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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Hi everyone. New member here and this is my first post.
I have searched all over the web for an answer and I just can't find any help.
I recently bought a 2014 JKU and now has about 36600 miles. I like to rock crawl and there's some quite steep sections out here and i plan on going to MOAB in September where using hill decent will come in handy going down hill.

No matter what I do, I can't get the hill decent to activate. I've followed all the requirements for activation. In 4-LOW, low speed, possibly 8% grade or more, etc. I never get a light to come on in the dash. From what i've read, a light should come on no matter what the conditions. At the very least I should get a blinking light if the conditions are not met. I can't even get the service department at the jeep dealership to come up with a solution other then telling me to bring it in and pay by the hour. Guess this isn't covered under the power train warranty and the bumper to bumper warranty has expired. Was hoping maybe it's just disabled somehow only needs some secret trick to turn it back on. LOL wishful thinking.

Thanks for any suggestions!
Todd
 

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Hmmmm. Just a guess. Have you had your wheel speed sensors looked at? This might upset the HDC nanny since it controls by speed. I think places like AutoZone or OReillys can test them.

What gear are you in when trying to engage?
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
Hmmmm. Just a guess. Have you had your wheel speed sensors looked at? This might upset the HDC nanny since it controls by speed. I think places like AutoZone or OReillys can test them.

What gear are you in when trying to engage?
I'm in drive since it's an automatic. That's a good idea about AutoZone. I was hoping someone could just tie into the computer and possibly get a heads up on what the issue is.

Thanks!
 

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I'm in drive since it's an automatic. That's a good idea about AutoZone. I was hoping someone could just tie into the computer and possibly get a heads up on what the issue is.

Thanks!
Of course that's just a logical guess. Maybe a fuse? It would take a little digging for me to figure out which fuse.

Is it actually engaging (ie just light doesn't work) or not engaging/no light?.
 

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See what they say about the sensors and report back.

Other possibility is just a loose wire somewhere. Does your hazard flasher work?
 

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Do you have your automatic transmission in manual-matic mode. Push the gear selector to the right and you will have the gear number showing on the dash? Push left or right for down or up shift. The jeep will use your selected gear for the speed range of the hill descent. Hitting the gas pedal will deactivate the hill descent.
 

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Discussion Starter · #9 ·
Stopped by AutoZone and was told they can only test engine light related issues.
Talked to a different jeep dealer and will be bringing it in Wednesday so they can hook up to it and hopefully determine what the problem is. Sounds like I'm getting charged $125 for the testing? and then trying to get them to honor the warranty under good will since it's only 600 miles past the expired bumper to bumper.
 

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Discussion Starter · #10 ·
Do you have your automatic transmission in manual-matic mode. Push the gear selector to the right and you will have the gear number showing on the dash? Push left or right for down or up shift. The jeep will use your selected gear for the speed range of the hill descent. Hitting the gas pedal will deactivate the hill descent.
I've never used that mode. Actually just found out about the manual mode a couple days ago from the forum. I did just go down and put it in manual mode. But I still should be seeing a light i think. Manual mode is just using the engine and low gear to try and keep low speed. But HDC uses the ABS system.
 

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Bummer. I had heard of folks getting them tested at those type of places. Sorry yours didn't do it.

I hope the dealer does right and gets it figured out for you. If it is a bigger issue than just a sensor - definitely push them on the warranty. A sensor itself it that's what it is will not be a very expensive or lengthy repair.
 

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Isn't this an option that can be turned on/off at the vehicle setting in the EVIC? Nope. Only Hill Start.

I wasn't sure as I own a manual tranny so I looked in the 2015 Owners Manual.

Enabling HDC
1. Shift the transfer case into 4WD LOW range. Refer to “Four-Wheel Drive Operation” in “Starting and Operating” for further information.

2. Press the “Hill Descent” button. The “Hill Descent Control Indicator Light” in the instrument cluster will turn on solid.

NOTE:
• If the transfer case is not in 4WD LOW range, the “Hill Descent Control Indicator Light” will flash for five seconds and HDC will not be enabled.

• If the ESC senses that the brakes are overheating the “Hill Descent Control Indicator Light” will flash for five seconds and HDC will become deactivated until the brakes have cooled.

Disabling HDC
Press the “Hill Descent” button or shift the transfer case out of 4WD LOW range. The “Hill Descent Control Indicator” light in the instrument cluster will turn off.

