Is My Clutch Slipping? 4 Warning Signs
Many drivers love the feeling of control that manual transmissions offer. But if you’ve acquired bad shifting habits or drive in congested areas that require frequent stops, your clutch might have a mind of its own. A slipping clutch means a weak link between your engine and your wheels and shouldn’t be taken lightly. If not addressed, the slipping can worsen and lead to more serious damage (including clutch failure). Here are 4 signs to be on the lookout for:
1. Clutch disengaging quickly
You could have clutch trouble if it only takes a slight push on the pedal to disengage. You should have about an inch or two of free movement before this happens. If the clutch disengages right away, it’s probably slipping.
2. Hesitation before accelerating
A slipping clutch reduces the amount of power the transmission gives the drive wheels. If you’re pulling a load, you may also find that you don’t have the boost you need. Pay attention if the gas pedal and acceleration feel disconnected as this may indicate clutch problems.
3. Higher than normal RPMs
Does your engine need more RPMs than usual to reach a certain speed? Test this in a parking lot by leaving the engine running, putting the car in second or third gear, and then letting the clutch out. If the RPMs go up and the car remains in place without stalling, odds are your clutch is slipping.
4. Burning under the hood
This usually means an oil leak or damaged electrical wiring but, in some cases, can come from the friction of a slipping clutch. Either way, a burning smell under the hood is never a good sign and requires immediate attention.
If you’re noticing any signs of a slipping clutch, it’s time to get your car back under control. Call a Veenstra’s repair specialist at 616-454-6597 to schedule your 22-point inspection.