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Old 04-17-2013, 01:27 PM   #1
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Is this a bad thing?

Usually when I am at a red light I usually shift my automatic into neutral while waiting at a red light. Should I stop doing this? The only reason why I am even putting it into neutral at a red light is because I thought it decreases my wear and tear on my brakes.

Thanks guys
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Old 04-17-2013, 01:30 PM   #2
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I doubt it's gonna do much to extend your brake life. The only reason I can think of to be in neutral at a red light is to rev your engine and scare everyone
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Old 04-17-2013, 01:33 PM   #3
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I'm certainly not a mechanic, but if you're doing that at every light, wouldn't it cause added wear to the tranny? Seems like the breaks would be a much cheaper wear and tear fix than the tranny.

If wear and tear is the only reason, than I go with the cheaper fix. (just my opinion)
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Old 04-17-2013, 01:34 PM   #4
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I don't see this hurting anything at all. If you want to reduce wear and tear on your breaks downshift with the paddles to help slow you down so you don't have to use your breaks as much.
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Old 04-17-2013, 01:36 PM   #5
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That's is a very good point lol WissDiver haha but it's not every light lol it's just every other light.

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Old 04-17-2013, 01:39 PM   #6
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You should stop putting it in N and put it the in R, the reverse lights leave the car behind you startled.
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Old 04-17-2013, 01:41 PM   #7
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brakes dont wear at a red light. Brakes wear away because you have to pieces of material rubbing against one another, and one has to give. The pads wear away from friction. Sitting at a light with your foot on the pedal just pushes the pads against the rotor.

Maybe itll help extend the life of the master cylinder or rubber parts of the brake lines for some silly reason, but probabaly not.
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Old 04-17-2013, 01:42 PM   #8
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Can it hurt your tranny?
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Old 04-17-2013, 01:47 PM   #9
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I'm certainly not a mechanic, but if you're doing that at every light, wouldn't it cause added wear to the tranny? Seems like the breaks would be a much cheaper wear and tear fix than the tranny.

If wear and tear is the only reason, than I go with the cheaper fix. (just my opinion)
agreed, also if you are revving and shifting into gear before it has completely returned to idle, that probably isn't good for the tranny. not suggesting you are but sometimes it's possible to do this
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Old 04-17-2013, 01:48 PM   #10
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I don't see this hurting anything at all. If you want to reduce wear and tear on your breaks downshift with the paddles to help slow you down so you don't have to use your breaks as much.
But then wouldn't he be wearing down his paddles?
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Old 04-17-2013, 01:57 PM   #11
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Old 04-17-2013, 01:57 PM   #12
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Originally Posted by 954camaro View Post
Usually when I am at a red light I usually shift my automatic into neutral while waiting at a red light. Should I stop doing this? The only reason why I am even putting it into neutral at a red light is because I thought it decreases my wear and tear on my brakes.

Thanks guys
I wouldn't do it for a couple of reasons...first, you may forget to put it back in gear when you want to go...You might get lazy and start taking your foot off the brake and roll forward or backward unknowingly...If you rev in neutral out of boredom or whatever, you might end up doing it with your foot off the brake, in gear and get a surprise...

...In gear and under power is the way to drive...even at a stop...
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Old 04-17-2013, 01:57 PM   #13
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I do it to.. not to decrease wear on my brakes, but because of having a leg injury and I can't sit there holding the brake for long periods of time without discomfort. I also pull the parking brake up to avoid rolling. short lights don't phase me, but the long 8 way with left turn lights that take 3-5 minutes, yeah I put it in neutral and pull the brake. But I also watch the signals on the cross street and when it goes yellow I press the brake, but the car in gear and take the parking brake off.. I've also been known to kill the motor at certain lights because I know they are long and only trip when there is a car on the sensor. 2 of those by my work, and I have timed them up to 7 minutes to trip after I have arrived at the signal.. so I kill the motor and save the gas.

I've done it on my last 4 vehicles, and never had and issue, what will hurt the trans is if you do a neutral drop that is put the vehicle in gear while the engine is revving above idle, barring that you will be fine.

