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Old 03-13-2020, 08:48 PM   #1
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Using the cruise control

So weíre planning too take 1 or 2 long trips this summer around 2000 miles round trip. Iíve pulled a TT all over Iowa but never really used my cruise I was younger and my knees werenít wore out like now ... so Iíd it a good idea to get too a long straight stretch up too speed and set the cruise?
Steve
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Old 03-13-2020, 08:55 PM   #2
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I use cruise all the time when I tow.
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Old 03-13-2020, 09:14 PM   #3
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Thx I had a couple old fellas tell me it’s not good too use cruise control... they didn’t offer up any real reasoning but told me it was bad
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Old 03-13-2020, 10:48 PM   #4
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I use my cruise as much as possible. Not in heavy traffic or when the road conditions are poor.
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Old 03-14-2020, 04:14 AM   #5
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Thx I had a couple old fellas tell me itís not good too use cruise control... they didnít offer up any real reasoning but told me it was bad
I might fall in the category of old fellas and I use cruise control whenever I can.
Never in heavy traffic or Mountainous terrain. For me it makes for a more enjoyable trip.
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Old 03-14-2020, 05:03 AM   #6
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I use tow/haul and cruise all the time. Let the tranny figure it out, unless it is constantly hunting for gears.

My current 8.1L gasser with 5 speed Allison lets me tow in overdrive.

However, my previous Silverado with 5.3L gasser and 4 speed forced me to drive in 3rd gear, tow/haul, locking out overdrive, but still using cruise. But that was OK. The 5.3 likes to Rev.
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Old 03-14-2020, 05:54 AM   #7
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I use cruise all the time when I tow.
X-2 Used it both towing and in the MH's over several decades.
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Old 03-14-2020, 06:13 AM   #8
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I use cruise all the time also.
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Old 03-14-2020, 07:40 AM   #9
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+1 for use the cruise.

I've gotten to where I know when I need to goose the go pedal a little to keep it from downshifiting too far. If you just totally let it do its thing, it'll bleed too much speed going up a grade, then go to WOT to try to get back up to speed. You can see the grade coming, so goose the throttle a little, get one gear downshift if needed, and (at least in my rig) it will hold speed over a small to medium grade.

It's especially bad in urban areas where I'm constantly going up and down overpasses. Sometimes I'll go manual in those situations. But I'd say the great majority of the time I'm using cruise. Did it the same way in both of the trucks I towed with before we bought the MH too.
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Old 03-14-2020, 08:28 AM   #10
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Whether or not you use cruise control depends on a couple things.

First, your transmission and engine. In your other thread, you said you'll be using a late model F-150 Eco Boost. That has a computer controlled ten speed transmission. I find mine does an excellent job of selecting the appropriate gear, and also is very adept at downshifting on downgrades to provide engine braking. On moderate terrain, I think the cruise control does a better job then me, as it's probably more attentive.

Of course, definitely use "tow mode".

The only time I override cruise control is on steep hills. My normal cruising speed is 62 mph, and I'll try to hit the base of the hill at 62, or up to 64, and let the rig lose some speed as it approaches the crest (55mph or so?).

Properly matched to it's payload, the 10 speed automatic and tow mode are a marvel.
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Old 03-14-2020, 08:50 AM   #11
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The world has changed. Early cruise controls caused automatic transmissions to wear out sooner and manufacturers recommended not using them while towing. Going back further there was a debate between manual and automatic transmissions and towing.

With my 2013 F150 Ford engineers recommend using cruise control and I use it most of the times. It does accelerate harder on hills than I usually drive so I'll usually turn it off in those areas. Cruise does a better job of keeping me at 65 than I do.
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Old 03-14-2020, 09:30 AM   #12
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I'll use cruise sometimes on relatively flat terrain but never in hilly terrain. Don't want my 6.2L downshifting to go WOT while climbing the hill when I can do it manually in 4th. I'd rather have me control the RPM's.
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Old 03-14-2020, 10:22 AM   #13
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I'll use cruise sometimes on relatively flat terrain but never in hilly terrain. Don't want my 6.2L downshifting to go WOT while climbing the hill when I can do it manually in 4th. I'd rather have me control the RPM's.
With computer controlled engines and transmissions it is difficult to impossible to do a better job controlling RPM than the computer.

I use/used cruise all of the time and with the Duramax in tow/haul it decided when it need to shift up or down. I have found that to be true with the Greyhawk also. Trying to make those decisions for it only resulted in loss of RPM and speed on climbs. The computer controls shift not only for RPM but for engine heat so fooling with it can cause other issues.

