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Discussion Starter #1
Thanks in advance for any advice, I appreciate everyone's time and input!

I have a 2013 Tundra CrewMax 4WD. I'm looking at renting a 2019 Forest River Salem Cruise Lite trailer from Outdorsy. I have been towing ski boats since I was 16, but have no idea about towing travel trailers. I am assuming to get the brakes to work on the trailer, I will have to buy(unless the owner has one I can use) a brake controller and connect it to my truck. Is that correct? I have a plug in my glove box that came with the truck that I am assuming I'll have to use as well.

What does it take to connect the brake controller? If I have to buy one, which models work the best, etc.?

Thanks!
 

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Like @Azblue said yes, you will need a brake controller to get the electric brakes on the trailer to work. The owner of the travel trailer might be able to let you borrow a brake controller, but might not have one that is plug and play for your Tundra. Assuming you have the tow package on your Tundra there is a connector under the driver side kick panel. If you don't want to splice wires between the brake controller and the Tundra you should be able to purchase an adapter that allows you to just plug it in. If you decide to purchase your own the Tekonsha is a good choice.

With the plug in your glove box I assume you are referring to something similar to what I have in my glove box. It is a converter used to attach a 4-pin trailer connection to the 7-pin connection next to the hitch on the Tundra. No, you do not need this. The trailer will come with a 7pin connection.

You will need a weight distribution hitch (WDH) to comfortably and safely tow the travel trailer. A boat and a travel trailer do not tow the same. The travel trailer can act as a big sail that gets pushed around by wind and passing semi trucks. When the travel trailer get pushed, the Tundra will get pushed. You don't want to get pushed. A good WDH will prevent this. I use the Equal-i-zer 4 point WDH.

If you don't already have tow mirrors on your Tundra you will have to add at least clip-on tow mirrors. I use CIPA brand.
 

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Discussion Starter #4
Thanks @Azblue and @Justin Guy for your responses, I appreciate it.

I don't have access to my truck for few days, but I don't think the plug in my glove box is an adaptor for a 4pin to a 7pin connection, my truck has both connection options by the hitch. I think it's a white square plastic plug with a few wires coming out of it.

I do have the tow package on my truck, so the plug you guys are talking about under the side kick panel, is it an actual plug, or is the wiring there and I have to connect a plug to it with wires? In my sales documents, under the tow package it says "Trailer Brake Controller Prewire". I guess i'll need to get behind that panel to know what I have for sure.

In regards to the weight distributing hitch, the owner of the trailer said they do not have a weight distributing hitch, which I assume means they do not use one when they tow their own trailer. If I buy a weight distributing hitch, that means I would have to attach the system I buy to their trailer and then remove it when I am done, correct?
 

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Installed a RedArc controller and just did a 2000 mile trip towing a travel trailer. Controller worked flawlessly and I love the fact that I don't have a control box bolted underneath the dash to hit my knee on.
 

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Discussion Starter #7
Installed a RedArc controller and just did a 2000 mile trip towing a travel trailer. Controller worked flawlessly and I love the fact that I don't have a control box bolted underneath the dash to hit my knee on.
Which RedArc did you instal? There seems to be a few models on Amazon..

Thanks!
 

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I've got the Tekonsha brake controller on my Tundra. There are u-tube videos that will show where the connector is and how to get to it. It's a mating connector under the panel and premade cables are available. As for the controller at the knee, I find it intuitive to manually apply the trailer brakes there, no fumbling. It is close to the knee though and I can see why it might bother people.

I've been told that others tow without the weight distribution hitch, WDH. Originally I was using the Tacoma for the pull but fairly quickly traded for the Tundra. I had installed the Reese Dual-cam WDH for the Tacoma so never pulled without it while driving the Tundra. If I sold the trailer I'd sell with the hitch, really the next owner would probably want it.

Not ready to sell though, I like hooking up and heading out...
 

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Discussion Starter #10
@Azblue & @Justin Guy

Finally found the time to look at my 2013 Tundra to see exactly what I have with regards to the brake controller already on my truck. I have 2 pics of what are behind the plate to the left of the parking brake. Is the plug that is circled in red and yellow where I plug a brake controller into. And when I buy a brake controller, will I need the brake controller jumper to make the one I buy connect to my truck?

Thanks!
 

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That looks like it. Yes, get a jumper that is vehicle specific to the Tundra and it should be plug and play (other than the ground and you should see a grounding post in that general area).
 

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that looks like it

Yea, I think that's it.

My truck is a 2015 so the plug is on the right. I checked the internet though and it seems that the 2013 has it there on the left. That's where the Tacoma had the plug...

Happy travels!
 

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Thanks @Azblue and @Justin Guy for your responses, I appreciate it.

I don't have access to my truck for few days, but I don't think the plug in my glove box is an adaptor for a 4pin to a 7pin connection, my truck has both connection options by the hitch. I think it's a white square plastic plug with a few wires coming out of it.

I do have the tow package on my truck, so the plug you guys are talking about under the side kick panel, is it an actual plug, or is the wiring there and I have to connect a plug to it with wires? In my sales documents, under the tow package it says "Trailer Brake Controller Prewire". I guess i'll need to get behind that panel to know what I have for sure.

In regards to the weight distributing hitch, the owner of the trailer said they do not have a weight distributing hitch, which I assume means they do not use one when they tow their own trailer. If I buy a weight distributing hitch, that means I would have to attach the system I buy to their trailer and then remove it when I am done, correct?
i rent my rv's on rental services and the person renting it should at least offer a WDH even if at additonal cost. It would not be worth it for you to buy one and put it on etc etc. Find a renter who has one available with the rental.
 
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