GM Integrated Trailer Brake Controller Problems with a Complete Troubleshooting Guide

What are the common problems with GM integrated trailer brake controllers? A damaged brake magnet, eroded vehicle plug, and loose pin connection are the most mentionable problems related to the trailer brake controller.

These issues are proven risky while driving. It may also cost your life. So how can you solve these GM integrated trailer brake controller problems? Trailers have a complex brake controller system. Thus it is difficult to find out the exact location of the error.

This is just the beginning. So do not panic. We will guide you with the proper knowledge to diagnose the problem and with the most effective troubleshooting guide.

GM Integrated Trailer Brake Controller Problems

An integrated brake control system is installed inside each trailer to control all the electric brakes. They are positioned below the steering wheel and also at its sides. So it becomes easy for the driver to approach them.

But the complete brake system also has some shortcomings. Sometimes the LED display fails to show if the trailer is connected, faulty connection to the battery, an exaggerated function of the brakes, etc., these problems are a bit difficult to identify.

First, check all the wire connections and look for any loose connections. Another method is examining the brake signaling system. Are there any issues related to the ground connection? These are some routine examinations to find out faulty vehicle plugs, loose wiring, and battery connections.

Here is a chart showing some trailer brake controller problems and the reasons behind them.

Most Seen ProblemsProbable Reasons
The trailer brake is incompatible with the brake pedal1. Faulty brake wire connection
2. Mismatched adapter wirings
LED display fails to show trailer connectivity1. Eroded vehicle plug
2. Insufficient trailer wirings
Uncontrolled trailer brake applicationInappropriate brake controller settings
Indications of overloading1. Multiple brake installation
2. Damaged wirings
3. Short circuit
4. Failed connections between the battery terminals and brake wirings
Failure to turn on the brake1. Damaged trailer brake controlling parts.
2. Faulty wire touching the metallic area.

The Trailer Brake is Incompatible with the Brake Pedal

How is this trailer brake related to the pedal brake? Whenever the driver applies force on the pedal brake, the trailer brake adds velocity to the vehicle. But if there is a low voltage supply, this harmonious function between the pedal brake and trailer brake malfunctions.

Their incompatible relationship is visible when the trailer brakes do not exert sufficient power after pressing the pedal brake. Are you going to leave this problem? Please, do not! This will make your vehicle slow and your journey boring.

The easiest solution to this problem is to check the connection of the red wire in the trailer brake controller system to the circuit. For checking, notice the voltammeter after pressing the pedal and in the resting phase. Is there any deviation in the needle?

LED Display Fails to Show Trailer Connectivity

This problem simply means that the lights on your trailer are not working.   Moreover, the trailer brake controller says not connected to the wires. Firstly to confirm the case, check the end connection of the ground wire. Moving to the reasons, we have damaged wirings and vehicle plug.

The trailer lights also fail to shine brightly when there is an unauthorized connection between the trailer wires and a metallic area. As a result, there will be less illumination of the lights or they will not glow at all.

To sort out the problem, start by replacing the damaged lights and wires. Break the unauthorized connections between the trailer wires and a metallic area. Lastly, make sure that all the wires of the light are grounded.

Uncontrolled Trailer Brake Application

Either the trailer brakes get jammed or act aggressively after starting the trailer. What could be the reason? This is a clear indication that the GM integrated trailer brake controller fuse burnt off. So there is disharmony within the controller system. Another reason for such a problem is a damaged trailer brake controller.

Always keep a close eye on the current flow through the wiring. In addition, replace the damaged brake controller and install a new and compatible controller in its original place.

Indication of Overloading

The most common question we face from the users is regarding the issues related to a damaged brake magnet. Thus when you step on the brake, the display shows overload. It means either the brake magnet is damaged or there are short wirings in the controller system.

As a result of overloading, there is heavy jerking. Connecting a short wire is a bit difficult. You might need some expert opinion or professional help.

Start by replacing the damaged controller magnet. Locate the short wiring area with the help of a circuit tester. Once you find out the place, re-install the complete wirings.

Failure to Turn on the Brake

This is the most deadly problem. Consider yourself driving, and you suddenly notice that the brake is not turning on. For the brake to work properly, it must be connected to a closed circuit.

Sometimes, the brake also fails to turn on when the adapter’s layout is incompatible with the OEM linkage.

Your first duty after this is to connect the brake system with a 12V circuit. Before buying the adapter, check the number, model, and slots on the OEM connector. Once a complete circuit is made, nothing can stop the brake from functioning properly.

A Helpful Tutorial You May Need!

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)

How do you test an integrated brake controller?

You can test an integrated brake controller using a 7-way tester and an adopter. Once you press the brake line, you will notice that the brake control system is activating and setting to the right.

How do you reset a trailer brake controller?

For resetting the trailer brake controller, you will need a screwdriver and an adjuster. Tighten the brakes until they make smooth turns while driving. Finally, disconnect all connections to bring all the functions to the factory version.

Why does my GMC say service trailer brake system?

GMC indicates the service trailer brake system on the display when there are short brake wirings and a damaged power setting within the trailer.

Final Verdict

The trailer requires an intricate brake control system to manage all the brakes. But sometimes, the brake controller malfunctions, and thus the vehicle starts idling. We have already discussed the common GM integrated trailer brake controller problems.

Maximum of those problems require an easy solution. So you can easily sort these problems by yourself. Damaged parts are easy to re-install but difficult to find. Do not forget to cross-check their number, power generation, and voltage consumption for maximum compatibility. Otherwise, the trailer fails to create sufficient momentum for the vehicle to move forward.

Let us know your problems and trouble-shooting experiences through comments in the comment section. Hope this article will be helpful for you to locate the trailer brake controller problems including their solutions.

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