Wiring a 6 Way Trailer Plug is Easier Than You Think

Wiring a 6 Way Trailer Plug is Easier Than You Think

You’ll find that 6-way trailer plugs are not as common as 7 or 4-way options. But if you have a gooseneck or horse trailer, you’ll see 6-ways more often. The 6-way plug runs power to turn signals, running lights, brake lights, and grounding for the trailer. Additionally, they have two pins, a brake controller output and 12v hot lead. When you’re setting up your own trailer, many people feel confident right up until they get to the wiring. But it’s easier than you think! Let’s break it down into 6 easy steps. 

Learning the Color Code for 6-Way Trailer Wiring

We’ll do the guide for the trailer wiring soon. First, we need to know what all of these colors on the wires mean. 

While there is some variance, let’s learn the industry standard. Consult instructions and manuals for variance on this.

  • Green: Right turn/brake light - Gauge 16 
  • Yellow: Left turn/brake light  - Gauge 16
  • Brown: Tail/running lights - Gauge 16
  • White: Ground wire  - Gauge 16
  • Blue: Brake controller output  - Gauge 16
  • Red or Black: Battery hot lead  - Gauge 16

Step 1: Get Yourself Set Up

Get your tools and supplies ready. You need a junction box, a breakaway kit, a brake controller, and of course, the 6-way harness.

Step 2: Junction Box Location/Installation

If you already have a junction box, you need to find it. It’s probably near the front of the trailer. Take the cover off and remove the nuts from each terminal. 

But if you’re installing a junction box, find a location where it can be secure, like inside the trailer’s tongue. The box’s location should let the wires reach, but not interfere with any components. Absent any plans to install or use a junction box, you can zip-tie the new wiring harness to the existing wires. 

Step 3: Make Connections on Your Trailer

Always check the manufacturer’s specs before making connections. But we will be dealing with a standard industry case in this description. 

When You Have a Junction Box

Remove the nuts on each junction box stud and replace the existing wiring. Cut any excess wiring from your new cable and strip the insulation from the wires with a crimper. Then crimp the ring terminals onto the new wiring. Put the terminals onto their corresponding studs in the junction. Ground wire to ground wire, brake wire to brake wire. Use clips for excess wire.

When You Don’t Have a Junction Box

Use butt connectors and heat gun when you’re working without a junction box. Use clips to secure extra wires. 

Installation Steps on the Vehicle Side

Let’s get your vehicle ready for the new wiring. 

With 6-Way Connector

If you have a 6-way, you’re ready to rock and roll. Plug the trailer-end connector into the vehicle end connector, and you’re good to go.

With 4-Way Connector

Get a 6-way adapter kit when you have a 4-way harness. Make sure the vehicle wires work with a circuit tester. Test the brakes, lights, and turn signal. 

With No Connector

With no connector, install a 4-way and use an adapter. It’s easier than many other options.

If your vehicle lacks any kind of connector, the easiest way to install a 6-way plug is to install a 4-way and use an adapter. For help on installing a 4-way connector, view our how-to guide here.

Step 2: Link Up Vehicle Connectors

You’ll either plug into, clamp onto, or splice your vehicle’s existing lighting and your wiring harness into your new parts. You may need a mounting bracket. Put a small amount of grease on all connections. Prevent corrosion by applying the grease to connectors and the vehicle’s plugs. Use the adapters to turn 4 ways into 6-ways. 


Test all the functions the wires power! That’s the only way to know if you’re good to go. If you’re missing something, look for loose wires, or disconnected terminals. 

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