I tried it a couple of times, never found it useful though. Never saved me time, in fact made me waste more. When I tried all three auto corrections at the same time, results were very dramatic in a bad way, so I'm not surprised by your findings.
When I have to do extensive color and contrast correction on a photo I convert the layer to smart object and use the Camera Raw filter on it. Smart objects let you apply any filter in a non destructive way, so you can always alter them later. If you have a lot of other layers there will be limitations, but for single layer photos it's like using Lightroom (well, sort of).
Otherwise you can use a curve adjustment layer, which is also a non destructive way to change color balance and contrast in the scene. The advantage of this is that you can use layer masks and stack adjustment layers.