The clutch has a function related to the comfort but also to the safety of the vehicle. It is made up of several complex parts that work together to make the engine run properly. Therefore, the diagnosis and the change of the clutch can take a few hours.
The service life of a clutch isabout 100,000 kms for gasoline vehicles and 150,000 kms for diesels. It is at the time of the technical control that it is necessary to decide whether the clutch needs to be replaced or not. However, there are some signs that alert you to wear and tear on this essential part:
• The clutch pedal becomes harder ;
• Squealing or hissing sounds come from the clutch pedal;
• The clutch slips;
• Changing gears becomes more difficult;
If none of these signs are showing, there are other ways to tell if it’s time to install a new clutch. First, start the car in 4th or 5th gear after warming up the engine, with the handbrake applied. If the car does not stall, it means that the clutch is damaged. Also, accelerate sharply, if the car does not manage to pick up speed while the tachometer rises, the clutch must be replaced.
How long to change the clutch?
The clutch is a complex system. It attaches to many parts and its replacement is not an easy intervention. It may take 3 to 6 hours in a row to get it right. The operation requires a perfect mastery of automobile mechanics. It is therefore wise to entrust this task to a professional because an error can jeopardize the safety of passengers. Clutch change is also an expensive operation because in addition to the price of new equipment, the cost of labor is not insignificant. You have to pay between 700 and 1,200 €.
How to maintain your clutch?
A well-maintained clutch can last for many years. It may even be that a driver never needs to replace this device, provided they have these few good reflexes:
- Gently press the clutch pedal and avoid sudden movements;
- Do not keep your foot on the pedal while driving so as not to stress it unnecessarily;
- Shift into neutral more often in order to release the pressure on the clutch pedal;
- Engage gears smoothly;
- Always start first;
- Release the clutch gradually in rhythm with the acceleration;
- Avoid keeping the pedal depressed when going downhill;
- Depress the pedal all the way when changing gears.
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