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Author Topic: neutral gear vs drive gear when at red light Back to Topics
cricsync

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Message Posted: Jun 11, 2013 1:58:13 PM

Will you save gas if you shift your car to Neutral gear when you stop by at red light rather than keep it in drive gear?
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jay93LA
Champion Author New Orleans

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Message Posted: Dec 17, 2014 8:38:39 AM

no
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dontuknowOH
Champion Author Ohio

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Message Posted: Dec 17, 2014 8:26:01 AM

Normally I score pretty good on the greens, that depends on the traffic load and time of day. Click to N.. when approaching red stopped traffic, can't beat them all, 3 out of 30+ is great, even five..... (savings)!
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Nuzan
All-Star Author Nevada

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Message Posted: Dec 16, 2014 1:26:09 PM

No
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hoopitup2000
Champion Author Virginia

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Message Posted: Dec 16, 2014 6:30:22 AM

Neutral . . . . .
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dontuknowOH
Champion Author Ohio

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Message Posted: Dec 16, 2014 4:30:18 AM

They have primitive advantages, like a "Flint-Stone vehicle" Two Feet Drive, Guessing, and my automatic has neutral, neutrel, newtrill, well something, ETC. to distract the right hand from the common 10---2 (clock dial) steering safe position. Nasty with the Power steering, invention.
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Mikeyy1960
Veteran Author Cape Coral

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Message Posted: Dec 15, 2014 7:12:00 PM

what about all the manual trans cars then???
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MertieMan
Champion Author Lexington

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Message Posted: Dec 14, 2014 7:55:10 AM

First of all, neutral is not an actual gear, furthermore this is an illegal practice, plus you have less control over the vehicle.
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Mikeyy1960
Veteran Author Cape Coral

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Message Posted: Dec 10, 2014 7:21:52 PM

yes, I just measured my idle speed and fuel flow in drive and in N and in drive the rpm was lower but engine was using lil bit more due to it being under load, in N engine speed was 800-820 and was using ..24 GPH

in D engine speed was 740-760 was was using .29 GPH
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Jackson126
All-Star Author Virginia

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Message Posted: Dec 10, 2014 5:11:23 PM

no
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dontuknowOH
Champion Author Ohio

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Message Posted: Dec 10, 2014 7:52:59 AM

Anyone that has rode a mini-bike, probably never noticed that when stopped at idle; The small fun device would just sit still and then not creep like the automobile with automatic trannies do if the brake pedal is released.

This in mind, I have always thought that autos should have a primary second centrifical type clutch ahead but sandwiched with the T-converter. That should free the engine of heavier pumping loads/driveline creep. Then saving extra fuel.

Those mini-bikes would catch and pull if the rider kept rocking the hand throttle (revving) the engine, but no creep. Resulting toward a better uncoupling at near stopped travel/drivetrain speed (dual-clutch)...ERA!

More complex, extra cost, but still toward the mileage gains, HA! Awards...
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bcressy
Sophomore Author Boston

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Message Posted: Dec 9, 2014 5:43:23 PM

my RPMs increase both with my CTV Mirage and did in my 2000 Galant. uses more fuel to run engine at higher RPM
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twt
Champion Author Virginia Beach

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Message Posted: Dec 9, 2014 4:25:23 PM

No noticeable difference.
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CaptainStall
All-Star Author New Brunswick

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Message Posted: Dec 9, 2014 9:54:55 AM

I don't know about saving gas, but I shift my MT into neutral so that I don't have to stand on the clutch for the whole stop.
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badbobKY
All-Star Author Lexington

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Message Posted: Dec 9, 2014 9:46:09 AM

no
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weddy11
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Message Posted: Dec 9, 2014 8:37:01 AM

No
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dontuknowOH
Champion Author Ohio

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Message Posted: Dec 9, 2014 8:34:44 AM

I try on approaching a long red with much traffic already stopped. Depends on the lane I'm driving in and rate of slowing, then judging for the green and traffic moving again.

Also if right turn lane is present, I try not to hold up a following vehicle that wants to go right at the stop during the red wait. Often there is a blocked right/through lane ahead, that can make a difference.

