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Draining A Clutch System

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sherrardk | 13:45 Thu 27th Jun 2013 | Motoring
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Asking on behalf of himself - how do you drain a clutch system when you can't bleed it because the fluid is so filthy? Thanks.


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The bleed niple will be on the sleave Cylinder attached to the bellhousing Sherrack, with the help of your OH or friend, get a container, Safety Glasses, length of pipe, 8mm ( I'm sure spanner) the car on stands or a pit ( SAFETY IN MIND) open the bleed niple & pump out the old fluid, refill via the Reservoir under the bonnet next to the Servo. Try not to spill the fluid on the paintwork, if you do, clean off as soon as poss. Get someone to pump the pedal as you open / close the bleeder until you have pressure.
Question Author
Thank you - there seems to be some problem with it (I think the technical term is 'it's knackered). There are dark muttering about master and slave cylinders!
Ideally the clutch fluid should be replaced every 3-4yrs. Normally the first sign of trouble is when the clutch pedal goes soft and you get problems changing gear. This problem with the clutch hydraulics is probably caused by air getting into the system via the Master/Slave cylinder seals wearing.

TWR's method to replace the clutch fluid is a good explanation.
why cant you bleed it ? the state of the fluid shouldnt make any difference you would normally keep bleeding and filling up until it runs clean there isnt that much fluid in a clutch system.
Out of interest what vehicle is this ?
Are you using the correct fluid for the Clutch Cylinder Sherrack, If there's bits in the Cylinder, either replace it or replace the rubbers, its not a big job to do this but the way I would go is a replacement, there is nothing worse than a Clutch failure ( Pedal going to the floor) on a journey, what make year of car? check out ebay but do not go for 2nd hand, you may go back to square one.
Remove the pipe that goes into the slave cylinder & it should drain itself.
That's no use if the Cylider rubbers / seal are knackered Carrust.
I know TWR, but to change the seals wont they have to remove the slave cylinder anyway?
2 Bolts+ the Feed pipe, not a big job.
Question Author
Right, it drains up to the cylinders but not through the pipe that leads away to the engine compartment. It is a Vauxhall Vivaro van thing.
When you pump the Clutch, the fluid pumps forward via the Slave Cyl en-route to the Clutch Cyl in turn pushes the Clutch against the Flywheel, Can you see any WET AREAS around the Slave / Clutch Cylinders?
Right, it drains up to the cylinders but not through the pipe that leads away to the engine compartment. It is a Vauxhall Vivaro van thing.

Are you loosing fluid?
Question Author
TWR - have told himself to log on and explain properly (he is called Jumberly).
..ahem...the clutch master provides the fluid to the clutch slave which then releases the clutch plate from the flywheel..
Hi....It's my clutch.

Thought I'd replace the filthy fluid, loosened the drian nipple above slave Cyl. put on pipe (with non-return valve) and pumped away....nothing came out! fluid with air, nothing. Loosened the pipe to the master and drain a little really filthy fluid and the reservoir dropped...topped up...pumped away (actually have blisters from doing it....still no fluid comes a total loss!!
Look at the back of the Clutch pedal in your cab, is it WET? if so, the seals within have gone.
Take the drain nipple out may be blocked.
Could be that....worth a try (although its persisting down at the moment) I'm thinking that the Master cyl. might have it's not pumping to the slave cyl.????
Non-return valve on the right way? Bleed nipple full of sh1t? If it is, remove it & give hole a poke with something metal that will fit in the hole.
It wasn't is now that I pulled the pipe off to drain a little fluid out!

Should have left well alone!

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