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Motoring advice needed

win7xp
Grafter
Posts: 124
Registered: 14-03-2010

Motoring advice needed

Acquired my first automatic car recently and have a question about auto gearboxes.
When stopped in a queue of trafffic for any lenght of time say at lights should you
select neutral to avoid wear to the gearbox ?
40 REPLIES
pierre_pierre
Grafter
Posts: 19,757
Registered: 30-07-2007

Re: Motoring advice needed

Not up to date with driving Auto's but there are more than one sort,  In general the initial transmission is a fluid connection with two swish plate and the actual box doesnt do anthing.
Just checked the official advanced driving manual, no recommendation there to put it in neutral, but to only use the right foot, so that you dont accidentally push the throttle when stationary,  The ehicle might dreep along the road, so use the handbrake
win7xp
Grafter
Posts: 124
Registered: 14-03-2010

Re: Motoring advice needed

thanks pierre_pierre
Handbrake a bit awkward as all Mercs are .
paulpicks21
Grafter
Posts: 422
Registered: 08-03-2010

Re: Motoring advice needed

I have been driving auto's for years , whenever I stop at lights or whatever I just keep my foot on the brakes.
I have never used the handbrake in these situations.
Not a very technical answer I know lol , but non of my auto's have ever developed any problems.
Cheers
Paul.
itsme
Grafter
Posts: 5,924
Thanks: 1
Registered: 07-04-2007

Re: Motoring advice needed

There is advice I have read before not to keep the foot brake on as this can have an detrimental affect on the discs/pads if the brakes are hot.
pierre_pierre
Grafter
Posts: 19,757
Registered: 30-07-2007

Re: Motoring advice needed

the same could be said about the handbrake, but the official advise is use the brakes.  In early day the Jag had a separate hand brake on the drive shaft, but I would thing that they all use the same brake components as the footbrake
Community Veteran
Posts: 38,239
Thanks: 932
Fixes: 54
Registered: 15-06-2007

Re: Motoring advice needed

On our present cars (Vauxhall Omega and Honda Jazz) which have disk brakes all round the handbrake seems to be independent of the main brakes and may well be on the drive shaft as they sometimes don't release properly when starting after a day or so in the garage. There is a nasty clunk when the car starts to move.
win7xp
Grafter
Posts: 124
Registered: 14-03-2010

Re: Motoring advice needed

I notice that when stopped with car in drive and foot on the brake the car is getting held back thus putting strain on the brakes.
Therefore what i do is hold my foot on the brake and select neutral to avoid straining the brakes as the engine has a lot of torque being a diesel
Community Veteran
Posts: 6,735
Thanks: 12
Registered: 02-02-2008

Re: Motoring advice needed

My automatic has a LOT of torque (4.2 VCool but I rarely put it in neutral other than when stopped at the side of the road.
The normal brakes (and gearbox) are designed on automatics to cope with stopping at lights etc.
Not sure exactly what the Highway code says however, it will probably suggest you put the "handbrake" on, though many modern cars (not mine) have automatic "parking brakes" anyway.
(and if I had the handbrake on I could probably just drive off without noticing anyway  Embarrassed )
win7xp
Grafter
Posts: 124
Registered: 14-03-2010

Re: Motoring advice needed

@HPsauce
4.2 V8  -  what sort of MPG do you get from that - have you shares in BP lol
Community Veteran
Posts: 26,372
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Registered: 10-04-2007

Re: Motoring advice needed

Irrespective of what is good for the car, don't you just hate being behind a car when it's dark with his vis brake lights shining straight in your eyes? Using the handbrake is a lot friendlier to the person behind. I think brake light being on should signify you are stopping - not you are stopped - the exception being when queuing in an unusual place e.g. on the motorway - but even then once the car behind you has also stopped it's friendlier to use the handbrake.
jelv (a.k.a Spoon Whittler)
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win7xp
Grafter
Posts: 124
Registered: 14-03-2010

Re: Motoring advice needed

@jelv
agreed.
The unfortunate thing is that my car's handbrake is engaged by a foot pedal and disengaged using a lever on the dash making it a bit of a pain to keep using in slow stop/start traffic. Don't you just love complicated german engineering.
Give me a conventional handbrake lever anyday
itsme
Grafter
Posts: 5,924
Thanks: 1
Registered: 07-04-2007

Re: Motoring advice needed

Are you sure that you have to use the lever to disengage? On Renaults that have a similar system the handbrake is removed automatically when driving away.
Community Veteran
Posts: 16,814
Thanks: 1,112
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Registered: 06-11-2007

Re: Motoring advice needed

@jelv..... Yes, it is a right pain in the eyes !  Cool
What I do if I am approaching some (inconsiderate b***) with his brake lights on at traffic  lights, (or whatever), is to put my headlights on full beam, and stop half a cars length behind him.... usually results in the hand brake being applied, and then I dip my headlights with a "complimetary flash" to say thanks ! ! !  Cheesy
Community Veteran
Posts: 7,149
Thanks: 51
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Registered: 30-08-2007

Re: Motoring advice needed

Quote from: win7xp
When stopped in a queue of trafffic for any lenght of time say at lights should you
select neutral to avoid wear to the gearbox ?

Not necessary.
Experience; is something you gain, just after you needed it most.

When faced with two choices, simply toss a coin. It works not because it settles the question for you. But because in that brief moment while the coin is in the air. You suddenly know what you are hoping for.