How to Reduce Clutch Wear
Your car’s clutch is subject to constant friction, so it’s no surprise that it wears out and needs replacement eventually. It could last 2,000 miles or 200,000 miles depending on how the car is driven. This month, the Wyatt Auto Services team are giving a few handy tips to reduce clutch wear and keep your clutch working great for many thousands of miles.
Never Ride the Clutch
Though your driving instructor will tell you ‘not to ride the clutch’, it’s rarely explained why this shouldn’t be done. You are riding the clutch whenever you keep the clutch pedal partially depressed while the car is moving and in gear. This is bad because while the pedal is depressed, the pressure pad is wearing against the clutch plate and isn’t entirely engaging the clutch. Keep your foot away from the clutch pedal while moving and only press the pedal to change gear. Whatever you do, do not use the clutch pedal and accelerator together to keep the car stationary on a hill, as this puts further strain on the clutch.
Fast and Smooth Gear Changes
Once you know your car well and can feel its biting point instinctively, you can master changing gear in a fast and smooth way. The longer you keep the clutch depressed the more pressure is applied to the clutch components. If you can shave a couple of seconds off each gear change this will add up over time to a much better wearing clutch.
Sit in Neutral
It seems like a good idea for saving time and effort, but keeping your car in first gear with the clutch down and footbrake depressed at a traffic light causes strain on the clutch. If you’re stopped for any length of time, give your feet a break and your clutch by knocking the gearbox into neutral.
Use the Handbrake
Tip 3 brings us nicely to Tip 4. Use the handbrake while stood at traffic lights rather than the clutch and footbrake. Also, it’s common advice to park with your car in gear. This is so that, should the handbrake fail, the car is stopped from rolling by the engaged gear. It’s a good idea to do this when parked on a hill but if you’re on level ground, consider using the handbrake alone. It is less likely to fail in this situation and the car will not roll without an incline. Also, without the clutch plates engaged the clutch will last many more miles.
Consider Taking the Long Way Round
It’s counter intuitive to some drivers not to go from point A to point B by the most direct route possible. However, if you live in a city or a densely populated area, you’ll benefit from taking the faster A roads and dual carriageways for some journeys to the other side of the city, rather than ploughing straight through the centre. With this turn of speed comes less clutch work and therefore far less clutch wear overall.
Wyatt Auto Services specialise in clutch repair and replacement, offering a comprehensive service when it comes to inspecting, repairing or replacing your clutch. Our highly skilled team strive to provide excellent customer service, tailoring everything we do to your specific requirements at an affordable price. We’re the number one garage and MOT test centre in Barnsley. For more information on all our maintenance and repair services, don’t hesitate to get in touch with our friendly team today.