Some people think the Low Gear is an excessive mode in an automatic transmission since it is supposed to switch between gears automatically. No, it’s a mistaken idea. The low key in an automatic vehicle actually helps boost its performance. But how?
1. What Does Low Gear Do?
The Low Gear, ‘L’ for short, is the first gear in your automatic transmission vehicle. When the vehicle’s in this gear, it slows the engine down and makes more torque. If you take the wheel of an automatic car, remember that the gears will automatically shift from “Idle” or “Park” to the first gear, and gradually get up to the fifth gear according to the speeds.
So when you opt for the Low Gear mode, the vehicle keeps staying at the first gear regardless of the engine getting the higher gear. This leads to slower speed, more torque, and more power generated from the engine.
2. When Do You Need Low Gear?
a. Driving up a steep hill:
Traveling up a highly inclined terrain requires much power from the engine due to the additional force of gravity applied to the vehicle. The first gear helps the engine reach its ample power to conquer the incline.
b. Getting down a steep road:
Constantly depressing the brake while getting down an inclined terrain will result in overheated brake pads, and a possible brake failure. With the first gear on, pressure on the brakes is reduced, hence longer lifespan.
c. Handling heavy hauling (towing a vehicle for example):
Low gear means more engine power to handle heavy hauling. The automatic cars automatically switch gears according to RPMs and speeds, and keeping hauling heavy loads without applying low gear will definitely harm the engine.