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Old 03-22-2021, 04:22 PM   #1
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F-150 Driving Mode

One thing that has annoyed me in my F-150s (2012, 2015, and now 2020) is that Ford does not provide the option of setting a default driving mode. It could be done with a simple software update, but I guess allowing the owner to change the default doesn’t fall under “Ford has a better idea.” If that statement is foreign to you, congratulations: you are still young!
The driving mode as many knows changes the transmission’s shifting profile. My 2020 has five choices: Normal, Tow/Haul, Snow/Ice, ECO (Economy), and Sport. Every time the ignition is switched off and then on, the driving mode will be normal. While it is easy to change by pushing a button on the shift lever, if you want to be in the Tow/Haul mode constantly and the ignition is turned off, you have to remember to switch from Normal to Tow/Haul when you start the engine again. For me, that is a PITA.
I just finished installing a driving mode memory module which retains whatever driving mode you are in when you switch off the ignition. Cost was approximately $50 from Timers.Shop. I am no longer annoyed! It works well and took me about minutes to install as it is “plug and play,” in my case, inside the steering column. Is it worth $50? Probably not for everyone; it would depend if you find having to change to your chosen driving mode every time you start the engine is annoying. For me, it was worth $50.
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Old 03-22-2021, 05:13 PM   #2
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Not exclusive to Ford. My BMW does the same thing, I changed few other settings using a third party software, not sure if this one is available in software.
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Old 03-22-2021, 09:31 PM   #3
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Originally Posted by C&G in FL View Post
One thing that has annoyed me in my F-150s (2012, 2015, and now 2020) is that Ford does not provide the option of setting a default driving mode. It could be done with a simple software update, but I guess allowing the owner to change the default doesn’t fall under “Ford has a better idea.” If that statement is foreign to you, congratulations: you are still young!
The driving mode as many knows changes the transmission’s shifting profile. My 2020 has five choices: Normal, Tow/Haul, Snow/Ice, ECO (Economy), and Sport. Every time the ignition is switched off and then on, the driving mode will be normal. While it is easy to change by pushing a button on the shift lever, if you want to be in the Tow/Haul mode constantly and the ignition is turned off, you have to remember to switch from Normal to Tow/Haul when you start the engine again. For me, that is a PITA.
I just finished installing a driving mode memory module which retains whatever driving mode you are in when you switch off the ignition. Cost was approximately $50 from Timers.Shop. I am no longer annoyed! It works well and took me about minutes to install as it is “plug and play,” in my case, inside the steering column. Is it worth $50? Probably not for everyone; it would depend if you find having to change to your chosen driving mode every time you start the engine is annoying. For me, it was worth $50.
C&G, I did the auto off fix on my f150. This one is intriguing. Do you have the link to what you installed? Thanks.
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Old 03-22-2021, 09:59 PM   #4
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C&G, I did the auto off fix on my f150. This one is intriguing. Do you have the link to what you installed? Thanks.
Two sources: Amazon, search for “Ford driving mode memory module,” or Google Timers.Shop and look for the section for F150.

I did not do the auto stop mod because I read and talked to a lot of people. My initial concern was that it would put undue strain on the starter, but all indications are that the starter is built to take the added “abuse.” And the second reason I didn’t do it is auto stop, or the lack of it kept me from being “stranded” in my 2015 F-150. Used mostly for towing an phantom draw drops battery voltage. So every week or two I would use the truck for errands. Typically, auto stop took a while to start working; the battery had to get back to full charge. One day it never started “auto stopping.” A load test indicated battery was headed south. So I decided if it saves fuel and serves as an early warning of degenerative battery disease perhaps I shouldn’t override it. But I did purchase and send an Autostop Eliminator module that plugs into the OBDll port for a family member because he couldn’t stand autostop.
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Old 03-23-2021, 03:22 PM   #5
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Would that $50 addition void the warranty on a 2020 F-150?
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Old 03-23-2021, 03:49 PM   #6
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Would that $50 addition void the warranty on a 2020 F-150?
Only the warranty on any part of the truck which the addition adversely affected can be voided. If you mess with your transmission mode control and later a door falls of the truck, any dealer who tries to tell you that your whole truck (including the door in this example) is not under warranty because you changed an unrelated part is lying to you and trying to defraud you.

If the added part causes electronic problems, that might not be covered by the warranty. If having any problem that might be related to the added part, first remove that part and see if the problem goes away, before taking it to a dealer for a warranty fix of the problem your addition may have created.
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Old 03-25-2021, 10:03 AM   #7
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I’m fairly certain they do that because of published MPG ratings. It certainly won’t be the same MPG if you’re not in the same transmission mode.

They disable short charging modes on electric cars for a similar reason.
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Old 03-25-2021, 11:57 AM   #8
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I’m fairly certain they do that because of published MPG ratings. It certainly won’t be the same MPG if you’re not in the same transmission mode.

They disable short charging modes on electric cars for a similar reason.
Perhaps, but theoretically the ECO (Economy) mode should provide improved MPG than The Normal mode, to which it defaults every time the ignition is switched off.
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Old 03-25-2021, 02:28 PM   #9
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Perhaps, but theoretically the ECO (Economy) mode should provide improved MPG than The Normal mode, to which it defaults every time the ignition is switched off.
Correct, and my car has an eco mode too, but the mpg ratings were published for “drive” mode, which is the default.

I don’t know for sure that it’s the published mpg that defines the default mode and your inability to change it, but I know that’s what defines some of the other default programming in electric cars.
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