Polo sedan squeaks clutch pedal

How to eliminate clutch pedal squeak on a Polo sedan

The rustling of the wheels, the hum of the engine and flying gravel under the bottom of the car – all this is no longer a problem for drivers who prefer peace in the cabin of their “iron horse”. Today you can put “noise insulation” wherever you want without assistance of professionals. But what to do if the source of disturbance settled inside the car? It is clear that creaks, bursting from backlashes of “torpedo” or doors’ casing is a natural process of car’s aging. There is nothing you can do about them. But if in this cacophony there also is a squeaking of a clutch pedal, it is high time to show interest to the problem.


For sedan Polo this theme is not unusual. There is a dry single-disc clutch on “German”, as well as on other modern automobiles, and it works by classical principle of friction force. Flywheel, disks, crankshaft – all these elements cooperate with each other with the help of hydraulic drive. And so they do not “fight” with each other, the moving parts float comfortably in the brake fluid, poured into the reservoir at the hydraulic cylinder.

Possible causes of clutch squeaking

Most often on the sedan Polo “guilty” turns out to be the hydraulic drive. The principle of its work is simple. When we depress the pedal, pressure is formed in the system, which comes to the clutch fork. Then comes the most cherished moment of fusion of transmission with engine, during which it is possible to switch gears. To keep the drive friction lining from wearing out, the structure uses a special compensating mechanism that does not require adjustment.


But the most common cause of malfunction of the unit is the usual air leakage or clogging of the system due to a breach of the tightness of the actuator. The fluid in the tank is very sensitive to moisture, which can easily leak inside the unit in the form of condensate. Creaking of a clutch pedal can become one of the signs of failure of an expensive unit. The treatment of the problem is a standard pumping of the system.

Often the problem is right in plain sight. The creak can be caused by moving parts of the pedal mechanism itself. Often on the Polo sedan, it occurs when the clutch pedal is released. Some components of the device get rid of unnecessary load, as a result of which an unpleasant squeak is formed.

Clutch hydraulic system

The mechanism is arranged as follows. Behind the pedal block there is an axle to which all the pedals of the car are attached with brackets. There are special plastic bushings under them which are shock absorbers so that “keys” could be easily pressed (we do not live in the beginning of 20th century!). Exactly these bushings are the source of noise. Whether it’s new bushings or old, worn-out plastic, the squeaking can happen at any time.

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As a rule, the bushings are not treated with grease. The ideal is to remove the entire pedal assembly and replace the plastic elements. The problem is that the service will charge you three skins for such operations, and the independent work will take a lot of time. Of course, if the squeak has already frayed your nerves, disassembling the mechanism for many hours will not seem so exhausting and time-consuming. However, in most cases, the car enthusiasts will be helped by the usual lubrication of the problematic places of the clutch.

Clutch system

Getting to the pedal box on a Polo sedan is not too difficult. The same cannot be said for small cars. For lubrication you can use engine or transmission oil. In order not to stain the floor, it is recommended to put a dry rag under the pedal unit, as well as to stock up on a rag for wiping drips. Next, everything is simple: we take a little oil in a syringe and apply the grease on both sides of the plastic bushing. Then squeeze the clutch pedal a couple of times and listen. If the squeaking doesn’t go anywhere, then we keep digging.

The return spring – probably it’s the problem. It can squeak due to its own wear. In this case it is better to replace it. Also it can catch on a metal bracket, on which a clutch pedal is fastened. Spraying with engine oil will not help here – it will only stain interior. “Vedeshka” will correct the situation, but only for a couple of days. Professionals recommend in a similar situation to treat the problem area with grease for CV joints. If the spring is noisy, the positive effect is 100% guaranteed.

Return spring

Finally, the root of the evil may hide in the very depths of the car assembly. The squeak is often provoked by clutch release fork, and also its “neighbor” – the bearing. Wear or leakage of working grease from the bearing causes the increased noise at release of clutch. If the elements of the crankcase have more or less bearable working look and are able to function normally, then there is a chance to refuse laborious disassembly of the mechanism and replacement of important units. Instead, you can try injecting engine oil onto the clutch release fork axle by removing a small rubber plug from the crankcase.

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Replacing the clutch fork and bearing

If greasing did not help to get rid of the squeak, you will have to perform a delicate operation of replacing the fork and bearing. At the same time you will be able to assess the condition of the diaphragm spring of the pressure plate. If you find severely deformed paddles, the disc will have to be replaced.

Saucing the clutch assembly

The procedure will require a 14″ wrench and a flathead screwdriver:

  1. Dismantle the gearbox.
  2. Unscrew a couple of bolts securing the bushing to the clutch housing.
  3. Remove the spring from the ball bearing, and then the plug itself with the bushing and bearing.
  4. To remove the bushing from the clutch, turn it 90 degrees and align the two retainers with the slots.
  5. On the back surface of the yoke, press the latches and remove the bearing coupling from the socket.
  6. Before installing the new parts, lubricate all the important areas of the clutch: the bushing, the splines of the transmission’s primary shaft, the fork ball bearing, and the fork itself where it meets the bearing coupling.
  7. Insert the bearing coupling back into the socket with a characteristic click of locks.
  8. Mount the clutch release fork and bearing in place, tightening to 5 Nm and turning the screwdriver 90 degrees.
  9. Install the gearbox in reverse order.