I saw too that a HD light would show up temp. on the dash if you have that option (if equipped). So you'll have to determine if you have that option.
 

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I had a wheel speed sensor go out and it seems like I got a check engine light (?). It has been a few years ago and I can't remember for sure. Anyway the shop hooked a computer to the OBS port and had me drive it to see which one wasn't counting. I don't have HDC but that does seem like a logical reason that it wouldn't work since it is related to anti lock brake system.
 

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downhill descent on an automatic only works in 1st and 2nd gear or in reverse. You must manually shift into 1st or 2nd or reverse. Drive will never activate the feature. It states this clearly in the owner's manual and I teach beginners on trail rides how to use it all the time.
 

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downhill descent on an automatic only works in 1st and 2nd gear or in reverse. You must manually shift into 1st or 2nd or reverse. Drive will never activate the feature. It states this clearly in the owner's manual and I teach beginners on trail rides how to use it all the time.
HDC can be activated in Drive gear - it only requires LO be engaged and speed less than 30mph. This is from the Owners Manual. That said, I have only used it a few times and I have always been in 1st when I did.



Hill Descent Control (HDC) — If Equipped
HDC is only intended for low speed off-road driving.
HDC maintains vehicle speed while descending hills in
off-road driving conditions by applying the brakes when
necessary.
The symbol indicates the status of the Hill
Descent Control (HDC) feature. The lamp will
be on solid when HDC is armed. HDC can only
be armed when the transfer case is in the “4WD
LOW” position and the vehicle speed is less then 30 mph
(48 km/h). If these conditions are not met while attempt-
ing to use the HDC feature, the HDC indicator light will
flash on/off.


When enabled, HDC senses the terrain and activates
when the vehicle is descending a hill. HDC speed may be
adjusted by the driver to suit the driving conditions. The
speed corresponds to the transmission gear selected.
Gear Approximate HDC Set
Speed
1st 1 mph (1.5 km/h)
2nd 2.5 mph (4 km/h)
3rd 4 mph (6.5 km/h)
4th 5.5 mph (9 km/h)
DRIVE 7.5 mph (12 km/h)
REVERSE 1 mph (1.5 km/h)
However, the driver can override HDC operation by
applying the brake to slow the vehicle down below the
HDC control speed. If more speed is desired during HDC
control, the accelerator pedal will increase vehicle speed
in the usual manner. When either the brake or the
accelerator is released, HDC will control the vehicle at the
original set speed.
Enabling HDC
1. Shift the transfer case into 4WD LOW range. Refer to
“Four-Wheel Drive Operation” in “Starting and Oper-
ating” for further information.
2. Press the “Hill Descent” button. The “Hill Descent
Control Indicator Light” in the instrument cluster will
turn on solid.

NOTE:
• If the transfer case is not in 4WD LOW range, the
“Hill Descent Control Indicator Light” will flash for
five seconds and HDC will not be enabled.
• If the ESC senses that the brakes are overheating the
“Hill Descent Control Indicator Light” will flash for
five seconds and HDC will become deactivated until
the brakes have cooled.
Disabling HDC
Press the “Hill Descent” button or shift the transfer case
out of 4WD LOW range. The “Hill Descent Control
Indicator” light in the instrument cluster will turn off
 

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Just my quick 5 cents. A bad wheel speed sensor will throw an ABS light and your cruise control will not work. Its usually not something you can miss when it is bad.

Regardless of what gear or anything I am in, if I hit the HDC button an icon shows up on my display and blinks at me. If I'm in the right mode it goes solid.

This problem sounds funky.
 

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Discussion Starter · #17 ·
Got an appointment tomorrow morning with the jeep dealership. Hope to bring back some good news and clear up this mystery.
 

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Got an appointment tomorrow morning with the jeep dealership. Hope to bring back some good news and clear up this mystery.
Let us know how your service visit goes, and feel free to reach out to us if you need anything while your Jeep is at the dealership!

Kori
Jeep Social Care Specialist
 

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Discussion Starter · #20 ·
Turns out it's a bad switch. Parts on order. They tried telling me nothing was wrong with the HDC. Had to remind them that no light appears on the dash. 3 hours later was called and told it's a bad switch. Very happy my warranty covered the visit anyway.
 
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