The Need for 2Low

The ben­e­fits of hav­ing 2Low ca­pa­bil­ity

Snowbirds & RV Travelers - - News - Words and pho­tos by Bryan Irons

Just to clar­ify; the 2Low kit pro­vides a means of shift­ing your elec­tron­i­cally con­trolled trans­fer case into low-range and only uti­liz­ing 2-wheel drive. Im­me­di­ately af­ter hear­ing the com­pany name, our fee­ble minds re­gressed to the dreaded boy-band days of the late 90’s. Luck­ily the 2Low of today has many things go­ing for it that the lat­ter do not, mostly pur­pose, qual­ity, and a lack of noise.

Hav­ing the abil­ity to shift into 2-wheel-drive low-range is some­thing many in the hard-core off-road world have en­joyed for years. Creep­ing be­tween trails at low speeds with­out im­pos­ing

the added strain and wear on the front-end com­po­nents adds to their longevity, and can al­low for tighter turn­ing ra­diuses when trac­tion is abun­dant as op­posed to the 4-wheel-drive coun­ter­part. The other ben­e­fit for us when trav­el­ing at slow speeds in­cludes less heat build up in au­to­matic trans­mis­sions and not hav­ing to ride the clutch petal go­ing slow when op­er­at­ing a stan­dard trans­mis­sion.

The 2Low ben­e­fits for a street driven truck/SUV can be even more ben­e­fi­cial. Hav­ing added slow speed con­trol with­out the front axle bind­ing is some­thing we wish we had in many past sit­u­a­tions, namely; creep­ing up steep FSR’s with our trail rig in tow, park­ing a heavy travel trailer in a camp spot, and launch­ing/load­ing a boat, or plough­ing snow with your truck. We have been guilty of a few of th­ese sit­u­a­tions, nor­mally a few times a month.

So, for $220 USD... from a Cana­dian Com­pany… we or­dered our “made in Canada” 2Low kit and in­stalled it in un­der an hour in the of­fice park­ing lot, if any­one asks… we were “off the clock”. Noth­ing more then a drill with a 3/4” unibit and a set of side cut­ters were needed for the in­stall, and to be hon­est, most of that hour was used like “Pinky & The Brain” to plot our takeover and com­plete dom­i­nance of the world.

For our 2014 Ford F-150 FX4, we found a spot for the high qual­ity push­but­ton that can only be ac­cessed with the door open. This may seem like an odd place but we wanted to make sure the switch didn’t get hit ac­ci­den­tally and dis­able 4-wheeldrive when we re­ally needed it. There is even enough ca­ble in­cluded to mount the unit in the cen­tre con­sole stor­age bin.

The bulk of the in­stal­la­tion, once the but­ton lo­ca­tion is de­ter­mined, in­volves plug­ging the push­but­ton into the small con­trol mod­ule and then plug­ging that into your ODB2 port. Re­ally, it’s that sim­ple. No pro­gram to down­load, no ques­tions to an­swer, no ve­hi­cle setup, no aux­il­iary power; just plug the sys­tem in and mount the but­ton. Ty­wraps, screws, and even a uni­ver­sal but­ton mount are in­cluded. Re­ally, it was so easy, we felt a lit­tle let down that we didn’t have to talk to tech sup­port.

Work­ing the unit is su­per sim­ple, just like the in­stal­la­tion. With the but­ton off, shift into low range as usual, for our Ford, we had to go into Neu­tral and press a but­ton. Af­ter that, press the 2Low but­ton and it il­lu­mi­nates in­di­cat­ing that the front axle dis­con­nect has been en­abled. The truck will not al­low you to shift back into high range (4-wheel, or 2-wheel) un­til the 2Low is turned off.

Haul­ing heavy loads up steep grades in first or sec­ond gear has al­ways con­cerned us as this gear re­duc­tion in an au­to­matic trans­mis­sion can cre­ate a lot of killer heat. Same as pulling a boat out of wa­ter, or back­ing our trailer up in tight quar­ters with un­du­lat­ing ter­rain… but no more. With 2Low, we’re no longer chew­ing fin­ger­nails to the bone won­der­ing if the next ex­pen­sive “pop” will come from the front end or trans­mis­sion. 2-Low – www.2low.ca

We picked the side panel on the dash to en­sure the but­ton would not get pushed in­ad­ver­tently dur­ing driv­ing.

With the panel popped out, use a step or unibit to make clean work of the plas­tic.

The sup­plied push­but­ton gives a nice clean look.

We tossed a sticker on the inside of the panel in case fu­ture own­ers are eas­ily con­fused.

Two-sided tape was used to mount the con­trol unit to the dash in­ner struc­ture.

Sim­ply clip panel back on, and you’re ready for 2Low driv­ing.

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