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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
This is my first trip to the forum as i bought a Sportage First Edition in September. Love the car and was gutted on Monday when travelling down the steep icy slope at my house it lost all traction and slid and hit a wall. Only a scrape in the bumper thank goodness but so annoyed all the same. I had the DBC on and was in first gear. Could someone please help with exactly how to use this. Should it be used on a steep icy road or should i just use first gear braking myself. what happens if all 4 wheels hit ice and the DBC hits the brakes?

Thanks in advance for any help.

ps - the car handles beautifully in the recent snowy conditions and can get up hills most others were struggling.
 

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Sorry to hear that.


Yeah I suspect DBC wont make much difference, unless it has the car under control in the first place.



Slowing down in gear is definatley the way forward in snow at least!



Slim
 

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I agree with Slim. I'd lock the 4WD manually then descend on the gears which will work on all the wheels in this mode and hopefully will stop them from locking. Even ABS doesn't like ice!
 

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Yep, and traction control is pretty useless in the snow too!


If it's v-steep , defo put it in 50/50 4wd lock.



I've been pushing my FE around corners in the snow for fun. Slight slippage at the back then 4wd kicks in and away we go like it's on rails.



Loving it in the snow. My old Mazda 6 was awful!



Slim
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
Thanks for the swift reply folks as i was getting nervous as i have to descend the hill every morning. Its very steep at the top which is the point i turn on to the hill and it is slighty cambered. the problem i had was with a parked jeep that failed to make it up and was parked on the hill and the camber took me towards it with the ice which left no space for recovery.

if i put 4wd lock and use gears should i leave the dbc off to stop it from automatically braking?

when its just snow the dbc takes it down the hill lovely but it seemed to be caught out by the ice.

David
 

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My undertanding is that DBC or the similar hill descent control works by controlling your speed in a feet off situation by selectively applying the brakes using the ABS. The problem on ice is that even ABS struggles as the wheels lock up very easily as there is so little resistence and you end-up sliding some distance before they unlock. There is a general acceptance that even with ABS braking distances on ice are much worse than other surfaces - or put another way, even the best brakes are less effective.


When you use the gears to control speed, the idea is that the wheels keep turning, maintain some contact and give you some control. I've driven old Land Rovers down very steep hills off road with my feet off the pedals and the very low gearing & 4WD giving me perfect control. The problem with most (all?) SUBVs is that they do not have a low ratio gearbox so on a very steep hill the engine braking may not be enough to keep your speed down tosomething comfortable - hence the reason DBC or HDC was invented - to overcome the lack of low gearing for descents.



In your situation, I would turn-off the DBC in ice, manually lock the 4WD, select 1st gear and try to go down the hill with no foot contact on any pedals. It will be slow but is as safe as you can be. If the car starts to run away you'll have to use the brakes but on - off and not hard unless it's the last resort before impact!



Let us all know how it goes please
 

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Discussion Starter · #8 ·
Thanks for all the advice, it really is appreciated. it all seem to make sense, and the DBC prob caused the car to slip on the ice as there was zero grip.

It was gut wrenching having the first knock in my first ever brand new car and didnt help someone went into the back of me when i told them not to try the hill it was too slippy. I have to say the bumpers seem quite tough though as there is only a few chips in the front and nothing at the back. I was extremely lucky and dont want it to happen ever again.

I have left it at the bottom of the hill the last couple of nights but doesnt seem to be ice on the hill so was able to get up and down to the house a couple of times no sweat.

Heres wishing everyone safe winter driving.

David
 

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I was reviewing my post 2 above and do have to admit that even in one of HM's trusty Land Rover Air Portables a steep descent on ice is not always under control. I found this descending towards the harbour on a concrete road in Port Stanley - we just kept sliding.....the road ended in a 90 degree bend...or the harbour....fortunately there was a very good kerb stone and I was able to drift the Land Rover to the left side of the road and we slowed sufficiently by scraping the wheel rims along the kerb - lots of sparks but no serious damage. They closed the road soon afterwards (no gritting there of course). The point, if there is one, is that nothing short of spikes can help when it's really sheet ice.
 

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Discussion Starter · #10 ·
thanks blow-in. i appreciate that on ice complete control is not always possible. It can be a scary feeling when you lose control.

what i was just trying to work out, as you described above, was would the DBC cause braking force on ice and thus induce a skid. I think this is what could have happened me.

On serious ice on the hill i think i will stay at home, otherwise i will use the advice and stick it to 4wd lock and use first gear as if i was driving a normal vehicle.

D.
 
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