For many of us car buyers, sellers, and drivers we may know a thing or two about vehicles. The engine works? Check. The steering wheel hasn’t fallen off? Bingo. However, there are moments when we need to dig deeper to find out how literally, the nuts and bolts of our cars work in tandem together. One such example of a lesser known car part is the throwout bearing. We at Car Cash Buyers, want to help inform our readers on the importance of all car parts but especially this one! Read on to learn more about this small but mighty piece of your vehicle’s clutch system!
What Is a Throwout Bearing?
Great question! A throwout bearing sometimes better known as a “clutch release bearing” in the simplest of terms is a small piece of the clutch system of your vehicle that momentarily disengages the engine from the manual transmission while shifting. A bearing remember, allows interaction between a moving surface and a stagnant surface. The physical attributes of a throwout bearing are small in stature but large in capability and responsibility. In general, a throwout bearing is shaped like a donut or a ring so it will be able to fit into the correct system with ease. Now that we have properly defined a throwout bearing, let’s get back to it.
But what is a clutch system, you may ask. How does my throwout bearing have anything to do with my manual transmission, is another frequent query we receive. As we proceed to tackle these questions, let’s take a step a further back, just to refresh our memories on the integral parts and pieces like a clutch system that make a throwout bearing so essential to your driving experience. When looking at the larger picture it is essential to have knowledge of all the working parts, especially the pieces and parts inside of your vehicle.
How Does a Throwout Bearing Work?
The way for a throwout bearing to successfully complete its important duties all parts of the clutch system need to be working properly together. The clutch allows engine power to be applied gradually when a vehicle is starting out and stops power to sidestep gear crunching when shifting. Gearcrunching is especially dangerous because over time those gears can erode and break down. The erosion of gears can create a disastrous domino effect within the innards of your car and wreck havoc on your vehicle’s health and your driving experience. Engaging the clutch allows power to flow from the engine to the transmission and drive wheels. Lastly, disengaging the clutch stops the power transfer and allows the engine to continue turning without force to the drive wheels.
You may be thinking, this is all well and good but what does the clutch system have to do with my throwout bearing? Herein inlies the clutch, (no pun intended). As discussed above, the throwout bearing is the bearing that connects the moving and non-moving parts. In your clutch system or clutch assembly the throwout bearing is the last piece in the series of components that composes the clutch linkage from the pedal to the clutch system inside your vehicle’s transmission. This essentially makes the throwout bearing the glue that keeps things continuously running in your manual transmission.
How Do I Know If My Throwout Bearing Needs To Be Replaced?
As most car enthusiasts are aware, vehicles need consistent maintenance and proper care to ensure driver safety and maintain the overall health of the car itself. Maintaining a throwout bearing is no exception, and it is important to know and identify the signs if your throwout bearing is not properly cooperating as it could spell danger for the rest of your vehicle system. We broke down the most identifiable signs and symptoms that your throwout bearing or your entire clutch system may be experiencing some trouble.
Start With a Road Test
As always, if you have any inkling something is not right with your vehicle the first step is to drive the vehicle around. Find a secluded or not so busy stretch of road and let the diagnosing begin! We also encourage you to bring another person with you on this road test so you can have another pair of eyes and ears on hand for the testing and diagnosing phase of this vehicle journey.
1. Pedal To The Floor: Listen For Unusual Noises
When driving, you should be training your ear to listen to anything unusual with the transmission in gear and the clutch pedal all the way to the floor of your vehicle. This is the simplest form of testing because everything is just starting to warm up within the vehicle. The next test you can do is while driving is to release the clutch with transmission in first gear. If you hear any unusual noise when doing this second test it could allude to a worn pilot bearing which will need to be replaced and can be done manually.
2. Clutch Pedal Vibrations
Feeling vibrations? Usually, that is a positive thing but when pressing down on your clutch pedal, it may be a sign of trouble up ahead. In general, when you press down on the clutch pedal you shouldn’t feel any movement it should just be a fluid motion. If you feel these vibrations when completing this action it could mean the clutch release bearing is damaged and or has failed. What is going on behind the scenes making you feel those vibrations is the throwout bearing is unable to align with the pressure plate thus, causing the physical vibrations.