Neutral often frees up the engine idle energy load at the alternator area, making it's duty more economical on long waits, by releasing torque converter draw down when coupled in drive to the tranny.

The ECM monitors all engine operating variables and makes necessary changes even at idle speed. Automatic Stuff, that most drivers don't want to know/care about. One may hear their E.. coolant fans run now/then and may notice the evaporation/purge cycle at idle on a hot day(a slight rough idle slower speed)temporarily. You may own a vehicle that talks to you!

Neighbor had one that when turned off sounded like its stomach was growling
from under the dash(gurgle gut)sounds for a few minutes after. ???
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GLM4205
Champion Author Toledo

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Message Posted: Dec 9, 2014 6:50:06 AM

No
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hoopitup2000
Champion Author Virginia

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Message Posted: Dec 9, 2014 6:31:00 AM

Yes,unless it's a short light.
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Thumper52
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Message Posted: Dec 9, 2014 5:26:59 AM

Yes
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dontuknowOH
Champion Author Ohio

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Message Posted: Oct 2, 2013 12:57:22 AM

There are a lot of costly questions, like maybe staying down on the go-pedal or often still accelerating up to a visible red light then using the brakes heavily to usually stop/slow. Then the cost hangs pretentious on when the brakes wear needing repaired or may possible fail.

Failing again can be a question of driver error or brake mechanical error/failure. The same goes for worrying about having a flat tire only if one drives or not, saying I've noticed maybe just a few drivers being not too practicable 24-7 Where/wear it happens everywhere...
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GrumpyCat
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Message Posted: Sep 30, 2013 10:40:40 AM

You might. But especially with an automatic there is the question of whether more wear of shifting in and out of gear costs less to repair than the cost of fuel saved?
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Dale Jr.
Champion Author Illinois

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Message Posted: Sep 30, 2013 9:15:09 AM

My vehicles are automatic so I leave it in drive.
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Glasman
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Message Posted: Sep 30, 2013 8:45:59 AM

yes and it's easier on the tranny and drive train.
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Floridaman2013
Champion Author Florida

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Message Posted: Sep 22, 2013 5:16:11 AM

I only shift to neutral when at a long stop or the transmission has been working hard (towing) so it can cool down, especially when waiting for trains. In high heat and sitting still in drive, the transmission fluid gets hot so keeping in neutral in those occasions will keep the fluid cooler, less wear on the seals.
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Camry05
All-Star Author Indiana

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Message Posted: Sep 22, 2013 3:57:08 AM

Drive
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dontuknowOH
Champion Author Ohio

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Message Posted: Sep 20, 2013 1:15:39 AM

My daily driver will soon be 13 years old, it gets N... upon coming to a red stop for a reasonable two or 3 minute wait, that improves my mileage over the long haul month to month

The other econo vehicle doesn't benefit waiting at a red light it's tranny has newer technology, and no appreciable idle load when stopped idling in drive mode. There is at least a 10+ mile per gal. difference between the two vehicles. partly due to different engine size and one is AWD V/S TWD.

Total weight being different and improved aerodynamics and extra gearing is a factor for the better mileage also city or highway driving.
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carinthuist
Champion Author San Francisco

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Message Posted: Sep 19, 2013 8:41:10 PM

Drive only
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GrizzlyRaptor
Sophomore Author Sacramento

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Message Posted: Sep 19, 2013 6:38:46 PM

Drive.
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Camry05
All-Star Author Indiana

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Message Posted: Sep 19, 2013 6:01:41 PM

in an automatic transmission, it is better to keep it in D when stopping at a light. Better for the brakes and mileage
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Houckster
Champion Author Atlanta

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Message Posted: Sep 10, 2013 2:58:27 PM

Recently I bought a product called Ethanol Defense made by Bell Labs and now they send me newsletters with advice for saving fuel. One of those suggestions was to put the automatic in neutral at stoplights. Their reasoning was that most transmissions are pushing the car forward so putting the trans in neutral will save fuel.

When I drive our Toyota Camry, I don't see any tendency for the car to move forward so I think this suggestion would not save any noticeable amount of fuel but if you have to keep your foot on the brake at stoplights, this might be worth trying. I'd also think getting the transmission checked would be worthwhile.

