Clutch pedal strangeness GT 1.9JTD - Alfa Romeo Forum
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(Post Link) post #1 of 13 Old 10-01-17 Thread Starter
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Clutch pedal strangeness GT 1.9JTD

Following an intermittent brake fluid low warning the ever-unreliable GT finally lost a lot of clutch pedal pressure last month and was diagnosed as a leaking slave cylinder. Got this fixed before Christmas but I still have one more problem.
If I lightly 'tap' the clutch pedal it depresses for say 1/2 inch without any resistance and springs back to the top making a clunk/click as it stops at the very top of the travel.

If I apply continuous downward pressure on the pedal to operate the clutch it goes past this first half inch and then hits pressure/resistance and operation is normal. Upon letting the clutch back up, operation is again fine until at the very top the pedal feels like it's floating (as there is so zero pressure at the very top 1/2 inch) and sort of catches the sole of my shoe as I am lifting it off the pedal.

It was booked in and has been to the garage today and they seem to have focussed on greasing the push rod to eliminate the creaking clutch pedal, which was an issue but not the one I necessarily needed resolving. Theyíve advised to bring it back in a week to change the master cylinder (as per what I asked them to do today) if Iím still not happy, else settle the small bill for grease. I appreciate they are trying to save me a bit of money but given the amount of repairs Iíve had to do since I bought the car in June, Iím beyond that and would prefer to just get it sorted for peace of mind.

I suspect the problem is the master cylinder and itís probably worth getting it done anyway given the slave was leaking but thought it would be worth getting some othersí thoughts before it goes back.
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Some free movement at the top of the pedal action is normal and necessary, to ensure the master cylinder is not exerting any hydraulic pressure and the clutch is fully engaged. I think from my gropings under the dash that the pushrod to the master cylinder is adjustable length, but half an inch sounds about right to me.

[edit: the noises are annoyingly normal. Pedal creaks and clicks are usually the return spring and/or the pushrod. Aside from endless lubrication some have reported improvement by adding a flat washer or two to the end of the pedal pin that the pushrod mounts on, then replacing the weird Alfa clip. Doing this supposedly keeps the pushrod from twisting and misaligning with the master cylinder. It's also worth squirting silicone grease at the point where the pushrod enters the master cylinder boot. I've done all this aside from adding a flat washer, and currently have just a trace of creak that can wait til warmer weather.

It doesn't sound like your master cylinder needs replacing at present, though if you do, some silicone or rubber grease on the pushrod end may help shut it up.
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Last edited by halftone; 10-01-17 at 15:35.
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(Post Link) post #3 of 13 Old 10-01-17 Thread Starter
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The travel is probably something thatís always been there but I didnít notice until something else went wrong. I do have a track record for that sort of thing so itís probably a fuss over nothing.

It was the same garage which advised of ďclutch pedal clicking/possible master cylinder? ď on the invoice when they did the slave so they have noticed it before handing the car back to me last month, but seemed to ignore it today!

Essentially the lubrication is what theyíve done today and has thankfully sorted the annoying (and common) creaking pedal problem so at least thatís something. Perhaps Iíll upload a video of it later just to confirm I am going mad and nothing is wrong!
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Got a video. Seems a bit worse now

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Hmm. That clicks right at the top of the travel. I wonder if it's the clutch switch not properly located or feeling unwell... It's a white switch with a protruding peg in a bayonet fitting above the pedal. Tricky to get at unless you get upside down in the footwell, but you just twist it 90deg to remove it upwards. If the noise disappears you found the culprit.

They often give problems after work on the clutch or pedal, as the peg is self-adjusting on an internal ratchet. Usually the peg gets pushed in too far, and the car no longer knows when the pedal is up (when the pin gets pushed in a little by a tab on the pedal pivot). This is the usual reason why cruise control doesn't work, unless of course you don't have one.

You can yank the pin out with pliers and reset it. It should protrude about 12mm, not be pushed right in. Or buy a new one https://www.shop4parts.co.uk/?name=s...6022&sku=71338

[edit: if you do reset the switch or buy a new one, install it in its bayonet whilst holding the clutch pedal down a little. Then the first time the pedal is allowed up, the switch will self-adjust correctly.
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Will have a look when there's some daylight. I did have to do this to get the cruise control working the first day I got the car. Just driven home and the clutch pedal appears to stick at the problem point momentarily now before popping back into position.

