Drivers just realising little-known hidden button that helps car stay on the road | The Sun

A DRIVING expert has revealed a little-known hidden button that can help your car stay on the road in tricky conditions.

Jason from SamkoWorkShop, who specialises in off-roading, took to his YouTube channel to share a handy hack for when your tyres are struggling to grip.

While it may seem counterintuitive, he actually recommended turning off your motor's traction control system when you're in a slippery spot, at least partially.

Using his Toyota Tacoma truck he showed viewers how to do this and explained how it can actually help gain more grip in certain scenarios.

Driving through a patch of sandy dirt track, Jason said: "This is soft sand, we're digging in…it's fighting me.

"We are stuck, can't go any further.



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"Let's hit this button…look at that, even where we were stuck it's blowing us right out of here now like nothing."

He explained that the button in question disables a couple of important systems which are necessary in everyday driving but can actually hinder you when bogged down in mud, sand or snow.

By pressing it, he greatly reduces the traction control, disables the vehicle stability control and activates something called a limited-slip differential.

The differential is the system on a car that allows the wheels to rotate at different speeds, which is necessary when taking sharp corners.

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A limited-slip differential is useful in low-grip situations as it limits the difference in speed between the wheels, preventing one from receiving excessive power, which would result in a skid or spin.

Similarly, when active, the traction control automatically stops a wheel spinning if low traction is detected, making it harder to avoid getting stuck.

It is designed to prevent a loss of grip but, at low speeds, can hinder efforts to escape slippery patches of road.

If your car doesn't have a limited-slip differential, then you can simply turn the traction control off in these situations.

This will allow the wheels to spin freely, actually giving you more chance of making use of the limited traction available.

You can disable the system using the designated button, usually found on the dashboard, which is marked with the symbol of a car with two wavy lines coming from the wheels and the word "off" underneath.

The switch is often accompanied by a light which, when on, indicates that the traction control has been deactivated.

However, it is vital that you do not use this feature outside of low-speed situations where you are trying to free your car from becoming bogged down.

Once you've achieved that, it should be turned back on immediately.

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In any situation where you are travelling at speed, especially if it is raining or icy, the button should never be used as it could make you more likely to lose control of the car.

Keep traction control on as a general rule unless in the specific circumstances where temporarily disabling it could be beneficial and always consult your owner's manual for advice.

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