How a clutch works and how to avoid costly repairs.

How a clutch works and how to avoid costly repairs.

The internal workings of a car are constantly moving and turning as you drive. As your car increases in age, parts will need repaired or replaced. Keeping your car well maintained and driving with care can save you money in the long run. One of the parts of your car which tends to get the most use is the clutch.


The clutch is one of the most common and troublesome parts of most cars. The way you drive can have a large impact on how long your clutch will last.

How does the clutch on a car work?

Every car with manual transmission will have a clutch. Your car engine is constantly rotating as soon as it is switched on even when it is not being driven. In order for your car to operate without the wheels turning, the clutch controls friction between the engine and the transmission. The clutch contains a large friction disc that comes into contact with the engine’s flywheel. When you don’t press down on the clutch pedal, movement travels from the flywheel to the friction disc of the clutch then onwards to the transmission. Press down on the clutch pedal and the friction disc of the clutch is pulled away from the flywheel, allowing the car’s engine to keep rotating without transferring power to the transmission and onwards to the wheels.

Using the clutch carefully and gently will prolong its life of up to 20,000 miles. Over time most clutches will need replaced no matter how you drive as they are made of metal and the friction causes them to wear away. Your clutch only wears when it is engaged and disengaged with the transmission. When you apply the clutch pedal suddenly it increases extra wear and tear on the friction disc of the clutch, making it more likely to slip when changing gear. Changing gears carefully so that the clutch isn’t suddenly pressed against or pulled away from the flywheel is best practice.

Most modern clutches are designed to tolerate more than 75,000 miles of driving without any issues, so remember to treat your clutch with care. Replacing a worn clutch is a big job and is something which needs to be carried out by an experienced mechanic. If your clutch is starting to slip – it is probably time to have it replaced.

Here at Premier Vehicle Care we carry out all mechanical repairs so don’t delay and call us today for a great friendly service.

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