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Zennyboy
Veteran Author Toronto

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Message Posted: Sep 10, 2013 11:16:52 AM

n
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dontuknowOH
Champion Author Ohio

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Message Posted: Sep 10, 2013 10:22:55 AM

Often N.... Depends on amount of traffic, how crowded the stopped lanes are also the squeeze up pattern while waiting.
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randy3116
Champion Author Tennessee

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Message Posted: Sep 10, 2013 9:16:04 AM

mine is a 6-speed manual and I do shift to neutral at traffic lights. I do, though, stay prepared to clutch and shift to move out of the way in case someone is not slowing down/stopping behind me.
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dontuknowOH
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Message Posted: Aug 9, 2013 8:36:01 AM

mybigtruck; I can agree on those savings you mentioned... Most drivers still think about vehicles they possible owned back in the 60, 70, 80's and their experiences with those vehicles.

A lot of newer engineering has replaced/superceded those models referring to under-hood engine operations of the modern engine, they operate by OEM programming to a large extent with some driver's choices = results that = ?..?.. then more ?.. ?.. older thoughts. How about a portable porta- potty with a solar powered Robot Sanitary Attendant, on duty! LOL!
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mybigtruck
Champion Author San Jose

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Message Posted: Aug 9, 2013 3:43:30 AM

It does. I monitored fuel rate idling in drive versus neutral. Idling in neutral does indeed consume less fuel.
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HotRod10
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Message Posted: Aug 8, 2013 1:58:05 PM

"you are better off turning off your car"

True, that would actually save fuel, as opposed to shifting into neutral, which is about a wash with just leaving it in gear.

How much would you save? With a modern fuel-injected vehicle, the consensus is that the break-even point is about 10 seconds. Beyond that you're saving gas, but how much? Although it seems longer, almost all stoplights cycle in under a minute; so for about 50 seconds (or less) the engine is not idling. Now, from my my survey here on the GB Forums, warm idle on my little Metro burns about 0.13 gal/hr. and others up to 0.40 gal/hr. At the high end, that's .4 * 50/60/60 = .00555 gallons. At $4/gal, you save 2 cents, or enough gas to go about 800 feet. I wouldn't have to think very hard to find a better way to save that much gas, and I won't be sitting there with people honking at me after the light turns green and they're waiting for me to start my car and go.

Btw, how much does a starter cost for your car? If you get 10,000 starts out of yours (which is about twice what I got out of my last one), you might break even (if you replace it yourself, not even close if you have to pay a mechanic).

[Edited by: HotRod10 at 8/8/2013 2:03:39 PM EST]
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waynecz
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Message Posted: Aug 7, 2013 11:47:52 PM

you are better off turning off your car, that is essentially how a hybrid gets a lot of its gas savings hence higher mileage
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HotRod10
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Message Posted: Aug 7, 2013 7:08:04 PM

I don't believe an AT is built to be constantly shifted between Drive and Neutral; it has a torque converter in order to make shifting into Neutral unnecessary. I would not risk damage to a $2000-$4000 transmission to possibly save a few cents at the gas pump.
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dontuknowOH
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Message Posted: Aug 7, 2013 5:49:07 PM

I can agree with HotRod10... about there being no stress at correct idle speed when in drive and still motion.

I also think one can't compare the wear/tear of a manual dry clutch with the wear on multiple disc wet clutches that are helped to cool by fluid. Rather bathed in fluid (under normal circumstances)fluid which draws damaging heat away and lubricating at the same time.

These automatic clutches are in constant operation as the tranny shifts up/down through the gears to carry a smooth shift when changing gear ratio transition. The drive torque is then high when those clutches operate, still keeping a smooth shift transition between gear changes.

The normal std. clutch often gets slipped a lot when start-offs occur, during heavy loads or up-hill starts more wear. Heat builds if slipped too much each time glazing of the dual-faced clutch disk and flywheel surface takes place even stress cracks can develop after heavy use. Results are a slipping clutch waiting to die, along with a throw-out and pilot bearing failing, and maybe a pressure-plate also, also a ring starter gear some cases.

