: Using the Manual Shift to Help Brake

06-12-09, 07:04 AM
Hey everyone. I used to have an old Toyota 5 speed and occassionially down shifted to help slow the car down. Is it ok to use the manual side of the shifter do the same? I mean I do it sometimes, I just don't know if it hurts the car or if it's made for that as well as strong accesseration... My thought is to save on brake pad as long as it doesn't hurt the tranny. I'm not talking downshifting to 2nd gear doing 50, I am talking a gradual downshit at the appropriate speeds. lemme know what you think!

:quagmire: OMG there's a Q'Man smiley!!

06-12-09, 07:58 AM
I think that brakes are a lot cheaper than a drive train. And while the drive train is built to take it, I would reserve using the engine for braking, on perhaps, long down grades and similar usages. I would refrain, from routine engine braking, for just flat around town braking though chances of harm would probably be low.

06-12-09, 11:40 AM
I use it regularly under 2 conditions: going downhill in mountainous country, and in stop & go rush hour trafffic. Doesn't seem to harm the transmission at all, so long as you don't let it rev up crazily when going down long or steep slopes.

06-12-09, 12:04 PM
Like most GM cars and trucks, the ECM will shut off fuel after a few seconds of deceleration. I'm not totally sure, but I don't think it will do that when in sport or manual mode. I't probably not a biggy but if you really want to save fuel, it's just another quirk in the system.

06-12-09, 12:33 PM
Do it all the time in my DTS, especially for off ramps from the highway.

06-12-09, 01:36 PM
ya my initial thoughts are with C&C that brakes are a lot cheaper then the drivetrain. I don't use it all the time, it is just when I feel the need to brake, the car is clean, want to reduce the brake dust, lazy right foot, feels cool like you have a real manual shift etc....

06-12-09, 08:40 PM
Depends on how long you will keep car. I do it as I'm on a lease and lease will be over before warranty runs out. On my car I use the brakes as it is a whole lot cheaper to replace the pads than a tranny or other expensive part that can die do to undo stress.

06-12-09, 09:58 PM
This is one reason I like the unmodified Tranmission control Routine. I have a frequently traveled road with a 25MPH limit. It's downhill but I don't need brakes because the STS holds its gear above 30MPH and so I don't exceed my Limit+9 targit.

IMHO - On long downgrades, only fools or the ignorant ride the brakes. In most other situations, brakes are probably easier & cheaper. With any automatic, it shouldn't do any damage, but if you do use the transmission a lot, it will likely run hotter. A bit more frequent transmission service is a good idea. Towing packages & premium cooling systems are suitable options for such enthusiasts.

06-12-09, 11:01 PM
Do it all the time in my DTS, especially for off ramps from the highway.

Same here...over 60,000 miles and it hasn't hurt anything yet.

Texas Jim

06-18-09, 11:26 PM
I think that brakes are a lot cheaper than a drive train.

They are. Engine braking is often just a waste of gas...and extra cycles on the drivetrain. That being said, if I want to stop the STS in a hurry...I'll use all the help I can get. :thumbsup:

Thankfully, I tend to stay out of driving situations where that's necessary. :highfive: