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Thread: '97 Silverado -brake signal wire for trailer brake controller

  1. #1
    Junior Member
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    '97 Silverado -brake signal wire for trailer brake controller

    Hi all,
    I'm new to the board. I'll likely be coming back alot since my wife just picked up a '97 4x4 extended cab Silverado to pull the horse trailer she shares with her sister.

    Now my problem...

    I'm working on hooking up the electric brake controller and things are going well except for one problem. I absolutely can not figure how to get the stoplight signal from the brake pedal. I've done a bunch of 'net research and this is the closest I can get to an answer: from bradstrailer.com

    """
    1997 GM Full Size Trucks:

    1. Locate the convenience center at the firewall just under the emergency brake pedal.
    2. Remove 6-8" of tape covering main loom of 40+ wires.
    3. You will find:
    5 WHITE Wires
    4 light gauge wires (16 GA.)
    1 heavy gauge wire (14 GA.)
    Multiple wires wrapped with YELLOW tape.
    (DO NOT DISTURB, AIR BAG SENSOR WIRES.)

    4. Probe the 4 light gauge wires with a test light.
    5. The wire that is cold until brake pedal is depressed and does not flash with hazard flashers activated is the correct wire. Splice that wire into the brake control's RED (stoplight) wire.
    6. Rewrap remaining wires. """""


    So I've located the main loom but separating it to probe 4 wires is not easy. I'm hoping someone here has some helpful hints/tips/advice about getting access to this signal wire. Even trying to access the harness that connects to the switch is difficult since the harness is on top of the switch.
    If all else fails I will take it to my mechanic but being so close...all other wires are run thru the firewall and connected... but yet this far away from success is frustrating.

    Any suggestions?

  2. #2
    Senior Member
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    i`ll have a look under my 98 this morning and see if i can give you any clues, i know it is tied into a white wire under column just like those instructions say....

  3. #3
    Junior Member
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    Quote Originally Posted by stumpuller454 View Post
    i`ll have a look under my 98 this morning and see if i can give you any clues, i know it is tied into a white wire under column just like those instructions say....
    I appreciate any help you can offer stumpuller.
    I was speaking to a guy at local truck&van accessory shop today and he agreed it's not an easy job. He had just done an install on a '98 this week and was saying he had to get in and wiggle the white wire in the bundle coming off the switch and try and watch for it further up behind the dash where it joined into the big main bundle. Cripes what a pita to get 1 wire connected.

  4. #4
    Full Member Zoomy's Avatar
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    Look on my Tahoe, I connected the red brake controller wire to a white wire behind a large connector under the steering column. The wire is a small white wire in the bottom passenger side end of the connector. My trailer brakes work fine using this wire.
    It was a bit of a chore finding it when I installed the controller.
    Good luck, have fun.
    Z

  5. #5
    Senior Member
    crabtruck's Avatar
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    I think on that truck the white from the pedal is spliced to four other whites.
    That may make it easier to find visually.
    Another idea is to pick up that signal at the under hood relay,
    it's the power to the coil of the stoplamp relay.
    Also white, not the blue, black or red.

  6. #6
    Senior Member
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    um, well, lookin at it and, umm, what can i say, its there,...hehe. theres not much that I could say to help yah out, its just a little white wire, under the column...hehe sory dude, guess its simply gotta be hunted outta there...

  7. #7
    Junior Member
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    May 2008
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    Thumbs up

    Thanks to the help I got here I successfully wired up that controller.

    I ended up working some extra slack out of the bundle of wires that came off the switch by grabbing it with some extra long needle nose pliers up near the dash.
    I was then able to pull that slack back from near the dash/steering column towards the firewall. See-sawing like that worked alot of slack loose in the harness on top of the switch. It also helps that the switch will release off the top of it's mount and tilt toward the dash. That provides a bit more slack. Next thing I saw was that white wire coming out of the switch. Bingo!!

    Squeezing my hand up between the pedal and firewall I was able to apply one of those splice/connectors and job was done.

    Needless to say it took me a lot longer to do then to type but it looks like I got'er done.


    Again, thanks for the help people. Maybe someday I can return the favour.

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