Are You Having Trouble Shifting Gears?

The ability to smoothly shift gears is a basic requirement in a manual car. A malfunctioning gearbox or a bad clutch can make your drive miserable. The most common problem with manual transmission is the clutch. A clutch wears out with age, but novice drivers or careless use can shorten its life.

When your car is more than a few years old, a slight deterioration in the gear and clutch is only to be expected. But, if you notice any significant symptoms, you should get it checked. Fortunately, your transmission gives you plenty of warning before it fails or becomes unusable. It’s important to know the symptoms of a faulty clutch or gearbox and get it checked at the first hint of trouble.

Clutch Vibrates When Engaged

A clutch pedal that is unusually hard or soft is a sign of trouble. Another symptom to watch out for is a clutch that vibrates when you engage it. This is called the clutch judder.

All these symptoms indicate a transmission problem. The main reason is the loss of grip of the clutch wheel on the flywheel. There are many causes for this. Transmission fluid could have leaked into the gears making them slip. Another possibility is a worn-out clutch lining, which provides the necessary friction for a good grip. It can also be a problem with the flywheel, pressure plate or pilot bearing. If you have a clutch judder, get it checked at the garage.

Burning Smell While Changing Gears

If you notice a burning smell while changing gears or your car feels sluggish and has difficulty moving even with the engine is revving, you probably have a slipping clutch.

The distinctive and unpleasant burning smell comes because the clutch disk has lost most of its friction material. With most of its friction material torn off, the clutch will not be able to grip the flywheel properly. This hinders the efficient transfer of engine power to the transmission, which causes the other symptom, the lack of power. The symptoms are usually more pronounced in higher gears.

Trouble Shifting To And From First Gear

If the clutch and the gearbox are in good condition, gear change will be smooth. If the clutch plate is faulty, you will have trouble shifting gears, especially first and reverse gear. If you experience any gear shift problems, get your car checked without delay at a good garage.

Grinding Noises While Shifting Gears

If you hear grinding noises when you try to change gears, you probably have a dragging clutch. It’s due to a clutch doesn’t disengage fully even when the pedal is fully depressed. As a result, the transmission shaft is still spinning when you try to shift and the gears clash causing the grinding noise. The problem usually occurs when you shift into reverse.

There are two common causes of a dragging clutch. The first one is a poorly adjusted clutch pedal. If the clutch adjustment allows too much free travel before it starts doing its job, it must be fixed. The other possible cause is a faulty release mechanism.

In a mechanical release system, the problem could be due to an overstretched or broken cable. In a hydraulic release system, it could be a problem with the master clutch cylinder. Low fluid pressure or entry of air into the system can also cause malfunctions in a hydraulic system.

Unusual Noises When Clutch Pedal Is Depressed

If the noise comes when you depress the clutch pedal, it’s probably due to a poorly lubricated release mechanism or a worn-out release bearing. If the noise comes when the car is in neutral and goes away when the clutch is depressed, you probably have a worn-out input shaft. In both cases, get it fixed without delay because the problem can get worse.

How To Check The Clutch

The best option is to call a mechanic, but if you have some knowledge about vehicle transmissions, you can check the clutch yourself. Open the bonnet and remove the inspection cover of the bell housing to expose the clutch. If you find it covered in fine black dust, your clutch is probably burnt and replacement may be required.

A clutch burnout is just one of the possibilities if you have transmission problems. Very often, the problem is caused by minor issues with the transmission that is inexpensive to repair. Only a qualified mechanic will be able to tell if the problem needs an expensive clutch replacement.

If you are having clutch or gear shift difficulties, take your car to a good garage instead of trying a DIY clutch repair. It could save you a lot of money and trouble. If you live in or around Manchester, contact us for high-quality car service and repairs at reasonable prices. We offer a quick and convenient service.

At VolksMaster our highly skilled, qualified team can provide a solution to any issues with your clutch you may be experiencing with the highest quality of car repairs and servicing. We will provide reliable advice to help you make well-informed decisions about your car maintenance and repair needs. All our work is carried out with safety and efficiency in mind.

If you need more information, or you would like to book your car in at one of our local branches in Oldham, Bury, or our Van Centre please get in touch. Our friendly team will be happy to help.

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    08/09/2021

    I’ve had cambelt, water pump, service and ac service done at Volksmaster Oldham and the service was fantastic. I had plenty of questions regarding my car which Ryan answered all of them and I was kept informed on the progress of the work carried out. I’ll be using Volksmaster again and would recommend to anyone. Thanks again guys 👍

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    I've been using Volksmaster for approx 7-8 years, (have used both the Oldham and Bury branch). Over the years the experience has always been top notch. Fantastic service, professionalism, great knowledge and honesty from all the staff who work there. I cannot recommend Volksmaster highly enough, thanks Mike, Steve, Dawn, Samantha and the rest of the team.

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    28/05/2021
  • First time using these guys, Ryan the service manager was excellent, always got back to me, let me know exactly what was wrong with the car first time round, what it would cost and when it would be ready, they really know their stuff, polite and professional I would highly recommend this garage to anyone, oh and they even washed and waxed my car after the job was done.

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    29/03/2021
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    Great service. They advised they could book me in on a Thursday after my Audi Q7 had a suspension failure. I dropped the car off on a Tuesday because it was virtually un driveable and by Wednesday they had given me a price and repaired the car.

    I'll be dropping the car off for a full service in the future. Natalie and Nathan were great!

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  • I was extremely impressed with the professionalism of the staff at Volkmaster. Used for the 1st time and was totally confident that they would get me back on the road, and they did. Level of service is great, friendly and polite staff. Cheaper than dealerships and a great service from the staff.

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    I was extremely impressed with the professionalism of the staff at Volkmaster. Used for the 1st time and was totally confident that they would get me back on the road, and they did. Level of service is great, friendly and polite staff. Cheaper than dealerships and a great service from the staff.Thank you Volkmaster 👍👍👍👍👍

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    What an absolute pleasure to deal with from start to finish.
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    15/03/2021
  • What an absolute pleasure to deal with from start to finish.Ryan even goes to the trouble of taking pics to show you without being asked. Having had my last car looked after by a main dealer (not the best experience) Volksmaster is like a breath of fresh air!

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    Absolutely spot on service as always from Volksmaster, I've always taken my Audi's to them and the work they have carried out has always been perfect and I'll definitely continue to take my car there. thanks for the excellent service Volksmaster.

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    12/03/2021

    Absolutely spot on service as always from Volksmaster, I've always taken my Audi's to them and the work they have carried out has always been perfect and I'll definitely continue to take my car there. thanks for the excellent service Volksmaster.

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    12/03/2021
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    Thanks Volksmaster.

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    05/03/2021

    Excellent service from the team especially Nathan who kept me up to date with my GTI and also car mini valleted in the lockdown period.

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    03/03/2021

    Got my CAM and crank correlation faults repaired. Supplied and fitted inlet manifold gasket, valves, magnets, housing and gaskets. Great service and done the job really quick. I had the car back in half a day. Highly recommended top technition Dave & Nathan.

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    02/03/2021

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