Do you set the parking brake?

Discussion in 'Gen 3 Prius Main Forum' started by Horsefeathers, May 13, 2014.

  1. Horsefeathers

    Horsefeathers Member

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    Always? Never? Sometimes? Depends on circumstances like grade?

    I have driven more manuals than automatics, but no matter what I drive, I always set the parking brake no matter if the ground is fairly level or if it's a manual or automatic. My husband is literally the only other person I know who does it even sometimes. Some people act like it's just the most bizarre thing, like I'm doing some woo dance ritual before getting out or something, like I am the most ridiculously anal driver out there. It causes me a bit of clenching and puckering when I see someone roll up somewhere, slam it in park, and then the car lurches backward and/or forward, and that's not even my car. So maybe people are right, not that it will change my parking brake habit. Blame my dad for instilling in me the fear of mistreating a vehicle. And then with this Prius with its totally unfamiliar everything including transmission, I'm even more fearful of tearing up something.

    So are you a parking braker? Or nah don't sweat it?
     
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  2. JC91006

    JC91006 Senior Member

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    you should do what makes you feel most comfortable. The parking brake is suppose to be used every time.

    I personally don't use it unless I'm on a hill.
     
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  3. Horsefeathers

    Horsefeathers Member

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    Ha, yeah, I'll always use it no matter what because it's an ingrained habit. I was just curious how many other people use it ever, sometimes, whenever. Some people act like it's the most foreign concept. But then that may be a result of my socializing with and being related to the shallower end of the gene pool.
     
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  4. mrbigh

    mrbigh Prius Absolutum Dominium

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    I only apply the parking brake when out of grade and mostly of the time, everything around us is a flat surface.
    But yours is a very good habit; it does make having the vehicle stolen or repo by towing more harder.
     
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  5. Cristino

    Cristino Junior Member

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    I've always used the parking brake no matter what. After almost two years of owning TB2, every now and then I have to pause and think footbrake instead of handbrake...
     
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  6. hybridbear

    hybridbear Member

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    I've never driven a manual and I use the parking brake all the time. I do it for the reason you mention above about watching the car lurch forward or backward without it. The way I see it is that the parking brake is designed to be used to hold the car under heavy load conditions (i.e. parking on an incline), thus, using it under light load conditions (parking on flat ground) will cause minimal wear and tear. The transmission (Prius or regular automatic) is designed to hold the car when in park and using the parking brake isn't a requirement. However, a transmission is much more expensive to replace than a parking brake. So if I can use the parking brake every time I park and thus save wear on the transmission I'll do it.

    My wife already had the same habit before we got married because her brother had reasoned the same and had convinced her of the merits of using the parking brake all the time.

    We now use the parking brake all the time on both our cars. It's habit to engage it when parking and to disengage it when we start driving.
     
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  7. fuzzy1

    fuzzy1 Senior Member

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    Always.

    It really is needed on manual transmissions, as several family members have repeatedly demonstrated. Just last month, aging dad forgot to park his truck in gear again, and it later rolled into another rig. A previous incident rolled into someone's porch. News reports have mentioned various cases where a minor or a pet knocked a car out of gear, causing the rig to roll. One of my previous cars could pop out of 1st gear on step descents (discovered after the warranty expired), a hard bump by a braille parker could possibly do it too.

    Some folks avoid parking brakes during cold spells to avoid freezing the cable in the braked position. By keeping it exercised daily, I have never had this problem.

    This is the only non-manual transmission in my household in three decades, and the habit remains.
     
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  8. PriusC_Commuter

    PriusC_Commuter Active Member

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    Yup, also a habit to always engage the parking break no matter where I park. I always assumed the car slightly rolling forward or backward if I don't is the car resting onto the transmission, and I'd rather put slight extra wear on the e-brake than the transmission over time if at all possible. I never really bothered to research this theory, so if I'm wrong please feel free to correct me. But that's my habit :p
     
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  9. ETC(SS)

    ETC(SS) The OTHER One Percenter.....

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    In the Prius?
    Always. But that's because it's a company vehicle and it's policy.
    I'm not subject to safety inspections but I've seen some of the outside technicians peeking inside to see if I'm following that rule, and I find that it's important to set a good example......when I can. ;)
    I've replaced the pad on the parking brake pedal 2 times and if you've never seen it it's appallingly shoddy for a vehicle with a Toyota badge on the hood.
    Booooo! :(

    In my personal vehicles?
    Almost never, but then I'm smart enough to turn my wheel into or away from the road as appropriate and not to park in such a way as to allow my car or truck to roll into traffic if the transmission fails while the vehicle is parked and off.
    Besides....I live in a very flat area. ;)
     
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  10. maurices

    maurices Member

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    My wife and I both use the parking brake on all of our vehicles we have had since 1990 whether or not they were manuals or automatics as our current cars are. Our son and daughter both do so too.
    That lurching you are seeing in other drivers is when an automatic vehicle is shifted into park without the vehicle completely stopped. This puts enormous pressure on the parking pawl, a part that is used to lock the transmission in Park. Very expensive to replace....
     
  11. xliderider

    xliderider Senior Member

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    Always. Manual, or automatic, under all conditions.

    It makes me cringe when valets and car dealer personnel drive the car up and put the gear selector in Park and step out of the vehicle, even on level ground, without engaging the parking brake.
     
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  12. Horsefeathers

    Horsefeathers Member

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    I'm in a pretty flat area as well, and I don't worry too much about the car rolling away. I was just always taught that all that leaning or pressure or torque (or whatever) in park is not good for the transmission, and it was just easier for it to become a habit every time.

    I'm glad to read it's not just me. Some people in my life would have me believe I am the last person on earth who does this and that it went out with crushed velour seats and fuzzy pompons lining the windshield.

    (Apologies to anyone still sporting crushed velour seats and fuzzy pompons. Rock on.)
     
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  13. KhaPhoRa

    KhaPhoRa Member

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    Always on my manuals transmissions, never on the autos.
     
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  14. situationalawareness

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    I figure it this way, why not? It takes the weight of an entire vehicle off of the transaxle lock when I'm not around. It's like putting your seat belt on really. Why not?
     
  15. Buzzhead

    Buzzhead Non-Interference w/ devel of pre-Warp civs

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    Almost always. If the brakes are wet I won't. I've had the pads rust onto the drum (back in 88 on my Toyota Starlet).
     
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  16. southjerseycraig

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    I always set the parking brake. My father taught me to do this in 1968, and I see no reason to stop. When I had a manual transmission car, setting the brake was an absolute necessity, but I do it even on other cars. BTW, the Prius is the far car I've driven since the 1970s that has the brake on the floor.
     
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  17. El Dobro

    El Dobro A Member

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    Always. Besides taking a load off the parking pawl, I don't want someone bumping into the car with the brake off.
     
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  18. car compulsive

    car compulsive Active Member

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    Now that my wife has the newest car in the family, her Fit and the S2K share the garage and both of my daily drivers are on the steep driveway. I set the parking brake, lift my foot off the brake so the vehicle settles, and then put it in park / shut it off. I don't use the parking brake in the level parking structure at work. I've been told to use it regularly so it doesn't rust up.
     
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  19. acceleraptor

    acceleraptor Member

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    Always. All cars I ever drive.
    (Unfortunately, I'm not always the one driving, so it nets out to "sometimes"..)
     
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  20. Mendel Leisk

    Mendel Leisk Underfoot

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    Always. It's insurance, even on the flat, and helps keep the cable from seizing I think.

    Kinda branch topic:

    Who sets their wheels "correctly", when parking on hills. You know, per the driving manuals, driver training.
     
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