Tow Button vs +/- on gear shifter - GMC Acadia Forum: AcadiaForum.net
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post #1 of 12 (permalink) Old 04-14-2017, 04:24 PM Thread Starter
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Tow Button vs +/- on gear shifter

Hey there...

I just bought a used 2016 Acadia with the tow package. It has the trailer button on the dash, but I am a little confused as to what the difference is, if any, between using that vs using the +/- button on the gear shifter. Enlighten me, oh wise ones! Thanks!

2016 GMC Acadia SLE2. Quicksilver Metallic, FWD, V92 Tow Package
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post #2 of 12 (permalink) Old 04-14-2017, 04:59 PM
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Re: Tow Button vs +/- on gear shifter

Towing a trailer requires a bit more power (torque) from the engine to pull the added weight. With the tow button engaged, the transmission will stay in a lower gear longer to give that added power. The tow button is most commonly used with the transmission in 'D'rive. The tow button adjusts shift points automatically, whereas the +/- button (with transmission downshifted to 'L') can override any automatic function. If you knew exactly how the tow function was programmed, you could duplicate it manually with the button.

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post #3 of 12 (permalink) Old 04-14-2017, 05:33 PM Thread Starter
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Re: Tow Button vs +/- on gear shifter

Quote:
Originally Posted by Speleos
Towing a trailer requires a bit more power (torque) from the engine to pull the added weight. With the tow button engaged, the transmission will stay in a lower gear longer to give that added power. The tow button is most commonly used with the transmission in 'D'rive. The tow button adjusts shift points automatically, whereas the +/- button (with transmission downshifted to 'L') can override any automatic function. If you knew exactly how the tow function was programmed, you could duplicate it manually with the button.
Thanks! So sounds like the button does the work for you rather than having to figure it out yourself.

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post #4 of 12 (permalink) Old 04-14-2017, 05:40 PM
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Re: Tow Button vs +/- on gear shifter

Quote:
Originally Posted by RaleighMike
Thanks! So sounds like the button does the work for you rather than having to figure it out yourself.
It can. Actually, the manual recommends putting the transmission in 'L' and shifting manually with the +/- button. See page 234: https://my.gmc.com/content/dam/gmown...r%20Manual.pdf. Many people don't desire to do that.

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post #5 of 12 (permalink) Old 04-14-2017, 09:52 PM
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Re: Tow Button vs +/- on gear shifter

If you have a towed item that has its own battery--- youll want to use the tow button.
This leaves the alternators output 'on' all the time to charge that battery (higher output).

Normally the computer controls the alternators battery and when the vehicles load is low- it lowers alternator output.

Also, if youre towing- and use the flash to pass feature- (tapping the stalk)... the default is to flash 3 times.
With Tow button on, it flashes 6 times.

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post #6 of 12 (permalink) Old 04-14-2017, 10:24 PM
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Re: Tow Button vs +/- on gear shifter

Quote:
Originally Posted by rbarrios
... the flash to pass feature- ...
This feature is a headlight function - nothing to do with turn signals. The turn signal function is described as press and release.

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post #7 of 12 (permalink) Old 04-15-2017, 08:37 PM
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Re: Tow Button vs +/- on gear shifter

thanks for the correction.
that is not flash to pass...

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post #8 of 12 (permalink) Old 04-17-2017, 02:45 PM
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Re: Tow Button vs +/- on gear shifter

Quote:
Originally Posted by Speleos
This feature is a headlight function - nothing to do with turn signals. The turn signal function is described as press and release.
Woh, woh, woh, Your telling me that my car will automatically flash my lights 3 times to pass?? I've never used that function. I've always just tweaked it once when I do it. How does one initiate this 3 flashes to pass function

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post #9 of 12 (permalink) Old 04-17-2017, 03:52 PM
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Re: Tow Button vs +/- on gear shifter

Quote:
Originally Posted by NWAcadia
Woh, woh, woh, Your telling me that my car will automatically flash my lights 3 times to pass?? I've never used that function. I've always just tweaked it once when I do it. How does one initiate this 3 flashes to pass function
I didn't say anything about headlights flashing 3 times!! That was an RB thing when he mentioned "flash-to-pass" in his comment!!! All I did was correct him about the terminology in use of turn signals.

From the manual:

Flash-to-Pass
With the turn signal lever in the low-beam position,
pull the lever toward you momentarily to switch
to high-beam (to signal that you are going to pass).
If the headlamps are on, they will return to
low-beam when the lever is released.
This feature operates even when the headlamps
are off.



Turn and Lane-Change Signals
...
To signal a lane change, raise or lower the lever
until the arrow starts to flash. Hold it there until you
complete your lane change. The lever will return
by itself when you release it. If you momentarily
press and release the lever, the turn signal
will flash three times.


I like the press and release feature of the turn signals - use it all the time to signal intentions on the freeway.

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post #10 of 12 (permalink) Old 04-17-2017, 03:56 PM
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Re: Tow Button vs +/- on gear shifter

Quote:
Woh, woh, woh, Your telling me that my car will automatically flash my lights 3 times to pass??
No,no,no! If you just momentarily touch your turn signal lever the turn signal will flash three times. Convenient when just changing lanes. If you have tow haul on, it will flash six times.

Flash to pass is turning on the high beam head lights momentarily or as long as you hold the lever up. Two separate functions using the same lever.

Bayner66, writing from The Lone Star State
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