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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Is it true that it won't put as much strain on an automatic transmission to put your car in neutral at a stoplight or long stops? I know it won't put as much strain on your brakes to do this, but what about the transmission?
 

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If it was a good idea, it would probably be in the manual. It's not, and I know it's not because I RTFM.
 

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Not at all. 80k miles later perhaps..

Anyways, the manual tells to not put the car into neutral at stoplights because technically, it'd be safer to have the car in drive in the event of an emergency and not necessarily because it would be bad for the car.
 

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Discussion Starter · #11 ·
Originally posted by PhamKL@Dec 20 2005, 06:37 PM
Not at all. 80k miles later perhaps..

Anyways, the manual tells to not put the car into neutral at stoplights because technically, it'd be safer to have the car in drive in the event of an emergency and not necessarily because it would be bad for the car.
good point. I'll stay in drive from now on.
 

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My car is a manual, but I have other vehicles that are automatics. If I am going to be sitting at a long light or waiting in traffic I will put it in neutral, keeping my foot on the brake. I think its a good idea to take the strain off the transmission. Its basically fighting against the brakes. Your not going to wear out anything by doing this every so often nor do I see how you will avoid an accident by keeping it in drive. With a manual car you have to shift into first anyhow.
 

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This is a philosophical question, not a technical one. There will be no appreciable difference between sitting in neutral and sitting in drive with an automatic from a service life perspective. It's entirely a matter of personal preference.

This does not mean you can brake stand the car without damage. Brake standing is holding the brakes on and stepping on the gas at the same time to improve launch. Brake standing raises transmission temperatures dramatically in just a few seconds. Unless you are racing for money, it is pointless and very detrimental to service life.
 

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From what I gather you're asking, yes, it is basically OK to shift an AT into neutral at a stop.

Like LBR said, it's basically a philosophical question. The point of accident avoidance is just that if a car is going to rear end you, with the car in gear you'll be able to head off much sooner. I (think) the manual for MT cars also tell drivers to leave the car in gear with the clutch depressed at a stop. We all know that's not a good idea as it'll cause undue stress on the clutch.

But since we're talking about AT cars, it's perfectly fine to leave the car in neutral at a stop. I do it all the time. Just make sure you don't roll around in neutral as that'll substantially increase heat in the transmission as the coolant is not cirulating like it would while driving.
 

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Where did you hear that?
 
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