I always heard (and read in a manual somewhere) the opposite - to use the brake - especially in harsh winters because it keeps the cable/parts free and lubricated...I rarely use mine as well and it has worked flawlessly every time.
Were I to visit San Francisco then I'd expect to use it most of the time. The law there requires you to curb your wheels, meaning you have to turn them so the downhill side is aimed at the curb. When parking facing uphill, turn left; facing downhill, turn right. (That's to the best of my memory. If it's different then someone who lives or visits there more often will update this.)
When I was learning to drive in PA my dad told me not to set it in the winter time because the moisture that gets on the cable while driving can freeze and make it hard or impossible to release the next morning. Not sure of the construction of ours (exposed or sheathed), but a cable is a cable.
The only time I use mine is by accident, when my Big Foot presses on it while I am getting in the car. The placement of the pedal bothers me as much as the heated seat switch bothers others. Whenever this happens, is when I find out that it still works correctly. If your parking brake pedal is not working correctly 1LT, then you need to find out where the clunk is coming from. Is it down by the pedal itself? Or under the car? Start there. Or if you dont feel like messing with it, take it to the shop.
I do not feel it is nessessary to use the brake unless parking on a hill, or doing maintenance or something on the car that requires the brake on for safety. Its probably good to engage and check it every once in a while, if you never engage it, it might not work when you need it.
I check mine every now and then, but I don't have a regular schedule. I just do it when I get a hair up my nose the wrong way.WOW!
Hard to believe that none of you use it on a regular basis. I use it every single time I drive. Isn't it bad for the tranny?
Sorry to go off topic OP.
Most likely an early 60's Chrysler TorqueFlite.I remember seeing a push button automatic but it was so long ago I don't remember whose it was.