5 Signs of a Failing Car Clutch


The Clutch is the most significant car component. It is often installed in both light-duty and heavy-duty vehicles and aids their working. It is connected to the rotating shafts and transfers power from the engine to the wheels. Unfortunately, just like other car components, a car clutch undergoes wear and tear and fails over time. Power transfer becomes a concern in such cases, so shifting it becomes impossible. Let’s explore the underlying reasons for a failing car clutch and take steps to mitigate the issue:

What’s the Function of Clutch in a Vehicle?

Function of Clutch

The car engine moves all the time, and the wheels remain intact. You want to halt the car without halting the engine, which can be performed by disengaging the wheels from the engine. With the engine flywheel and clutch disc, you can make the engine and the transmission spin.

Soft Clutch Pedal

The very first sign of a failing clutch is a soft clutch pedal. This generally occurs when there is an issue with the hydraulic release mechanism. If you notice that the Clutch is softer than before, there is a possibility that air might have got inside the Clutch. These concerns, when left unattended, make your Clutch drop on the floor or would work without any apparent pressure application. Take the car for a technician inspection and plan a car clutch change when necessary.

Burning Smell from the Car

Another obvious sign of a failing clutch is the burning smell. This burning smell generally occurs due to friction coming out of a slipping clutch. Rattling sounds and a clutch replacement following the smell would prevent the issues from returning. Ignoring these issues would lead to bigger problems and costly repairs in the future.

Changing Gears Becomes a Hassle

Changing Gears

While using the gearshift, one expects a smooth and seamless manual transmission experience. If you are experiencing difficulties while shifting gears, it is possibly due to a failing clutch. With an old or deteriorated clutch moving from one gear to another becomes a hassle. Sometimes reverse operation becomes a huge concern for the drivers. Taking the car to a qualified technician for a car clutch change would resolve the issues in no time.

Biting Point Shifting Upwards

Those who spend time knowing the ins and outs of the car know where the car’s biting point is. As the Clutch deteriorates, the biting point starts moving upwards. This situation is commonly observed during a failing clutch, and you’re allowing the Clutch to move towards the wheel.

Increased RPM

Clutch issues are generally accompanied by increased RPM and decreased pick-up. In such cases, the RPM is going to exceed way beyond before the vehicle begins to catch up. This not only leads to mileage drop but also deteriorates the Clutch to a great extent. A clutch replacement would resolve the issues in no time.

Transmission Produces A Grinding, Whirling, or Chirping Noise in Neutral

Out of all the signs of a failing clutch, determining this failure symptom is difficult for many. When the transmission moves to neutral, your car starts producing grinding, whirling, or chirping sounds. This sound doesn’t go away the moment the clutch pedal is depressed. These sounds are produced by worn-out input shaft bearing. Only a mechanic can help you determine the underlying reasons and recommend solutions.

Clutch Pedal Stuck on Floor

Sometimes the clutch pedal remains on the floor, commonly occurring due to binding issues followed by linkage release or bearing. Have a look at the springs in the linkage; they need to be adjusted at times. Look at the release bearing and ensure that the pedal stop stays intact.

How Much Does Clutch Replacement Cost?

Clutch replacement is one of the expensive replacements. The average clutch replacement cost generally falls between $1200-$1400 involves both labor and parts. Other repairs sometimes accompany it, and the costs start escalating after that. However, you can save money by purchasing quality clutch and parts from ‘The Auto Parts Shop.’ Just pay the labor charges to the mechanic and resolve the issue.

The Bottom Line

Don’t ignore if you’re facing concerns due to a failing car clutch, and consult a mechanic to prevent the issues from coming back. Shifting would be a big concern if clutch issues occur and demand the driver’s attention.

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