Traction Control - A System Breakdown - ModernCamaro.com - 5th Generation Camaro Enthusiasts
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post #1 of 40 Old 07-12-2010, 10:12 AM Thread Starter
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Traction Control - A System Breakdown

Most of us think there are only 2 systems that can be affected by that Traction Control switch but actually there are 4 (main systems):

Antilock Braking Sytem (ABS)
Traction Control System (TCS)
Vehicle Electronic Stabiltiy (VES)
Engine Drag Control (EDC)

Each of these systems has a very specific purpose even though they may share control modules and sensors. I'll get into them in a sec...

The module which controls these systems is the Electronic Brake Control Module (EBCM). This module does far more than just handle braking - it is the module which controls everything associated with tires being on the pavement and the car being in a straight line.

Some of the sensors which return data back to the EBCM include: the wheel speed sensor, the lateral accelerometer sensor, the yaw rate sensor and the steering wheel positioning sensor. Based on the names alone, you can imagine the type of calculations the EBCM has been engineered to make.

Anyways, getting back to the traction/braking systems - here's a bit of a run down in terms of what each system actually does.

ABS

Nothing you don't already know except that the system can release, hold or increase the amount of brake pressure to any wheel independently of each others requirement. It cannot however, increase more brake pressure than what the master cylinder is dishing out so if you are in a jam and your ABS is on, jump on that brake pedal as hard as you can so you can give the system the max amount of braking pressure if it needs it. If it's too much, don't worry, the system will figure out which wheel(s) to lighten up on.


TCS

The TCS actually has a "graduated" design. When the EBCM detects drive wheel slippage, the FIRST thing it does is sends a signal to the ECM telling it to reduce the amount of torque it is sending to those wheels. How does the ECM do that? It retards the timing and starts shutting down fuel injectors. (anyone starting to see how having TCS on affects seat of your pants acceleration?).

If this is not enough to control wheel spin, then the EBCM will begin applying brake pressure to the drive wheels in conjunction to what the ECM is doing. All this happens in miliseconds.


EDC

When a driver let's of the gas rapidly or downshifts to cause the rear tires to skid, this system will actually have the EBCM send a message to the ECM telling it to increase torque to the rear wheels (throttle increase) so that wheel lockup is prevented.


VES

The Camaro really does calculate the yaw rate in order to take the car out of a slide. In simple terms, the yaw rate is the amount of angle the car is sliding sideways. So if you want to drift the car, you must turn this system off or it will constantly be trying to bring the car back.

How does the system determine yaw rate? It uses 3 parameters: position of the steering wheel, the speed of the vehicle and sideways acceleration of the vehicle.

This system will generally kick in under performance driving but it will also kick in when you are driving on a loose gravel road and the rear end kicks out on you. This system will kick in even if you slide out on a gravel road while your foot is off the gas or brake pedal.

So all this to say what? There is a lot more going on in this car than you might think. The car gives you the ability to turn these systems off in various ways but it's there if you need it!



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post #2 of 40 Old 07-12-2010, 11:26 AM
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COol was wondering what the difference was between the auto and stick when it comes to Control SYstems. Great info
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post #3 of 40 Old 07-12-2010, 11:52 AM
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So is the "Stabilitrak" system an actual discrete system or just a new set of parameters for the TCS?

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post #4 of 40 Old 07-12-2010, 12:04 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by weland View Post
So is the "Stabilitrak" system an actual discrete system or just a new set of parameters for the TCS?
that is just GM's names for traction & stability control

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post #5 of 40 Old 07-12-2010, 02:16 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by RedJewel2SS View Post
that is just GM's names for traction & stability control
They allow you to turn on and off 2 separate things (with the button), traction control and stabilitrak. It shows 2 separate warning lights on the dash. Why be able to turn off stablitrak separately if it's the same thing as traction control?

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post #6 of 40 Old 07-12-2010, 02:24 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by weland View Post
They allow you to turn on and off 2 separate things (with the button), traction control and stabilitrak. It shows 2 separate warning lights on the dash. Why be able to turn off stablitrak separately if it's the same thing as traction control?
i dunno, i just know when i tap the button twice and it is in "competitive mode" the car drives like a bat outta hell!

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post #7 of 40 Old 07-12-2010, 02:28 PM Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by weland View Post
They allow you to turn on and off 2 separate things (with the button), traction control and stabilitrak. It shows 2 separate warning lights on the dash. Why be able to turn off stablitrak separately if it's the same thing as traction control?
One is the TCS system and the other is the VES system. Regardless, when you put the car into Competitive mode, these systems are still on - they are just "detuned" to allow you to drive the car more enthusiasticly before the systems kick in.



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post #8 of 40 Old 07-12-2010, 02:29 PM Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by RedJewel2SS View Post
i dunno, i just know when i tap the button twice and it is in "competitive mode" the car drives like a bat outta hell!
Have you tried the 7 second button hold yet?



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post #9 of 40 Old 07-12-2010, 03:14 PM
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Quote:
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Have you tried the 7 second button hold yet?
Ok what is that?

I apparantly havent tried it, unless it 7 seconds on the gas just after down shifting into 3rd gear at 60mph.

What a rush.

Ok, Ok...What is the 7 second button hold?
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post #10 of 40 Old 07-12-2010, 03:22 PM Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Ken View Post
Ok what is that?

I apparantly havent tried it, unless it 7 seconds on the gas just after down shifting into 3rd gear at 60mph.

What a rush.

Ok, Ok...What is the 7 second button hold?
It's the .....

Hold the trac button down until the two TCS lights come on at the same time (aprox 6 to 7 seconds). It turns all traction/stability control stuff off completely and the car acts like it's on crack. Don't bother looking in the owners manual for this mode because it's not written down anywhere.

If you let it rip when in this mode, the car can easily go sideways so I warn you - play around with it in a deserted area somewhere. This is the mode which the drifters use.



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