Clutch is soft and not disengaging - Ranger-Forums - The Ultimate Ford Ranger Resource


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  #1  
Old 11-25-2005
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Clutch is soft and not disengaging

My clutch is very soft and will not disengage. If I start the ranger i better have my foot on the brake or it will move. I can not take it out of gear with engine running nor place it in gear with the engine running. Can anybody give me some help and prices if I would ge this fixed at Ford. Any help it appreciated. especially since i have to go 400 miles back to school.

Thanks much

Jordan

Yes i have checked the clutch fluid and it is fine.
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Old 11-25-2005
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There's no way to say for sure from the description but it sounds like the slave cylinder is dying. It is the weak link in the Ranger manual transmission powertrain. The part itself is under $100 but, unfortunately, it is necessary to pull the transmission and transfer case to replace it. To make matters worse, it usually soaks the clutch with fluid when it fails. Reference #5:

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Old 11-25-2005
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I'm With the Wenzinger on this. The clutches are strong enough for daily operation and its usually the slave cylinder that fails. When it fails, as bob stated, the fluids leak out from it and coat the clutch itself. This causes burn and hurts the clutch itself.

At52K miles and a 2001 it would seem your out of warrenty. If you do the work yourself, for the whole lot of parts it will run about 300$ and a few hours of your own time.

D.
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Old 11-25-2005
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Is the slave cylinder conered under warrenty?
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  #5  
Old 11-25-2005
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Thanks much. I could tell something wasn't right when i put fuel in at 200 miles it engaged very high and was extremely soft.
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  #6  
Old 11-26-2005
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I looked at it some more and i can not see fluid anywhere around the slave cylinder. I tried bleeding it and just made things worse. No pedal resistance at all except for the return spring. I don't get any fluid out of the bleeder screw, except for some air the first try.
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  #7  
Old 11-27-2005
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Same thing happened to me. You're not going to be able to see the slave cylinder just by looking at it, the cylinder is inside the bellhousing. I'm 99% sure it's your slave cylinder.
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Old 11-28-2005
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I had talked to a couple other mechanics, and they thought it was the master cyl. bypassing, due to my fluid level not dropping. So i have to wait a few weeks before i can get to working on it.
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  #9  
Old 11-28-2005
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Quote:
Originally Posted by fx4me
Is the slave cylinder conered under warrenty?
Yes it is. I had mine replaced at 12k miles under warranty. At the time there was a TSB and supposedly a 'new' part (throwout bearing?!) to be installed.
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Old 12-08-2005
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The slave cylinder in my Ranger puked this morning at 19,000 miles. It's still under warranty but I hate to let the Neanderfux touch my truck.

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  #11  
Old 12-08-2005
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Bummer dude! ... Welcome to the club, we've got T-shirts!
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Old 12-08-2005
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Quote:
Originally Posted by NHBubba
Bummer dude! ... Welcome to the club, we've got T-shirts!
A problem like this should rate at least a hoodie!

I could find a soft pedal TSB title for 2002 but not 2003. Do you have a copy or a TSB number?
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Old 12-08-2005
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Jeez, I'm just waiting for mine to fail, already have money set aside to fix it. I just hope I'm not in the middle of nowhere when it happens! I'm expecting it soon since i have 45k on the truck.

Do you have to take the exhaust off to do it yourself? Also, is the truck still mobile with a shot Slave cylinder? As in, Could you drive it home?
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  #14  
Old 12-08-2005
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My clutch seems to be getting shorter, but not softer. It's always been fairly soft, ever since I bought it at 60 k miles...it has 101 k now...I just refilled the clutch fluid which was the problem the last time this happened, and it is still a very short stroke...what do you think bob?
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Old 12-08-2005
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Morph
Do you have to take the exhaust off to do it yourself? Also, is the truck still mobile with a shot Slave cylinder? As in, Could you drive it home?
Exhaust, driveshaft(s), crossmember, transmission, transfer case and skid plate if you have them, etc. Not a trivial job.

Mine died this morning without warning. It is still driveable - just barely. Have to start in gear with the clutch depressed. No way to get it into gear from neutral at a dead stop. You can feel it dragging all the time.

I wouldn't drive it much unless you are planning on R&Ring the disc and pressure plate and resurfacing the flywheel, too. Probably not the best thing for the transmission synchros, either.
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Old 12-08-2005
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Quote:
Originally Posted by rwenzing
I could find a soft pedal TSB title for 2002 but not 2003. Do you have a copy or a TSB number?
You know, I didn't pay that close attention. In fact I didn't ever even ask. They just said "Yeah, this is a known problem, there's a new part out.." They then insited that they couldn't do anything for 2 weeks until they could get the part. "Why do it twice? We'd rather get you the right part so this is never an issue again." said my very patronizing 'service advisor'.

