Clutch fluid, commonly referred to as brake fluid, is one of the vital liquids required for a vehicle to function. Since the fluid level reduces with time during vehicle usage, it becomes necessary to top it off in the clutch reservoir as need arises. But a leak in the clutch reservoir will also result in declining levels. Leaks are more likely to occur at either the slave cylinder or master cylinder, and if left unattended, low fluid levels can cause serious damage to your vehicle. You can ascertain the level by inserting a dipstick in the reservoir; however, certain signs of insufficient fluid will be apparent while driving. Below are six signs of low clutch fluid.
1. Vibrations When Shifting Gears
When all is well with your car’s clutch, shifting gears should be a relatively smooth process. Stuttering or other resistance during gear change is most likely a sign of declining clutch fluid levels. Inadequate fluid makes it difficult to shift efficiently, so it is best to top up the fluid level whenever due. Otherwise the pressure on the mechanical parts to execute certain functions is greater and it leads to increased vehicle wear and tear.
2. Gear Slippage
Clutch fluid enables proper transmission of force during all gear selections. When the fluid is low, the hydraulic power required for smooth gear shifting is absent.
3. Sluggish Gear Shifts
Adequate clutch fluid enables quick shifts as well. When clutch fluid is low, slow or sluggish gear shifts are the norm. This can make driving a laborious experience.
4. Gear Grinding
Low fluid levels may cause the clutch to not release and make gear shifting extremely difficult or impossible and cause a grinding sound when attempting a shift. This causes undue wear on transmission components.
5. Loss of Springing Action in Clutch Pedal
Adequate clutch fluid allows you to operate the clutch pedal efficiently and accurately. The pedal ought to spring back into position swiftly when released, but insufficient clutch fluid prevents the pedal’s normal movement. Sometimes the pedal fails to reach to the end point, or it may get stuck before it reaches the furthest end.