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Clutch wtf?

Discussion in 'E30 (1984-1993)' started by neep3r, Mar 25, 2011.

    neep3r guest

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    Yesterday I noticed my clutch started feeling weird when pressing and depressing. Today I noticed a spinning noise that got slightly worse throughout the day (drove all day, 100+ miles). I popped the hood and noticed my brake fluid was at minimum so I filled it back up and that seems to fix the odd feeling I was experiencing with the clutch, but the spinning/whining sound is still there.

    I'm not sure how something like this could happen overnight, I'm thinking it could be the bearing but that's just a guess and I want to know what you guys think it could be. If I hold the clutch down at a light the sound is constant.

    Thanks.
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    MGarrison

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    The clutch hydraulics feed off the brake fluid reservoir - if you have a leak with the clutch master cyl. or the clutch slave cyl., you could see your reservoir level drop. Check it out, post-haste, lest you find yourself stuck someplace clutchless and trying to drive it with no clutch. If the master or clutch isn't actuating fully, obviously that means it's not dis-engaging the clutch fully, a potential cause for your noise, at least.

    That doesn't preclude other potential clutch issues - throwout bearing, clutch friction disk worn out, etc.
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    CRKrieger

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    I'm thinking your throwout bearing could have had some serious failure that allowed the clutch slave rod to remain extended much farther than usual (thus explaining the missing fluid). It's also possible your clutch isn't fully disengaged when you depress the pedal. Sounds like you've got to go in there - sooner rather than later. Sorry. :(
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    mooseheadm5

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    I agree with CR. That is what I was thinking before I even read his response.

    neep3r guest

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    Thanks guys, I scheduled an appt. at http://www.bavarianmotorsltd.com/ in Phoenix, AZ for Tuesday the 29th - I explained what I was experiencing over the phone and the guy said I'll probably need to replace the clutch, which will run me $830. I hope that's not the case, I definitely don't want to drop that kind of cash for a 4th week in a row...
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    Brian A

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    You are now forearmed with information about what might be happening. Use that information to discuss and plan the diagnosis process.

    neep3r guest

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    That's what I'll do, I appreciate the advice. :)
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    CRKrieger

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    Depending on the miles on the car, you might not actually NEED a clutch. I took a pretty good one out of my '88 with about 150k on it. I then sold it to a guy who thinks almost nothing of dropping the gearbox to put it in his. If the clutch has plenty of material and it hasn't been damaged by other things, you might get away without changing it now.

    neep3r guest

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    That's why I have such a problem with this whole thing... my car has 95k miles, and the clutch was working perfect until just a couple days ago. At the same time the clutch started making noises and feeling weird I noticed a lot of leaking from what seems to either be my power steering reservoir, the power steering pump, and possible somewhere else since the brake fluid was pretty low.

    This all happened within a few days after the water pump belt broke on my car... My gut says it's not the clutch, I'm guessing (without knowing anythign about clutches whatsoever) it's either a hose/line or a pump/cylinder... something that could lose fluids and cause the clutch to fail or not work properly. The master or slave cylinder maybe? I've had 40+ cars, all but 3 were 5/6/7-speed manual transmissions, only once did the clutch go out and I was the cause.
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    mooseheadm5

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    I think it is not unreasonable for the shop to prepare you for the possibility of a clutch replacement. It is possible that the spring fingers of the clutch pressure plate have become damaged or broke and caused the problem. It may not need the clutch, but better that you know what it might need now so you can be prepared for that possibility. Their quote seems reasonable as well, since the parts alone will be in the $300 range and it takes most of a day to pull the trans and replace the clutch. More likely, though, it is just the release bearing.

    neep3r guest

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    You're right, it is nice to know what I could get myself into financially if things don't work out.

    neep3r guest

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    Does power steering fluid have anything to do with the clutch or the problems I am experiencing? I have a serious puddle of power steering fluid, there has always been a leak but ever since the clutch problem I have noticed a much bigger leak of power steering fluid. Last night I put a tray under my engine compartment and now I have a nice puddle.
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    MGarrison

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    It shouldn't. The power steering reservoir is plumbed directly to the power-steering pump, which is plumbed to the steering rack, and that's all at the front of the engine, nowhere near the transmission, clutch, or back end of the block. Get a good flashlight and look at the power steering fluid lines, pump, and steering rack. If your steering rack boots are squishy, as in full-of-fluid squishy, or obviously leaking ps fluid, your rack seals are shot and you need a new or rebuilt steering rack.
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    CRKrieger

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    These are two totally separate systems using two completely different fluids.
    There are only two things to look at there and either one of them losing fluid is obvious. Prepare for the worst at this point. As Paul said, the estimate is quite fair so, if you have to do this, you don't have to second guess that you're getting screwed. You're not.

    neep3r guest

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    Thanks CRKrieger

    neep3r guest

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    What great timing! I was driving to my mechanics garage when the clutch finally just gave out. I had just started the car and pressed in the clutch pedal, as soon as I got the shifter into reverse the clutch pedal pulled itself to the floor and the car stalled hardcore.

    Needless to say I got a brand new clutch today, along with a handful of other things I decided to have them do. Why not? :)

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