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Clutch Maintenance Tips: Enjoy A Healthy Clutch!

clutch maintenance

Some of the common clutch maintenance tips to extend the lifetime of your clutch include:

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  • Eliminate excessive heat
  • Change your driving habits
  • Consider bleeding the clutch
  • Keep an eye for symptoms of a bad clutch

The clutch is a unique feature in any vehicle equipped with a manual transmission. Keeping up with your vehicle's clutch prevents dealing with major breakdowns that could cost thousands of dollars in repairs.

Unfortunately, many drivers ignore the importance of maintaining their vehicle's clutch, and that's why they get surprised with major breakdowns. The good news is that maintaining your culture is not a complicated job, and it doesn't require a lot of effort from you.

This article provides you with the top tips and tricks on clutch maintenance to help you extend the clutch's life and prevent critical breakdowns not only for the clutch but also for the manual transmission.

What is the clutch and what does it do?

Before we dig into details about Clutch maintenance, let's step back and get an idea about what does the clutch do in your vehicle?

If you drove a car with a manual transmission, you might be familiar with the clutch, the third pedal you will need to engage every time you switch gears. However, if this is your first time to learn about the clutch, or if you haven't driven any vehicle equipped with a manual transmission, you might not be familiar with what is the clutch is and what it exactly does.

Typically, when driving your car, the engine continues spinning over time and generating power as long as the ignition switch is turned on. However, you don't necessarily need your wheels to keep moving and spinning, corresponding to the engine's power. As a result, you will need the transmission to engage and disengage the engine from the wheels so they don't move as the engine is running.

In vehicles equipped with manual transmissions, the driver must provide some inputs to engage and disengage certain gears that help your vehicle understand whether you need to move your wheels and at what speed.


Clutch maintenance tips

As you might already know, the clutch is a critical component in any vehicle equipped with a manual transmission. Without a perfectly working clutch, you won't be able to drive your car at all.

Therefore, it is critical to keep up with your clutch and prevent dealing with major breakdowns suddenly because you ignored the maintenance specified new vehicles owner’s manual. Typically, automotive experts recommend the following when it comes to taking care of your vehicle's clutch:

1-    Eliminate excessive heat

One of the worst things that could damage your clutch prematurely is getting exposed to extreme heat or generating a lot of heat. Your clutch is not supposed to generate too much heat because it could damage the internal components.

Your clutch can generate heat if it's used the wrong way. In other words, if you continuously partially engage the clutch by riding on it, you can easily create additional friction that could cause a lot of internal overheating.

Similarly, if you're trying to haul a large load using your vehicle, if the car cannot haul the large loads without slipping the clutch, you will experience excessive heat generation that could damage the clutch. Therefore, experts recommend switching to a lower gear if your vehicle clutch keeps slipping as you're trying to haul a large load.

2-    Change your driving habits

Most clutch damages happened due to your driving habits. So, for example, even if you your foot on that clutch a little bit without any pressure while stopping at a traffic light, you can't cause some internal wear-outs that could complicate down the road.

That's why the best real thought is that whenever you're not using or engaging the clutch, put your left foot on the floor all the time and never allow it to ride the clutch for any reason.

3-    Consider bleeding the clutch

Every comment problem with your vehicle's clutch might be whenever you feel that the clutch is squishier than before. When that happens, it could be related to air building up inside the clutch fluid. As a result, a lot of the pressure won't work properly, and the function of your clutch might not be as it should be.

That's why whenever you have a weird feeling about your vehicle's clutch, it's recommended that you perform what's known as clutch bleeding where your mechanic can help you remove any air bubbles from inside the fluid. Many drivers learned how to do their own culture bleeding, which means that you can easily do the job yourself without needing a professional mechanic or spending high labor costs.

4-    Keep an eye for symptoms of a bad clutch

Finally, one of the best things that could help you maintain a healthy clutch is to keep an eye for any symptoms indicating that the lock clutch is going bad or is about to go bad here. In this way, you can take the problem early and help your mechanic resolve the issue without installing a new clutch. Fixing the problem is much cheaper when you don't need to install a new component, as you might already know.

Signs of a bad clutch

Since we indicated earlier that it's very critical to keep an eye for any symptoms indicating that the culture is going bad, let's take a closer look at some of these symptoms that you're not familiar with them:

1-    Issues with acceleration

One of the first things you might notice when your clutch is about to go back is having some difficulties accelerating your vehicle. Next, you'll notice that the engine is revving properly bought the vehicle is not accelerating as it should. Therefore, it might be worth inspecting the clutch to confirm that it's not the culprit.

