Is Your Clutch Slipping?

Summary

    – Slipping clutch: how to recognize it?

    – Risks of a slipping clutch

    – Slipping clutch: cost of repair

The clutch is the part that ensures the gear shift when the engine is running. It is located between the gearbox and the engine.

The clutch wears out due to friction between the flywheel and the clutch disc. At the end of its life, it tends to slip. Let’s see how to react to this problem.

Slipping clutch: how to recognize it?

There are several ways to tell if your clutch is slipping. Here are a few things you can do yourself:

    – When you’re accelerating, the engine screams, and the tachometer suddenly jumps up, but the car doesn’t pick up speed.

    – At a standstill, when you put the car in first gear, pull the handbrake, accelerate moderately while letting go of the clutch pedal, the engine revs up, but the car stays still.

    – When you drive, a burning smell may suddenly appear in the cabin. This is due to the clutch disc slipping on the flywheel.

Risks of a slipping clutch

If you drive with a slipping clutch, it can fail at any time. You will risk being left behind because the clutch slips in all operating phases:

    – Your car will be immobilized because the clutch can no longer connect the transmission and the engine.

    – A towing by a breakdown service will be an obligation.

    – Moreover, you risk damaging the flywheel because of the clutch’s friction on this one and engaging even more expensive repairs.

Slipping clutch: cost of repair

As soon as the clutch starts to slip, you should contact a professional to have your clutch checked as quickly as possible. This is because sometimes it is due to an oil leak between the clutch housing and the engine block, which causes the same symptom.

If, on the contrary, your clutch disc is worn out, it will be necessary to change what is called the clutch kit, which consists of a release bearing, a mechanism and the clutch disc:

    – This repair is heavy because it is necessary to disassemble the transmission and the gearbox.

    – Sometimes, depending on the vehicle, the dismantling of the engine, in addition to the gearbox, is necessary. It is a repair that can last from 4 to 8 hours.

Changing only the clutch disc would be useless because the other parts of the kit (the mechanism and the release bearing) have the same number of kilometres and, therefore, similar wear.

Therefore, you would risk doing the same operations again two or three months later, generating an additional financial cost.

Good to know: some additional costs are often required when replacing the clutch, such as gearbox oil, two transmission seals, a clutch cable and brake fluid for hydraulic clutch release bearings.

To change your clutch, choose your repairer:

    – At a car dealership of your car’s make. Of course, the labour is often more expensive, but they know their product very well.

    – In an independent garage or a car centre. The knowledge of your vehicle is less, but the labour is often cheaper.

    – At your usual garage, if you trust them.

To go further, browse our different contents:

    – What Does Double-Clutching Mean?

    – Is Your Clutch Worn Out?

    – Everything You Need to Know About the Clutch Cable

    – How Does a Manual Transmission Work

    – How Does an Automatic Transmission Work

    – Why Change Transmission Oil

    – What Could Cause a Transmission Leak?

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