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Although I've been towing trailers for a very long time, I was looking forward to playing around with the Pro Trailer Backup Assist feature on my new 2020 F150 Limited. Unfortunately, when I went to set it up, I found it just won't work for me. The checker box sticker has to be placed between 7 - 22 inches from the center of the ball mount. The surge brake controller on my tandem axle boat trailer is in the way as shown in the picture below. Has anyone else run into this situation? Is there any way around it?

Funny thing is that in the manual and setup guide, they don't reference any boat trailers other than the short stubby ones used for a single PWC.

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I'm so damn old school that I'm a one room school house with a wood stove... that aside, does it matter if the checker box sticker is on the tongue? If not, or you don't know, try this: take a slate plate steel or aluminum (pronounced ə-loo͞′mə-nəm, RS 😁) approximately the same width as the brake housing that extends back to the crank's frame,drill 4 holes and hole saw a fifth for the... cap? Looks like a cap, at any rate, then bolt that to the top and put the checker box sticker there. You may need to get longer screws, depending on how think the plate is.
 

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Yes sir, old school here also and apparently, great minds think alike. My first thought was to fashion a platform attached to the top of the brake controller just as you described. However, its really not worth the effort. I've been trailering boats since my teens ( a VERY long time ago) and just wanted to play around with this new feature. I seriously doubt I would use it very often. Additionally, that sticker platform would definitely end up slicing open someone's shin, probably mine!

As to the sticker being on the tongue, it can be off to the side as picture "B" below illustrates. I had planned to put it in precisely that location until it came time to do the measurement. At that point I definitely emitted a few colorful expletives when I realized that point on my trailer frame was about 3 1/2 miles away from the center of the ball mount
Measurements.jpg
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Oh well. Enjoy the truck anyway. My personal truck is a 73 with a cammed out 5.0, but my company hands me a new truck every 5 years or 100000 miles. My 19 doesn't drive like a truck at all. It's actully smoother than my wife's new Jeep Wrangler... which doesn't drive or feel like a CJ anymore.
 

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I just recently set up my trailer assist on my Expedition, also with a boat trailer. I used to have surge brakes and while I converted to electric I have the same coupler...just welded so it won’t move.

I think you’d have to place the sticker on the top of the brake reservoir. The camera won’t see it on the trailer behind that surge mechanism. Maybe find a way to keep that front plate in place without those bolts so the sticker is between the filler cap for the brake fluid and the emergency brake lever with the cable?

While I have limited time using the feature, it doesn’t work and smooth as I expected. If the trailer is in shadows the sticker isn’t visible to the camera. And if I have to pull forward is awkward to re-engage it.


2016 F-350 Super Duty King Ranch
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Although I've been towing trailers for a very long time, I was looking forward to playing around with the Pro Trailer Backup Assist feature on my new 2020 F150 Limited. Unfortunately, when I went to set it up, I found it just won't work for me. The checker box sticker has to be placed between 7 - 22 inches from the center of the ball mount. The surge brake controller on my tandem axle boat trailer is in the way as shown in the picture below. Has anyone else run into this situation? Is there any way around it?

Funny thing is that in the manual and setup guide, they don't reference any boat trailers other than the short stubby ones used for a single PWC.

View attachment 52219 View attachment 52219
I just purchased a new 2020 F-150 Lariat with Max Trailer Tow Package including Pro Trailer Backup Assist. I also purchased a Road King tandem axle trailer with 4 disc brakes and a similar Actuator to yours placed right where the sticker needs mounting. There was no flat surface available on the tongue or frame and neither Ford or Road King had a solution. I fabricated a simple workaround, i.e. a platform behind the master cylinder fill cap using 2 of the 4 existing mounting screws on top, therefore no modification required to any existing equipment. It works great. You can easily do this also by purchasing 1/8 inch thick aluminum bar or plate cut to the same width as the actuator (3-1/4" wide in my case) with enough length to allow for bends down to the trailer frame. It's a rigid structure using 1/8 inch aluminum and only the 2 mounting screws although you might want to use a u-bolt
1595350766536.png
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to fasten the rear portion to the frame where I left a flange although I find no need to fasten it down at this time. All you need for tools are hex driver for screws, a vice to clamp and a rubber mallet to bend/form the bends, a drill, and a saw to cut-off for final length. Good luck.
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Thanks @drhuneycutt, that actually looks pretty good. Where did you purchase that aluminum plate?
It’s working great. I couldn’t find the right width (3-1/4”) of 1/8” AL bar to allow for the 2 screw holes plus cover the actuator width at my local Home Depot or Lowe’s so I called a local machine shop that processes small jobs. They cut to size from 1/8” AL sheet and gave me 3-1/4” wide by 3 feet long piece long enough in case I messed up on the first try. It took a length of about 15” of material to bend to size, so I ended up with some extra blank stock. Hope this helps.
 

