Wiring Your Toad

Now, let’s return to your toad for a moment, since there is still work to be done before you can safely tow it behind your motorhome. Your toad also needs to be “wired” so that the toad lights can be controlled from the motorhome, just like a trailer. The toad lights that need control are the tail lights, the brake lights, and the turn signals. Usually a four-wire cable is sufficient for this task, because a ground wire is also needed. But, before you buy a cable or make one up, check and see what type of connector is already on your motorhome. Some older motorhomes have only a four-wire connector, many newer motorhomes have a six-wire connector, and, now, most motorhomes come with seven-wire connectors. It is easiest if you have your car wired up with the same type of connector.

Most newer cars today that have built-in computers for controlling all sorts of functions will require that you not wire the motorhome directly to the lights in your toad. Instead, you will need diodes that keep the motorhome signals from interferring with some of the other non-lighting toad internals. A diode is sort of like a switch—allowing either a signal from the motorhome or a signal from the toad to activate, for example, the brake lights; and the diodes keep the two signals from ever getting together.

Unless you are savy with automotive electrical skills, it is best to pay someone knowledgeable to wire your toad lights. Some folks choose to add a set of magnetic lights that can be placed on the vehicle rear end when it is being towed—eliminating the need to mess around with the vehicle’s wiring.

If you select an auxiliary toad brake that requires 12 volts from the motorhome, then you will definitely need to install either a six-wire connector or a seven-wire connector, since you will using the fifth wire for the 12 volts needed by the auxiliary brake system.

Oh yes, one more little detail. If you have a toad that has orange turn signals that are separate from the brake lights, then you will also need to add a little box to your toad that separates the motorhome’s turn signals from the brake lights. The same is true in reverse—if you have a motorhome with orange turn signals and a toad with red turn signals, then a different adapter is needed. Usually, both of these adapters are readily available at your favorite RV supply store or your local auto parts store.

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