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2003 Grand Am clutch gone in under 14 Months

Discussion in 'General Automotive Discussion' started by 62 250 GTO, May 7, 2004.

  1. 62 250 GTO

    62 250 GTO F1 Veteran

    Jan 9, 2004
    7,732
    Nova Scotia Canada
    Full Name:
    Neil
    As for warranty, what part{s} of the clutch aren't covered? Can a car with 21,000 kms have a clutch that just wore out? It's in the garage now and I'm at work so I won't be there to see it come out. I'm sure I'll get the song and dance about it being worn out. Is that possible on new cars? Just over 1 year per clutch? No warning signs either, just wouldn't go back into gear.
    Any tips for getting it repaired under warranty?
    Thanks.
     
  2. Kds

    Kds F1 World Champ

    "Friction parts" are not covered under warranty......this means the clutch disc and pressure plate.......I don't know how you drive, but you can expect to get the "abuse" excuse from the dealer I would imagine.......whether or not it is warranted (pun intended)
     
  3. Mitch Alsup

    Mitch Alsup F1 Veteran

    Nov 4, 2003
    6,967
    A clutch is controlled by the drivers left foot. Poor usage pattern from the driver will wear out a clutch in no time.

    In addition, when the engine is making high power levels and the clutch is in the "friction" zone the clutch is sheding heat like the kind of heat brakes shed as you decelerate from 100 MPH at 1Gs.

    Summary: use the clutch right and you can get 100,000 miles on it. Use it wrong and you won't be able to get 100 miles on it. Same clutch, same car, different driving.

    Just for the record, I have 20,000 miles on my F355B clutch and 32 track days. So, high performance driving does not kill clutches. And for other references, I typically get 80,000 to 100,000 miles on clutches in my Vette and other sports cars.
     
  4. Kds

    Kds F1 World Champ

    So what happened Neil ?
     
  5. FLATOUTRACING

    FLATOUTRACING F1 Rookie

    Aug 20, 2001
    2,684
    East Coast
    Full Name:
    Jon K.
    Neil,

    Mitch is right depending on how it's used a clutch can last a long time or a short time.

    Things like slipping the clutch, holding it on hills, and poor heel n' toe or mismathcing of revs can quickly destroy a clutch.

    For example, most of the guys racing in the 355 Challenge series were getting only half a season from their clutches but Jim Kenton, who won the championship and is a good driver got nearly a season and a half of racing on his clutch and I got 5000 hard driven miles out of my Challenge clutch.

    It's the guys in the middle of the pack who can't execute a proper downshift that tear their clutches up.

    Another thing, not street related, but about 50% of clutch wear on race cars comes from people using first gear when driving the car in and out of their trailers.

    The only way you can argue in your favor is to look at the clutch and pressure plate and locate some defect in an area that would not normally show wear.

    Regards,

    Jon P. Kofod
    www.flatoutracing.net
     
  6. b-mak

    b-mak F1 Veteran

    I agree. I have 192,000 km on my original clutch on a similar drivetrain as in your Grand Am. I've had the car since new. The includes: one really good crash, teaching a 14 year old to drive manual and heel-and-toe (in 7 easy lessons!), plus my wife putting on 70,000 of those kms. I remember having some clutch slip around 150,000 km, but that's long since gone. And I'm not gentle with the damn thing either...

    It definitely comes down to how you use it.
     
  7. 62 250 GTO

    62 250 GTO F1 Veteran

    Jan 9, 2004
    7,732
    Nova Scotia Canada
    Full Name:
    Neil
    Sorry for not getting back to this thread {I forgot about it}. The clutch fork broke. A design flaw or production flaw perhaps? All expenses covered including the rental, an ugly 04 Sunfire auto with 2 doors and the cheapest body panels I have ever seen. I can't even imagine getting into a wreck with that car. There is no way it passes any crash tests. "Cheap and flimsy".
     
  8. Kds

    Kds F1 World Champ

    Good news.......!!
     

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