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Old 01-14-2006, 12:01   #1 (permalink)
Derry Argue
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300tdi soft clutch?

This may be one of those stupid questions. I might not even have a problem
at all!

I don't do much in town driving but a few weeks ago I was in town waiting
at a roundabout. I put my foot on the clutch and the pedal went almost to
the floor before I felt normal resistance. My reaction was that I had a
clutch cylinder failure. But for the drive home it behaved perfectly and
since then I have wondered if I imagined it.

Then, I went to town again yesterday. Same thing, but this time it happened
two or three times so I begin to think it is not my imagination. I have
checked the fluid level and it is fine.

Normally, a reasonable pressure is required to depress the clutch pedal.
This problem shows itself by the clutch pedal appearing much softer. There
is no grinding of gears nor any gear change problem.

Is this senile decay in myself or the first symptoms of clutch cylinder
failure in the D90? And, if the latter, which cylinder?

Thanks for your patience!

Derry
1997 300tdi D90 100,000 miles
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Old 01-14-2006, 12:01   #2 (permalink)
Graham Carter
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Re: 300tdi soft clutch?


"Derry Argue" <home@adviegundogs.co.uk> wrote in message
news:42t0piF1k5hcrU1@individual.net...
> This may be one of those stupid questions. I might not even have a problem
> at all!
>
> I don't do much in town driving but a few weeks ago I was in town waiting
> at a roundabout. I put my foot on the clutch and the pedal went almost to
> the floor before I felt normal resistance. My reaction was that I had a
> clutch cylinder failure. But for the drive home it behaved perfectly and
> since then I have wondered if I imagined it.
>
> Then, I went to town again yesterday. Same thing, but this time it

happened
> two or three times so I begin to think it is not my imagination. I have
> checked the fluid level and it is fine.
>
> Normally, a reasonable pressure is required to depress the clutch pedal.
> This problem shows itself by the clutch pedal appearing much softer. There
> is no grinding of gears nor any gear change problem.
>
> Is this senile decay in myself or the first symptoms of clutch cylinder
> failure in the D90? And, if the latter, which cylinder?
>
> Thanks for your patience!
>
> Derry
> 1997 300tdi D90 100,000 miles


I drove my brothers Volkswagen van once, and took it from London to Poole.
Got to the end of the M3, and no clutch, exactly like you got - pedal to the
floor. After a couple of pumps, it started working again. He had not
noticed the problem as he rarely drive long distances.

What it was was the seals in the clutch slave cylinder. The fluid wasn't
coming out, but was leaking round the piston into the normally "dry" part.
Under pressure, it all seemed to correct itself, until the next time.

I have heard of similar symptoms on other cars.

Cheers!
Graham Carter

--
Carter Computer Services (Pvt) Ltd
P.O. Box A1619
Avondale
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Tel: +263 4 300082
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email:gcarter(at)mweb(dot)co(dot)zw



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Old 01-14-2006, 12:01   #3 (permalink)
Huw
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Re: 300tdi soft clutch?

Derry Argue wrote:
> This may be one of those stupid questions. I might not even have a
> problem at all!
>
> I don't do much in town driving but a few weeks ago I was in town
> waiting at a roundabout. I put my foot on the clutch and the pedal
> went almost to the floor before I felt normal resistance. My reaction
> was that I had a clutch cylinder failure. But for the drive home it
> behaved perfectly and since then I have wondered if I imagined it.
>
> Then, I went to town again yesterday. Same thing, but this time it
> happened two or three times so I begin to think it is not my
> imagination. I have checked the fluid level and it is fine.
>
> Normally, a reasonable pressure is required to depress the clutch
> pedal. This problem shows itself by the clutch pedal appearing much
> softer. There is no grinding of gears nor any gear change problem.
>
> Is this senile decay in myself or the first symptoms of clutch
> cylinder failure in the D90? And, if the latter, which cylinder?
>
> Thanks for your patience!
>
> Derry
> 1997 300tdi D90 100,000 miles


It's the clutch cylinder seal. Believe it or not you can 'cure' it by
removing any mats or carpets and really stamping hard on the pedal until it
floors maybe a dozen or two times. This is almost guaranteed to work and
will give you many more moons of happy clutching. Don't be too gentle with
your stamping.

Huw


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Old 01-14-2006, 12:01   #4 (permalink)
Huw
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Re: 300tdi soft clutch?

Huw wrote:
>
> It's the clutch cylinder seal. Believe it or not you can 'cure' it by
> removing any mats or carpets and really stamping hard on the pedal
> until it floors maybe a dozen or two times. This is almost guaranteed
> to work and will give you many more moons of happy clutching. Don't
> be too gentle with your stamping.


Engine need not be running and gears in neutral of course. Certainly not
while driving.

Huw


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Old 01-14-2006, 21:02   #5 (permalink)
Derry Argue
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Posts: n/a
Re: 300tdi soft clutch?

"Huw" <hedydd[nospam]@tiscali.co.uk> wrote in news:42t1pfF1kantmU1
@individual.net:

> Huw wrote:
>>
>> It's the clutch cylinder seal. Believe it or not you can 'cure' it by
>> removing any mats or carpets and really stamping hard on the pedal
>> until it floors maybe a dozen or two times. This is almost guaranteed
>> to work and will give you many more moons of happy clutching. Don't
>> be too gentle with your stamping.

>
> Engine need not be running and gears in neutral of course. Certainly not
> while driving.
>
> Huw
>
>
>


Thanks, Huw and Graham, that's what I suspected though was hoping it
wasn't! But I hadn't heard of your cure before so it doesn't sound urgent.

