Brake controllers are important components in heavy-duty trucks and vehicles. They help to apply braking force to a vehicle’s tires efficiently and consequently halt motion. The YouTube video “Brake Controller Guide.
” gives an overview of brake controllers and why they are important components in a vehicle.
The suitability of a brake controller type depends on the weight of the vehicle it’s to control. Vehicles over 750 kilograms need some form of brake controller; vehicles between 750-2000 kilograms need hydraulic brakes, while vehicles weighing 2000 kilograms and up need electric-over-air or electric-over-hydraulic brakes. Electric brakes differ from their mechanical counterparts due to the presence of electromagnets on their machine face that apply brakes by pulling the shoes out when pressure is applied. In contrast, mechanical brakes use a cable or hydraulics to pull the shoes out.
Brake controllers work via the transmission of power to the electromagnets, increasing or decreasing the braking force depending on how much pressure is applied to the brakes. Different kinds of brake controllers exist. Common types include the manual or solid-state brake controllers, the manual mode with a time base brake controllers, and the proportional or inertia vice controllers. These brake controller types possess differing modes of operation, and a trailer driver must become familiar with them to operate them properly.