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A collection of helpful articles based on reader submissions
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Below is a collection of Jim Grant's Tech Tips sorted by Vehicle Make. These Tech Tips were answers to questions submitted to Jim by users over the course of many years.
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Lincoln - Mercury
  Jim Grant's Tech Tips

‘94 Isuzu Rodeo, Slipping Clutch

Q: So far I have installed the following in my '94 Isuzu Rodeo 3.2 with a manual transmission. A new clutch, clutch master cylinder, clutch slave cylinder, clutch and pressure plate. But, after all of this work the clutch continues to slip after driving the vehicle for 15 minutes. This has been a persistent problem. I overheard a dealer mechanic say that it was a problem of design, the fluid line was too near an exhaust pipe. Not even the dealer has been able to address this problem.

- Daniel

A: For a clutch to start slipping after the vehicle has been driven a short time and all of the components are known to be good then it is likely that your problem is an adjustment issue. The hydraulic clutch in your vehicle uses brake fluid. Brake fluid, as it is heated, expands. Because brake fluid expands, a provision is designed into the system to allow for the expanding fluid. If this provision were not in place, as the fluid heats and expands, the clutch would start to release. The expanding fluid would be applying pressure to the hydraulic clutch as if you were starting to step on the clutch pedal. On the back of the clutch master cylinder, there is a push rod that connects to the clutch pedal. This push rod is adjustable. If the push rod is incorrectly adjusted, it will cause the piston in the clutch master cylinder to block the compensation port in the clutch master. If this port is blocked the brake fluid cannot go back into the reservoir as the fluid expands. The pressure in the hydraulic clutch system will increase. This increase in pressure has to go somewhere. That somewhere is the clutch slave cylinder. The build-up of pressure is the same as if you were holding your foot on the clutch just a bit. So, check that push rod's adjustment, you'll likely find that there is no free movement and the push rod is in fact pushing a bit on the clutch master cylinder piston. As a heads-up, I have seen people adjust this push rod in an effort to improve the clutch pedal. The reason for this incorrect adjustment was to compensate for a poor clutch pedal. The reason the clutch pedal was poor is due to the clutch not being bled correctly. There are two bleed points on most Isuzu systems. One is at the clutch slave, but there is one in-between at the damper for the system. If the damper is not bled correctly, the clutch pedal quality will be poor. A few inspections and a little adjusting should take the slip out of your clutch.

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