I reckon it will be back to the garage if it isn't the switch.
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(Post Link) post #7 of 13 Old 11-01-17 Thread Starter
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Switch looks fine to me and is making full contact. I took it out anyway, pulled out the pin and reseated slowly lowered pedal on to it which reset the switch position. I can safely rule out the switch as operation looks correct.

I think the pedal's range of motion is no different to before, I just think the very top of the travel is extremely 'slack' so to speak. Short of any other ideas from anyone else, I think I'll get the garage to change the master cylinder. I've spent over grand on the car in repairs since I bought it in June last year, so I'm not going to be too upset if I pay for the master cylinder and it doesn't fix the issue.
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So the switch isn't the source of the click? I can just about hear mine, so they aren't silent, but a loud click ain't right.

There could still be air in the system, accounting for extra free movement or a soft pedal that might be fixed with further bleeding. Not that fitting a new master cylinder is a bad idea at all as it should give many years of something-that-won't-play-up, but fixing what isn't broke gets rather expensive. Master cylinders usually outlive slaves thanks to all the debris ending up in the slave. OTOH if the master is the source of the noise, it probably is unwell.
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Originally Posted by halftone View Post
So the switch isn't the source of the click? I can just about hear mine, so they aren't silent, but a loud click ain't right.

There could still be air in the system, accounting for extra free movement or a soft pedal that might be fixed with further bleeding. Not that fitting a new master cylinder is a bad idea at all as it should give many years of something-that-won't-play-up, but fixing what isn't broke gets rather expensive. Master cylinders usually outlive slaves thanks to all the debris ending up in the slave. OTOH if the master is the source of the noise, it probably is unwell.
The system was bled, car kept overnight and then bled again in the morning when they did the slave as the garage recognised the pedal was a bit weird at the top of the travel. It was that same garage who advised it could be the MC, but when it went back in this week they seemed to focus on the clutch pedal creak (this isn't the same as in the video as grease has solved this issue) rather than fixing the pedal issue.

The noise in the video (which just to be clear isn't the clutch pedal creaking noise I had before the grease job) is the pedal returning very quickly to resting position, it sort of knocks on the area of the switch but it's more due to the fact it just comes back up once you release at the top of the travel (as shown in the video) rather than the switch itself making the noise. It's the action of the pedal mechanism swinging and then hitting the top if that makes sense?

The part where I tap the pedal with my foot to make the noise....I could honestly just flick it with one finger to achieve the same it really doesn't require any pressure. Obviously to depress the pedal fully to the floor it does.
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I just read elsewhere that clicking is caused by the Stupid Alfa Spring Clip [tm], that retains the pushrod to the pedal - the one that breaks often ---> Clutch Pedal Clip - Autolusso New Alfa Romeo Parts

Apparently breaking is often preceded by clicking, due to excessive end float allowing the pushrod to displace sideways - which might also explain the clutch feel going weird. You might want to take a good look at the clip to ensure it's been replaced properly, isn't broken or bent out of shape, and/or add one or more flat washers to take up any end float.
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(Post Link) post #11 of 13 Old 12-01-17 Thread Starter
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Popped into the garage again and spoke directly to the mechanic which looked at it. His first words were "it needs a master cylinder"

Booked in for next Thursday so I'll report back then
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(Post Link) post #12 of 13 Old 4 Weeks Ago Thread Starter
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After a parts supplier **** up yesterday I finally have her back and pleased to report a new master cylinder solved the problem.
It had actually got worse to the extent it would stick near the bottom of the travel and I would need to lift the pedal up with my foot. Obviously I didn't drive it until I needed to get to the garage I'd booked it into but I spent the 40 mile journey praying it wasn't going to go completely!
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(Post Link) post #13 of 13 Old 4 Weeks Ago
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Was just reading through and was about to mention getting the cylinder replaced when I saw that you did, glad to hear it fixed the problem
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