Although a great number of people operate a manual vehicle, relatively few actually know or understand what a clutch does. Many people, of course, are happy to rely on the services of a garage to help them understand what is wrong with their clutch, but it still makes good sense to understand the basics of a clutch, and therefore, how to identify a fault. A faulty clutch usually manifests itself in one of three different ways; all three of these indicate that the clutch is in need of repair. Examine three signs that tell you that you need to check the clutch.
If you feel that the clutch pedal is hard to push, or there is a slight clunking noise as you push, it could be that the spring has disengaged from the pressure plate and is being dragged from inside as you try to push the pedal down. The spring prevents the clutch from fully releasing, causing a crunching and high engine revving sound when you try to change gear. To remedy this, the clutch should be replaced by a mechanic, and a new spring will be fitted securely in the pressure plate. The other factor regarding a sticky clutch is a loss of pressure from the hydraulic linkage, meaning that the pedal becomes hard to push down. The pressure loss is normally due to a leak or lack of clutch fluid.
Another symptom of a faulty clutch is when the vehicle shifts – or slips – out of gear with no input from the driver. The clutch problem can also manifest as a jerky vehicle, shifting back and forth as the clutch fails to properly engage the gears. Although gear slippage can happen, especially if a vehicle is heavily laden, it can also be indicative of two issues: an oil leak may have developed between the clutch plate and the crankshaft (and should be fixed), or the clutch is simply worn to the point that it will not engage the gears properly and should be replaced at a garage.
Smoke Or Burning Odor
If a vehicle emanates a burning smell (similar to rubber burning), which may or may not be accompanied by smoke coming from the underside of the vehicle's bodywork, it could be that the clutch plate is overheating. This is especially common for vehicles who are in slow moving traffic, and their operators ride the clutch as the vehicle is in motion. This causes the heat to build up. It can also be caused by wear and tear to the clutch plate, which should be replaced.
Knowing some of the things to look for will also help you to explain to a mechanic which symptoms the vehicle is displaying. For more information, contact a business such as Stopmaster Brake Service Pty Ltd.