AP Products, Inc. 800-417-2477 (Administration & Non-Technical) 800-874-3271 (Technical Support Line)
UNIFIED TOW BRAKE®
Unified Tow Brake Installing Dealers
Installation Video (320x240, low bandwidth)
Components of the Unified Tow Brake. (This might take a couple minutes to download and you will need to use the scroll bars to view the entire picture.)
A TOW BRAKE, & WHICH ONE TO CHOOSE?
Let us help you decide
Okay. Here's the deal. You finally own the motorhome you've dreamed of for years. You've reached a point in your life when you can slow down and travel to places you've only read about in books. Of course you'll chart a course with numerous destinations, where you can explore all the interesting places around each stop. This means you're going to need to tow your street vehicle in order to get around. With the added weight of the towed vehicle to your motorhome and all the road hazards that you will encounter, you recognize the need for some sort of tow brake.
After all, the safety of you as a driver, your passengers, your motorhome and your street vehicle are at stake.WE KNOW YOU HAVE A CHOICE, SO WE'LL GIVE YOU THE FACTS
AND LET YOU MAKE THE LOGICAL CHOICE.
FIRST OF ALL, WE UTILIZE YOUR TOWED VEHICLE'S OWN POWER BRAKES
No other product on the market today utilizes the towed vehicle's own power brakes. That's why it's called Unified: It utilizes the power brakes of both vehicles. This exclusive, patented feature sets us leagues apart from other available tow brakes. Just think about this since it has happened at least once to all of us; Your engine suddenly dies, you push on the brakes and get nothing. That's because with the engine not running the power brake booster is no longer able to get vacuum. Now consider this; If you install ANY other tow brake, that's the kind of braking you'll achieve in your towed vehicle because the engine is not running and they make no provisions for supplying vacuum to the power brake booster. No matter how hard the other guys push on a DEAD brake pedal they can't get much braking.
Here's how we achieve braking power. We supply a 12 volt vacuum pump that mounts in the engine compartment of the towed vehicle. Each time the Unified Tow Brake is activated, a signal is sent to the Power Module located in the towed vehicle. The Power Module computer engages the vacuum pump to replenish vacuum to the towed vehicle's power brake booster. The Power Module also sends a modulated signal to the supplied Electronic Solenoid which is hidden under the driver seat of the towed vehicle. The Solenoid is connected to the brake pedal lever with a push/pull cable that is hidden underneath the carpet. By modulating the current to the solenoid, we can vary the amount of pull on the pedal to slow the towed vehicle to whatever degree is needed. This allows the towed vehicle to deliver the same powerful braking performance while towing, that you would get while driving the vehicle.
Other tow brake units on the market today cut into the brake lines or master cylinder of either the motorhome or the towed vehicle. At U.S. Gear, we feel this approach is not only frightening, but causes some real safety concerns. We therefore designed our unit to steer clear of tampering with either vehicle's brakes. Any time the brake lines are cut, the potential is there for air to get in the line, and cause the brakes to fail. In addition, we did not want the installation to void the manufacturers warranty. So, after months of talking with hundreds of motorhome owners and listening to their feedback, U.S. Gear has incorporated all of the features they've been demanding. The Unified Tow Brake monitors and adjusts for both road conditions and terrain ALL BY ITSELF from the motorhome's cockpit. The computer software is the key, and here's how it works...
WE UTILIZE STATE-OF-THE ART TECHNOLOGY
As with the utilization of power brakes, no other tow brake offers a remote control unit in the cockpit of the motorhome. The Patented Remote Control unit, which mounts to the transmission gear shift/selector lever, or any other convenient location houses the computer "brain", and is wired to the Power Module installed in the towed vehicle. Under normal operation, the Remote Controller progressively modulates the braking effort of the towed vehicle to mirror the braking effort applied to the motorhome's brakes through the use of multiple accelerometers and computer software package. The use of multi-accelerometers allows the controller to sense gravity, eliminating the need for the controller to be perfectly level when installed, never having to adjust level on the fly. The computer constantly checks for inertia change by sensing the vehicle's deceleration and constantly sends a signal, telling the towed vehicle how much braking force to apply. And what's more, if the brakes on the motorhome fail there is a manual feature that can help slow the vehicle down. The driver can simply depress the override thumbswitch lever and apply brakes to the towed vehicle for brake assistance.
WE OFFER PROPORTIONAL AND PROGRESSIVE BRAKING
Once again, due to the use of our controller, no other product on the market offers BOTH proportional and progressive braking. Everybody's talking about their importance, but what do they really mean?
Proportional Braking: When towing, there are 2 vehicles which have a combined weight of x amount. So the question becomes, how much braking should be accomplished by the motorhome, and how much should be accomplished by the towed vehicle? You want it to be in direct proportion to each vehicles' own weight. Our unit provides proportional braking via a signal adjustment (or gain) to the towed vehicle's brakes from the Remote Control unit.
Progressive Braking: (Often referred to as modulated braking). In essence, this means that when the motorhome brakes are applied, whether hard or soft, a mirror effect occurs in the braking of the towed vehicle. In other words, the more braking force applied to the front vehicle, the more force applied to the rear vehicle. The light bar on the Controller labeled Braking Effort indicates your current level of progressive braking. Other units only have one pre-determined "average" push on the pedal for brake assistance. So what happens if you're in a panic situation, and need ALL the braking you can get? Is one pre-determined "average" push on your towed vehicle's brake pedal going to be enough help? We think that if you're in an emergency and have to stand on the brakes, you'd probably prefer the full force of both vehicles' power brakes to slow you down. With our unit in a panic situation, you will in fact stop faster by using both vehicles' power brakes full force than if you were driving the motorhome by itself.
WE END THE NEED FOR ASSEMBLY, THEN DISASSEMBLY
Now that you recognize the vital importance of installing a tow brake, would you want to go to the hassle of re-installing and re-adjusting EVERY TIME you connect or disconnect your vehicle from the motorhome? This is just a time consuming and frustrating nuisance. Plus, all elements of the other tow brake units have cylinders, plates and wires attached to the brake pedal, and littering the drivers side floor.
Let us greatly simplify matters for you! Install the cable, pulley and solenoid one time, with all elements hidden underneath the carpet and seat. Install the Remote Controller one time on the gear shift/selector lever, or the face of the dash. When you're ready to drive your street vehicle, disconnect the umbilical cord. When you're ready to tow again, reconnect the umbilical cord. The only time you might want to disassemble is if you upgrade to a new motorhome or towed vehicle. No big deal! It can be transferred to any vehicle at any time. Enough said?
OUR BREAK AWAY FEATURE COMES STANDARD!
We've mentioned the road hazards you're likely to encounter as you enjoy the freedom of the road. There is always a chance that for whatever reason, your towed vehicle could separate from your motorhome. Other manufacturers recognize this hazard as well, and offer a break away feature as an add-on option at an additional cost. At U.S. Gear, we always put safety first, and so we built into the unit a break away feature that is standard with each kit. It immediately brings the vehicle to a stop should separation occur. There's even an audible warning if the umbilical cord disconnects. And guess what? Our unit, with the break away feature included, sells for the same price as other units WITHOUT this feature. Still the logical choice!
Unified Tow Brake ONLY from U.S. GEAR
The Unified Tow Brake by U.S. Gear represents a major advancement in towing technology. This technology was available for decades to travel trailer and fifth wheel customers, and now, thanks to U.S. Gear is available for all class "A & C" motorhomes.You have a choice, so which would you prefer?
UNIFIED TOW BRAKE - Safety That's Really Within Reach
Call 1-800-874-3271 for more information or for a dealer located near you.
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