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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I am wondering what RPM you allow the car to drive at when you are cruzing? What gear?

Is it bad to drive along at less than 2000 RPM?

I notice a vibration at about 1600 rpm, but that was common with my sedan as well. I took my friend for a drive and he was giving me hell for driving under 2000rpm.

Is it hard on the engine? Tranny?

Or no harm done and you are saving gas by not letting it rev right up?

Thanx for helping out a newbie at stick....:)
 

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I've been letting my RPM drop below 2000 for years now. When I'm trying to save gas, I drive in the highest gear possible. For me, that means that on a flat road, I use 6th gear as low a 40MPH. As long as the car can pull in that gear, and the engine does not feel like it is staining when I accelerate, I use that gear. As soon as I feel a hint of strain I down shift. People say that is too low a gear, but you knowwhat, If I can still accelerate in 6th and pass a car fairly easily without the engine vibrating, it is not too low IMHO. That is the beauty of torque I guess :)
 

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I was told by a mechanic friend a while ago that it will put more load on your motor thus increase wear. I didn't quite understand until he gave me a bicycle anology. Simply put, it's real hard to pedal at low rpms in a higher than usual gear. Even much harder than pedaling as fast as you can in a lower gear.
 

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I don't have a manual legend, but in the manual cars I have driven 6th was reserved for higher highway speeds and I would drop it into 5th anytime I was up around 40mph or higher.
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
Chris.... that is kinds what I mean, like on a flat road while you are already moving. I dont see why it is bad if you are just coasting, and you are right... you still have a little acceleration in 6th at lower highway speeds.

KenS... that is a good analogy your mechanic gave you. It makes perfect sense that when you are trying to climb a hill on a bike in 21st gear, you are going to tire really fast. But I am wondering what kind of wear he is refering to? Is it not bad to rev your engine high at the same time...:rolleyes:
 

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Anyone who drives a manual often can tell when the engine is straining and when you need a lower gear. You can actually feel it. If I don't feel it, I don't believe the engine is straining as much as people think it is. On a flat road, I don't think it is strainning the motor at all. Either way, I'll trade good gas mileage for a few 10K miles less on the engine. The engine last well over 100K, and even 200K, so I don't mind to much if mine dies at 175K miles :)
 

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I am one of those who is just about the opposite. When accelerating very rapidly I don't take the car out of 4th (and sometimes 3rd) until I reach my cruising speed. If that cruising speed is 60+ MPH then I put it into 6th and set the cruise control. If it is 50-60 MPH then I put it into 5th. 40-50 MPH cruising is 4th. If I need to goose it a little, I downshift at least one gear and go! Those are the speeds that my ear discerns that put the least strain on the tranny. Now decelerating is different - if coasting I might leave it in 6th or any other gear until right before I stop.
Other posts note that the Type I engine has more peak torque lower in the RPM band and the Type II develops its peaks in both torque and horsepower higher in RPMs so don't be afraid to hear your engine sing! It's the most beautiful sound in the world (well, almost)!
 

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One thing I need to clear up though. I'm not talking about everyday constant driving when I posted what I poseted, but for straight flat roads when you are crusing and saving gas. I certainly am not shifting early when I'm accelerating on the freeway on ramp, or even when I'm getting going from a stop light. I usually reve to about 3-3.5K and stay around 4th gear for city/town driving.
 

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Mckenzie91 said:
Chris.... that is kinds what I mean, like on a flat road while you are already moving. I dont see why it is bad if you are just coasting, and you are right... you still have a little acceleration in 6th at lower highway speeds.

KenS... that is a good analogy your mechanic gave you. It makes perfect sense that when you are trying to climb a hill on a bike in 21st gear, you are going to tire really fast. But I am wondering what kind of wear he is refering to? Is it not bad to rev your engine high at the same time...:rolleyes:
I think his point was, that as bad as it would be for my car to be constantly in the higher rpm range, driving around constantly in the lower rpm range would be worse. He's from England and gas is pretty expensive over there, so it was an issue with some customers with prematurely worn out engines that never drove in the normal RPM range, to save on gas.
 

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Mckenzie91, your engine can handle alot of abuse. I agree with ChrisK on the points he has made.

FYI, over here (VA) when you are going to pass someone - the moment you step into the right lane to pass them theyy sure as crap will accelerate on you. So I have been in six, dropped to 5 - saw that it wasn't going to happen and dropped into fourth up to red line and then shifted back into 5th and sixth.

After a party my skirt was driving my drunk arse home and she said, "this guy is one my bumper", so I was like loose him and she said, "well, how in the hell am I supposed to do that" all loose in the mouth, like she needed my switch - so I said... "slap her into fourth and punch it" DAMN if she didn't slap into second, the RPMs screamed into the redline and the engine was going all retarded - meanwhile the guy in back slamned his brakes and I his car spun sideways down the road. Damn, I was sober then. I got out of the passenger side and all I heard was f you and well, being a lover - not a figher - I was like no f you as I was running around the car. She fired up and you'd thought I hit green at bristol. Needless to say it was a bad situation all around.

KNLNGUS
 

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Discussion Starter · #13 ·
Thats hilarious....:D :D :D

Did you happen to see the video in the off topic forum that Jose posted with the guy in the RSX type S? He was bein' all hardcore revin' the snot out of the thing and in his shift from 3rd to forth, he popped it into second..... You could see his tach jump almost a full 360 degrees... it was pretty funny.:D

Thats a good example though of how strong the engine is..... My friends mom has a 93 Grand Prix with the 210HP 3.4 L 24Valve V6. Daddy took it out on the highway and dropped from 5th to 2nd. Needless to say he blew up the transmission.....:(

"Boy did those tires sure light up though!" he said excitedly..... that was the funny thing... still sees the lighter side of a $4000 tranny job:D

Another friend of mine took out his younger brothers GTI VR6 Drivers Edition VW and did the same thing..... 5th to second on the highway..... That tranny was like $8000 because it was from the drivers edition... ouch.... oh well. Their dad owns an oil company so they got lotsa $$$$$,....:)
 

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i'm no expert but here's my 2cents

I've been pulling a trailer with 2ATVs atop for quite some time and a feel comfortable with this topic, so this is what I think.

The most damage that can occure to your engine and transmission from pulling the weight of the car in a high gear at low rpm's is as follows;

1. Bent crank shaft
2. Bent connecting rod
3. Bent gear shaft

What come from these ailments. A bent engine part will vibrate and shake the engine and mess up the main bearings and weaken other parts and a snapped rod or bearing cap could punch a hole in your block. I'm just trying to scare you, however. Engine vibration is sign of loss of power and if your engine is low on power then you have to push it harder to get the same acceleration and if you maintain you're previous practice of under reving then the strain and warping of parts continues at an accelling rate.

And this is how it'll break down in savings.
At most you'll save 2mpg on a 18 gallon tank which is 36 miles on a tank at 24mpg (at most) you looking at 1.5mile/mpg at $2/gal (at most) is a savings of $4 buck per tank.

If you asked me I'd tell you to follow the recommended shift points and save the life of your engine.
 
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