cruise control weirdness

Hello all, I had some weirdness happen in the cruise control function last Monday evening and thought I'd run it by the group. I had to take my riding mower to the shop via utility trailer the other
evening and on the way back home, in an effort to save a little gas, I engaged the cruise control. As I was pulling a trailer, I also had tow/haul mode engaged (is that the proper term?) I had the shifter button pushed in and dash light was on. Here's the thing: on the way home, with an empty trailer, the cruise kicked itself off 3 different times during the 12 mile or so trip. Dash light would go out and throttle would drop to idle. After the first and second time, it came back on with the switch pushed back on. But after the third time, it would not re-engage. Even with tow/haul mode dis-engaged. I checked all the fuses when I got home but found none blown. As it was late I decided to wait until the next day to try anything else. As you can well imagine, the next day, without the trailer attached, it worked fine.
Is CC not supposed to be used while in tow/haul mode? Could faulty wiring in the trailer lights be causing this? (the trailer lights wouldn't work when first hooked up. I had to wiggle the 7-way-to-4-way adaptor around some until they did.) CC has been working fine since that night.
Any ideas, thoughts, spells or incantations? Thanks, Snuffy '04 Z-71, 5.3, 4 sp.auto OD trans
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cc doesn't actually save gas, or at least older cc don't.. In the manual for 92 GMC it strictly says not to use cruse when towing, specially up hills ( I believe this is more in reference to large trailers and camping trailers).
Snow...

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jd8080 you don't have to use tow/haul mode. Its useful for a heavy load but I dragged a cavalier on a two wheel dolly about 200 miles without pushing the button and used cruise all the way. Of course, there ain't a hill more than 2 feet high in Kansasssssssssss. If the road is rough, that will kick off the cruise. Maybe the lurching of the trailer would do it too. I doubt that you could save even a sniff of gas on a 12 mile trip using cruise, but I believe that cruise could save some gas on a trip. Probably not more that a pint though. When I was connecting the car dolly, I grounded my left turn signal and blew the fuse. I didn't fix it right then cause the truck signals still worked, but I didn't have a left turn or stop on the trailer. This had no effect on the cruise control function. I don't have a clue as to why your cruise quit on you and then worked without the trailer. One of the wizards in here will have the right answer though!
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over 70K, the rebuilder told me that if ever towing ANYTHING-even an empty utility trailer-to only do while in D-NEVER, EVER in OD!!! He said the OD was/is too weak to handle any towing, and that in city traffic is wasn't a bad idea to run it that way either. ( I think the manual states that too.) I don't know if the newer trannys are any better, but after paying to rebuild 3-yes, I said 3 units on the '91, I ain't taking any chances. Funny thing was, the only towing that was done before the first failure was an older, rather lightweight aluminum fishing boat-perhaps a dozen short trips of less than 40 miles-and with a couple roundtrip of about 250 miles. And most all towing was done in OD. That first rebuild was done by what was a supposed to be a reputable rebuilder in Douglasville GA (anybody want the name?) and it lasted a little over a year and a half-about 20K . It never seemed right(never towed in OD either) and when it finally went,(yes, it was returned 5-6 times) I picked the nearly cheapest guy in town(I was living in WV by then) This guy was near retirement age, so I figured he knew his stuff. As you can well imagine, after opening 'er up, he started telling me how whoever had been in there before had done a lousy job. Yeah whatever, his rebuild lasted just over a year, about 14K(and by then I had moved back to GA again). I still followed the same no-OD advice whenever towing or in traffic with it too.
Third rebuild was done after extensive research to find the absolute best guy around and while it took a little longer(he wouldn't turn it loose until it was right) I can now say it now shifts better than it did since new and I drove it off the dealer's lot. It's been 15 months now and it still works better than it ever did. I would love it if the resident tranny techs here would care to enlighten me about any of the above-yah, nay, whatever...and what's the best way to not have to not see them again, or anything else that's related...?
These things are supposed to be trucks. Who knew they are so damned fragile! Geez, my old '81 Ford was nearly indestructable compared to any of these modern trucks. Course, it was a 300 c.i. in-line six, manual tranny with no power anything. Not much there to break I guess. Did LOTS of towing with it(a 20 footer fiberglass boat...!) and besides a clutch at 134K, it never even so much as hicupped. I reckon nothing is built like it wuz anymore...
Anyway, I'm supposed to pickup the Troybilt tommorow evening. It's about 350-400 pounds, plus whatever the 5X10 trailer weighs. I'll be in tow mode-using CC, both there and back. I'll let ya's know if it acts up again.
Snuffy
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over 70K, the rebuilder told me that ifever

