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Old 06-19-2019, 03:50 PM   #1
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Tow Haul Button - does it matter?

Okay, here we go newbie stupid question #2...
I have a 2019 Ram 2500 (4x4 Crew Cab) with a 6.4 L Hemi towing a 25 foot Flying Cloud. I know the Tow Haul button changes the shift points (holds them longer?) but once I get rolling and up to speed, does that really matter?
Should I push it in and just leave it in for the entire duration of the tow or just when accelerating to speed?
Advice and knowledge is welcome! Thanks
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Old 06-19-2019, 03:55 PM   #2
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since i'm moving toward getting a Ram myself, i'd like to know the answer to this. i'd imagine it's a button you leave activated for the duration of your trip.
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Old 06-19-2019, 04:15 PM   #3
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Mine is a 2007 Ram diesel. I run it in tow-haul always when pulling. Changes the shift points and makes the shift more positive. In the mountains when running 55 or less I go to the next step, OD off. I think using the tow haul is easier on the transmission. On flat ground it makes no difference if you cut it off while at speed so there is no point to doing that. Your trailer is probably right at the bottom of the weight that actually needs tow haul. But I think using it will preserve the transmission.
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Old 06-19-2019, 04:16 PM   #4
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For me in my gas Silverado 2500, unless I am in the mountains, I leave it off, and enjoy another mile per gallon.
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Old 06-19-2019, 04:17 PM   #5
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I always activate it.
I forget when I get gas and it defaults to off, but usually I catch up.
Yes, it changes the shift points much higher, so you'll stay in a lower gear longer.
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Old 06-19-2019, 04:40 PM   #6
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I have a 2017 F250 diesel but I don't imagine the tow-haul feature on my truck works that much differently than it does in the Dodge.

Staying in each gear longer while accelerating is one aspect of the tow-haul feature as is the transmission kicking down into a lower gear earlier under load. The Powerstroke in my truck has so much torque that I don't find that the transmission downshifts excessively. The most important feature of tow haul, IMHO, is that the transmission will shift into successively lower gears when the brakes are applied. This is especially useful while descending a grade and helps with speed control.

On the straight and level I don't find much difference in how the transmission shifts so I leave it in tow-haul mode most of the time, including when the cruise control is activated.
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Old 06-19-2019, 05:52 PM   #7
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Hi

Turn it on whenever you are towing. Fiddling with it while in motion is a distraction you very much do *not* need.

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Old 06-19-2019, 06:23 PM   #8
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Do some research for your brand, but for GM, it not only raises shift points, activates decel down shifting, but also raises line pressure to keep more clutch application force. GM recommends using it when gcw is at or above 75% of rated gcwr.
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Old 06-19-2019, 06:23 PM   #9
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Found this in my ‘19 Ram 1500 owner’s manual - sounds like it’s “as needed” but as other posters have said, I leave it engaged when towing.

Automatic Transmission
The DRIVE range can be selected when towing. The transmission controls include a drive strategy to avoid frequent shifting when towing. However, if frequent shift- ing does occur while in DRIVE, select TOW/HAUL mode or select a lower gear range (using the Electronic Range Select (ERS) shift control).
NOTE: Using TOW/HAUL mode or selecting a lower gear range (using the ERS shift control) while operating the vehicle under heavy loading conditions will improve per- formance and extend transmission life by reducing exces- sive shifting and heat build up. This action will also provide better engine braking.
Tow/Haul Mode
To reduce potential for automatic transmission overheat- ing, activate TOW/HAUL mode when driving in hilly areas, or select a lower gear range (using the Electronic Range Select (ERS) shift control) on more severe grades.
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Old 06-19-2019, 06:31 PM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by dznf0g View Post
Do some research for your brand, but for GM, it not only raises shift points, activates decel down shifting, but also raises line pressure to keep more clutch application force. GM recommends using it when gcw is at or above 75% of rated gcwr.
x 2
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Old 06-19-2019, 06:36 PM   #11
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From what I understand the Tow/Haul button in my 2016 RAM also tells the engine control unit to downshift on grades while towing and activate the anti-sway features, among other things.
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Old 06-19-2019, 07:07 PM   #12
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I use tow haul when I am towing in the hills is because it engages grade braking when needed. Without tow haul turned on it does not, according to my owners manual.
At other times I will use tow haul in stop and go traffic because it seems to be easier on the transmission and keeps the RPMs higher, at the top of the power curve, at low speeds
When I am in the flat lands I'll switch it off so that it will go into the higher gears easier for better fuel economy.
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Old 06-19-2019, 07:44 PM   #13
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MY 2013 Ram 2500 Cummins will not go into 7th gear in Tow Haul resulting in slightly less fuel economy which, in my mind, is more than offset by the advantages mentioned by the others. I always (unless I forget at a fuel stop) use tow haul when towing.


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Old 06-19-2019, 09:16 PM   #14
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Another nice feature is that it prevents your vehicle from lurching when you are hooking up. We had a steep driveway. Whenever I'd line up the vehicle for hitching, and then put it in park, it would lurch forward. Frustrating. Tow/haul mode prevents that. It holds the vehicle in the right place while you lower the trailer. Maybe this is less important when one person is lowering the trailer for you while your foot is on the brake, but it's really useful when you are doing it by yourself.
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