Quick guide to changing a clutch / gearbox on 2.5 156
The idea of this guide is to help anyone out there who needs a new gearbox or clutch, and either wants to know if it is within their abilities, or not. And to give people who give it a go some tips. It is based on only having basic tools and working as keen amateur spanner men not pros.
The first job as always is to disconnect the battery, only you take it further and remove the battery tray as well, along with the air box intake pipes maf etc this gives you access to the slave cylinder and the gear linkages, we removed the pipe to the slave cylinder and then the actuator arm which we took off the fulcrum shaft, (remove the circlip, pry the actuator arm up and tap gently on the fulcrum shaft, this allows the arm to clear the spline, we marked the position of the arm on the shaft to ensure it went back correctly afterwards) we removed the arm as the thrust bearing is locked onto the pressure plate and we couldn’t get the ‘box out until the assembly could swing free.
The gear linkages fasten over some ball joint type connectors and can easily be pried off using a suitable sized spanner, then using a large screwdriver pry out the cable retaining clips ( when you get under the car you can remove the mount for these cables and draw the cables back through and out of the way)
We also removed the bolt from the top engine mount to let the engine move more freely later on…
This leaves only the speedo wires and bell housing bolts, oh and the top starter motor bolt……
I bent a 13mm spanner to a fantastic shape to get this baby out, and it’s a pig to remove, I will try to post a picture of it at some point.
Crack the front wheel nuts and jack and secure the car on axle stands, this is vital as if when you are jiggling to get the ‘box out the car falls on you ….well just use axle stands.
At this point I removed the manifold assembly, not the down pipes, just the flat section( we swung this around and propped it up so as not to damage the lambda sensor, or its wires) and also the cat.
Remove the wheels and then split the lower ball joint from the strut, we jacked up the wishbone and tapped the back of the strut with a hammer (on the flat surface-its apparent when you see it) the passenger side came off easily, but we couldn’t split the drivers side so we removed the four bolts that mount the wishbone to the subframe.
After spitting the passenger side balljoint you can then undo the alllen bolts that secure the driveshaft, which can then swing out of the way, and allow the gear box to slide off the flywheel.
On the drivers side there are 3, 10mm headed bolts that hold the driveshaft bearing in place remove these and the driveshaft can slide back from the diff.
Support the engine (block of wood to spread the load, and a trolley jack under the sump, and remove both of the gear box mounts, the one on the passenger side also clamps the power steering pipes and a union on the clutch pipe, from the top the clutch pipe can be swung out of the way and the p/s pipes moved to give clearance for the ‘box
Remove the two lower starter motor bolts and a tricky little allen bolt, the engine and ‘box can now be split, you may have to lift and lower the engine and twist the box a lttle to get it out but I promise it will clear the subframe – honest.
You need a T45 spline key to remove the pressure plate and a prybar to pull the plate off the three locating pins, we used a draper ½” drive ratchet handle to locate/line up the new clutch plates and refitting is the reverse of the above.
We also cleaned down the gearbox input shaft and put a small amount of copperslip on it to make the clutch smoother and lighter to operate (and it works) we also put some on the clutch arm splines in case we ever need to remove it in the future….
I would also say, even if you are only changing the ‘box, consider the clutch at the same time while it is all out, ‘cos it is a big job.
We spent from 8am until 4pm stripping out the ‘box, and from 4 until 10pm refitting it all and putting tools away, now we’ve done it once I think we could knock a couple of hours off this….
But not too soon please.
Hope this guide is of some use to someone out there
Oh and Big Thanks to Ben my partner in crime – Cheers Mate