The clutch in a manual transmission vehicle will need to be replaced—the question is only when. And while most clutches need to be replaced between 50,000 and 100,000 miles, if a clutch is misused or damaged, then replacement will be needed sooner. Knowing the signs that your clutch needs replacement allows you to plan accordingly and avoid having your clutch go out while driving. Keep in mind these signs your car’s clutch is on its last leg:
- Pressure reduction. Over time, the clutch disc of your car will start to wear down, causing reduced clamping force of the pressure plate. This clamping force is necessary for the controlled shifting of your car. The reduced clamping force will eventually cause your clutch to start slipping.
- Clutch slippage. When your car’s clutch starts slipping, you should notice that is doesn’t kick into gear immediately when you let out the clutch. Yours car’s RPM may rev abnormally when it should be in gear. This will first happen when you accelerate fast, drive up a hill, or are towing a load.
- Premature wear. Every clutch has a limited life-span, but a number of things can cause a clutch to wear prematurely. Riding the clutch excessively works the clutch at a scorching temperature. A burning smell is common when riding the clutch. A clutch can also wear prematurely because of an oil leak. Talk to your automotive repair company about checking for leaks and getting the most out of your clutch.
For more information on clutch issues and maintenance, contact Greulich's Automotive Service & Collision of Scottsdale and the greater Phoenix, Arizona area. If you’re concerned about your clutch, then we’d be happy to take a look. Visit our website or call us at (480) 483-8186 to schedule your car for service today.