Q: Vehicle won't go into gear when running, when turned off, vehicle will go into gear but won't start. 1998 Ford Explorer

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My 1998 Ford Explorer 5-speed was having some issues shifting into 1st gear, later that day I went to start the vehicle to run errands and smelt a burning odor. Thinking, ok I burnt the clutch a bit, started the car and went to into reverse and the gear wouldn't go. So I tried going into ANY other gear and they all ended the same way. So I turned off the car and let it sit for 10 minutes. I put the car in reverse and tried to start it that way, it just sounded like the engine was choking and didn't start. Letting it sit while I did some research, I came up with nothing useful. I went to put it into gear again and start, hoping it was a temporary problem, the car got stuck in first. The next day I went to check the engine and I somehow managed to get the car out of first. And here it sits.

My car has 203667 miles.
My car has a manual transmission.

Hello - your clutch hydraulics are the problem here. Check the clutch hydraulics fluid level - and it may share the same reservoir as the brake master cylinder (both use brake fluid as the hydraulic medium). If fluid needs to be added, that means that probably the clutch slave cylinder is leaking - this might be visible as a clear, but bitter-smelling liquid on the ground under the engine. I recommend a clutch hydraulics inspection performed by a mobile, professional mechanic, such as one from YourMechanic, who will come to your location, diagnose this problem, and give you an accurate assessment of damage and cost estimate for repairs.

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