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Old 21st November 2019, 16:46   #196
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Default Re: ARTICLE: Mechanical Empathy | Preserving the Car While Driving

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Hello everyone!

This one is definitely one of those old but still gold threads.

I had one question which has been bugging me. I have seen many drivers and technicians say that you shouldn't start up the car and immediately put it in reverse. They advise putting it in 1st, and driving 6 inches forward before putting it in reverse and backing it up. I can't think of any technical reason for this. Anyone?

Happy motoring,
Anees
They do it as they believe your first move should always be 'forward' and not 'backwards'. I got this answer from someone who had a habit of doing this. Don't remember the person though but i still remember what he said.
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Old 21st November 2019, 17:12   #197
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Default Re: ARTICLE: Mechanical Empathy | Preserving the Car While Driving

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They do it as they believe your first move should always be 'forward' and not 'backwards'. I got this answer from someone who had a habit of doing this. Don't remember the person though but i still remember what he said.
I kinda suspected this is more superstition than technical. Considering I haven't received any technical reasons in the past 2-3 days, I am going to assume that that is the case! Thanks!
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Old 21st November 2019, 18:12   #198
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Default Re: ARTICLE: Mechanical Empathy | Preserving the Car While Driving

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I have seen many drivers and technicians say that you shouldn't start up the car and immediately put it in reverse. They advise putting it in 1st, and driving 6 inches forward before putting it in reverse and backing it up. I can't think of any technical reason for this. Anyone?
Only applicable to manual gearboxes, since reverse gear in most (all?) 'boxes isn't synchromesh. Slot into first before slotting into reverse (you don't need to move the car at all), and you'll find the reverse gear engages more easily than if you started the car in neutral and immediately tried to engage reverse gear.

The 'driving 6 inches forward' bit may be related to some kind of spiritual way of convincing learners that it's a necessary procedure - maybe something to do with 'always move forward, don't start your day in reverse'.

Last edited by SS-Traveller : 21st November 2019 at 18:15.
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Old 22nd November 2019, 10:29   #199
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Default Re: ARTICLE: Mechanical Empathy | Preserving the Car While Driving

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They do it as they believe your first move should always be 'forward' and not 'backwards'. I got this answer from someone who had a habit of doing this. Don't remember the person though but i still remember what he said.
Superstition may have been encouraged by mechanics so that people follow the procedure.
Most gear boxes do not usually have oil pumps, and oil circulation is better during forward motion. A few feet of forward motion means your top shaft has thrown up the required oil, all wheels are wet with oil and lubricated, while reversing the oil thrown up will be far less, and the gears in the front will remain dry.

This is not applicable to the current day gearboxes.


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Old 3rd July 2020, 17:41   #200
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Default Re: Mechanical Empathy | Brakes

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Nothing makes the brakes last longer, than by not using them. Ya, right, I'm ducking already, anticipating all the brickbats that you are going to throw at me. And that is the crux of the matter - anticipating that you need to stop, well before you do. Not only do you save your brake pads from wearing out, you save a lot of fuel in the bargain too.
Thank you. This is exactly what I do and have been doing for years. I do get better fuel efficiency than most other drivers to the point that many often refused to believe me. Once upon a time, in our Maruti 1000, I used to get 14 kmpl in real life driving in Kolkata. People thought I was fibbing. Even today in my SX4 ZDi, I get 14--15 kmpl in regular city driving. It's only due to my self imposed eco mode of gentle acceleration and minimal braking together with using gears to keep the revs near 1500 rpm as much as possible. After all, a penny saved is a penny earned.
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Old 4th July 2020, 22:15   #201
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Default Re: ARTICLE: Mechanical Empathy | Preserving the Car While Driving

I think this is the appropriate thread to ask the question which has been bothering me ever since I bought our vehicle last year. (Creta 1.6 Petrol Manual)

I consider myself as someone who is little too careful while driving to ensure that I don't stress the engine at all.

I am not sure if this approach is causing more harm to the engine than saving it.

So below are my queries:-

1. I tend to drive mostly within the 1500-2000 band where 8 out of 10 times the RPM is around 1500 to 1700 irrespective of which gear I am in. Am I lugging the engine by doing that?

2. I tend to change gears (upshift) mostly within 1000-1500 rpm band. Is that the correct approach or should I upshift only within 1500-2000 rpm band?

3. I always try to be at the highest gear at the lowest RPM possible without stalling the engine. Am I being too conservative?

4. After firing up the engine, I idle the engine for at least 1 minute and then drive. I heard that it's not required nowadays and I should engage the gears without idling the engine.

Please suggest if I should change any of the above to ensure that the engine is happy. Please note I am a sedated driver.
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Old 4th July 2020, 23:13   #202
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Default Re: ARTICLE: Mechanical Empathy | Preserving the Car While Driving

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1. I tend to drive mostly within the 1500-2000 band where 8 out of 10 times the RPM is around 1500 to 1700 irrespective of which gear I am in. Am I lugging the engine by doing that?
No.

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2. I tend to change gears (upshift) mostly within 1000-1500 rpm band. Is that the correct approach or should I upshift only within 1500-2000 rpm band?
There's no set range. 1500+ RPM is the bare minimum you should upshift at, because the RPM will fall when you shift to a higher gear. Plan your upshifts so that the resultant RPM in the selected gear does not fall below 1000-1200 RPM. 2000 RPM should be the sweet spot even for a sedate driver.

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3. I always try to be at the highest gear at the lowest RPM possible without stalling the engine. Am I being too conservative?
Yes, you are. In my Swift petrol, I upshift between 4000-5000 RPM when in the mood. Most of the petrol cars deliver serious punch at higher RPMs. I'll only say that you're missing out on a lot of fun by upshifting so early.

In most of the modern cars, ECU will prevent the engine from stalling when the revs are too low. However you might be unknowingly lugging the engine if you're used to driving at idle/very low RPMs. The engine will take its own sweet time when you want press the throttle to build speed from such low RPMs which is not good.

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4. After firing up the engine, I idle the engine for at least 1 minute and then drive. I heard that it's not required nowadays and I should engage the gears without idling the engine.
Good practice on a cold engine. Not required otherwise.

Last edited by self_driven : 4th July 2020 at 23:15.
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