If your car has a manual gear box, your car will have a clutch. Clutches are infamously susceptible to wear, and getting a mechanic to replace it can cost upwards of £500! Luckily, by making a few tweaks to your driving style, you can drastically increase the lifespan of you clutch, saving you both time and money in the long run. Lets take a look.
1. Avoid “riding the Clutch”
If the clutch is partially disengaged, when it could be engaged or disengaged they you are known as “riding the clutch”. Essentially it means that you will be adding unnecessary stress is created between the flywheel and the clutch disc, which speeds up the wear of this part. Resting your foot on the clutch pedal is an example of riding the clutch; if you kick this habit, you could save £1000s in the long run
2. Don’t use your Clutch to slow down
You really shouldn’t use your clutch to slow down. That’s what your brake pads are for. And a brake pad replacement on a Ford Focus would cost you around £60. A clutch replacement is closer to £400! You wouldn’t use a laptop as a hammer would you?
3. Don’t just find the biting point, know the biting point
For learner driver finding the clutch biting point is an easy introduction getting your car moving without an embarrassing stall. But once you’ve thrown away those learner plates (and furry wing mirror dice) it time to step it up a gear. Rather than finding the biting point, slowly release the clutch pedal, hovering over the bite point before lifting. The manoeuvre is a little trickier, but will vastly increase the longevity of your clutch.
4. Be decisive with your clutch control
As with riding the clutch, sloppy clutch control can add unnecessary wear on you clutch. If you don’t engage or release the clutch confidently, then you can end up hovering in the middle, which creates additional stress on your clutch plate. A little practice can go a long way, so next time try thinking about the movements you want to make on the Clutch pedal before you make them.
5. Make full use of the parking brake
Leaving your car in gear is an easy way to stop your car from rolling down the hill , but using this as the sole technique to prevent a run away vehicle puts a lot of strain to the clutch. Next time, use the parking brake in addition to leaving your car in gear, as the parking brake can help carry the load.
The Bottom Line
If you’re not sure what is wrong with the car book a diagnostic inspection – one of our mechanics will come out to work out whats wrong with your vehicle. If you’re sure that you need a Clutch Replacement, select that option from the repairs opting during the booking process.