What is cruise control and how it works?

Introduction

Driving on an open road for long distances is a tiring task, especially if one has to constantly press the accelerator. However, automobile companies are now inventing breakthrough technology to further make the lives of drivers easier, one of the major parts the automobile companies have invented is cruise control which now comes standard on many models of cars. Globally many drivers prefer cars that have this feature available due to the ease and convenience it provides. However, one may always wonder, what is cruise control, adaptive cruise control, and what is cruise control used for? This article aims to explain cruise control and when it should be used by drivers following what is the difference between cruise control and speed limiter.

What is Cruise Control?

Proton X70

Driving on an open road for long hours is a task drivers avoid, however with cruise control this tiring task can be made easier, but what is cruise control? Cruise control is a feature that helps reduce the fatigue off of the foot would feel while driving on long roads. This feature imitates human driving by maintaining a constant speed without the driver pressing the accelerator pedal. The way cruise control manages to do so is by the usage actuator to control the throttle keeping the car moving at a constant speed. With the technology advancing at a much faster pace, companies have made cruise control even more noteworthy with the introduction of adaptive cruise control, however, what is adaptive cruise control one may wonder. Keep reading this article to know more about cruise control and adaptive cruise control.

Cruise Control vs. Adaptive Cruise Control

Adaptive cruise control is an advanced version of cruise control. The conventional cruise control sets the speed of the moving vehicle making the cruise without the need of pressing the accelerator pedal, however, adaptive cruise control is much smarter working in the same manner as the cruise control, however, once the speed is set the car keeps moving but also calculates the speed of the car ahead by its sensors to calculate the distance of the moving car ahead. If the car ahead slows down adaptive cruise control with control the acceleration of the vehicle in order to avoid a collision. Furthermore, if the car in front accelerates after breaking the adaptive cruise control sets the speed limit back to the initial preset.

How does Cruise Control work?

difference between cruise control and speed limiter

Now that we know what is cruise control let’s discuss how cruise control work and what is cruise control used for. Cruise control is controlled by a small computer that is usually found under the hood of the car or behind the dashboard, it connects to the throttle system of the vehicle as well as several sensors to manage and control the acceleration of the vehicle. The way these sensors work is by sending a signal to the computer which then decides to accelerate or decelerate accordingly gradually. But what is cruise control used for? Cruise control can be made use of on long drives where the speed limit remains the same over much of the distance and where the driver has to maintain a constant speed. An example would be of highway, where there is low traffic, yet every car has to maintain a speed limit.

How to use Cruise Control?

Cruise control is designed to be used on roads with low traffic, stops, and specific speed limits such as highways and motorways, however, one must always know how to use cruise control in order to ensure safety and under what weather conditions should it not be used. In order to use cruise control, the driver must reach a specific speed limit after which the cruise control can be activated, once activated the driver can slide his foot off the acceleration pedal and the car will continue to cruise at the maintained speed, however, cruise control should not be used in the rain as under harsh weather conditions a driver must be aware of his surroundings, furthermore, acceleration and deceleration would be needed under harsh weather conditions thus, cruise control will reap no benefits to the driver which is why cruise control should not be used in the rain, storm or snowfall. Moreover, one can always wonder if is it bad to use cruise control at low speeds and the answer to that is yes! A very low speed under high traffic conditions will result in a rear collision as a driver will have to accelerate and decelerate repeatedly.

Difference between Cruise Control and Speed Limiter

cruise control at low speeds

Another feature that many drivers may come across in cars other than cruise control is speed limiters. Speed limiters act in a similar way to cruise control however are slightly different. Once a speed limiter is activated it will limit the speed of your car allowing your car to accelerate till a specific speed limit after which the car will not accelerate, in order to main the speed the driver will have to press the acceleration pedal due to this speed limiters are different from cruise control in which the car will cruise on its own once the speed is set.

Pros and Cons of Cruise Control

Cruise control is an amazing feature, however, has its pros and cons just like any feature. Since cruise control manages acceleration, it directly impacts fuel efficiency making the car more fuel efficient. Furthermore, cruise control can also reduce the chances of getting a speeding ticket by managing the speed set by the driver. However, cruise control can make the driverless prepared which can result in a collision thus drivers are advised to keep their sight on the road despite cruise control being activated furthermore as mentioned cruise control is not suitable for harsh weather conditions where a driver has to accelerate and decelerate repeatedly.

Conclusion

Cruise control is a feature that modern cars are now equipped with, however, one must always know when to use cruise control and when it should not be used followed by what is the difference between cruise control and adaptive control, adaptive cruise control, what is cruise control used for and is it bad to use cruise control at low speeds.

FAQs

  • What is cruise control?

    Cruise control is a feature that modern cars are equipped with allowing a driver to cruise at a preset speed without the need to step the foot on the acceleration pedal in order to accelerate.

  • What is adaptive cruise control?

    Adaptive cruise control is an advancement in cruise control allowing a car to accelerate and maintain the preset speed with the incorporation of sensors to automatically decelerate if the car predicts a collision.

  • What is the difference between cruise control and a speed limiter?

    A speed limiter is a feature that once activated will limit the speed of your car allowing your car to accelerate to a specific speed limit after which the car will not accelerate this makes it different than cruise control in which the car cruises at a specific speed.

  • When should cruise control not be used?

    Usage of cruise control is not recommended in heavy traffic conditions and harsh weather conditions.