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seanpmcd 12-17-2009 03:50 PM

Hope Clutch and NOT Tranny!!
Hi Everyone! I am going to try and explain this the best I can. When I am in neutral with the clutch disengaged, only sometimes I hear a clicking noise. When I engage the clutch, while still in neutral, the noise goes away. The clutch feels like it could be on the way out as the gears kick in when I am almost fully released with the clutch. When I shift from 1st to 2nd, it is a very hard shift sometimes accompanied by click or a few clicks as if the teeth on the gears are being grinded. From 2nd to third, a less harder shift, still not smooth though, and a lighter click(never the grind sound). The rest of the shifting seems fine?? Any ideas would be appreciated.

dan188 12-17-2009 04:05 PM

The clicking noise could be the throw out bearing. When the clutch pedal is not depressed (and the car is in neutral) the bearing is spinning free and over time it can wear out and rattle a little. When you put the clutch in, the bearing has pressure on it and the noise goes away... But I am not sure if that would affect the 1-2 shift so maybe I am wrong. Someone else can chime in to support or discredit me, haha.

rico334 12-17-2009 04:11 PM

I just posted a similar question this week with my 6sp. I was told it was the synchronizers in the transmission. Mine doesn't not grind, but you can feel a bump everytime going from 1st to 2nd, sometimes from 2nd to 3rd. The rest of the gears work fine and down shifting backwards through the gears does not do it.

I took it in to a trasmission shop this week also and they felt like the synchronizers were OK and leaned more toward a bad throwout bearing .... ? ? ?

ccain 12-17-2009 04:23 PM

Welcome to the site! :wavey:

Well, to me it sounds exactly like a clutch issue. Depending on how old and how many miles you have on the Jeep it may be time to replace it.

Just a little background on how a clutch works. The clutch friction plate has a machined surface the same as that on the flywheel which is bolted to the rear of the engines crankshaft. The clutch friction plate has several heavy springs around the back side of the plate. These springs push the two mating surfaces together against the clutch disc. Think of it as sort of a reverse disc brake set up whereas the rotors are on either side of one big pad. On the clutch friction place there are a series of fingers which act as levers to increase tension on the springs and raise the actual friction surface away from the clutch disc thus releasing the disc, clutch plate and flywheel. This allows the load to be taken off the engine and allows it to idle without engaging the trans. The throw out bearing has a friction surface on it as well that comes in contact with the fingers. You have to remember when the vehicle is running and all of these items are working and you're pushing in on the peddle, the whole mess is rotating at a high rpm.

The clicking you are hearing is most likely the rollers in the throw out bearing. They are greased from the factory and never get lubricated after that. Also over time the surface of the disc wears down and glazes causing a "slippage" issue due to the wear. The surfaces of the clutch friction plate and the flywheel also wear and glaze. Temperatures weaken the springs over time as well. Sometimes age coupled with the extreme temperatures the clutch makes when operating the surface of both will get a series of crack running from the canter toward the outside edge of both. This is why it is ALWAYS recommended to have the flywheel machined when installing a new clutch.

All the wear makes it so the peddle has more travel before the clutch engages.

If you plan to wheel this Jeep I would suggest replacing the clutch with a heavier duty one from either a reputable 4x4 shop or somewhere like Quadratec. You'll notice an increase in peddle pressure (or it will take more effort to push in the clutch peddle) but the clutch is less likely to wear as a factory style replacement would.

Also, given the cost of replacing the clutch, and if you are going to wheel it, another option would be to convert the vehicle to an automatic transmission. Trust me on this, I sure wish I had an auto all the times I was stuck on the side of a hill... Well, either that or I wished I had 2 more legs. :D

Either way, good luck and I hope this helps.

seanpmcd 12-17-2009 06:01 PM

I appreciate everything you have written. Very insightful. Are you kidding about converting to an automatic? What would you guess it would cost to have a new clutch and the flywheel machined cost? Thanks

distortedtj 12-18-2009 12:14 AM

Clutch kit is about $150 depending on the Year and Motor you have.


The wranglers have a unique flywheel in such that the surface is not flat, but rather it is domed. If the flywheel doesn't have gouges in it and is decently smooth you can simply take some emery cloth and go over the flywheel.

scuba101 12-18-2009 12:26 AM

Hey man, that harsh grind from first to second and then the same, but not has bad from second to third...I just had that same problem with mine. After checking it over, I stuck a pry bar in and moved my tranny around. Broken tranny mount. Replaced that bad jonny and now the problem is gone. Maybe you'll get lucky and have the same issue. Worth the check

ronbos74 03-24-2010 08:14 PM

"new" flywheel
Soooo I'm taking it that buying a flywheel at O'Reilly's is ok too? Or? I am changing out da clutch, slave and master cylinder this weekend and got a flywheel as well....
This will be my first time for this.:rolleyes:

distortedtj 03-24-2010 10:52 PM


Originally Posted by ronbos74 (Post 581142)
Soooo I'm taking it that buying a flywheel at O'Reilly's is ok too? Or? I am changing out da clutch, slave and master cylinder this weekend and got a flywheel as well....
This will be my first time for this.:rolleyes:

Replacing the fly wheel is fine. Just be sure to take some acetone and clean it well before install.

Alot/most companies apply a protective film over the flywheels. Clean it off before install.

rrich 03-25-2010 06:38 AM

Sean - yours definitely sounds like a clutch issue. When you take it apart, replace BOTH the throwout bearing and the clutch disk.

DO NOT HAVE THE FLYWHEEL RESURFACED - unless the machinist has the equipment and knows how to use it. The flywheel is slightly domed, if they cut it flat like almost all places will, it will chatter when you start out, and it won't lock-up as well.
Use the stock Luke kit like the factory used. If you have a highly built 600 HP motor, and a gorilla left leg, then consider something else. If not, stock will serve you the best if you don't abuse it.
Just use a bit of emory cloth (not sand paper - it imbeds some of the grit in it, causing pre-mature wear.) Just scratch it up - get rid of the mirror glaze, but don't make it real rough. The mild scratch marks help it break in.

Rico - you said it "bumps" when you shift it. That's how synchros feel when they slip too much or not enough. (You feel the "bump" through the shift lever, not the clutch pedal.)
Be sure to try something much cheaper than rebuilding the tranny first. If you have any of the mickey mouse "trick" or "performance" fluids in it - like purple, slick 50, STP, Lucas, or anything other than what the factory says to use, dump it and refill with what you get from the dealer.
The factory knows what coefficient of friction the synchros require, that's why they call out theirs. Sure it's a bit more expensive - but you don't need much. Compare the cost to the cost of a rebuilt tranny.
Then drive it at least 50 miles before saying it didn't help.

It used to be all you needed was 90wt. But with the exotic metals and different angles they use now it's become more critical. Often times it's just the additives, but they make a huge difference too.

Even with the factory fluid - it's a good idea to dump and fill with new every 60-70k miles. The additives do evaporate. It just prevents trouble down the road.

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