Clutch Troubleshooting
Clutch slipping
Transmission hard to get in or out of gear when depressing clutch pedal
Clutch noise - Pedal up
Clutch noise - Pedal down

Trouble free clutch installation


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Clutch slipping
1 Clutch out of adjustment - No free play
Refer to service manual for proper adjustment procedure of clutch, any associated hydraulic valves, and transmission brake, (if equipped). Clutch disc may be burnt due to improper adjustment. (Any clutch slippage, even for a short time, can ruin clutch).
2 Slipping and Chattering
Driver resting foot on the clutch pedal. Don't use clutch pedal to rest foot on. Adjust clutch. Release bearing may be failing. Clutch disc may be burnt at this point. (Any clutch slippage, even for a short time, can ruin clutch).
3 Clutch Slipping - Oil on clutch
Transmission or rear engine seals leaking. Replace clutch, bearings, and all seals in clutch housing. Grind or replace flywheel.
4 Clutch Slipping and hard to get or out of gear
Overheating due to excessive clutch slippage, disc warped. Replace pilot & release bearings, clutch disc, and pressure plate. Grind or replace flywheel. Always check transmission and rear engine seals.
5 Clutch has been engaged with engine RPM too high or too high of gear selected
Replace clutch, bearings, seals, grind or replace flywheel, and educate driver.

Transmission hard to get in or out of gear when depressing clutch pedal
1 Clutch out of adjustment
Refer to service manual for proper adjustment procedure of clutch, any associated hydraulic valves, and transmission brake, (if equipped).
2 Pilot bearing froze Replace pilot & release bearings, clutch disc, and pressure plate if damaged. Grind or replace flywheel.
3 Clutch disc warped or burnt Replace pilot & release bearings, clutch disc, and pressure plate. Grind or replace flywheel. Always check transmission and rear engine seals.
4 Clutch disc sticking due to flywheel gummed up Replace pilot & release bearings, clutch disc, and pressure plate. Grind or replace flywheel. Always check transmission and rear engine seals, if not replaced recently replace them.
5 Pressure plate fingers broken or burnt Replace pilot & release bearings, clutch disc, and pressure plate. Grind or replace flywheel. Always check transmission and rear engine seals.
6 The transmission was forced into position damaging the splines of the disc hub - only applies to recent clutch replacement
Install new clutch and carefully control the position and alignment of the transmission during installation. Use adjustable splitting dollies and install temporary guide pins to assist in aligning the transmission to the engine. Turn the input shaft, not flywheel, and pto shaft, (if equipped), to align splines.
7 Clutch disc hitting flywheel bolts - only applies to recent clutch replacement Clutch disc in backwards or flywheel needs replaced (turned below specs). Replace any worn or bent parts.
8 Pressure plate release levers too low - can't dis-engage Check flywheel step spec, grind or replace if necessary. Pressure plate bent from being pulled together. Clutch disc in backwards. Clutch disc burnt or warped. Replace damaged parts.
9 Dowel pins missing causing misalignment of transmission to engine
Replace dowel pins. Check for leaking seals or bearings out due to misalignment.
10 International 86/88 series cab mounts broken
Cab lifting as clutch pedal is depressed. Replace broken cab mounts.

Clutch noise - Pedal up
1 Release bearing failure
This only applies if there is no free play and release bearing is contacting pressure plate fingers. Or in models such as spicer angle spring clutches where the release bearing always turns.
2 Release linkage making noise
Find and correct linkage, maybe worn, or need a release bearing return kit. Sometimes it is as simple as something just touching causing a vibration.
3 Clutch has come apart
Troubleshoot clutch disc and pressure plate to find cause. If this is the case there will usually be metal fragments in inspection cover (if equipped). Replace pilot & release bearings, clutch disc, and pressure plate. Grind or replace flywheel. Always check transmission and rear engine seals.
4 Pressure plate driven PTO shaft spines worn out Usually you will lose hydraulics/steering and PTO if this is the case. Replace pilot & release bearings, clutch disc, pressure plate, and PTO shaft. Grind or replace flywheel. Always check transmission and rear engine seals.
5 Powertrain failure - Noise "telegraphing"
Troubleshoot transmission or engine to find source of noise.

Clutch noise - Pedal down
1 Pilot bearing failure Replace pilot & release bearings, clutch disc, and pressure plate. Grind or replace flywheel. Always check transmission and rear engine seals.
2 Release bearing failure
Usually caused by lack of clutch adjustment - no free play. Or failing to grease release bearing (if equipped with greaseable bearing). Replace pilot & release bearings, clutch disc, and pressure plate. Grind or replace flywheel. Always check transmission and rear engine seals.
3 Pressure plate fingers worn or broken - Usually caused by #2 If this is the case there will usually be metal fragments in inspection cover (if equipped). Replace pilot & release bearings, clutch disc, and pressure plate. Grind or replace flywheel. Always check transmission and rear engine seals.
4 Clutch has come apart
Troubleshoot clutch disc and pressure plate to find cause. If this is the case there will usually be metal fragments in inspection cover (if equipped). Replace pilot & release bearings, clutch disc, and pressure plate. Grind or replace flywheel. Always check transmission and rear engine seals.
5 Clutch disc hitting flywheel bolts - only applies to recent clutch replacement Clutch disc in backwards or flywheel needs replaced (turned below specs). Replace any worn or bent parts.
6 Pressure plate driven PTO shaft spines worn out Usually you will lose hydraulics/steering and PTO if this is the case. Replace pilot & release bearings, clutch disc, pressure plate, and PTO shaft. Grind or replace flywheel. Always check transmission and rear engine seals.

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Trouble free clutch installation
Basic tips for trouble free clutch installation
Resurface or replace the flywheel! If resurfacing, make sure that the final result is within specifications. (see our Flywheel Step Specs guide) After flywheel is resurfaced make sure pressure plate mounting bolts do not bottom out. Always compare your replacement parts to the old parts. The hubs on the replacement units should match the clutch shaft. The clutch should slide on the shaft freely and smoothly with no binding. Check all shaft splines, if they are badly worn replace them. Always check the rear engine seal and transmission input seals for leakage. Inspect all of the clutch operating linkages from the pedal on down to the sliding sleeve and carrier. Replace both the pilot bearing and release bearing(s). Nobody wants to redo a clutch job because of not having replaced a $2.00 pilot bearing. Use an alignment tool to properly center the clutch disk. When bolting the cover assembly down, always tighten the bolts evenly while alternating across the cover. If your cover assembly came with an instruction sheet, make sure that you adhere to the specifications to assure a correct release point. Don't force the tractor back together! Turn the input shaft, not the flywheel for proper alignment. Make sure transmission to engine alignment dowels are in place. *From A&I Tech Tips

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