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Old 08-06-2013, 03:35 PM   #1
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Squishy clutch pedal after hard drive

Hi Everyone,

I let my brother in law test drive my car, with me in the car, and after the drive, there was quite a bit of a burnt clutch smell due to him not use to the clutch on our car and a bit of spirited drive.

Now, all the gears seem to have a hard time engaging but once they are engaged, the car drives fine and there doesn't seem to be any slipping.

I've driven the car to 35 mph, switched to 6th gear and floored it with no slipping at all.

The clutch definitely feels different through, it's not as smooth moving in and out. It seems to catch about half way out and it's not as stiff as it should be. The movement of the clutch does not seem as linear, it starts off a little stiffer and softens up pass the half way mark.

Any idea on what I should look at and what needs to be repaired/replaced?

Thanks
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Old 08-06-2013, 09:42 PM   #2
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I'd suspect you have a bad clutch master cylinder. If not that, it'll be the slave cylinder.
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Old 08-06-2013, 09:48 PM   #3
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Is there a way to diagnose which of the two needs replacing?
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Old 08-07-2013, 01:03 PM   #4
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I'd try bleeding it first. Are you sure it wasn't the brakes that were stinking? If the brake fluid gets too hot then they'll often need to be bled after they've cooled. Since the clutch and brakes use the same fluid, this could be the problem. The last half of the clutch return is exactly what goes limp when there's air in the system.
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Old 08-07-2013, 01:06 PM   #5
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Thanks for the info. I'll try bleeding them when I get a chance and report back.
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Old 08-07-2013, 01:10 PM   #6
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Any writeup on how to bleed the system without a bleeder tool? is that even recommended?
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Old 08-07-2013, 01:47 PM   #7
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You can easily bleed the brakes with out a power bleeder. It just requires someone to pump the brake pedal before you bleed and remember NOT TO LET UP on the pedal until you have the bleeder valve cranked down tight (to prevent air from being sucked in through your drain tube).

If you go this route, be sure to keep an eye on the fluid in the reservior and keep it full.

1. Start from the passenger side rear, inside bleeder first. Bleed until you see fresh fluid.**
2. After you see fresh fluid, swap out your hose to the front and bleed out the old fluid from the caliper itself.
3. Next go to the driver's side rear, repeat above steps.
4. Next, front passenger side, repeat above steps.
5. Finally, driver's front side, repeat above steps.

** Look at the color of your existing fluid. Gold or blue? If gold, buy blue fluid so you can see the color change. It will take at least one can of fluid for a full brake system flush, which will give you a nice stiff pedal and may help your clutch issue as well. Certainly won't hurt it! ATE Super Blue (or the same stuff in GOLD color)

Stuff to do before you begin: Get the back jacked up and wheels off (both sides). Get the right open MM wrench for the bleeding. Get some airline hose to drain old fluid. Get a big clear glass jar to catch old fluid. Get 2 cans of high temp brake fluid:

ATE Super Blue (or the same stuff in GOLD color)

Inspect your brake pads and ball joints and discs while you're at it.

Separate thought: I let one of my friends drive my car the first week I had it and he drove it like he just stole it with me in the passenger seat. I said, "settle down, dude!" and he said, "these cars are meant to be driven hard!!!"

Well, they can be driven hard, if you don't mind pouring money into them for brake pads, discs, clutch plates, etc.!

I do not let anyone drive my car any longer unless I'm at the track and my instructor wants to show me what my car can do if I will discipline myself to drive the car better.
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Last edited by RandallNeighbour; 08-07-2013 at 01:53 PM.
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Old 08-07-2013, 01:53 PM   #8
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Thanks for your post, this confirms my understanding of how to manually blled the system.

My brakes feel perfectly fine, will bleeding the brake valves fix my clutch problem? Or should I just do the clutch bleed from the slave cylunder located on top of the transmission?
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Old 08-07-2013, 02:55 PM   #9
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You will need to bleed the clutch from the slave cylinder on the transmission.
Be prepared for a rather difficult job unless you have 3 arms that are 4' long......

I change out my clutch fluid every 2 years and find its easier to remove the rear wheel, the bottom alloy engine plate and the left hand side angle cross brace for easier access.
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Old 08-07-2013, 07:21 PM   #10
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Bleeding the brakes fully will help mix new fluid in the clutch cylinder, will it not?
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Old 08-08-2013, 11:00 AM   #11
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we had something similar happen on our 99 Boxster project car it turned out to be a broken clutch release arm



the pedal felt normal but stopped high and wouldn't disengage the gear but you could push it harder and it would finally release and shift
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