How to Deal With Clutch Failure in Your MINI
While the MINI’s reliability is unquestionable, the cars under this brand are prone to mechanical malfunctions as is normal with every other car. Among the common problems that the MINI can develop is premature clutch failure. The clutch is a component in the transmission system that makes it possible for the driver to engage and disengage the wheels of the car while changing gears without causing any damage to the engine of the car. The MINI has a manual transmission system, so the driver has to step on the clutch pedal before changing the gears in the car.
How it Works
Applying pressure on the clutch pedal puts pressure on the clutch disc. That pressure is in turn transferred to the flywheel, effectively creating a link between the transmission shaft and the engine. When these two run at synchronized speeds, the car can then move.
The action of applying pressure on the clutch pedal causes a reaction that is transmitted throughout the transmission system. This transmission involves a number of components within the transmission system including the springs, bearings, and clutch disc among others.
Causes of Clutch Failure
Premature failure in the clutch of the Mini Cooper can be brought about by a number of reasons. The most common reason why the clutch may fail significantly is because of regular wear and tear. The different smaller parts that form part of the transmission system are prone to wearing out. In fact, breakdown in any of the many different parts in the clutch usually has wear as the root cause.
Even with a regular service schedule, the constant stopping and starting that comes with normal driving can cause these parts to wear out, causing the clutch to fail. Resting your foot on the pedal when driving even when the clutch is not engaged, driving in a city with heavy traffic, and carrying extremely heavy loads will also cause the clutch to become worn out faster and cause failure.
Symptoms of Clutch Failure
Clutch failure in your MINI Cooper will definitely not go unnoticed as there are some obvious signs that will indicate a problem right away. Some of these signs include:
Unusual noises within the transmission
When there are squealing, squeaking, or grinding noises in the car any time you shift into gears, chances are that some components in the transmission are worn out. Other times, you may hear these noises when you are in neutral gear, clearly indicating that the clutch is failing.
When the clutch fails, the engine may run too fast even when the car is moving slowly. This situation is commonly referred to as slipping. The problem is a direct result of the wearing out of the clutch disc. In addition, misalignment or wear in the clutch linkages will also cause slipping.
Rough gear shifts
The clutch is responsible for ensuring that the gears shift on time once they are engaged. When there is a delay in this shifting, or when the car experiences a problem picking up speed when you try to accelerate, chances are that the clutch has a problem. Rough gear shifts will also become more pronounced when you try to reverse the car.
Other than these signs, you may also notice excessive vibrations in the clutch pedal when you hold it down.
What to Do
The resulting effects from clutch failure can make your driving experience extremely uncomfortable. This is why as soon as you experience any of the symptoms associated with the failure, you should seek the help of a professional mechanic to take a look at your MINI. Finding a specialist that is familiar with clutch-related problems in the MINI will ensure that your car gets the best quality of services possible. They will also be able to diagnose the root cause of the problem correctly before rectifying it. This will not only save you valuable time but also money from future problems that could arise from poorly done replacements.
Here at Glenwood Foreign Car, we understand the need for quality repairs done by certified and skilled technicians. We are available to help restore the transmission in your MINI as soon as you alert us to your problem. For residents of areas around Upper Makefield Township, Yardley, Newtown, and Morrisville, PA, we are ready to take a look at your MINI as soon as you make an appointment.