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Open Roads Forum  >  Tech Issues

 > Workhorse Cruise Control Issue

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Loren Ross

Reno, NV

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Posted: 02/28/09 11:41pm Link  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

Can anyone tell me if it's possible to adjust the sensitivity or response time of the Cruise Control system? I have a 2007 Southwind on a Workhorse W22 chassis, with the 8.1L GM engine, auto trans.

There is a substantial delay in the response time of the cruise control when encountering a hill. My rig will drop anywhere from 4 to 8 MPH before the cruise control will kick the transmission into a lower gear. On some bigger hills, the cruise control has waited to downshift until I had lost 10 MPH, and by then there was no way I could get momentum back.

I do try to anticipate the need to downshift and I will punch the gas pedal to force the shift, but that doesn't always work. Sometimes this action has no effect at all until the rig has slowed substantially.

Unfortunately, I don't know how the Cruise Control even works, so I'm looking for someone to give me some ideas on how I can fix this problem...

radardog

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Posted: 03/01/09 06:49am Link  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

When going uphill I have to push down on the gas a little to keep the cruise from doing what you say. The RPM's are just too much when it causes the transmission to drop an gear.


The fan always wins


dgo1369

Georgetown, TX, US

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Posted: 03/01/09 07:17am Link  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

Loren Ross wrote:

Can anyone tell me if it's possible to adjust the sensitivity or response time of the Cruise Control system? I have a 2007 Southwind on a Workhorse W22 chassis, with the 8.1L GM engine, auto trans.

There is a substantial delay in the response time of the cruise control when encountering a hill. My rig will drop anywhere from 4 to 8 MPH before the cruise control will kick the transmission into a lower gear. On some bigger hills, the cruise control has waited to downshift until I had lost 10 MPH, and by then there was no way I could get momentum back.

I do try to anticipate the need to downshift and I will punch the gas pedal to force the shift, but that doesn't always work. Sometimes this action has no effect at all until the rig has slowed substantially.

Unfortunately, I don't know how the Cruise Control even works, so I'm looking for someone to give me some ideas on how I can fix this problem...


Mine is kinda a two part answer. Until just recently, any time I approached an incline that I thought my cruise control could not sustain, I took my MH out of cruise and just goosed the accelerator to climb the hill. Since I live in the flat lands, most of my travel to my destination is uphill!

Recently I upgraded my MH with Ultrapower. I haven't yet experienced the type of travel I will be doing this summer, but initial reaction to the hills around here (Hill country of Texas) have been extremely positive. I hold no illusion that I will be using cruise while climbing to some of the 11,000 - 12,000' elevations I have to climb this summer, but I will be using it a great deal more getting there than before and will be climbing MUCH easier than before.


Dennis Osha


rvten

Crossville,TN

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Posted: 03/01/09 08:24am Link  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

I never use cruise control in any of my MH's in the hills. My past A's or this C. It never knows when to shift at the right time.
Do not see your problem as just a Workhorse thing.


Tom & Bonnie
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Wayne Dohnal

Bend, OR.

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Posted: 03/01/09 09:45am Link  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

All of the cruise controls are now implemented with software in the engine computer and there aren't any adjustments to be made (except by the manufacturer). As new as your rig is, I'd think it has a 'drive by wire' throttle, where there are no mechanical components at all in the cruise system. If it were to be the older type with a vacuum servo pulling on the throttle via a mechanical connection, you could look for binding or a weak vacuum source.


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wa8yxm

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Posted: 03/01/09 01:19pm Link  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

Workhorse uses the same CC that GM uses, I've not worked on one of those since 1995, but at that time it was indeed possible to adjust them.

How to do it, I can't tell you

If you find out I'd like to know, I need to adjust the one on my towed.


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othertonka

Stockton, CA

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Posted: 03/01/09 01:25pm Link  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

I solve this problem by taking control my self. In my opinion a "Cruise control" is just what it says, for "cruising" and that is flat land. In the mountains I take control and turn the cruise off and the overdrive off. Then if I sense I need a downshift, I manually just slip the gear shift lever down 1 gear and it gives me a smooth downshift. That way by using the throttle and manual shift, "I" am in control, not some automatic system. The Allison does a real good job of managing these downshift for those who don't want to be bothered by manually downshifting but in my case I again want to do my own thing, I enjoy driving and this is part of the experience. Might not work for some. But My answer to your question about Cruise in th emountains is turn it off. Then you won't have those severe RPM changes. Just offered as food for thought.
One other thought, if you have the cruise control set for say 65 MPH, why would anyone expect it to try and maitain 65 up a mountain when you know in your mind that you will never be able to climb that mountain at 65? It won't do it so I suggest, turn it off.

* This post was edited 03/01/09 01:42pm by othertonka *


Othertonka
2004 Southwind 32VS 8.1 Workhorse chassis
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Loren Ross

Reno, NV

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Posted: 03/01/09 11:30pm Link  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

OtherTonka, you said something that almost made sense to me. You said "The Allison does a real good job of managing these downshift for those who don't want to be bothered by manually downshifting...."

That got me thinking maybe that's my problem. The Allison won't downshift when it needs to. Maybe my problem has nothing to do with the cruise control after all...

I don't disagree with your position that I should take control myself, but I see no reason to do that on small hills normally encountered in the "flatlands". I never intended to maintain useage of the cruise control in the mountains, which by the way I define mountains as a 3% grade or more. In mountain terrain, I always kill the CC and use my own skills. The main reason I use the CC is to avoid meeting new Highway Patrolmen! (And I Like Highway Patrolmen!!)

By the way, I wish it was easy for me to manually downshift in my rig, but somebody at Fleetwood decided to design the 6 speed Allison with gears 1, 2 & 3 on the column, with gears 4, 5 & 6 on a 3-position switch on the dashboard. And they didn't put this switch in a very convenient place, it's difficult to reach while driving. Downshifting one gear requires me to take my eyes off the road and reach down to the lower dash area.. Not very safe, so at times and depending on traffic conditions, I just can't downshift manually, I have to jam the pedal to the floor and then it usually jumps to third gear no matter what speed I'm at.


Now my next question, does anyone know if the Allison trans can be adjusted to downshift earlier????

rvten

Crossville,TN

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Posted: 03/02/09 08:07am Link  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

The Allison trans can be reprogramed. But you will need to see an Allison shop for it.

I also suggest you go to www.irv2.com and go to the Workhorse forum.

othertonka

Stockton, CA

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Posted: 03/02/09 10:01am Link  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

Loren, I agree that dash switch is a poor design. Mine is a 5 speed and the dash switch is just for 5th, overdrive, on and off, and the other 4 are on the shift lever on the columne. I agree that dash switch makes it kind of hard to do the downshift manually. I am looking for a way to move that switch to the gear shift somehow but I am still in the "Planning" stage as of now. The allison is supposed to learn your driving habits and set a shift pattern that suits how you drive. Maybe a reflash, like disconnecting the battery for 30 minutes, would put it back in that mode and you could start over. Just a thought. Or a trip to an allison dealer. Good luck.

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