Traveling with an RV while towing your car can be a great way to explore new places and enjoy the freedom of the open road. However, it’s important to have the right equipment to ensure you can travel safely and with confidence.
An RV brake system is one of the most important pieces of equipment you should consider when towing a car behind your RV. Safety is one area where we don’t want to cut corners.
Today, we’re going to introduce you to some of the best RV braking systems to keep you and your RV safe on your adventures. Let’s get started!
What are RV brake systems?
RV braking systems help drivers of RVs and campers with trailers achieve a safe and controlled stop. Towed vehicles can add tremendous weight to an RV, resulting in longer stopping distances.
Quality RV braking systems dramatically shorten braking distance and increase safety for both the RV and the towed vehicle.
When purchasing an RV braking system, you need to consider factors such as the weight of the towed vehicle, the type of RV you have, and the price you are willing to spend.
Don’t forget to follow the manufacturer’s recommendations for installation and maintenance to ensure the brake system is working properly and safely.
How do RV brake systems work?
Ultimately, all RV braking systems have one important job: to help the towing vehicle slow down the trailer or vehicle they are towing. Most towed RVs use either hydraulic or electric braking systems. However, larger Class A motorhomes have air brake systems.
In towed RVs, the trailer is connected to the tow vehicle’s electrical system, usually through a seven-pin connection. When the driver depresses the brake pedal, a signal is sent to communicate with the RV’s brakes.
Whether hydraulic or electric, these systems reduce wear on the tow vehicle’s brakes and increase safety.
On larger vehicles with air brakes, an on-board compressor fills the reservoirs with air. The air remains in these tanks until the system needs it.
After the brakes are applied, the air flows through a series of valves and hoses to the brake chambers of each wheel. This causes the brake shoes to press on the drum and slow the vehicle.
Are RV brake systems required by law?
Regulations for RV braking systems vary from state to state. However, federal laws in the United States require towed vehicles with a gross vehicle weight rating of more than 3,000 pounds to have a separate braking system.
These regulations generally apply to motor homes and recreational vehicles. Some states go a step further and impose additional requirements on the type of braking system you must use.
Take the time to familiarize yourself with the rules and regulations of the state in which you are traveling.
It’s worth noting that even in states where it’s not required by law, it’s generally a good idea to use a braking system for safety reasons.
These devices can help shorten stopping distances, prevent accidents and give you, the driver, more control. Aside from the initial cost, there is no good reason not to use such a system when towing.
The 5 best RV braking systems
We think a quality RV braking system is worth spending a few extra bucks on. We present five of the best brake systems you can buy. Are they also the cheapest? Probably not.
However, they are known in the community for doing their job well and being easy to use. These two features are reason enough for us to pay their premium price.
1st Roadmaster Invisibrake
This is one of the best RV braking systems on the market. There are many things to love about the Roadmaster 8700 Invisibrake. The system senses when the driver applies the brakes and activates the brakes on the towed vehicle. Invisibrake has a good reputation in the community, and many users love it.
Like many other braking systems on our list, this system is permanently mounted in the vehicle. However, this model easily fits under the driver’s seat for a clean look and to avoid potential damage.
However, the difficult installation will likely require professional help. With a price tag of $1,000, you should always consider installation costs as well.
Once installed and fine-tuned, the Invisibrake system is easy to use and requires no driver assistance. It works with almost any tow vehicle and provides reliable and effective braking performance.