Thus, it is possible to separate three main fault zones, causing clutch pedal creak: hydraulic unit, pedal unit or clutch mechanism itself. As practice shows, most often polovedy resort to the standard lubrication of problematic nodes, which in most cases and solves the problem of unpleasant creaking clutch pedal.

Why does the clutch basket squeak?

Many drivers as a result of using the vehicle encounter such a problem: creaking clutch pedal. But not every driver is able to determine the source of origin of this unpleasant squeak, and very often they seek help from specialists, or try to determine and fix the problem on their own. The squeak of the clutch pedal can be eliminated independently, but only if you have some experience or know your car well.

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Why the clutch can squeak

Clutch pedal creaking can be figuratively divided into two types:

  1. The so-called light squeak. Such a squeak does not affect the pedal in any way, and has absolutely no effect on its operation. Rather, this unpleasant sound begins to irritate the driver, creating uncomfortable conditions for the operation of the car and causes a great desire to end it as soon as possible. Very often it can occur when air temperature outside is close to zero or below zero (characteristic for winter). As a rule, in these weather conditions it is extremely difficult to get rid of it, because it can appear again and again. It disappears on its own, when the car heats up a little and the clutch develops with time and comes to its normal state.
  2. A hard or as it is also called a heavy squeak is a clear signal that it is necessary to diagnose the system, as the appearance of this heavy sound implies the occurrence of a real threat of failure of any of the parts closely related to this pedal. You may also notice abnormal pedal behavior: it may run tight or jerky. This is quite a serious problem, which requires urgent repair, otherwise it will lead to malfunction of the fork or cable breakage.

So, let’s sort out why the clutch pedal squeaks.

There may be several reasons that accompany the occurrence of an annoying squeak. Therefore, before the repair, it is extremely important to determine the very source of its occurrence.

One of the common causes of noise coming from the pedal is a plastic transmission bushing. The bushing touches the bracket when the clutch pedal is depressed, resulting in some friction between the two elements, and from this interaction, an unpleasant sound occurs.

Clutch pedal squeak can also occur in another situation, for example, there is no lubricant present in the box on the primary shaft. The sound in this case appears during the operation of the pedal, in the place where the pressure bearing is located. In the process, the fork presses on this bearing, which in turn interacts with the clutch disc. From such an impact, the sound will undoubtedly make itself felt and usually a sudden urge to get rid of it.

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The creaking of the clutch pedal can also come from the engine compartment. In this case, too, the cause may be a lack of lubricant on their surface.

In very rare cases, the squeak can come from the pressure pin. In this case, no diagnostics and lubrication will help, as such an element is not repairable, and requires replacement. But do not forget to grease the new part well before installation.

Stiff clutch pedal

If you own a car with automatic transmission, then this article may not seem interesting to you, because now we will talk about an indispensable part for vehicles with manual transmission. Of course, we are talking about the clutch pedal, which acts as the main link between the driver’s desire and the “obedience” of the car. To engage or disengage the clutch one has to apply a certain amount of force to the pedal, but if excessive forces are required from the driver, that is a clear sign of the presence of any malfunction in the system.

Causes of a stiff clutch pedal

Why, after all, do we sometimes have to encounter such a phenomenon as a “stiff clutch pedal”? In fact, there are several most common causes. First, the pedal lever itself often jams or the cable gets chafed, and second, the source of such problems can be too much wear on the clutch fork bearing, which also starts to move tightly. In some cases, a stiff clutch pedal is explained by a clogging in the hydraulic system or a worn out release bearing.

Naturally, to restore the normal operation of the clutch pedal will have to take a number of necessary actions, but first we will try to understand the different signs of the manifestation of those or other failures. For example, if clutch pedal rigidity is a result of fork bearing wear then at pedal pressing you will hear some characteristic rumbling, testifying that squeeze out bearing has already fulfilled its allotted time and it is time to replace it with a new detail.

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Nowadays mechanisms are designed for driving long distances (more than 1300 km), however the driver doesn’t mind doing regular diagnostics and timely elimination of the appearing problems (including replacement of broken parts). In the same cases, when the system is treated carelessly and inattentively, the clutch pedal will serve you 50 000 km mileage at most, and in large trucks the problems may be caused by bad lapping of new elements.

Do not exclude the problem of incomplete engagement of the mechanism from possible causes of “stiff clutch”. In such situations, when shifting a gear, the driver of the vehicle will hear a characteristic grinding. This is due to the inability of the slave disc to break away from the pressure plate normally. To eliminate this malfunction, it is best to immediately contact professionals.

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