I had a related problem with my last Pug 504. The clutch disappeared at odd
times, once at Drmochter on the A9 (miles from anywhere). The worst time
was just after I had just been released from hospital and my brain wasn't
working properly.

The clutch packed up on the Kessock Bridge outside Inverness and I had no
option but to pay 100 to get the truck transported home....by which time
the clutch had (of course!) returned. :( That one turned out to be a
leaking connector and I finally sorted it by inserting an "O" ring at the
joint, then promptly sold it. Of course, it has been perfect ever since.

Derry
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Old 01-15-2006, 09:01   #6 (permalink)
Huw
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Re: 300tdi soft clutch?

Derry Argue wrote:
>>
>>

But I hadn't heard of your cure before so it doesn't sound
> urgent.


Well it 'cured ' mine for over two years before it had an external leak.
Only needed to do it once, maybe twice during that time.



Huw


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Old 01-15-2006, 16:01   #7 (permalink)
Derry Argue
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Posts: n/a
Re: 300tdi soft clutch?

"Huw" <hedydd[nospam]@tiscali.co.uk> wrote in news:42vbsbF1kk6hoU1
@individual.net:

> Derry Argue wrote:
>>>
>>>

> But I hadn't heard of your cure before so it doesn't sound
>> urgent.

>
> Well it 'cured ' mine for over two years before it had an external leak.
> Only needed to do it once, maybe twice during that time.
>
>
>
> Huw
>
>
>


Been looking at Haynes. I may just change the slave cylinder for peace of
mind... I have to pass Dromochter every three weeks or so and do not relish
roadside the thought of repairs!

Derry
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Old 01-15-2006, 16:01   #8 (permalink)
Huw
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Posts: n/a
Re: 300tdi soft clutch?

Derry Argue wrote:
> "Huw" <hedydd[nospam]@tiscali.co.uk> wrote in news:42vbsbF1kk6hoU1
> @individual.net:
>
>> Derry Argue wrote:
>>>>
>>>>

>> But I hadn't heard of your cure before so it doesn't sound
>>> urgent.

>>
>> Well it 'cured ' mine for over two years before it had an external
>> leak. Only needed to do it once, maybe twice during that time.
>>
>>
>>
>> Huw
>>
>>
>>

>
> Been looking at Haynes. I may just change the slave cylinder for
> peace of mind... I have to pass Dromochter every three weeks or so
> and do not relish roadside the thought of repairs!


You don't fancy trying my cure then? It is free! :-)

Huw


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Old 01-16-2006, 02:01   #9 (permalink)
Derry Argue
Guest
 
Posts: n/a
Re: 300tdi soft clutch?

"Huw" <hedydd[nospam]@tiscali.co.uk> wrote in news:43058lF1kj0iaU1
@individual.net:

> Derry Argue wrote:
>> "Huw" <hedydd[nospam]@tiscali.co.uk> wrote in news:42vbsbF1kk6hoU1
>> @individual.net:
>>
>>> Derry Argue wrote:
>>>>>
>>>>>
>>> But I hadn't heard of your cure before so it doesn't sound
>>>> urgent.
>>>
>>> Well it 'cured ' mine for over two years before it had an external
>>> leak. Only needed to do it once, maybe twice during that time.
>>>
>>>
>>>
>>> Huw
>>>
>>>
>>>

>>
>> Been looking at Haynes. I may just change the slave cylinder for
>> peace of mind... I have to pass Dromochter every three weeks or so
>> and do not relish roadside the thought of repairs!

>
> You don't fancy trying my cure then? It is free! :-)
>
> Huw
>
>
>


Oh, but I do! The way I procrastinate, it will take me a couple of
years to get around to the job anyway!!

What does concern me is a post I found on Google. Something about some
push rod or other disappearing into the bell housing (??) when the slave
cylinder is removed necessitating splitting engine and gear box to get
it out -- or did I get it wrong again?

Derry
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Old 01-16-2006, 02:01   #10 (permalink)
Huw
Guest
 
Posts: n/a
Re: 300tdi soft clutch?

Derry Argue wrote:
> "Huw" <hedydd[nospam]@tiscali.co.uk> wrote in news:43058lF1kj0iaU1
> @individual.net:
>
>> Derry Argue wrote:
>>> "Huw" <hedydd[nospam]@tiscali.co.uk> wrote in news:42vbsbF1kk6hoU1
>>> @individual.net:
>>>
>>>> Derry Argue wrote:
>>>>>>
>>>>>>
>>>> But I hadn't heard of your cure before so it doesn't sound
>>>>> urgent.
>>>>
>>>> Well it 'cured ' mine for over two years before it had an external
>>>> leak. Only needed to do it once, maybe twice during that time.
>>>>
>>>>
>>>>
>>>> Huw
>>>>
>>>>
>>>>
>>>
>>> Been looking at Haynes. I may just change the slave cylinder for
>>> peace of mind... I have to pass Dromochter every three weeks or so
>>> and do not relish roadside the thought of repairs!

>>
>> You don't fancy trying my cure then? It is free! :-)
>>
>> Huw
>>
>>
>>

>
> Oh, but I do! The way I procrastinate, it will take me a couple of
> years to get around to the job anyway!!
>
> What does concern me is a post I found on Google. Something about some
> push rod or other disappearing into the bell housing (??) when the
> slave cylinder is removed necessitating splitting engine and gear box
> to get it out -- or did I get it wrong again?
>


This is a different issue altogether. Should this happen then there would be
no alternative to drastic action and the only way home would be to change
gear without clutching, which is possible as long as you go slowly and don't
stop. It is unrelated to the problem you have and may never happen.
Certainly my 84 example is still chugging along happily although it did have
a new clutch at some point in the dim and distant past. If you worry about
such things you will send yourself to an early grave, so don't.

Huw


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