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How to disable the stability/traction control?

Discussion in 'Gen III 2010+ Prius Technical Discussion' started by cossie1600, Aug 16, 2009.

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  1. cossie1600

    cossie1600 Active Member

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    Hi, I am looking to disable the traction/stability control of my Prius. Is there anyway to do it? I don't see a button

    Thanks
  2. Rokeby

    Rokeby Member

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    It is with regrets that I report that the long and the short of it is the
    stability/traction control can't be disabled... at least not on the Gen II.

    It sounds harsh, but the only recourse is to Live With It.

    There are many Gen II threads on what to expect, how to use its's
    positive features, and minimize the negative ones.

    Use the search tool with "traction control" and "traction control" to
    learn what the Gen II version is like.

    Her's a short thread with good, solid info to get you started:

    http://priuschat.com/forums/gen-ii-...on/42846-traction-control-worked-i-think.html

    It will probably take most of the coming winter to get enough
    reliable first hand reports of the innumerable minor variations of how
    the Gen III systems work to get a good solid understandings of subtle
    differences between Gen II and Gen III.
  3. cossie1600

    cossie1600 Active Member

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    I am hoping there is a TCS refuse or something. Worst case scenrio, I guess pulling ABS might be another way
  4. cossie1600

    cossie1600 Active Member

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    How to disable stabilty/traction control

    I didn't get any response the first time I asked, want to see if anyone found a way to disable it yet.

    Thanks
  5. Bobsprius

    Bobsprius BobPrius

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    Re: How to disable stabilty/traction control

    I do not believe it can be disabled and IMO I would not want to. It's there for safety and I think it may be a good thing to have. It maintains traction and control when you lose traction either by skidding or swerveing suddenly. I would want it active in case of such event. We have a lot of deer here in NYS and I had one encounter and the car handled like a dream as I swerved left to right in a second. Why may I ask would you want to "Disable" such system???
  6. Paradox

    Paradox Prius Enthusiast / Moderator Staff Member

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    Re: How to disable stabilty/traction control

    It's there for safety of the hybrid system, so no it cannot be disabled. After owning a 2006, it's much improved on the 2010 and doesn't nearly kick in as often.
  7. cossie1600

    cossie1600 Active Member

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    Can't use stability control when I am on the track
  8. djasonw

    djasonw Active Member

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    Taking the Prius to the track. You are joking right?
  9. JimboPalmer

    JimboPalmer Nadir of Wrongness

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    Re: How to disable stabilty/traction control



    You DID get the correct response the first time you asked, just not the response you wanted to hear.

    There is no way to disable the traction control, even the land speed record Prius with 26 inch tires had to adapt to the traction control. Damn Computers.

    Got Hybrid? - Sport - Auto Reviews - Car and Driver
  10. pwrup

    pwrup Junior Member

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    Re: How to disable stabilty/traction control



    I found a easy way to disable the traction control along with the vehicle stability control. I have done this on my 07-Prius and it only needs a on/off switch to disable it. If this got your attention, let me know and I'll post how to do it.

    - pwrup
  11. cossie1600

    cossie1600 Active Member

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    Please post.

    I can pull the ABS fuse, but I want to keep the ABS
  12. pwrup

    pwrup Junior Member

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    Well, if you still want the ABS, I don't know how to just keep that alive. However, the traction control, VSC and ABS will disable itself if it thinks there is a problem with the brake system and it will light all the dash lights that have anything to do with the brakes such as the VSC/ABS/Brake etc. So all you need to do is find some way of injecting a fault in the brake system. Well this turns out to be a lot easier than you might think. All I had to do is open the hood and disconnect the brake fluid level cable. The cable is a little hard to access but when it is removed, the system think there is a problem and all the lights on the dash will go on and thoes systems get disabled. The car should be able to run and get you out of the situation where the traction control gets you stuck (this is when on a snow or loose gravel incline the wheels won't spin). This should only be used as a needed since all those safety features are now disabled. My plan is to run a wire in series from the brake fluid connector to a switch in one of the knockouts by the dimming switch. I will also look into finding a cable connector that could match the plug so no wire modification may be needed.
    2 people like this.
  13. cossie1600

    cossie1600 Active Member

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    I ran it with everything on. It turns out the car barely has enough power to spin the tires in the rain, so traction control never really had a chance to kick in. When it did come on, it didn't completely cut power. So I guess you just have to deal with it
  14. HTMLSpinnr

