Changing your car’s clutch may not be the easiest job, but it is possible.

With the right tools and level of expertise, you can replace your car’s clutch and potentially save yourself a bit of money.

That being said, if you need a clutch replacement, it may be best to book with a professional mechanic instead to save yourself money in the long run if the job goes wrong.

Read on and find out how to find the right clutch, which tools you will need, and how to change your own car’s clutch.


Disclaimer - We strongly advise that you do not attempt to replace your own clutch unless you are a professional.


Can I Replace My Own Clutch?

Yes, you can replace your own clutch – but you may wish to invest in a professional clutch replacement to ensure that the job is done right.


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Clutch Replacement


You should only attempt to change your clutch if you are a DIY enthusiast with in-depth mechanical knowledge and experience working on cars – a clutch replacement is absolutely not for beginners.


clutch disc being installed

The clutch disc is being installed in this image.


Which Tools Will I Need?

To carry out a clutch change, you will need the following:

  • A torque spanner with fitting head
  • Lubricant
  • A screwdriver
  • A car jack
  • A piece of hose
  • A hose clamp
  • A container


How Do I Change My Car's Clutch?

Before you begin, you should make sure that the clutch is definitely what is causing the problem your vehicle is experiencing – rather than another component like the pedal-arm bushings or the slave-master cylinder.

Once you have purchased all the relevant parts and tools, you can get started replacing the clutch.

Make sure that you find the brake fluid reservoir and top it up with brake fluid before you start so that you can ensure air is immediately replaced in the cycle.


This is a fantastic video we recommend to help you change your clutch yourself.


Park in a Secure Position

Start by parking the car in the right position and on a flat surface – preferably in a garage.

Raise the front of the vehicle using the jacking points – as highlighted in your vehicle handbook.

Always support the engine by putting a jack beneath the oil pan, and use jack stands for support and your safety.


Get Ready to Remove the Transaxle

The transaxle usually sits at the same end as the engine and the drive transmission.

Unhook the clutch cable and positive battery cables.

You can then disconnect all of the electrical connections and the speedometer cable.

Next, disconnect and remove the starter motor.


Unbolt the Engine Mount and Remove the Clutch

Locate the bolts that connect the bell housing to the rear engine and remove them all.

You will need to remove at least one of these to remove the transaxle.

Once you have unbolted the transaxle and pushed it away from the engine, you can access the pressure plate.

Undo the bolts which hold the pressure plate onto the flywheel.

Don’t remove these all at once – the clutch disc could fall and injure you.

Once the last bolt has been undone, you can control the pressure plate and disc.

If the pressure plate is still attached to the flywheel, gently remove the alignment dowels using a screwdriver.


Inspect the Clutch and Flywheel

The clutch disc can wear down – just like a brake pad – and so you should check if it still has a thick layer of friction lining.

Without it, the clutch will be more prone to slipping.

You should check the flywheel for signs of extreme heat damage, hot spots and cracks.

At this stage, you can either repair or replace the flywheel if you find any and remove any dirt that has built up in the crankshaft.

You should make sure that all the bolts are re-torqued to manufacturer specifications.


Match the Clutch

Make sure that your new clutch matches the old one – the diameter of the discs and surface area of the clutch materials should be the same, as should the height of the pressure plate.

The new clutch should slide onto the transmission shaft with little resistance.


Replace the Clutch

The protruding edge of the clutch disc should point towards the pressure plate before you attempt to reinstall it, as this helps the clutch to release properly.

Gently install the new clutch disc and pressure plate onto the alignment dowels of the flywheel.

Leave the pressure plate bolts slightly loose until you have inserted the clutch alignment tool, so that you can line the clutch disc up with the transmission correctly.

With the clutch alignment tool in place, retighten the bolts of the pressure plate in a star pattern.

Don’t tighten any of the bolts all at once, and don’t use air tools.

When you’re done, you can remove the alignment tool.


Reinstall the Transaxle

Align the transaxle with the clutch disc splined hole and gently move it forwards until the input shaft glides into the hole.

Once in place, you can replace the bolts that you removed earlier.

Make sure that you tighten the bolts properly to avoid any slipping.


Release the Jack and Test Your Vehicle

After checking that all the bolts you removed earlier are secure, you can remove the jack stands.

Gently release the jack to lower the front of your vehicle.

You can then slowly pump the clutch pedal while adding hydraulic fluid until it works normally.

Then, test the gearbox by shifting through the gears or taking the car for a short drive.


Which Clutch Is Right For My Vehicle?

The clutch is made up of the pressure plate, the driven or friction plate, the diaphragm springs, the cover plate, and the release bearing.

Collectively, these pieces are known as the clutch plate.

You will most likely have to buy a new flywheel when replacing the clutch, as this part works in tandem with the clutch and they usually need to be replaced at the same time.

You can buy the clutch and flywheel from most licensed garages and part stores. Make sure to buy the entire system, not just a part.

When replacing a clutch, you should always replace both the pressure plate and disc assembly, and never use a new disc with a worn pressure plate.

A clutch kit features all the main elements in a car’s clutch, including the clutch disc, pressure plate, flywheel, throw race, and release bearings.

These elements can all improve your vehicle’s performance, and you can save money by buying a clutch kit instead of buying these parts separately.


How Much Does a Clutch Kit Cost (UK)?

A clutch replacement kit in the UK can cost anywhere from £100 to £500.


What Happens After a Clutch Replacement?

You may notice that the clutch smells slightly funny when you first drive the car after replacing the clutch.

This smell can most likely be attributed to the manufacturer oils burning off or the clutch settling in, and it will probably last for the first few hundred miles.

However, if you smell burning coming from your clutch, then you should book a diagnostic check to make sure that everything is working as it should be.


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Clutch Replacement


Have you tried to replace your own clutch? Let us know in the comments below.