You might have read my article about how my friend told me that putting your car on neutral while going downhill saves some gas and my thoughts on it. But in this article, I’ve decided to share my thoughts on improving engine life by putting your car on ‘neutral’. According to my friend, putting your car on neutral keeps the engine running more ‘smoother’.
Again, I was skeptical when he first told me about this, but once more, I wasn’t sure if this was really true or not. So, I decided to research and find out if it would really make a difference if one puts a car with an ‘automatic’ transmission on neutral at the lights. Oh and by the way, I don’t really think that you can save gas by putting your engine on neutral at the lights.. mainly because your engine will pretty much just idle and while it’s idling it’ll still sip some gas – so I doubt if there will be any gas savings. For gas savings, I’d try turning off the engine when possible (not at intersections though.. because that’s just be too little time to gain any measurable savings), and perhaps use cruise control when possible, and get rid of any extra weight in your car. I guess if you really wanted to save gas, you could try hypermiling (or may be hyperkilometering if you’re Canadian).
Ok, so the question here remains that would engine life/transmission life really be better if you keep you engine on neutral. In my opinion, I don’t think it makes a difference for 2 reasons:
1. The engine is still on if you keep the gear on neutral. This means that you won’t really be saving any ware and tare in the engine by putting the gear on neutral – so I don’t see how you can improve the engine life.
2. Shifting back and forth might actually put more ware on the transmission, because you’ll constantly have to shift in and out of gear every time you are at an intersection (which is a lot of times, considering the amount of times I always have to stop at an intersection)
Furthermore, I think that on an automatic car, neutral is pretty much the same as stopped. Although, I guess if you’re in neutral, you don’t really have to step on the brakes because the car won’t really move forward as the engine is disengaged from the transmission. Therefore, you can probably save some money with the brake lights, the brake pads, and perhaps break fluid, but I don’t think it’ll make much of a difference if you’re driving a car with an automatic transmission.
Anybody have any other ideas/thoughts on this issue?
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