Interstate visitors towing Recreational Vehicles (RV's) registered in another State or Territory and travelling through NSW are not subject to the NSW breakaway brake monitoring provisions under the current version (Aug 1, 2013) of the Road Transport (Vehicle Registration) Regulations, Roads and Maritime Services NSW says.
But breakaway brake system batteries in NSW registered caravans must have a remote readout in the tow vehicle the RMS said.
GoSee understands that leading RV builder Jayco has begun installing relevant wiring in its caravans as a standard fitting.
Our friends at Jayco Canberra told GoSee today that retro-fitting a breakaway monitor costs about $250. For older caravans additional wirings adds about $50, they said.
For trailers with a GTM exceeding 2 tonnes, the braking system must be capable of being applied from the driver’s seat. Overrun brakes are not acceptable.
Break-away system monitor wiring
Earthing or grounding systems for the trailer brake units must be specifically and individually wired (i.e. one earth wire to each brake unit) and not via the trailer suspension components, wheel bearings or tow couplings, Roads and Maritime Services said.
A RMS NSW Inspectors bulletin says the law is satisfied if the trailer mounted battery is constantly charged by the towing vehicle and a warning device is fitted to alert the driver (from the normal driving position) if there is not enough charge to activate the breakaway braking system in the caravan/trailer.
An acceptable warning circuit must incorporate either a visual or an audible warning device, the RMS says.
The Road Transport (Vehicle Registration) Regulation 2007 requires that all trailers with a Gross Trailer Mass (GTM) exceeding 2 tonnes have a braking system which will operate automatically if it breaks away from the towing vehicle. Braking should be maintained for at least 15 minutes, RMS NSW says.
So a battery needs to be carried on the trailer which is always fully charged.
When a caravan is presented for inspection, the towing vehicle must be equipped with a compatible charging system which is connected to the caravan/trailer and is fully operable.
Any caravan/trailer equipped with electric brakes, must have a label affixed which says that any vehicle used to tow it must be equipped with an acceptable charging/warning circuit.
Break-Safe remote battery monitor
The Redarc Break-Safe Break-Away system shown in the pictures with this Information Article is designed to apply the trailer brakes and brake lights if the trailer or caravan is accidentally separated from the tow vehicle.
The makers say the system has a built in battery that can be charged from the tow vehicle's auxiliary line or by a battery charger. An easy to operate test button is used to indicate the level of charge in the battery. This should be checked before the trailer is towed.
The Series 6000 suits 2 and 4 wheel trailer brakes.
Series 6000XP suits 2,4 and 6 wheel trailer brakes.
The RM6000 remote monitor shown provides an accurate way to monitor the breakaway battery condition, and will give an audible and visual signal if the battery condition falls below the acceptable levels (using a volt meter to monitor the Break-Safe battery is dangerous, as it will not give a true indication of the battery condition).
The RM6000 remote monitor operates each time the brake pedal in the tow vehicle is pressed. The additional circuitry in the Break-Safe 6000 and 6000XP disconnects the Break-Safe battery from the charge wire and then connects it to a small electronic load.
Should the Break-Safe battery be good, a green light will illuminate on the front panel of the RM6000. If the battery is below the safe level, a red light flashes and a buzzer sounds for about 10 seconds.
The CTEK professional MXS25 fully automatic battery charger pictured in this Information Article is a classic example of the truth in the adage that you only get what you pay for. CTEK told GoSee that the 1.9kg automatic eight-step charger is designed to propel battery performance into the top bracket safely. Editors note: There is a link to the free Information Article on the CTEK MXS25 in the GoSee free library at the end of this story.
Break-Safe battery has test ability
Editors note: Wikipedia the free online encylopedia reports that Roads and Maritime Services is an agency of the New South Wales Government responsible for building and maintaining road infrastructure and managing the day-to-day compliance and safety for roads and waterways.
The agency was created on 1 November 2011 from a merger of the Roads and Traffic Authority and NSW Maritime. Planning responsibilities were transferred to Transport for New South Wales, which was created on the same day. Its website Transport for NSW is responsible for improving the customer experience, planning, program administration, policy, regulation, procuring transport services, infrastructure and freight. Transport operating agencies have been freed up to focus on service delivery – providing safe, reliable, clean and efficient transport services.
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