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Max Online: 36273 @ 01/23/13 02:34 PM
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#12278197 - 06/04/17 02:07 PM Trailer Brakes Necessary?
PurpleFrogger Offline

Registered: 05/18/13
Posts: 54
Do you have to use trailer brakes?

I ask because I had one seize up on me yesterday and would only roll backwards. I was able to get help. The guy removed the brake in question and saved my fishing day and kept me from being stuck!

I have a full size truck and I am only towing a 19 foot aluminum bass boat. It didn't seem any different afterwards and I think the trailer is too light to have to be inspected, BUT I wonder if this would be harder on my truck in the long term if it was my normal set up.

Also, how much credit can I give the guys who saved me? They operate a local business and deserve a good reputation, but I don't want to upset the forum.


#12278250 - 06/04/17 02:58 PM Re: Trailer Brakes Necessary? [Re: PurpleFrogger]
thirtysixit Offline

Registered: 01/11/16
Posts: 129
Loc: San Antonio, TX
Nothing wrong with giving credit where it's due! I don't have a problem with knowing where to take my business. Let us know!

Anyway, I've got my trailer brakes disabled. I drive a F150 and tow an 18ft fiberglass Stratos. It hasn't caused me any issues over the last 50k miles. Just my 2 cents.
"Show me a man who will jump out of an airplane, and I'll show you a man who'll fight."
- Lt. Gen. James M. Gavin

#12278274 - 06/04/17 03:09 PM Re: Trailer Brakes Necessary? [Re: PurpleFrogger]
GIG'EM AGGIES Online   content
TFF Team Angler

Registered: 05/14/14
Posts: 3384
Loc: texas
Trailer brakes have kept me from rear ending someone on Hwy. 276 several times. These were dip$[censored] who never signal and realize they almost missed their turn so they slam on their brakes at the last minute. Also help going down steep hills like you see around Possum Kingdom Lake. I think they help over time save wear and tear on my truck brakes but not absolutely necessary.
I am a Senager. (Senior teenager) I have everything that I wanted as a teenager, only 50 years later. I don’t have to go to school or work. I get an allowance every month. I don’t have a curfew I have a driver’s license and a car. Women I hang around with are not scared of getting pregnant. And I have a bass boat.

illegitimi non carborundum

#12278281 - 06/04/17 03:19 PM Re: Trailer Brakes Necessary? [Re: PurpleFrogger]
WAWI Online   content
TFF Guru

Registered: 05/18/07
Posts: 20860
I pull a 520 ranger with absolutely zero brake fluid. No problems stopping at all with tundra. Trailer brakes are a total pita. Last boat removed them and had actuator welded. This one I won't cause of trailer inspection, I'll just add fluid back when time comes. I do this because they get stuck and burn up hubs, quickly.

#12278327 - 06/04/17 04:07 PM Re: Trailer Brakes Necessary? [Re: PurpleFrogger]
Rayzor Offline
TFF Celebrity

Registered: 05/13/08
Posts: 5126
Loc: Magnolia, Texas
JMO - not if your pulling a 19' aluminum boat. A 20' and up fiberglass boat, yes.
Be safe,

2001 Triton Tx-21/225 Mercury EFI

#12278332 - 06/04/17 04:10 PM Re: Trailer Brakes Necessary? [Re: Rayzor]
Chet Offline
Extreme Angler

Registered: 02/03/06
Posts: 1518
Loc: Ft Worth
Originally Posted By: Rayzor
JMO - not if your pulling a 19' aluminum boat. A 20' and up fiberglass boat, yes.

This, but a real emergency stop may make you wish you had them.

#12278389 - 06/04/17 05:25 PM Re: Trailer Brakes Necessary? [Re: PurpleFrogger]
lakeforkfisherman Online   happy
Elliptical Mechanic

Registered: 08/04/06
Posts: 9574
Loc: Dallas/Quitman
I've towed my 20' Gambler for 4 years without trailer brakes and no issues. There have been a couple of cheek clinching scenarios, but my truck has always stopped her. I've pulled to Table Rock and back 3 times and the mountains were no problem.
I approve of this message.

