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  • FIRST POST
    • building with lego
    • By building with lego 17th Mar 17, 7:52 PM
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    building with lego
    Leaving car in gear while parked- yes or no?
    • #1
    • 17th Mar 17, 7:52 PM
    Leaving car in gear while parked- yes or no? 17th Mar 17 at 7:52 PM
    I have just read the thread about someone's car which was shunted 3m by a rollaway vehicle.

    I always park with my wheels turned, with my handbrake on and in gear, be that 1st or reverse.

    If my car were hit (while parked) hard enough to move it 10 feet, would my gearbox be damaged? Or would it be enough to stop the runaway car as well as mine?



    (The OP in that thread mentioned not having left their car in gear, and that they would do so in future. My pondering is whether an impact that great would do more damage to the gearbox than to the bumpers/ front.)
    They call me Dr Worm... I'm interested in things; I'm not a real doctor but I am a real worm.
Page 1
    • forgotmyname
    • By forgotmyname 17th Mar 17, 8:11 PM
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    forgotmyname
    • #2
    • 17th Mar 17, 8:11 PM
    • #2
    • 17th Mar 17, 8:11 PM
    Always in gear.

    No the impact wont hurt the gearbox. the tyres will lose grip long before that happens. Unless you have a rare car that will break its gearbox before it can spin its wheels.
    Punctuation, Spelling and Grammar will be used sparingly. Due to rising costs of inflation.

    My contribution to MSE. Other contributions will only be used if they cost me nothing.

    Due to me being a tight git.
    • Jonners85
    • By Jonners85 17th Mar 17, 8:20 PM
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    Jonners85
    • #3
    • 17th Mar 17, 8:20 PM
    • #3
    • 17th Mar 17, 8:20 PM
    Always leave mine in gear, just a habit I've fallen in to.


    I don't think any damage would be done as long as it is just a knock and zero Tyre movement.
    • jimmy cricket
    • By jimmy cricket 17th Mar 17, 8:39 PM
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    jimmy cricket
    • #4
    • 17th Mar 17, 8:39 PM
    • #4
    • 17th Mar 17, 8:39 PM
    One of our neighbours came running out of the house shouting at my partner as to why he was leaning against the bonnet of his car. The response was that my partner was walking past and saw the car starting to move. Parked on handbrake only...
    • Aylesbury Duck
    • By Aylesbury Duck 17th Mar 17, 9:00 PM
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    Aylesbury Duck
    • #5
    • 17th Mar 17, 9:00 PM
    • #5
    • 17th Mar 17, 9:00 PM
    Always in gear. It's unlikely but not impossible that the handbrake cable could snap or stretch. In many cars, parking in gear with the handbrake on also locks all four wheels. Stops your student colleagues wheelbarrowing your car down the road....
    • building with lego
    • By building with lego 17th Mar 17, 9:05 PM
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    building with lego
    • #6
    • 17th Mar 17, 9:05 PM
    • #6
    • 17th Mar 17, 9:05 PM
    Cool, that seems fairly conclusive then! In my (novice) head the impact would have ground the wheels back and done goodness knows what to the box, but my mind is more at ease.

    I've even heard of people parking gearbox only while on the flat. Makes sense if the above posts are accurate.
    They call me Dr Worm... I'm interested in things; I'm not a real doctor but I am a real worm.
    • iammumtoone
    • By iammumtoone 17th Mar 17, 9:26 PM
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    iammumtoone
    • #7
    • 17th Mar 17, 9:26 PM
    • #7
    • 17th Mar 17, 9:26 PM
    The only time I park left in gear is when on a hill or slope, which is hardly ever.

    Cars do not roll whist on flat ground but there is always the chance of someone driving into a parked car, would leaving it in gear be wise in that situation?

    Should you leave it in forward or reverse if the ground is flat?
    Sealed pot challenge ~ 11 #017 - Open 1st Nov


    • Aylesbury Duck
    • By Aylesbury Duck 17th Mar 17, 9:32 PM
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    Aylesbury Duck
    • #8
    • 17th Mar 17, 9:32 PM
    • #8
    • 17th Mar 17, 9:32 PM
    The only time I park left in gear is when on a hill or slope, which is hardly ever.

    Cars do not roll whist on flat ground but there is always the chance of someone driving into a parked car, would leaving it in gear be wise in that situation?

    Should you leave it in forward or reverse if the ground is flat?
    Originally posted by iammumtoone
    I'd choose based on the situation. If I was parked nose-in to a wall or another car, I'd park in reverse. That way, if I mistakenly started the car with it still in gear, it wouldn't jump forward and crash. I'd park in a forward gear if I'd reversed up to something and parked.
    • d0nkeyk0ng
    • By d0nkeyk0ng 17th Mar 17, 9:34 PM
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    d0nkeyk0ng
    • #9
    • 17th Mar 17, 9:34 PM
    • #9
    • 17th Mar 17, 9:34 PM
    I always leave parked in first gear if flat or facing uphill, or reverse if downhill. I depress the clutch before starting the engine.
    • Robisere
    • By Robisere 17th Mar 17, 9:45 PM
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    Robisere
    I never leave mine in gear. It is an automatic, though. And I put the handbrake on.

    But before I suffered spinal damage and used a manual gearbox car, I always left it in second gear, handbrake on.

    I have a niece who was trapped between two cars at traffic lights in icy weather. Car in front was waiting for green, car behind came up too fast, lost control and shoved hers into the front car. Her handbrake was off and she came out of it with severe whiplash injury and lifelong spinal problems, due to a double shunt into both cars. Front car had hanbrake on, did not move when she was pushed into it. She rebounded again, back into the car behind, which was trying to reverse away.
    There may be more than one way to skin a cat.
    But the result is always inedible.

