About Hooking Up A Wire Harness On A Car For A Trailer: A trailer could serve several uses, depending on your wants, including transporting camping utilities, boats, materials, and goods.
The tricky thing involving trailers is connecting one to your primary car.
Color coding is the most important thing to know if you’re wondering how to hook up a wire harness on a car for a trailer.
From there, the installation should not be too complicated.
Table of Contents
- Trailer Wiring Harness Understanding
- Trailer Wiring Harnesses Types and Different Plug Types
- Mounting Your Trailer Wiring Harness Connector
Trailer Wiring Harness Understanding
Trailers are separate extension vehicles you need to link to your primary vehicle.
You can add a trailer wiring harness connector to the rear of your primary vehicle to connect your trailer, thus having the indicator and brake lights working properly.
Different connector types from 4 to 7 pins enable power transfer for lighting and auxiliary functions like backup lights, power supply for interior lights or a winch, and electric trailer brake control.
Therefore, choosing a connector with the right pins is important to enjoy your trailer’s features.
Trailer wiring uses various colors to make it easier to understand and correctly link your wires with your connector and primary vehicle.
|Function||Color||Min Wire Gauge||Where to attach (Vehicle side)||Where to attach (Trailer side)|
|7-WAY||6-WAY||5-WAY||4-WAY||Right Turn||Green||18||16||Car Wiring Harness (right turn)||Right turn signal of the trailer|
|Left Turn||Yellow||18||16||Car Wiring Harness (left turn)||Left turn signal of the trailer|
|Ground||White||16||12||Car Ground Point (rustproof, uncoated, metal)||Ground point of the trailer (rustproof, uncoated, metal)|
|Marker/ Tail||Brown||18||16||Car Wiring Harness (taillight)||Taillights|
|Brake||Blue||18||12||Electric brake control, power for brakes||Breakaway switch|
|Battery||Black or Red||12||Fused battery lead or fuse block||Interior lights, battery charger, breakaway kits|
|Backup||Purple||16||Car Wiring Harness (backup circuit)||Hydraulic coupler/ backup lights|
Trailer Wiring Harnesses Types and Different Plug Types
Having discussed the different colors of wires and their uses, you might still not be sure why there are various types of trailer wiring. This is because there are various towing and trailer scenarios, each with specific uses and functionalities.
The 4-way configuration has four wires: green (brake/right turn), yellow (brake/left turn), brown (running lights/taillights), and white (ground).
4-ways are available in round or flat configurations. Smaller trailers often use flat configurations, while industrial applications use round configurations.
The 5-way configuration has 5 wires: white (ground), green (brake/right turn), yellow (brake/left turn), brown (taillights), and blue (trailer brakes).
The 6-way configuration has 6 wires: white (ground), green (brake right turn), yellow (brake/left turn), brown (taillights), blue (trailer brakes), and black (+12 V).
6-ways are available in square and round complications. Often, the square configuration is utilized in popup cameras.
The 7-way configuration has 7 wires: white (ground), green (brake/right turn), yellow (brake/left turn), brown (taillights), blue (trailer brakes), black (reverse lights), and red (auxiliary power).
7-Way RV Blade – SAE Configuration
The 7-way SAE configuration has similar wiring to the 7-way but has 2 different wire colors: white(ground), yellow (brake/left turn), green (brake/right turn), blue (trailer brakes), orange (+12V), and gray (reverse lights).
7-Way RV Blade – Traditional Configuration
This configuration has the number and color of wires as the 7-way configuration, but the wires have completely different functions.
White (ground), yellow (reverse lights), green (taillights), brown (brakes/right turn), blue (trailer brakes), black (+12 V), and red (auxiliary power).
Hooking Up A Wire Harness On A Car For A Trailer: 7-Way Connector
Mounting Your Trailer Wiring Harness Connector
Before doing any work on your car’s wiring, go through the manual and thoroughly inspect if you already have a connector installed. If your car doesn’t have an existing wiring harness, it probably has the necessary plugs to enable you to install trailer wiring.
Towing Package and Trailer Harness Wiring Pre-Installed
Your car probably already has a car-side 7-way RV blade or 4-way flat connector.
Normally, a 7-way connector should be close to the center of the rear bumper, mounted on the bumper itself or a tab.
With a 4-way connector, you can expect to find it tucked under your car’s rear.
When you must tow, pull out the connector and close the back door or trunk. A rubber weather strip provides a seal for the door to prevent wires from getting pinched.
If the wiring on your car is not the same as the one on the tow, you can use a wiring plug adapter/T-one connector to make the two different configurations compatible. Also, you don’t have to splice into your car’s wiring system using an adapter.
However, you can’t adapt upwards, for instance, a 4-flat on your car to a 7-blade on your tow. But it’s possible to adapt downwards from a 7-flat on your car to a 4-blade on your tow.
The adapter normally uses a 4-pole trailer connector, which can easily adapt to match bigger 5-pole and 6-pole styles.
An adapter can plug into flat 4-pole connectors and has wires for additional functions like auxiliary power for tools or a winch, providing power for trailer brakes, power lead for utility lights, and reverse.
If your trailer or car has something besides a 4-way connector, like a bigger 6-way plug, ensure you find the right adapter for your trailer and car.
Hooking Up A Wire Harness On A Car For A Trailer: Towing Package That Has OEM Sockets
You’ll need to find your socket to check the type of connection to determine the trailer wiring harness you’ll need.
Hooking Up A Wire Harness On A Car For A Trailer: No OEM Socket or Towing Package
If your car doesn’t have OEM sockets or a towing package, you must get a custom wiring harness configuring the taillight connections.
Check the trailer wiring harness close to the coupler or tongue to determine the type of wiring connectors installed.
No OEM Sockets, Towing Package, or Custom Harness Available
For such a situation, you’ll need a taillight converter to splice into your car’s existing wiring.
Remember, getting the right connector is important when mounting your trailer wiring harness. For all your trailer wiring harness needs, contact Cloom Tech.