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Old 01-03-2011, 04:45 PM   #1
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Downshifting/engine braking

Sorry if there has already been a thread on this, but I have a question about downshifting. A coworker of mine and fellow Wrangler owner told me today that because of the kind of transmission that is in the Jeep, you shouldn't use engine braking (downshifting). My husband and I both own performance vehicles and I used to ride a motorcycle, so engine braking is a tool I use often. Is there any truth to this claim and if so, what are the facts to back it up? I tend to think if you don't downshift too quickly and keep your RPMs normal, you should be fine, but this is my first Wrangler, so I'm just learning the ins and outs. (2007 six speed wrangler, V6, if that info makes a difference). Thanks everyone!

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Old 01-03-2011, 04:49 PM   #2
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i have a 97 4.0 and i downshift when i drive a stick i always have if your not suppose to that news to me lol

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Old 01-03-2011, 04:53 PM   #3
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I think the difference is you wear out the clutch faster with downshifting and you wear out the brakes quicker without downshifting to slow you down? But when the Jeep is new I wonder if its bad to do a lot of engine braking? I have been using the brakes alot more since I want to be nice to the new engine.
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Old 01-03-2011, 04:57 PM   #4
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I don't downshift to slow down, but I downshift to go downhill. My dear ol' dad always told me that "brakes are a [blank] lot cheaper than a clutch"...
I've not heard anything good or bad - that's just my personal preference...
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Old 01-03-2011, 05:52 PM   #5
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I'd downshift it. If the clutch and trans are junk, I'm sure after market has something better. Smoking, faded brakes are unacceptable
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Old 01-03-2011, 05:58 PM   #6
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I have been driving a stick for 40 years and have always down shifted and have never had a problem with the clutch. Having said that I don't shift from 5th when doing 50 to second either. You must know what grear to go to so you don't over rev the engine or over stress the drive chain.
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Old 01-03-2011, 09:17 PM   #7
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What is this clutch wear you are talking about? I only use the clutch from a stop. Up shift and downshift by matching rpm.
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Old 01-03-2011, 10:20 PM   #8
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While fun, clutchless shifting is not really good for your tranny, no matter how good you are at it! I would rather replace a clutch than a whole transmission! Thanks everyone for the feedback, you all pretty much confirmed my thoughts. I never downshift more than one gear at a time when slowing, so I should be ok then.
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Old 01-04-2011, 08:06 AM   #9
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I have never down shifted. Easier on the drive train to just put it in neutral and use the brakes.
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Old 01-04-2011, 08:15 AM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by CorpusBeachJeep View Post
A coworker of mine and fellow Wrangler owner told me today that because of the kind of transmission that is in the Jeep, you shouldn't use engine braking (downshifting).
That's preposterous. Downshifting is fine.

For all warning of clutch wear, if you properly rev match your downshifts, there is no more clutch wear during a downshift than a proper upshift.

If you cram your trans into a lower gear, and slowly let off the clutch to bring the engine up to speed, that's very hard on the synchronizers and the clutch.

A blip of the throttle is usually all that it takes to get your engine in the right rpm range, then put it into gear and let off the clutch. That's very easy on the synchronizers and clutch. It's a couple hundred rpm difference vs a possibly a couple thousand.
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Old 01-04-2011, 08:31 AM   #11
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I'm downshifting all the time too. I hate cleaning break dust off my front wheels. You just need to practice it. You're basically applying rear breaks only so spinning out is possible.
As to wearing out the clutch or tranny, if you don't grind the gears or feather the clutch too much, it's the same as up shifting.

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