right, too, about how damn fragile they are nowadays. I was in the service for 20 and used 4wd a lot. Never had these independent front suspension, though. I consider my truck a soccer mom truck. It goes real good in snow but I'd be scared to death to get this thing out there in the mud. If I was having those tranny problems you described, I think I might be looking for that bridge over by the west virginia line somewhere. I could to lose one tranny just cause shit happens. But after that I start shopping for a different piece of junk. I know there's some pretty good wrenchers following this thread. I'm surprised nobody's jumped in with the right answer, yet!
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Yeah, me too. Did I step on somebody's toes or sumpin'? elieve me, it wasn't intentional if I did. And thank you George for the reply but especially thank you for serving your country.
Anyhow, hooked the trailer back up and headed for the mower shop this evening. Now, does the truck have to be traveling a certain speed before CC will engage? 'Cuz it never would turn on while on the way down there. I was running about 42-44 mph and it just would not engage. (My '91 will engage @ 25mph and will then decrease to about 20-if you keep at it.) I had made sure the wiring adaptor was well seated before taking off.
Got to the shop, we loaded up the mower and I started back. Couple miles down the road-doing about 48 mph or so-hit the CC switch and it engages. Stays on fine. Turns off when I hit the brakes for a turn like it's supposed to. A couple times even. And it re-engages fine just like it should.
Now, as before, I'm in tow mode this entire time. And I'm also noticing a slight surging. Not enough to really register on the tach, but I can definitely feel it. Dunno if it's related or not.
Anyway, driving home, I'm thinking well maybe the CC issue was over and then about a half-mile from home-bam, no CC. It's turned it's self off just like the last time. Except it will not re-engage. Even above 50 MPH. Get on home, pull up to the barn, shut it off, unload the mower, unhook the trailer, and take off back down the road. Of course, truck has been cranked and turned off a couple times while backing the trailer in and all. I go to engage CC-it works just fine. Only drove it a couple miles but it stays on the whole time like it should. It dis-engages when I brake to turn around and re-engages on the way back...
So I'm bumfuzzled as hell now. Thinking of taking it in to the dealer as it's still got about 15K left on the warranty but I somehow doubt they'll find much of anything. Would like to know what that surging biz is all about. May do it anyway so I can get me an owner's manual whilst I'm there.
Any ideas, anybody? Thanks, Snuffy
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Snip

26- 30 MPH
Major Snip ---------------
Mr Smiff, if your CC is part of the turn signal handle, roll on down to the stealership with about 70 bucks, and get a new one. Should be a single wire type... connects down near the base of the steering wheel column. They simply pull out of the column, real easy to replace (except for snaking the wire down the column shaft area, but you'll get it down there after about 30 minutes of screaming).
HDS
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Tie a string (or small wire) on the bottom end before pulling it out. Then pull it out. Attach the string to the new unit and use the string to help pull the new one in. Should cut the screaming down to 15 minutes or so.

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Umm, I appreciate the advice but I don't think you fellers quite understand-the CC only acts up when I'm towing a utilty trailer. Otherwise, it works fine-just like it's supposed to. I put about 80 miles on it today-without the trailer, and must of 'em were with the CC on and it never acted up once.
I know-doesn't make any sense to me either. I've pulled this very same trailer many times with my '91 GMC C1500, whilst using the CC, without this problem. My dad says he doesn't recall it doing this with him but he only pulled a trailer with it once or twice.
Still puzzled, Snuffy
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would act up from time to time. When this happened my CC would not work.
My problem was my trailer wiring receptor. I have the 7-prong receptor. When I took it apart, it was full of green corrosion. Put a new receptor ($7 at WalMart) and everything works fine now.
Rich
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Thanks Rich, I'll check that out. Pop's been holdin' out on info-it seems he installed some setup to operate the rear lights of the truck while it was being towed behind his motorhome-I'm really starting to suspect that is where this problem is coming from.
Snuffy
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Ha, Ever been to Ft. Riley. Just memories of climbing up those sandstone hills during basic. Get half way up and come sliding back down!!
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areas. Not open to the public of course. I think those kids would be having a lot of fun if it wasn't the dang Army.
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