    • photome
    • By photome 17th Mar 17, 9:46 PM
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    photome
    I have been driving for 36 years and always leave in gear
    • iammumtoone
    • By iammumtoone 17th Mar 17, 9:53 PM
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    iammumtoone
    I have a niece who was trapped between two cars at traffic lights in icy weather. Car in front was waiting for green, car behind came up too fast, lost control and shoved hers into the front car. Her handbrake was off and she came out of it with severe whiplash injury and lifelong spinal problems, due to a double shunt into both cars. Front car had hanbrake on, did not move when she was pushed into it. She rebounded again, back into the car behind, which was trying to reverse away.
    Originally posted by Robisere
    Thanks for sharing that story, I only use handbrake at lights if on a hill. I will now think to use it at all times.
    Sealed pot challenge ~ 11 #017 - Open 1st Nov


    • Prothet of Doom
    • By Prothet of Doom 17th Mar 17, 10:01 PM
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    Prothet of Doom
    One of our neighbours came running out of the house shouting at my partner as to why he was leaning against the bonnet of his car. The response was that my partner was walking past and saw the car starting to move. Parked on handbrake only...
    Originally posted by jimmy cricket
    People have died doing this, after they get squashed between car and wall usually.

    I have an OLD automatic that requires the gearbox to be in park before I can get the key out, and really don't need the handbrake at all.

    I my wife's car, I tend to turn the wheels towards the kurb and leave it in gear if it's parked on a slope. But we live in a flat bit of the UK so don't need to worry.
    • Mr.Generous
    • By Mr.Generous 17th Mar 17, 10:03 PM
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    Mr.Generous
    Always park in gear. Reverse is lowest gear so most resistance, I usually park in 1st though. Was it Vauxhall that had cars where the handbrake kept slipping off?
    • iammumtoone
    • By iammumtoone 17th Mar 17, 10:20 PM
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    iammumtoone
    One of our neighbours came running out of the house shouting at my partner as to why he was leaning against the bonnet of his car. The response was that my partner was walking past and saw the car starting to move. Parked on handbrake only...
    Originally posted by jimmy cricket
    People have died doing this, after they get squashed between car and wall usually.
    Originally posted by Prothet of Doom
    Yes it should never be done. Cars can be replaced, people can't.

    However I think that is easier said than done, most people want to help and try to avoid an accident if they can see it occurring. It is natural instinct to step in to try to stop it.
    Last edited by iammumtoone; 17-03-2017 at 10:39 PM.
    Sealed pot challenge ~ 11 #017 - Open 1st Nov


    • Car 54
    • By Car 54 17th Mar 17, 10:36 PM
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    Car 54
    Cool, that seems fairly conclusive then! In my (novice) head the impact would have ground the wheels back and done goodness knows what to the box, but my mind is more at ease.

    I've even heard of people parking gearbox only while on the flat. Makes sense if the above posts are accurate.
    Originally posted by building with lego
    Gearbox only is illegal. You must apply the parking brake.
    • forgotmyname
    • By forgotmyname 18th Mar 17, 1:51 AM
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    forgotmyname
    Gearbox only is illegal. You must apply the parking brake.
    Originally posted by Car 54
    Since when? What if your parking brake only actuates the gearbox the same as leaving it in gear?

    Try an old Land Rover with the handbrake on the gearbox, you can move it a foot or more before it stops.
    Punctuation, Spelling and Grammar will be used sparingly. Due to rising costs of inflation.

    My contribution to MSE. Other contributions will only be used if they cost me nothing.

    Due to me being a tight git.
    • Car 54
    • By Car 54 18th Mar 17, 7:24 AM
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    Car 54
    Since when? What if your parking brake only actuates the gearbox the same as leaving it in gear?

    Try an old Land Rover with the handbrake on the gearbox, you can move it a foot or more before it stops.
    Originally posted by forgotmyname
    Since when? - certainly for my lifetime. The current legislation is the C & U Regs 1986 107(1): "Save as provided in paragraph (2), no person shall leave, or cause or permit to be left, on a road a motor vehicle which is not attended by a person licensed to drive it unless the engine is stopped and any parking brake with which the vehicle is required to be equipped is effectively set. "

    In the Highway Code which you studied for your test it's rule 239.
    • unforeseen
    • By unforeseen 18th Mar 17, 7:49 AM
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    unforeseen
    Since when? What if your parking brake only actuates the gearbox the same as leaving it in gear?

    Try an old Land Rover with the handbrake on the gearbox, you can move it a foot or more before it stops.
    Originally posted by forgotmyname
    The handbrake on old LRs was a prop shaft clamp. It was on the ones used by the military in the 60s & 70s at least. I found out the hard way that trying to do a handbrake turn is a good way of removing the prop shaft. This was as the days when the driver's seat was the fuel tank.
    • coffeehound
    • By coffeehound 18th Mar 17, 9:41 AM
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    coffeehound
    Someone on another forum made a point about mechanical sympathy regarding leaving the car in gear. When you apply the handbrake and remove your foot from the footbrake, the car rolls a little in taking up the slop in the handbrake mechanism.

    If you are in gear when doing this, the weight can then be held by the transmission (not sure exactly which components might suffer due to this, clutch bearings?) rather than the handbrake. So the ideal procedure would be to apply handbrake, release footbrake, and only then put it into gear.
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