    HTMLSpinnr Moderator Staff Member

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    Like Mark said, the 2010 TC is far less agressive than the previous generation. 2004 was probably most aggressive, so for me, it's night and day ;-)
  15. nineinchnail1024

    nineinchnail1024 New Member

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    This is the one thing that drives me nuts about the prius. I'm used to cars with no nanny systems. I grew up driving 5 speeds with no ABS or TC. To be honest with you, I feel more OUT of control when the TC kicks in because I can't diffuse the situation the way I see fit. When I hop in my mustang, there's a nifty button to my right that says "TCS OFF". It's the first thing I press every time I start the car. Why can't the prius have that option?
  16. a64pilot

    a64pilot Active Member

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    Pretty sure it's to protect the PSD. If you have to design the drivetrain to be robust enough to withstand the shockloads of a spinning tire suddenly getting traction, then it has to be bigger, heavier, and have greater transmission losses due to internal friction and rotating mass than one that can be sized for a car that can't really spin the tires.
    Just a theory, no proof, but it fits.
    If anyone wanted to track, as in a track day on a road racing circuit a Prius just be aware the 99% of the public get's around a race track faster with traction control and ABS. Only the 1% of the true professional racers are better than the computer, and then only sometimes. Doubt you would break traction on a dry track in a Prius anyway, even a wet one actually.
    1 person likes this.
  17. patsparks

    patsparks An Aussie perspective

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    Why not?
    I intent to hillclimb mine when the tide and the moon and my shifts and race day all align.
  18. wvgasguy

    wvgasguy New Member

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    Re: How to disable stabilty/traction control



    In my TCH once, I tried to pull off of the driveway up a very small grade in the grass. The grass was damp from the morning dew. I got about 6 feet onto the grass when the car simply shut down due to loss of traction. I was able to roll back onto the drive way. Had I pulled "down" the slope and not been able to back up I guess I would have had to call a wrecker. This was not a steep slope and not bad terrain. It was in the spring (good weather).

    There are times when I would like to initiate a small amount of wheel spin, without overspining or heating the system. It seems like they could have built into it some type of reduced spin so as not to hurt the system rather than just have the car grunt once and stop.

    I'm very cautious where I take my Prius. Fortunately with my Highlander Hybrid, it so far has been able to gain traction with at least one wheel. However I still don't feel comfortable if the weater is bad, so my wife may be driving the Expedition this winter on bad days.

    Snow tires would help, but possibly give a false sence of security.

    As far as for normal driving, I can't imagine ever wanting to shut down the system.
  19. qbee42

    qbee42 My other car is a boat

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    Toyota did build in the ability to spin the wheels. Even my 2006 can spin - the 2010 much more so. The earlier traction control is too fussy, but 2006 and on you can spin. I've rocked mine out of snow on many occasions.

    Part of the problem is that you can't hear the wheels spinning. On a conventional car you can mash down the pedal and hear the "NeNeNeWhirNeeeeeeeneee" sound of spinning rubber. On the Prius the spin is controlled. You can't induced uncontrolled spin.

    Another issue I have with this topic is the assumption that a stuck Prius is stuck because of traction control. Maybe, but generally it's not the case. Cars get stuck. Even my Jeep C-J5 routinely got stuck. All you need is low traction and a grade.

    It's easy to blame things on non-causal relationships. With the Prius we hear it all of the time with traction control and ABS. Traction control gets blamed every time someone can't get up a snowy hill. ABS gets blamed when a Prius has trouble stopping in a low friction situation. Basic physics is at play in these situation and has more to do with it than either of these automatic systems. Tires have a much bigger contribution. The Prius doesn't run wide, soft tires. Without good traction, turning off ABS and traction control is not going to help.

    Tom
    2 people like this.
  20. chrisj428

    chrisj428 Active Member

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    Tom,

    I think the concern here is not having the ability to disable the system in order to launch the car once already stuck.

    A good example is when the nice guys come in and plow my lot. Sure, the throughway is nice and clear (once I'm able to get past the foot of snow now piled in front of my bumper).

    Being able to disable just the TRAC part of the system would allow me to spin the tires enough to launch over that impediment. When I had my GTI and my GLI, the ESP would inhibit wheelspin to the point where having it engaged was detrimental. Fortunately, a button on the dash allowed me to shut off the traction control portion of the ESP, spin the tires and launch the car out of the embankment.

    I guess I'd better start carrying a foldable snow shovel or somesuch. :smow:
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