I keep seeing messages from prople that warn against shifting automatic transmissions. I have always shifted my auto-trans at will, every since I learned to drive. My Dad is in construction, we pulled trailers with tools etc. for years, we shifted the automatic transmissions to select the gear for best performance and use. Now I shift down on a regular basis to extend the Fuel Cutoff window if I'm going to come to a stop (or nearly) from highway speeds. I have never had a Transmission Fail in 100's of thousand of miles driven. About 20 years ago we sold our '74 Dodge work van to a friend (for $700). It had almost 300,000 miles on it and we manually shifted it every time we drive it. He put a new engine in it and drove it about 75,000 more miles before the trans started slipping (he never shifted). My 2000 Dodge minivan has (as of this morning) 199,680 miles on it. It has been shifted so many times the shifter has visible wear on it, but it still works perfectly. I think that there are people out there that can totally destroy a transmission by shifting it and I think there are those who know how and why they are shifting and it doesn't produce any additional wear at all. In fact the trans may even be lasting longer than it would have shifting on its own.