I've since parted ways w/ that dealership, and would probly throw food at that 'advisor' if I saw him in a resturant.. So I wouldn't be surpriesed if he had fed me a total line of bs.. They weren't real down w/ handing customers useful information like that anyway.

My clutch never actually failed.. it just made some mighty odd noises. It would squeak and groan everytime I let out on it in 1st and sometimes 2nd. It was especially bad if I was starting on an incline. It also started very faint. My GF has bionic hearing and she could hear it. I'm so deaf I called her a liar for 2 months.. then heard it for myself.

The real stinker is I think it is doing it again at just a notch over 30k. I'm going to have to start looking to trade if I'm going to be getting 12-15k per clutch/slave cylinder assembly.
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  #17  
Old 12-08-2005
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I know the squeak and groan noises you are talking about! I'm putting together a list of things to have worked on soon. My warrenty expires in April.
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  #18  
Old 12-08-2005
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Bob ..I think Dave, of Dave & Julie fame had that info at one point. He is on clutch/cylinder number three or four at this point! I think he PM'ed me that info at one point. I know he's active at ORR, maybe he can hook you up w/ that. .. Although he's got an '02, so it could have been that same '02 TSB you mention that he was talking about.
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Old 12-08-2005
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Quote:
Originally Posted by bigolbubba
My clutch seems to be getting shorter, but not softer. It's always been fairly soft, ever since I bought it at 60 k miles...it has 101 k now...I just refilled the clutch fluid which was the problem the last time this happened, and it is still a very short stroke...what do you think bob?
I hate to say it but I think you are living on borrowed time. If you have to do any clutch work on a Ranger with higher miles on it, plan on a slave cylinder replacement, too.

Mine died at only 19,000 from new and I am very careful not to abuse the clutch. I don't ride it, I shift to neutral at lights and I rarely shift it hard. Truly sad because this has been a known problem with Ranger/Explorer/Mazda/F-series and Bronco for many years.
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Old 12-08-2005
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Quote:
Originally Posted by NHBubba
My clutch never actually failed.. it just made some mighty odd noises. It would squeak and groan everytime I let out on it in 1st and sometimes 2nd. It was especially bad if I was starting on an incline. It also started very faint. My GF has bionic hearing and she could hear it. I'm so deaf I called her a liar for 2 months.. then heard it for myself.
Mine has been squawking intermittently for awhile now on launch, especially uphill as you said. I didn't make the connection to the slave cylinder, thinking it was just a glazing problem or something. I'll have to put some pressure on the dealer to replace the clutch assembly, too, assuming that the leak was causing the squawk.
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  #21  
Old 12-08-2005
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My squeal got pretty bad. Bad enough to be really annoying (and embarasing at times, driving a new vehicle that sounded that way!). I complained to my dealer. They told me I was dreaming and that everything "checked out". I insisted on talking directly to a tech and finally got the situation addressed, if not resolved, after we took a little test ride (to the end of their lot!). Getting it resolved of course was it's own little battle.

My dealer practically volunteered to replace the clutch while servicing the cylinder, of course he made it seem like he was doing me such a favor 'cause we're best buds and all. It's odd, they put up such a battle to acknowledge that my truck had the problem in the first place, but then went all out w/ the fix.

Of course 10k miles later I found they rushed and/or botched the job and smashed my O2 sensor reinstalling the trans.. destroying the wiring harness.

Your situation seems to indicate to me that had I pushed things and ignored the noise, I probably would have ended up w/ a failed clutch. I'll definitely get it looked at again before my warranty expires next year!
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  #22  
Old 12-09-2005
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I had the same symptoms, but my cylinder was fine they said. It was the clutch that was broken... I don't abuse it either which is the bummer.
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  #23  
Old 12-09-2005
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yeah I just dropped it off at my mechanic...$550 worth of repairs and labor...he is going to replace the slave cylinder and clutch....there goes christmas.
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  #24  
Old 12-15-2005
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Now that I have time to replace the master cylinder. I have a few questions? Is it possible the master cylinder is ready to put on w/o bench bleeding it? How do i get at it to remove it?
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  #25  
Old 12-19-2005
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I have a more specific question. How do you remove the rod from the clutch pedal arm?

I got it off, and have it the master cylinder installed.
Three weeks is way to long to be without the Ranger.

Jordan

P.S. Thanks for all the help

Last edited by jorlee; 12-19-2005 at 01:54 PM.
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