2-    Loud grinding noises

When the clutch is not working properly, you might hear some weird grinding noise is indicating that the metal components are interacting with each other the wrong way. That could happen due to a significant issue with the clutch, but it also might be linked to other troubles within the transmission itself.

3-    Problems with a loose clutch pedal

If you realize that the clutch is looser than before, it might be the right time to inspect the clutch or replace it if necessary. It could indicate that your clutch plate's internal components are wearing out, which means that either the entire culture is failing or some of its components are not working as they should.

4-    Issues with a sticky clutch

While dealing with a loose clutch means an internal issue with the clutch, when the clutch is relatively stickier than before, it also indicates a problem with the clutch. For example, if you pressed on the clutch pedal and found it hard for the clutch to come back to its original position, it could be time to replace your vehicle's clutch.

5-    Additional weird noises

While grinding is the most common type of weird noise indicating a problem with your vehicle's clutch, sometimes you might hear some squealing or screeching noises coming from the side of your clutch. It might indicate a problem with the entire transmission or a specific issue with the clutch.

6-    The gears are not responding

Another severe issue indicating a problem with the vehicle's clutch is when the gears are not switching as you're trying to switch them. So, for instance, if you decided to go up for gears and engage the clutch, nothing happened; it could be a problem with the culture itself or a problem with a surrounding component.

7-    The gears do not stay

Similarly, sometimes you might switch your spots after switching a certain gear; it goes back to the original one. That's what automotive experts describe as “gears that stay.”

8-    Strange burning smell

Finally, when there's a lot of heat generated from the friction inside that transmissions clutch, you might start smelling weird burning smells. When that happens, the clutch is wearing out in the kids out because of excessive temperatures impacting the rubber components.

How much does it cost to replace the clutch?

Unfortunately, clutch replacement is not a cheap job, and it should cost you somewhere between $575 and $725 for labor only, while parts should cost somewhere between $627.00 and $650.

The biggest component when it comes to replacing your clutch has to do with the labor because it is a labor-intensive job and requires a specific level of mechanical skill sets to be done here it's not something that you can do by yourself because there's a very high chance that you might introduce major breakdowns that could cost you a lot of money if you're not familiar with what you're doing.

Although you can save on labor costs by going to a small independent job, sometimes only one expert recommends going to a dealership, especially if you're driving a luxury vehicle. Yes, independent shops have great mechanics but going to the dealership of the same brand helps you have a mechanic who is familiar with your vehicle and knows exactly how things should be done rather than experiencing your car.

Can I drive my car if it has clutch problems?

No, clutch problems are those that prevent you from driving your vehicle completely. Without me switching gears, you won't be able to adjust and regulate the power generated from the engine and how your vehicle's wheels respond. In other words, when your vehicle's clutch feels complete, your car should not be driven.

How often should I replace my clutch?

While it's critical to keep an eye for symptoms of a bad clutch, some over the mode of experts recommend being more proactive about clutch problems and replacing it at least once every 100,000 miles. Therefore, clutch replacement is not something that you have to perform regularly. However, once your vehicle hits 100,000 miles, there is a very high chance you will start dealing with major breakdowns related to significant components, and that's why many drivers considered selling their cars after hitting the 100,000 miles.

Performing some of the clutch maintenance tips that we highlighted in this article helps you reach the 100,000 miles successfully without any sudden major breakdowns. However, this all depends heavily on the clutch, your driving habits, and how much stress you put on your vehicle.

Clutch Maintenance: Final Thoughts!

Your vehicle's clutch is a core component in the manual transmission appeared. Without a working clutch, you won't switch gears, and you will have difficulties driving your vehicle. That's why keeping up with clutch maintenance is extremely important to enjoy a healthy clutch without sudden major breakdowns.

This article provided you with simple tips to keep in mind when taking care of your vehicle's clutch. These include preventing bad driving habits like riding the clutch, eliminating excessive heat, considering clutch bleeding as a solution to remove any bubbles inside the clutch fluid.

No matter how much care you put towards your vehicle's clutch, if your car has major mechanical problems, it might be the right time to sell your vehicle and use its value towards a better car that doesn't have any problem.

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