Our top tips to avoid wearing out your clutch

The clutch plays a vital part in the operation of your vehicle. It is an aspect that is depended on heavily, and so it is not surprising that over extended periods of time, they eventually wear out. At this stage, we would ideally provide you with a rough timeframe as to when you should look into getting yours replaced but with clutches their longevity depends entirely on the way in which they are used.

This month, we are here to provide you of our top tips for prolonging the life of your clutch so you can prevent the cost of an early and untimely replacement.

Don’t ride on the clutch

Don’t treat the clutch like a footrest. When learning to drive you may have been told to stop ‘riding the clutch’ by partially pressing it down. This simple action has the unwanted consequence of wearing the clutch faster, even though it may not seem like a big difference in technique. Partially engaging the clutch like this causes additional friction between the pressure pad and clutch plate. It’s best to keep away from the clutch unless you actually need to change gear! In particular, don’t drive round corners or slow down with the clutch partially pressed. This is a sure-fire way to reduce its lifespan unnecessarily.

Rely on the handbrake when stopped

Keeping the clutch down when idle at traffic lights or junctions is another way to cause unnecessary wear and tear. Rather than keeping your car in first gear, it is best practice to change into neutral if the vehicle is stopped. This applies for any length of time! Following this approach, you would use the handbrake rather than the brake to remain stationary.

Change gear when first appropriate

If you’re a new or inexperienced driver, it may take you longer than is necessary to switch gears. This is all part and parcel of learning to drive a manual vehicle and is completely natural. However, that doesn’t mean it’s harmless! Pressing down the clutch for longer than you need to will place additional stress upon the components and, given how often you change gears, this adds up throughout your vehicle’s lifespan. Focus on making your gear changes as efficient as possible and your car will thank you for it!

Don’t use your clutch to brake if not needed

This is another adjustment in driving technique that can make a big difference to your clutch. When you need to slow down or stop your car you should smoothly shift down through the gears and apply the brakes effectively. This will reduce the strain that the clutch assembly is placed under. Be careful about what you put your clutch through as this can be a costly component to repair or replace. Replacing your brake pads will be a much more cost-effective move!

Would you like some additional advice about how to get the most out of your clutch? Perhaps you’re looking for expert servicing and repairs to keep your car and its clutch in top working condition. At Bromley Vehicle Test Centre, our team of trusted mechanics put you and your needs first. Give us a call on 020 8460 6666 today if you have any questions or queries. We will always be happy to help.