it easier. These aren't threaded right outta the box. So what I like to do is take the screws and kind of do this you know, down here it's just easier and kinda pre thread those holes makes it go together a lot easier. So, that one done I already did the others. We can simply just line this up with our bracket and tighten everything down. So I like to get them all started first before I completely tighten 'em that way I can make sure I have it where I want it. So I'll get all four of them started and then come back and snug 'em down. In case you're wondering, I'm using a quarter inch size socket to do this. But once we have all these snug what I'm gonna do is grab a couple of zip ties and just kind of tucker wiring back here, clean up our install look and once that's done, we can test, test this to make sure it's working properly. So we went ahead, hooked up to a test box and what I'm gonna do is hit our manual override. So, we can see that light getting stronger and stronger. And so, we know at least up in here that's indicating to us that power is getting sent back to the trailer brakes. And that'll finish up our look at and our installation of the Hayes synchronizer trailer brake controller on our 2015 Toyota 4runner..

Info for this part was:

Employee Joshua S
Video by:
Joshua S
Employee Jacob T
Video Edited:
Jacob T
Employee Dustin K
Video Edited:
Dustin K
Employee Cole B
Installed by:
Cole B
Employee Ryan G
Test Fit:
Ryan G

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