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  #16  
Old 08-08-2003, 07:01 PM
RMF RMF is offline
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Join Date: Aug 2003
Location: Denver
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One lister noted that he never uses the parking brake. By just letting the transmission "hold" the car, strain can be placed on the pin in the tranny that does the "holding", especially if it is on a hill. These can break and when the car is taken our of park, you can feel/hear the car "clunk" out of park.

Finally, if some one should bump your car hard enough while it is parked, the pin can break. A piece of metal floating around the tranny could cause probelms. Now you are looking at tranny problems as well as car damage from the idiot who hit you and did not leave his name or phone number.

It is just a little bit of insurance to use the parking brake. If the tranny was sufficient to hold, why would there be a parking brake? Manufacturers are always looking to cut costs and leaving off the parking brake would be a good way, especially one like the MB with separate drum and shoes.

RMF
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  #17  
Old 08-08-2003, 09:14 PM
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Join Date: Jul 2003
Location: Montreal, Quebec
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Well RMF, I have a 14 year old ''pin in the transmision'' and it seems to be a pretty solid/reliable pin. I have parked on hills over the last 11 years with this car.
I probably also have some very rusty parking brake cables and I would not dare trying them to see if they still work.
Same story with my 1978 Vette (which I have owned for 11 years) and my 1974 MGB .
Parking brake are to be used when ''the pin'' fail.

JackD
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  #18  
Old 08-11-2003, 10:41 AM
RMF RMF is offline
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Well Jackd - each to his own. I prefer the peace of mind. You appear to like challenge in life.

RMF
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  #19  
Old 08-11-2003, 12:23 PM
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Join Date: May 2002
Location: Mass
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When parking on a hill with an automatic, I prefer the warm and fuzzy feeling that comes with redundant stopping mechanisms (both). This is particularly true when I have a 3500lb boat attached.

I apply the parking brake first. I do not like the balky "feel" of the shift out of park when the car is hanging on the tranny. I figure if it is that hard to shift, it just cannot be a good thing. Will this actually cause real damage in my lifetime? I do not know...

More important, if you live in an ice belt, remember that the rear diff (depending upon the diff in question) is still open when the tranny is in Park. This means that if either rear wheel does not have traction, the car will slide. The parking brake engages both wheels, so this can make the situation better.

In my state, you cannot pass inspection without a functioning parking brake anyways.

I have indeed seen tranny park mechanisms fail. This is usually caused more directly by someone shifting into Park while the car is still rolling, if they would 'fess' up to it...

Actually, I just drove an old pickup this weekend with a marginal ability to hold in Park. Sometimes it holds, sometimes it does not. Of course, it is 36 years old...
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  #20  
Old 08-11-2003, 05:21 PM
inspector1
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Those who have had a hydraulic failure on a mountain road ( or anywhere) can appreciate a mechanical brake, ie. parking brake
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  #21  
Old 08-11-2003, 06:30 PM
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Join Date: Apr 2002
Location: Surrey, Uk
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Anyone who never uses the parking brake needs a check up from the neck up.

1. If the cables get rusted and seized through lack of use it won't work when you need it (and in the UK it won't pass the annual test)

2. If you park on a hill the propshaft flex joints and engine mounts (not to mention all the other components mentioned) are under permanent stress
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  #22  
Old 08-11-2003, 08:35 PM
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I will surely not condemn anyone choosing to use their parking brakes, which is certainly not a bad habit. On the other end, I , and certainly several thousand other drivers, are not doing it for no particular reason and have not experienced any catastrophe because of this habit.
I have lived in an ''ice belt, snow belt, bitter cold belt'' all my life, (for 6 months every year), I have never never lost my brake going downhill, the ''permanent stress'' does not seem to have affected my Benz over the last 14 years as I still have the original engine mounts and drive-shaft flex-disks.
JackD
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