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When you have stopped your vehicle that is equipped with an automatic transmission at a traffic light or in light traffic there is no need to shift the vehicle from ‘D’ (Drive) to ‘N’ (Neutral). Some drivers believe additional stress is placed on the parts within the transmission in the above conditions and can cause premature failure of it. This is not the case. When the vehicle is stopped while the transmission in the ‘D’ position, the coupling for the engine and transmission begins to slip, so the transmission is no longer engaged until the brakes are released. The majority of wear in an automatic transmission occurs when it is shifted from one drive position to another such as when going from ‘P’ (Park) to ‘D’ (Drive), because the clutches within the transmission are responsible for the engagement and disengagement of the transmission from the engine. It is perfectly fine to sit with one foot on the brake pedal at a stop light.

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