Clutch Replacement Cost
The Average Cost to Replace a Clutch Is $1,222-$1,398, Depending on if You Go to the Mechanic or DIY.
This price range is based on national averages for all vehicles and does not factor in taxes, fees, or your particular make and model. Related repairs or maintenance include flywheel repair or replacement, pressure plate replacement, or throw-out bearing replacement. For a more accurate estimate based on your make, model, and location, use the RepairPal Fair Price Estimator.
Get a more accurate estimate for your clutch replacement using RepairPal’s Fair Price Estimator:
Cost at the Mechanic: $1,222-$1,398
- Parts: $637-$660
- Labor: $585-$738
The time it takes for a clutch replacement at the mechanic may vary depending on your make, model, and year of the vehicle. Generally, it takes a professional approximately two to five hours to replace a clutch. This involves separating the engine from the transmission, removing the old parts, installing the new ones, and putting the engine and transmission back together again. Sometimes it may be necessary to resurface or replace the flywheel as well.
Cost to DIY: $637-$660
- Difficulty levels: Advanced
- Parts needed:
A DIY clutch replacement requires some knowledge of mechanics and how to remove the transmission. If you already have the necessary tools and understand how your clutch works, you can save money if you change the clutch yourself.
Sometimes, though, a clutch only needs adjustment, not a replacement, and can be done at home. However, readjusting a broken clutch won’t fix it.
Keep in mind that the type of clutch kit you need depends on the make and model of your vehicle. If you plan to replace your clutch yourself, make sure to choose the right parts for your car. When in doubt, always refer to your owner’s manual.
What Is a Clutch?
The clutch is the mechanical component that sends power from the engine to a manual transmission. (Most automatic transmissions use a torque converter or a continuously variable drive system instead of a clutch.) It does this by pressing a friction disk against the flywheel. The clutch pedal, through either a mechanical or hydraulic system, pushes these components apart, disconnecting the engine from the transmission. It also allows the friction disk to slip against the flywheel, which allows the car to accelerate into first gear from a stop. Then, power goes through the selected gear inside the transmission to the driveshaft(s) to turn the wheels.
What Does Clutch Replacement Include?
Clutch replacement is often an in-depth process that takes several labor hours to complete. In most vehicles, the clutch is located between the engine and transmission, which means you have to disconnect the transmission from the engine to replace the clutch. Accessing the clutch of all-wheel drive cars can be more difficult than front-wheel-drive automobiles.
Once you have access, the clutch replacement itself usually involves removing the old pressure plate, friction disk, and throwout bearing, and replacing them with the new parts included in the clutch kit.
What Happens if You Don’t Replace Your Clutch?
The first problem you will encounter with a worn-out clutch is that it will slip. When you press the gas pedal, the engine RPM will increase, but the car will not accelerate because the clutch slips instead of transferring power to the transmission. Eventually, the clutch will wear out so much that you will not be able to move your car at all. If the friction disk completely wears out, its metal backing plate will grind against the flywheel, which will require the flywheel to be resurfaced or replaced as well.
How Often to Replace Your Clutch
There isn’t a typical timeline for replacing a clutch. Some clutches may wear out quickly, whereas others last well over 100,000 miles. A clutch should last at least 80,000 miles, but heavy use can wear the clutch out faster. This can include towing, hard acceleration from a stop, or rough gear changes. Your driving and shifting techniques can have a profound effect on the lifetime of your clutch. Newer vehicles tend to last longer before they need a clutch replacement.
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Common Symptoms of a Clutch That Needs Replacing
There are a number of signs that your clutch may be wearing out and in need of replacement. The first sign is that when you press the gas pedal your engine RPM will increase, but your speed will not. This is a sign that the clutch is slipping rather than transferring power to the transmission. You may also notice strange smells, similar to hot brakes. The cause is similar. The friction surface of the clutch is overheating from excessive slippage. Later this is followed by metallic grinding sounds, which are from the clutch backing plate rubbing directly against the flywheel once the friction surface is gone.
Another symptom you may notice is a pulsing sensation through the clutch pedal while changing gears. This indicates that the flywheel is warped or wearing unevenly. While the clutch may not be worn out in this case, exactly the same procedure is required to resurface or replace the flywheel as to replace the clutch. There is no additional labor cost to replace the clutch in this case, only the parts themselves. It makes sense to replace the clutch while you’re in there, whether you need it or not.
Related Maintenance Services
The following services are commonly performed along with a clutch replacement:
- Flywheel resurfacing or replacement
- Master or slave cylinder replacement
- Adding or changing transmission fluid
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