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Old 05-28-2015, 01:12 PM   #1
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RAM 1500 Tow/Haul

For those who have a RAM 1500 when do you use the Tow/Haul mode?

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Old 05-28-2015, 01:54 PM   #2
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Every time we tow our Airstream, or a heavy utility trailer. Then we manually back the 6-speed transmission down to 4th gear so there is no hunting of gears in hilly country or headwinds. That also puts the transmission at 1:1 gear ratio, most probably its most efficient, less strenuous, less likely to overheat gear.


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Old 05-28-2015, 05:16 PM   #3
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Then it is not just for long gradual hills?

Just what does tow/haul mode do?
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Old 05-28-2015, 06:09 PM   #4
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Usually allows engine to rev higher before a shorter, firmer shift. May also downshift sooner. Better use of engine power, overall.
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Old 05-28-2015, 06:32 PM   #5
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Chrysler RAM tow/haul is essentially the same on the Jeep Grand Cherokee which I have. I use it virtually all of the time when towing. I especially like the fact that when it is on and you set your speed with a tap of your brakes, going down our long western grades, it trys it's darnedest to keep that speed without you doing any manual downshifting. I have gone down 8 mile long 6 to 8% grades with only a couple of additional brake applications after the first one to set the speed I want to go. This is towing, of course.

Firmer upshifts, fewer shifts overall, and no apparent milage decrease (the engine runs somewhat faster, it seems). Everything is positive about it's use in my opinion.
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Old 05-28-2015, 08:33 PM   #6
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Car & Driver called it the closest thing to a "Sport Mode" in a truck. No other manufacturer's tow mode is quite like the Ram's.

It adjusts all of the vehicle's shift points, disables the MDS and engages engine breaking. And according to two tuners on the Ram forums actually adjusts the vehicles fuel curve (based on observation of the tables during a dyno tune), so if you happen to be using 89 you get even better performance in tow/haul.

(aside a number of guys like to use it for launching at the track, but we're talking guys with the R/T's)

The manual says to use it every time you tow or haul a load. We use it all the time just about.
Family of 5 exploring the USA with a Ram Power Wagon & Airstream in tow.
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Old 05-28-2015, 09:09 PM   #7
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On my 2012 Ram 1500 Hemi I use it every time I approach an uphill on downhill section. On relatively flat road I turn it off and find the tranny works fine w/o 'searching' . Admittedly, I haven't compared mileage, and as others have stated, the manual recommends using it anytime you're hauling a load.
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Old 05-28-2015, 09:22 PM   #8
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IIRC, the Owner's Manual on my 2012 Ram 1500 recommends Tow/Haul anytime towing other than light loads and whenever in hilly terrain to avoid overheating the transmission and unnecessary downshifting.
It only slightly affects gas mileage but will measureably improve towing performance by altering shift-points and engine braking and also changes the torque converter lockup to avoid damage.
I use it anytime I'm towing.

Here's the verbage from the manual:

• When driving in hilly areas, towing a trailer, carrying a heavy load, etc., and
frequent transmission shifting occurs, press the TOW/HAUL switch to select
TOW/HAUL mode. This will improve performance and reduce the potential for
transmission overheating or failure due to excessive shifting. When operating in
TOW/HAUL mode, transmission upshifts are delayed, and the transmission will
automatically downshift (for engine braking) during steady braking maneuvers.
• The "TOW/HAUL Indicator Light" will
illuminate in the instrument cluster to
indicate that TOW/HAUL mode has
been activated. Pressing the switch a
second time restores normal opera-
tion. If the TOW/HAUL mode is de-
sired, the switch must be pressed each
time the engine is started

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