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Old 08-01-2008, 04:43 PM   #1
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Smile Shifting To Neutral At Red Lights...Saves Gas?!

I've heard that it's possible to save a bit of gas by shifting to neutral when you're at a red light. Has anyone else heard such a thing?
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Old 08-01-2008, 04:54 PM   #2
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With an automatic, it helps slightly. The saving is very slight, as is the effort.
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Old 08-01-2008, 05:04 PM   #3
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Apparently some transmissions still run full pressure though the torque convertor while in neutral, and have the clutches disengaged while your foot is on the brake so savings are slight. Whereas when they are in park lubrication pressure is reduced and the pump is not working as hard. Full lube pressure at neutral is probably good for neutral coasting, but likely won't save you as much at stop lights as putting it in park would. However, if you've been slogging uphill recently at low city speeds and have been surfing the torque convertor, you might be better off leaving it in neutral as the higher lube pressure should give better cooling of the transmission through the tranny cooler.
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Old 08-01-2008, 06:22 PM   #4
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It saves a tiny bit. From my scangauge, if I'm in idle-D I can use from 0.20 to 0.22 gallons per hour. If am in idle-N, I go down to 0.14 to 0.17 gph and remember that this lasts for all of 5 to 7 seconds while waiting at a light so don't expect the world in savings. But it's zero effort for minimal gain, so why not?

(turning the engine off for a long light/wait [more than 10 sec] is the better recourse)
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Old 08-01-2008, 06:48 PM   #5
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lol and it's like a strange safety measure too because it's a pain to do while your on the phone, I end up cutting my driving calls short cuz of it
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Old 08-01-2008, 07:01 PM   #6
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I have done that before and noticed that the rpm did drop a little bit whilst in N. I take it to mean saving of a little bit of gas.
When I shift to N at a red light, I leave my hand on the shift knob to remind myself to shift back to D when it is time to go.
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Old 08-01-2008, 07:16 PM   #7
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I've gotten mild RPM drops and fuel rate drops as reported by ScanGauge in my truck by shifting into N at lights. Every little bit helps. Today I figured out DFCO, and will use that in conjunction with my stoplight strategy in hopes of raising my city mileage in The Beast even more. Currently I'm getting about 14 - 15 MPG city in a truck EPA rated (new ratings) for 12 city.

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Old 08-01-2008, 11:48 PM   #8
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If you do it right you are in neutral as you coast up to the light. I Do this with both automatic cars that i have.
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Old 08-02-2008, 06:02 AM   #9
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Neutral coasting to the light is better than race to the light and slam on the brakes, but wouldn't DFCO be better if your vehicle is capable?
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Old 08-02-2008, 06:48 AM   #10
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In my saturn, at a red light IN GEAR the gallons per hour is reading .45

when I slip it into neutral that drops to .32

So basically, in gear at a red light, I could sit there 2 hours and burn one gallon of fuel.

In neutral it would take 3 hours.
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