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Hey @drhuneycutt - I finally took the plunge a few weeks ago. Using your idea, I got it setup. Have to admit that even after all the years I've been towing boat trailers, I really love the Backup Assist! Once I get to the ramp and get lined up, I turn it on and use the knob to back it down. Thanks so much for all the replies and the great idea!!!

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You’re very welcome. Your setup looks great. Backup assist has made things much easier for me also even though I’ve been backing up trailers for a long time.
 

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F150 2020 Platinum here. Backup Assist was working till they issued a recall due to backup camera defective. Since then Backup Assist does not work anymore. First it said it could not find the sticker, so I tried to create a new trailer and enter all dimensions again, but it won’t let me, after the message to drive straight, it cancels out, “Pro Trailer Backup Assist: Setup Canceled. Measurements Not Saved” Is the message, time and again... I am in the middle of a trip for 2 weeks towing a travel trailer, in remote areas (disperse camping) and no idea how to fix it. The 1800 number in the Ford Manual is useless. BTW, all the USB ports inside my cab stopped working too. Any help will be GREATLY appreciated!!! BTW, the backup camera works. When in reverse it pops up on the screen, yet when I cycle through the cameras by repeatedly pressing the camera button on top of the screen, it does not come up.
 

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Who ever performed the recall, didn't do something right, I'd take it back and get them to fix it.
 

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F150 2020 Platinum here. Backup Assist was working till they issued a recall due to backup camera defective. Since then Backup Assist does not work anymore. First it said it could not find the sticker, so I tried to create a new trailer and enter all dimensions again, but it won’t let me, after the message to drive straight, it cancels out, “Pro Trailer Backup Assist: Setup Canceled. Measurements Not Saved” Is the message, time and again... I am in the middle of a trip for 2 weeks towing a travel trailer, in remote areas (disperse camping) and no idea how to fix it. The 1800 number in the Ford Manual is useless. BTW, all the USB ports inside my cab stopped working too. Any help will be GREATLY appreciated!!! BTW, the backup camera works. When in reverse it pops up on the screen, yet when I cycle through the cameras by repeatedly pressing the camera button on top of the screen, it does not come up.
I just found out I have the same issue on my 2020 King Ranch after they "fixed" the backup camera, my USB ports are all working though. Seems to fix one thing they broke another. Even tried new setup and I get stopped at the same place everytime.
 

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I just purchased a 2020 Ford F150 with Backup Assist and It won't work for me. Each time I try to set it up after I get the message to drive straight, it cancels out with the message, "Pro Trailer Backup Assist: Setup Canceled. Measurements Not Saved" over and over again. Does anyone know if there is a fix for this, I need this to work.
 

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It's a 2020, take it in to Ford and have them look at it. Could be a software thing.
 

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I have an '21 F250 Powerstroke. Set up the Pro Backup assist. Went thru all the steps.... got the red circle right on the checkered sticker.... and I keep getting the error 'no trailer detected' . Towing a 28ft Airstream. The propane tanks are really close the sticker so I used black matte vinyl wrap to cover the aluminum.
 

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I just purchased a 2020 Ford F150 with Backup Assist and It won't work for me. Each time I try to set it up after I get the message to drive straight, it cancels out with the message, "Pro Trailer Backup Assist: Setup Canceled. Measurements Not Saved" over and over again. Does anyone know if there is a fix for this, I need this to work.
Were you able to get this fixed? I Just discovered mine is doing the exact same thing on my 2020F150. I also had the back-up camera replaced and now am getting the same message you were. I'm glad I saw this post because I couldn't find anyone that was able to help.
 
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