Car Clinic: Clutch Not Always To Blame

Car Clinic: Clutch Not Always To Blame
 

Question:

I had a problem on my 2005 Toyota Quantum with difficult gear selection. It was identified as a worn clutch release fork. After the fork was replaced, everything worked wonderfully. Recently, though, I have started having the same problem. I don’t know what to do, because a new clutch kit was fitted last year.

Mandla

Answer:

Mandla, two questions come to mind here. First, was the fulcrum (on which the clutch fork pivots when you depress the pedal) replaced when a new fork was fitted? When there’s excessive wear on the fork, the chances are good that the fulcrum is also worn.

Many gearbox specialists therefore prefer to replace the fulcrum at the same time as the fork. Second, how certain are you that the reappearance of hard shifting is due to a problem with the clutch again?

A clutch that fails to release fully may be the most common cause of hard shifting, but there are other possible causes — such as worn bearings in the gearbox causing “gear float”, worn selector forks (possibly due to the driver being in the habit of resting his hand on the gear lever when driving) or bad selector alignment.

And even if the clutch is to blame, the fault may be in any one of several components, as outlined in Car Clinic of October 23.

Gerrit Burger