Auto/Trannies built to shift more solid with increased Line pressure/servo action, extra cooling of the fluid helps the clutches last, but heavy trailer towing, multiple uphill downhill use or extreme heavy loading stresses the automatics to a rebuild later. Yes leaks, their common but heat/severe driveline shock destroys and so does lack of fluid.

I'm just saying when the Engine rpms are up that's when the tranny and driveline is getting higher torque stress not at idle, and A.. clutch tangs are made of hard material, stay lubed, get a lot of pressure on the friction surfaces on a reg. basis going threw the normal A.. shifting process. Done...... "dinner" waiting!
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CoolCancerian
Rookie Author New Jersey

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Message Posted: Aug 7, 2013 2:13:16 PM

Nope, with an auto.
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krazkar
Champion Author Calgary

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Message Posted: Aug 7, 2013 1:48:41 PM

When I had a manual, yes.

With an Automatic, no. Driving an auto has dumbed me down so much that I would forget to put it back into drive when the light turns green
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hoopitup2000
Champion Author Virginia

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Message Posted: Aug 7, 2013 1:31:51 PM

Yes, manual transmission
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HotRod10
Champion Author Wyoming

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Message Posted: Aug 7, 2013 1:28:31 PM

"Might not save gas but you will take the tension off the drive train and save your transmission"

If your transmission is working right and your idle speed is set correctly, there shouldn't be any stress on the drive train. The torque converter takes care of allowing the engine to keep turning without turning the transmission input shaft; any "tension" on the drive train is normal and considerably less idling than it is while driving. Shifting between D and N over and over is what will kill the transmission, because you're engaging and disengaging the clutches. They wear out just like the clutch in a manual.
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dontuknowOH
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Message Posted: Aug 3, 2013 11:30:34 AM

Trying to understand any savings by dropping out of drive at a long light is a bit... to explain on a technical basis. I would say that to own an automatic tranny equipped vehicle the first thing is to realize that doing so is a convenience and there is an extra cost for convenience of about any kind of ownership.

Vehicles that have automatics eliminate constant driver required shifting, also the foot clutch work during traffic travels/motion. The automatic clutch function/tranny shifts come at an extra cost top the owner/driver.

When a vehicle is stopped and idle/running with other conveniences turned on there is an extra fuel cost for that energy being used up whether its for safety or not.

Todays automatics get close or even better mileage compared to the std. trannies of past years that is on the average results. Past carbureted vehicles had a pump-shot enrichment squirting a stream of extra fuel into the engine each time the go-pedal had a pressed stroke during manual shifting in each gear(like a Kid's water pistol)on each trigger pull).

EFI/ECM design is an advantage to that pre-system, still realize when your vehicle is stopped/running in drive mode then the automatic clutch/and tranny is a convenience cost when the brakes are held on to prevent movement. Yes the engine is producing HP output then at Idle at a fuel cost, and that can vary.... by your habits of choice/driving.

Automatic clutch referring to the (torque converter) which is slipping away engine HP cost at Idle when in drive motionless stopped. Just MYOP...
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BigHorne1
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Message Posted: Aug 3, 2013 9:54:49 AM

ON a manual it helps the clutch and you clutch foot. For an automatic it does nothing.
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WES03
Champion Author Maryland

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Message Posted: Aug 3, 2013 9:12:09 AM

Are we talking auto or manual here?
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ranger2k
Champion Author St. Louis

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Message Posted: Aug 2, 2013 1:39:57 PM

yes, its nicer to the transmission
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lyanMI
Champion Author Detroit

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Message Posted: Aug 2, 2013 10:40:18 AM

I do it some times but didn't see much impact
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dassfg
Champion Author Fort Worth

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Message Posted: Aug 2, 2013 8:14:03 AM

Might not save gas but you will take the tension off the drive train and save your transmission
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Dennis783
Champion Author Des Moines

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Message Posted: Aug 2, 2013 7:54:31 AM

drive, it doesn't save much and rish trying to take off with car not in gear
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Boyrr
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Message Posted: Aug 2, 2013 6:29:58 AM

not needed, saves nothing
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