3. Gear Shifting Troubles
It can be downright irritating when your gear shift feels “sticky” or not able to adapt quickly to your shifting needs. However, it could also be a sign that your throwout bearing is in need of a replacement. What is interesting about this symptom is it should not be an isolated instance. If something is truly wrong with your throwout bearing you should experience a number of these signs listed above as well as gear shifting problems. The key is, you should experience the previous signs first then usually with time you will begin to experience the gear shifting problems alerting you to the fact you may need to set some time aside to check out your throwout bearing.
Solutions To Throwout Bearing Problems
So now we know the three main signs of trouble in clutch system paradise. Strange noises, clutch pedal vibrations, and most likely some form of gear shifting problems. Bear in mind your specific vehicle may have other ways of telling you something is just not right. When driving, always pay attention to anything that may feel or sound just a bit off or unusual. Given all these problems, what are the solutions!? At Cash Car Buyers, we always want to help our readers learn how to diagnose and solve their respective vehicle issues. Proceed with reading to discover timely and often entertaining solutions to your throwout bearing woes.
Throwout Bearing Issues Solved (With a Little Help From Our Friends)
Problems, problems, problems. This is probably how you feel once you have diagnosed the issue with your throwout bearing not working correctly. But never fear, Car Cash Buyers is here! We scoured the internet and discovered three fantastic Youtube videos from Danny Johnson, The Horsepower Monster, and Educational Mechanics all centering on throwout bearing solutions, maintenance and more!
1. Education Mechanics: Throwout Bearing Explained
Education Mechanics offers a 58 second video packed with nuggets of knowledge and layman’s term definitions of all the pieces of the clutch system puzzle. This is the perfect video for beginners who need terms explained or someone who wants to view step by step how to attach the throwout bearing with someone guiding your every move. Education Mechanics also boasts tons of other educational videos from air brake relay to an animated video explaining how a turbocharger engine operated. If you want to be educated on your vehicle Education Mechanics is the Youtube channel for you!
2. The Horsepower Monster: How To Set Up a Clutch and Throwout Bearing
The Horsepower Monster guides the viewer step by step through a quick 3 minute and 55 second video so you can watch and get to work! Though this video does not offer any definitions to vehicle terms the producer provides viewers with easy to follow visible directions and shows all tools needed for the project. In this video you will learn how to connect the throwout bearing complete with an engine straight out a vehicle right on the desk of the producer! Viewing the actual engine up close is a great way for an intermediate car enthusiast to master this process after watching the video a few times of course.
3. Danny Johnson: How To Install The Throwout Bearing
Similar to The Horsepower Monster, Danny Johnson let’s the viewer see the installation of the throwout bearing from start to finish with nothing left on the table. In this 3 minute and 33 second video Danny Johnson shows watchers up close and personal how to grease, attach, and test your throwout bearing into the clutch system. What sets Danny Johnson’s video apart from the rest is his insistence of prep work and showing that preparation before starting to work on the vehicle. Though it may seem like a no brainer to some vehicle enthusiasts, this is an incredibly important step to illuminate and show in these types of intermediate to expert level videos.
Throwout Bearing Investigation: The Wrap Up
Here we have it folks! The investigation of the throwout bearing has come to a close. We discovered what a throwout bearing is, what signs of trouble may be headed your way, and discussed three Youtube videos that can help in the process of replacing a throwout bearing in your vehicle. It is also important to bring up during the final thoughts section that throughout the lifetime of your vehicle you may need to replace the throwout bearing multiple times. Hence the name, “throwout”. Due to the integral nature of this car part, it is imperative to remember to completely replace this part. This is exactly why we wanted to show you ways to replace the throwout bearing on your own, so you can have complete power and control over this vehicle isse. Our advice is to avoid quick fix solutions, like just greasing the part. We recommend avoiding these quick fix solutions due to the fact these parts are so important to the safety and functionality of how your vehicle drives day in and day out. With these final thoughts, we at Cash Car Buyers hope you have learned a little something and are now more than ever motivated to check out your own throwout bearing today in your car!