Automatic transmission cars are easy to drive. Though the mechanism involved in an automatic transmission is complex. Due to their complexity, automatic transmissions are expensive to repair. In order to maintain a vehicle with an automatic transmission gearbox, here are a few things you shouldn’t do in an automatic transmission vehicle.
Do not Use “Park” as a Brake:
Never put your car on “P” while the car is moving. The locking mechanism which is a pin, prevents the car from moving when it’s in “Park”. The Pin is called a Park Pawl. The Park Pawl acts as a lock in between the gears. This pin stops the gears from rotating, which prevents the car from moving. Therefore suddenly shifting the gear to “Park” risks damaging the park mechanism.
Shifting the Gear to Park or Neutral at a Stop Signal:
This is debateable, many believe that they relieve the gears from unnecessary stress when they change the gear to park at a stop signal. An idle car in drive mode causes much less stress to the transmission. When you have the brakes pressed and the car is on drive mode, the engine is constantly rotating and the impeller connected to the engine is trying to rotate the turbine to gain speed (but the wheels are stopped by the brake). The amount of stress applied to the transmission when the car is in neutral is very low, when compared to the stress applied on the drive mode. People also believe that they save fuel by changing to neutral from drive. The amount of fuel saved is very low and it really isn’t worth the trouble.
Shifting to Neutral when Going Down a Hill:
Putting the car on neutral while the car is moving downhill is not recommended at all. This is because when the car is in neutral, you have no control over the speed at which, the car is travelling. A lot of people believe that they are saving fuel when the car is descending in neutral, this however isn’t the case. Most modern automatic transmission systems cut the fuel supply of the car while the car is moving downhill.
Do not Rev the Car to Launch it:
Revving the engine in neutral and shifting it to drive to launch it can damage the automatic transmission. An automatic transmission gearbox has bands and clutches, which can get worn off prematurely due to excessive stress and pressure applied to them. When revving, the bands and clutches tend to slip when the car launches.
Do not Shift between Gears While the Car is Moving:
Always make sure that you come to a complete stop when shifting gears in an automatic transmission. Bands and clutches are responsible for gear changes in an automatic transmission. These bands and clutches have friction material linings in them, which last a life time. When the car is in motion and gears are shifted, a lot of load is applied to the bands and clutches, which damage the frictional material, ultimately damaging the transmission.
The above mentioned are just a few important things a driver should keep in mind when driving a vehicle with automatic transmission. It is recommended to get the transmission oil checked every 5000Km-7000Km. Always use the transmission oil recommended in the car’s owner manual.