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Trailer brake law in Florida

Old 02-22-2014, 11:41 AM
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Default Trailer brake law in Florida

Are brakes required on all 4 wheels/both axles on a boat and trailer weighing about 5000#?

My 2007 trailer from a Fla dealer only has one axle of brakes so I figured that it complied, so I ordered my new trailer with only one also. Did I make a big mistake legally? I know more is better, but....

Last edited by noclutch; 02-22-2014 at 06:16 PM.
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Old 02-22-2014, 07:40 PM
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Answered in your other post....but yes...brakes are required on all axles for anything over 3000 GVW.

While it won't keep you from getting it registered, it could cost you a ticket in the Keys, or any other high enforcement area.

Kevin can probably put a kit together with the parts you need. Basically install the brake assemblies on the second axle, add a tee fitting to the existing brake hoses, connect and bleed. A reputable shop can probably do it in a couple hours or so.
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Old 02-22-2014, 08:13 PM
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I run one set of brakes on mine but the trailer is an 02 and when I bought it one set was all that was required by law so I hope it still applys to me, I wonder about that every once i awhile
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Old 02-23-2014, 05:43 AM
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Originally Posted by Parthery View Post
Answered in your other post....but yes...brakes are required on all axles for anything over 3000 GVW.

While it won't keep you from getting it registered, it could cost you a ticket in the Keys, or any other high enforcement area.

Kevin can probably put a kit together with the parts you need. Basically install the brake assemblies on the second axle, add a tee fitting to the existing brake hoses, connect and bleed. A reputable shop can probably do it in a couple hours or so.

Who is Kevin??? and how can he be contacted??? does he have a website???
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Old 02-23-2014, 05:51 AM
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Originally Posted by Circle Hooked View Post
I run one set of brakes on mine but the trailer is an 02 and when I bought it one set was all that was required by law so I hope it still applys to me, I wonder about that every once i awhile
Nope. The only grandfathering is for Pole trailers manufactured before 1972. Otherwise, it's all wheels, all axles exceeding 3,000 GVW.
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Old 02-23-2014, 03:45 PM
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I plan on just doing one axle on the next boat and I am in Florida. You will be fine.
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Old 02-23-2014, 06:42 PM
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Originally Posted by JOEKEN View Post
I plan on just doing one axle on the next boat and I am in Florida. You will be fine.
So because your doing one axle (legal or not) your saying it's ok?
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Old 02-24-2014, 06:28 AM
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If you go look in a launch ramp parking lot at two and three axle trailers some day, you will see this is about the most widely disregarded law in Florida. But it is the law, and I have heard, as a poster above mentioned, about some enforcement effort in the Keys.
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Old 02-24-2014, 03:34 PM
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Originally Posted by Thalasso View Post
So because your doing one axle (legal or not) your saying it's ok?
No what I am saying is that I very seriously doubt he will receive a Traffic Citation for it. The trailer will stop fine with just one axle.
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Old 02-24-2014, 04:36 PM
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Thanks for the feedback guys. Just out of curiosity, I put up a poll thread to see the numbers.

Good point Topcat- now that you mention it it seems that I haven't noticed brakes on all axles at the ramps, but one often doesn't notice what isn't there anyways...

For the record, it was me (being ignorant of the law) who specified only one axle of brakes on my new trailer. Yet Kevin has very generously offered to help me comply, if I so desire. He is amazing
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Old 02-25-2014, 05:42 PM
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I am not sure what the law is. But a friend of mine just got a brand new triple axel trailer 2 months ago and it only had brakes on the front two axels. And It stops great!
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Old 02-25-2014, 07:34 PM
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Has anyone on here added an additional set of brakes to a trailer that had an un-braked axle?

Did it make a significant difference?

The reason I ask, is that I have a triple axle trailer with brakes on two axles, I have been considering adding brakes to the third axle.
I am curious as to the effect of 1/3 more braking capacity to the performance of the trailer.

LA
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Old 03-01-2014, 01:41 PM
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Originally Posted by JOEKEN View Post
I plan on just doing one axle on the next boat and I am in Florida. You will be fine.
Not to start a flame war; but, that's about the worse advice you could give. Unless you're willing to pay the OP's tickets and/or fines.

For example, let's say somebody runs a stop sign or red light in front of you. You T-bone the guy because you can't stop in time and kill the driver. Sure, he ran a traffic control device; but, I guarantee you his family's attorney will sue you for everything you've got under the argument that if your trailer was equipped with brakes on all axles as required by law, you could of stopped in time. Yes, you and I both know it's bullsh*t; but, that's what they'll say and they will win.

Any attorneys out there want to chime it?

Bottom line, spend the $300 - $400 and install brakes on the second axle. Cheap insurance.
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Old 03-01-2014, 07:16 PM
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Originally Posted by Lattitude Adjuster View Post
Has anyone on here added an additional set of brakes to a trailer that had an un-braked axle?

Did it make a significant difference?

The reason I ask, is that I have a triple axle trailer with brakes on two axles, I have been considering adding brakes to the third axle.
I am curious as to the effect of 1/3 more braking capacity to the performance of the trailer.

LA
I did mine last summer before going to the Keys for mini season. I did notice an improvement but my old brakes were toast so I can't say how much difference I noticed having the 3rd set. I will say that I did have to turn down the gain on the brake controller.
The install was pretty easy on mine, I have E/O so I just added a couple of T's and a short run of flexible line, bolted on the new rotors and calipers and bled the system.
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Old 03-02-2014, 01:56 PM
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I have a tandem axle under a 25/28 Contender and when I added brakes (disc) to my rear axle, my impression is that braking performance improved, but I didn't do any formal measures.
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Old 03-04-2014, 12:07 PM
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In Florida, any trailer axle carrying over 3,000 lbs must have a braking system installed
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Old 03-04-2014, 06:00 PM
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I only have one set of brakes but have no problem complying with this exception

http://www.flsenate.gov/Laws/Statutes/2011/316.262
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Old 03-04-2014, 06:27 PM
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Think you are quoting the wrong statute.

316.261 is pretty clear about brakes on trailers and the 3000 lb law.
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Old 03-04-2014, 06:39 PM
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I read it as 316.262 is an exception based on 316.261 #3 but it doesn't help with #4 so I guess I'm not legal.
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Old 03-05-2014, 04:04 PM
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Originally Posted by Lattitude Adjuster View Post
Has anyone on here added an additional set of brakes to a trailer that had an un-braked axle?

Did it make a significant difference?

The reason I ask, is that I have a triple axle trailer with brakes on two axles, I have been considering adding brakes to the third axle.
I am curious as to the effect of 1/3 more braking capacity to the performance of the trailer.

LA
I would think the bigger benefit in everyday use with surge brakes would come from reduced heat on each braked axle, thus lower wear and longer life. If you have e/h you'd have more absolute braking at the trailer so less wear on the tow vehicle as well.
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