Now, I am sure there are those who need to be in control and that is fine, sometimes that is absolutely necessary but in cruise and in tow/haul climbs were better and downhill was much less of a white knuckle experience.
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Old 03-14-2020, 10:24 AM   #14
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I don't like to use cruise control when towing my 6000 GVWR Jay Feather with my 2010 F150 5.2L 3.55. Even with Tow/Haul engaged it really tends to "hunt", downshifting and upshifting constantly. So no cruise control for me. At highway speeds it seems to like 5th gear (6-speed tranny) so I mostly let it ride there.

Good luck!

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Old 03-14-2020, 11:32 AM   #15
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Cruise control & tow/haul mode all the time. Tow/haul is a great break saver.
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Old 03-14-2020, 04:09 PM   #16
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Big Steve View Post
So weíre planning too take 1 or 2 long trips this summer around 2000 miles round trip. Iíve pulled a TT all over Iowa but never really used my cruise I was younger and my knees werenít wore out like now ... so Iíd it a good idea to get too a long straight stretch up too speed and set the cruise?
Steve
You do not mention what you have for a tv or tt. If you have more than enough tv for your tt, cruise will be no big deal. If your pushing your tv payload limits, you may want to avoid cruise control.
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Old 03-15-2020, 12:06 AM   #17
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I have a 267 BHSW and a 2019 f150 with the eco boost 3.5 twin turbo V6 ten speed electric tranny the big tow package with bigger fuel tank the 36 gallon. With all the in tow messages like tranny temp oil temp coolant temp draw on voltage just tons of cool stuff in tow mode !
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Old 03-15-2020, 12:09 AM   #18
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Thank you all for the great advice ! The older gentlemen were from a way different era so I’m guessing recommendations back then we’re not to drive with the cruise on ! I’m so glad I’ve found you all it’s amazing that all the help I’ve asked for has so greatly been answered in a great friendly way !
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Old 03-15-2020, 11:09 AM   #19
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With computer controlled engines and transmissions it is difficult to impossible to do a better job controlling RPM than the computer.

I use/used cruise all of the time and with the Duramax in tow/haul it decided when it need to shift up or down. I have found that to be true with the Greyhawk also. Trying to make those decisions for it only resulted in loss of RPM and speed on climbs. The computer controls shift not only for RPM but for engine heat so fooling with it can cause other issues.

Now, I am sure there are those who need to be in control and that is fine, sometimes that is absolutely necessary but in cruise and in tow/haul climbs were better and downhill was much less of a white knuckle experience.
The problem is that the cruise control can't see a grade coming. So it will allow the rig to drop as much as 5 mph without downshifting. Then it will downshift to 3rd gear at WOT trying to gain back that 5 mph (which it won't be able to do).

Instead, it's better, smarter, and easier on the equipment if you give it a little throttle AHEAD of the grade, get one gear downshift, and maintain speed as you go up the grade. Then the rig is already in the appropriate gear at the appropriate RPM to maintain speed up the grade instead of trying to make up lost speed and momentum.

That tactic tends to work better in hilly terrain or in an urban area where you're going up and down overpasses. If you're pulling a long, steep grade, you probably need a different tactic.

If you hit enough of a grade and bleed enough speed, the cruise control will cut off anyway. It's designed to maintain a set speed at whatever cost, not to drive for you.
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Old 03-15-2020, 11:19 AM   #20
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The problem is that the cruise control can't see a grade coming. So it will allow the rig to drop as much as 5 mph without downshifting. Then it will downshift to 3rd gear at WOT trying to gain back that 5 mph (which it won't be able to do). Instead, it's better, smarter, and easier on the equipment if you give it a little throttle AHEAD of the grade, get one gear downshift, and maintain speed as you go up the grade. Then the rig is already in the appropriate gear at the appropriate RPM to maintain speed up the grade instead of trying to make up lost speed and momentum. That tactic tends to work better in hilly terrain or in an urban area where you're going up and down overpasses. If you're pulling a long, steep grade, you probably need a different tactic. If you hit enough of a grade and bleed enough speed, the cruise control will cut off anyway. It's designed to maintain a set speed at whatever cost, not to drive for you.
My transmission (Aisin) will downshift when my set speed drops 2 mph and can hold my speed on any grade I've yet to experience. I believe the 4.10 ratio attributes to that.
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