#12278463 - 06/04/17 06:23 PM Re: Trailer Brakes Necessary? [Re: PurpleFrogger]
PurpleFrogger Offline

Registered: 05/18/13
Posts: 54
Thanks for the input guys, it really helps! I hate to miss a chance to be on the water and fish and your information helps me to keep fishing!

The two guys who helped me were John and Lysle from the Western Auto in Whitney at Hwy 22 and 933. I will make it a point to get what I need from them in the future, PLUS THEY TALK FISHING!
GREAT GUYS!!! Stopped what they were doing to help me!

#12278614 - 06/04/17 08:33 PM Re: Trailer Brakes Necessary? [Re: PurpleFrogger]
buggsboy Offline

Registered: 07/22/11
Posts: 316
Loc: Carthage, Tx/Lake Fork
It depends on the size of your tow vehicle and the size of your boat. In fact, a 18' 8" Nitro Z7 with a single axle trailer may or may not come with trailer brakes. The brakes are optional on the single axle trailer. My friend that I fish with a lot has a 18' 6" Ranger boat with a single axle trailer, and it didn"t come with brakes. We both tow with full sized half ton trucks (me Tundra him with GMC) with no problems. That being said, I wouldn't be comfortable towing a 20 ft boat without brakes.
PB. 10 lb 12 oz

#12278752 - 06/04/17 10:22 PM Re: Trailer Brakes Necessary? [Re: PurpleFrogger]
Bobby Milam Offline
TFF Team Angler

Registered: 07/13/14
Posts: 3508
Loc: Arlington
19' aluminum, I'd think you'd be ok without them but they are nice when you really need them.

#12278793 - 06/04/17 10:59 PM Re: Trailer Brakes Necessary? [Re: PurpleFrogger]
Hog Jaw Online   content
Extreme Angler

Registered: 06/09/08
Posts: 2584
Loc: The Great State of Texas
Nope , do not need them , at least I don't.

#12278854 - 06/05/17 01:24 AM Re: Trailer Brakes Necessary? [Re: PurpleFrogger]
Jignpig65 Offline

Registered: 09/27/15
Posts: 404
Loc: Paris Texas
It depends on where you are and more importantly the drivers around you. Find an isolated road and test your stopping distance, with and without boat, if it doesn't change too much then you and those with and around you, can live without trailer brakes.

#12278903 - 06/05/17 06:36 AM Re: Trailer Brakes Necessary? [Re: PurpleFrogger]
slim1 Online   content
Pro Angler

Registered: 05/24/13
Posts: 718
Loc: Cooper, TX
I don't know if it is still a law but at one time if your trailer and load weighed 1/2 as much as your vehicle you had to have brakes.
Riding With Respect
Flag Captain

#12279039 - 06/05/17 08:29 AM Re: Trailer Brakes Necessary? [Re: PurpleFrogger]
ROT Angler Offline

Registered: 05/09/17
Posts: 62
Loc: Mesquite, TX
Your boat may be light enough to not be an issue under normal conditions. The problem with trailers without brakes comes when you have to make a hard stop to avoid an accident. The tow vehicle may stop ok but the trailer will keep on coming either pushing the tow vehicle so stopping distance is longer, or the trailer may try to pass you and jackknife.

With good working trailer brakes everything will stop in a straight line. You can add a brake controller to your tow vehicle and electric brakes to your trailer pretty cheap. Texas does not require trailer brakes for a trailer with less than 4,500 pounds gross weight, but other states have different requirements so if you plan to fish out of state you need to check their requirements.

#12279072 - 06/05/17 08:44 AM Re: Trailer Brakes Necessary? [Re: PurpleFrogger]
Cast Online   content
TFF Celebrity

Registered: 07/31/12
Posts: 8998
Loc: North Texas - God's Country
I insist on electric brakes on both axles on all trailers I own. Saved my butt more than once.

I have a short attention spa

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