Skip the auto shop - Our mechanics make house calls
  1. Home
  2. Articles
  3. Symptoms of a Bad or Failing Clutch Cable

Symptoms of a Bad or Failing Clutch Cable

clutch cable

A clutch cable is the steel braided cable found on manual transmission vehicles that connects the transmission clutch linkage to the clutch pedal mechanism. When the pedal is depressed, the clutch cable pulls on the clutch linkage to disengage the clutch so that the transmission can be safely shifted. When the clutch cable begins to have problems, it can cause issues with shifting the vehicle, which will take away from its overall drivability. Usually a problematic clutch cable will display a few symptoms that can alert the driver that a problem has occurred and needs to be serviced.

1. Transmission slips out of gear

A bad clutch cable can sometimes cause a transmission to slip and pop out of gear. This will usually occur when it is accelerating and is under heavy load. This will obviously take away from the drivability of the vehicle, as it will have to be constantly put back into gear each time it pops out.

2. Hard clutch pedal

Another symptom of a problem with the clutch cable is a hard clutch pedal. A jammed or stuck cable will not be able to move when the pedal is depressed and will result in a pedal that resists depression when stepped on. Continuing to try and step on a pedal that has resistance may cause the cable to break, which will result in an inoperable clutch pedal.

3. Clutch pedal sinks to the floor

Another symptom, and a more serious issue, is a clutch pedal that sinks to the floor. If for any reason the clutch cable snaps or breaks, the clutch pedal will become disconnected from the clutch linkage, and as a result will have little to no resistance when the pedal is depressed. This will obviously result in a vehicle that cannot shift into gear and will be undrivable.

The clutch cable is a simple component in operation and design, however, when it fails it can cause problems that may render the vehicle undrivable. For this reason, if you suspect that your clutch cable may be having an issue, have the vehicle inspected by a professional technician, such as one from YourMechanic to determine if your vehicle needs a clutch cable replacement.

The statements expressed above are only for informational purposes and should be independently verified. Please see our terms of service for more details
Still not sure about your car's issue?
Diagnose your car
What kind of issue are you experiencing?
Brakes are squeaking
Car is not starting
Car is overheating
Car is shaking (vibrating)
Fluids are leaking
Heating and A/C
Smoke or steam is coming out of the car
Warning light is on
Icon-warranty_badge-02

Skip the repair shop, our top-rated mechanics come to you.

At your home or office

Choose from 600+ repair, maintenance & diagnostic services. Our top-rated mechanics bring all parts & tools to your location.

Fair & transparent pricing

See labor & parts costs upfront, so you can book with confidence.

12-month, 12,000-mile warranty

Our services are backed by a 12-month, 12,000-mile warranty for your peace of mind.

Get A Quote

Need Help With Your Car?

Our certified mobile mechanics make house calls in over 2,000 U.S. cities. Fast, free online quotes for your car repair.

GET A QUOTE

More related articles

Rules of the Road For Iowa Drivers
Driving on the roads requires knowledge of the rules, many of which are based on common sense and courtesy. However, even though you know the rules in...
Veteran and Military Driver Laws and Benefits in Idaho
The state of Idaho offers a number of benefits and perks for those Americans who have either served in an Armed Forces branch in the...
How to Avoid Back Pain in a Car
If you have back problems, sitting in a car for an extended period of time can be excruciating. Even without back problems, you could experience discomfort and soreness from...


Related questions

Q: Clutch and revvs

This sounds like your clutch needs replacing. I can't really advise you very well because I don't know the year of your car. If your car does actually have 17,000, I would take it back to the dealer, assuming you...

Q: Clutch pedal goes to floor.

You have a hydraulic issue. This could be your clutch master cylinder, which is mounted in the back of your engine compartment near the brake master cylinder. The clutch master cylinder pushes hydraulic fluid down to the clutch slave cylinder...

Q: sometimes have trouble starting the car and backfire and when I'm driving

Hi there. From the description you have provided, your vehicle's backfiring and surge should be properly diagnosed. It could be, the distributor itself is at fault. The distributor shaft and/or distributor bushings may be worn. Replacing the distributor cap and...