It is also advisable to tap the brake as you shift from Neutral to Drive, just on the off chance that the idiot in front of you can't figure out which pedal makes his car move forward and stops short, you don't want to roll into them. It truly amazes me how often I see people goose it then slam the brake when a light changes as if they can't figure out which pedal does what.
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Old 04-17-2013, 02:00 PM   #14
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brakes dont wear at a red light. Brakes wear away because you have to pieces of material rubbing against one another, and one has to give. The pads wear away from friction. Sitting at a light with your foot on the pedal just pushes the pads against the rotor.

Maybe itll help extend the life of the master cylinder or rubber parts of the brake lines for some silly reason, but probabaly not.
^^^ This. There is no brake wear occurring while stopped. And you may be adding tranny wear with the extra, unnecessary shifting.
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Old 04-17-2013, 02:04 PM   #15
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Ya I don't rev then put into drive before it returns to idle my friend did that and you could just tell that it was horrible for the tranny but thanks for looking out!!
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Old 04-17-2013, 02:14 PM   #16
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I've always done this while driving manual x-msns just to give my left leg a break. It doesn't hurt or help anything in the drive train.
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Old 04-17-2013, 02:18 PM   #17
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It's an automatic people. If you wanted to pretend like you had a stick shift you shold have gotten one.
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Old 04-17-2013, 02:26 PM   #18
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It's an automatic people. If you wanted to pretend like you had a stick shift you shold have gotten one.
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Old 04-17-2013, 02:30 PM   #19
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^ what does that statement have to do with anything
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Old 04-17-2013, 02:39 PM   #20
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It's an automatic people. If you wanted to pretend like you had a stick shift you shold have gotten one.
get over yourself.

not everyone can drive a manual, and I am not talking about knowing how. Some people have physical limitations.

I have driven manuals for 20+ years, from motorcycles to semi trucks, but due to a life altering accident I can no longer physically do it.
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Old 04-17-2013, 03:20 PM   #21
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As a seller of automatic transmissions, I can tell you that the practice of shifting to neutral at lights does the following:

  • Reduces transmission friction disc life
  • Reduces fluid life
  • Places undue (albeit minor) shock on the driveline
  • Undue wear on the shifter, cable and linkage
  • Actually reduces fuel economy due to idle recovery when placed into gear
  • Adds heat (transmission's worst enemy) to the transmission
If you're stopped, there is no wear on your brakes, period. Although you may never see any actual short-term harm come from this practice, be assured that tiny bits of the life of your transmission and driveline are eaten away with every shift.
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Old 04-17-2013, 03:22 PM   #22
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As a seller of automatic transmissions, I can tell you that the practice of shifting to neutral at lights does the following:

  • Reduces transmission friction disc life
  • Reduces fluid life
  • Places undue (albeit minor) shock on the driveline
  • Undue wear on the shifter, cable and linkage
  • Actually reduces fuel economy due to idle recovery when placed into gear
  • Adds heat (transmission's worst enemy) to the transmission
If you're stopped, there is no wear on your brakes, period. Although you may never see any actual short-term harm come from this practice, be assured that tiny bits of the life of your transmission and driveline are eaten away with every shift.
There you go OP, stop doing it.
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Old 04-17-2013, 03:26 PM   #23
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i've owend several automatics in my day and several manuals, however i just don't under stand the point. If you have a leg injury thats a different story, however brakes are less expensive to replace than a tranny.

I guess i don't understand why anyone would do this. However I believe to each their own!
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Old 04-17-2013, 03:29 PM   #24
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i've owend several automatics in my day and several manuals, however i just don't under stand the point. If you have a leg injury thats a different story, however brakes are less expensive to replace than a tranny.

I guess i don't understand why anyone would do this. However I believe to each their own!
What if you shift it into neutral after you stop. On a flat surface so it doesn't roll? I've done this after working out or games when my legs are tired. I have also shifted into neutral going down hills. Is that bad?
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Old 04-17-2013, 03:36 PM   #25
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I've always felt a manual was easier on the brakes overall, as you have the ability more readily to downshift or slow down with the clutch engaged using the engine's compression to ease the load necessary for braking...Whereas an automatic, down-shifting is not as effective, or harder on the trans than what it's worth...dunno...Probably "trade-offs" all around...
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