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Clutch "shudder" on 1st shift when cold


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I have a 2002 C4S with 40,000 miles. I go off regular warranty in about 3 weeks, but I purchased the car a year ago as CPO so I'll still have the extended, but more limited warranty.

Problem: When the car is cold (especially if ambient temp is also cold), when I back out of my work parking space then engage 1st gear for the first time, I almost always get a shudder/bucking of the clutch (much like what a complete novice would do at first attempt to learn a manual transmission) that lasts for a second or two. Very rarely it also happens on the second time engaging first gear at the garage's exit (within about 30 seconds of the first occurrence).

Other issues that might/might not be relevant:

1) I have an annoying clutch squeak (at the clutch pedal area) when I depress the clutch; dealer lubed something - it helped for about 1 month, but the squeak is back.

2) The clutch pedal has always (since I bought the car with 24,000 mi) been pretty stiff.

3) I've never noticed any other type of clutch slippage, except as described above.

4) When letting out the clutch, the engine engages very high in the clutch pedal's travel.

Any ideas?

Edited by c4s jim
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I may be wrong but I think a clutch plate is an expendable item not covered under warrenty. I don't think your clutch is slipping, as slipping is most noticeable in higher gears and especially at lower rpms when trying to accelerate. Drive at 35 mph in 6th gear and floor it, if the engine races and your speed hardly increases, your clutch is slipping.

Porsche clutches are a little different and the engagement point doesn't seem to be where you think it should be. The clutch pedal is initially hard to depress and it gets easier the further down it goes, seems reversed when letting it up. I had a new clutch fitted last week with my new motor and it feels very much the same as the old which was about 50% worn. I kill my car a lot when starting off, mainly because the sensitive feel is absent thru the heavy and stiff hiking boots I usually wear. I do much better in shoes.

If the squeak is back get out the oil. Good Luck, Nick

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Nick,

Thanks for your thoughts. I agree that if there's no slippage under load, it's not likely a worn clutch.

Guys,

I could really use some help.

Does anybody have any insight on what might be causing the clutch shudder?

Thanks,

Jim

Edited by c4s jim
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Nick,

Thanks for your thoughts. I agree that if there's no slippage under load, it's not likely a worn clutch.

Guys,

I could really use some help.

Does anybody have any insight on what might be causing the clutch shudder?

Thanks,

Jim

Try this the next time the car is cold. Before starting it, work the clutch pedal numerous times, up and down. You are try to warm up the pivot points of the pedals as well as the actuator arm in the bellhousing. Really work it. Now start it up and see if the symptom of the shudder is less or gone.

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IMHO - you will find in the end of all that is said...a new clutch will fix your problem.

The stiff pedal is the first sign of needing to replace the clutch disk before the disk is worn to the point of damaging the flywheel. A slipping clutch is a symptom that the disk has worn past the disk material and onto the rivets (where it proceeds to damage the flywheel). You may save yourself some $$ by replacing the disk now rather than later.

Take care,

Ed (Arizona)

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Shudder may be caused by a slight amount of oil or grease that has mixed with spent clutch material and is on the clutch plate. This makes the friction plate or disc stick or adhere somewhat to the pressure plate and or flywheel when just starting to release or engage it. This is most noticeable when cold because the disc has been squeezed between the PP and flywheel which are cold also. When things warm slightly, this sticky film on the disc becomes more viscous and slides freely resulting in normal operation.

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