The cruise control switch is the electrical switch that is used to control the various functions of the cruise control system. When the cruise control is activated, the vehicle will maintain the set speed or acceleration without the driver having to step on the accelerator pedal. While the cruise control system is not a critical feature to the performance of the vehicle, it does help improve fuel efficiency and can reduce driver fatigue.
The cruise control switch is the switch that houses the cruise control system’s various controls. It is usually mounted directly on the steering wheel, or on the steering column. The switch is essentially the control surface for the cruise control system. When it has any problems, it can cause issues with the functionality of the cruise control system. Usually a problem with the cruise control switch will produce a few symptoms that can alert the driver of a potential issue that should be serviced.
Cruise control light doesn’t illuminate
One of most common symptoms of a problem with the cruise control switch is a cruise control light that will not illuminate. The light should be illuminated as soon as the cruise control system is switched on to notify the driver that the system is activated. If the light does not come on, that may be an indicator that there may be a problem with the switch, or perhaps another component in the system.
Vehicle cannot maintain set speed or acceleration
Another symptom of a potential problem with the cruise control switch is a vehicle that will not maintain the set cruise speed. The cruise control system is designed to maintain the speed of the vehicle automatically, so that the driver does not have to step on the accelerator pedal in order to maintain speed. If the vehicle does not maintain speed or acceleration, even when the “set” button is pressed or activated, then that may mean that the button may not be functioning.
The cruise control switch is essentially the control surface for the cruise control system, and any issues with it can lead to problems with trying to use the cruise control. For this reason, if you suspect that your cruise control switch may be having an issue, have the vehicle inspected by a professional technician, such as on from YourMechanic. They will be to replace your cruise control switch if necessary.
This article originally appeared on YourMechanic.com as Symptoms of a Bad or Failing Cruise Control Switch and was authored by Ed Ruelas.