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2012 Subaru Outback
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Discussion Starter #1
Hi all,

I'm having a strange issue with my clutch pedal.

I have a 2012 Outback with a 6 speed manual transmission. I had the clutch done about 30,000 miles ago at 60k.

Yesterday for some reason, the pedal developed a bit of play in in. The pedal has very little resistance being pressed down for a few inches, then it engages the clutch.
I thought it was the clutch slave cylinder, so I replaced that today. Now, it is doing the same thing, but now it will not start. I'm thinking the switch is bad, but would that account for the play in the pedal?

Thanks for any help.
Eric
 

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2013 3.6R limited. 2006 Wrx Limited
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60k clutch replacement is pretty early. Do you keep your foot on the clutch at stop signs and lights?
 

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My first thought is the clutch safety switch should not be affected by the freeplay issue but if Subaru put the switch down at the end of the chain (at the slave or fork) rather than at the pedal, it would be affected.
Did you get a good bleed of the hydraulics after installing the new slave cyl?
 

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Discussion Starter #4
60k clutch replacement is pretty early. Do you keep your foot on the clutch at stop signs and lights?
It's my wife's car, so she may be doing that. I normally don't. I thought it was pretty early as well... We did buy it when it was 3 years old, so who knows how they treated it before we got it.

Eric
 

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Discussion Starter #5
My first thought is the clutch safety switch should not be affected by the freeplay issue but if Subaru put the switch down at the end of the chain (at the slave or fork) rather than at the pedal, it would be affected.
Did you get a good bleed of the hydraulics after installing the new slave cyl?
The switch I believe is on the pedal. And it wasn't affected until I replaced the slave cylinder. Now it's making a clicking sound, almost like something is broken.

I did get a good bleed (actually did it twice to make sure).

Eric
 

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Now, it is doing the same thing, but now it will not start. I'm thinking the switch is bad, but would that account for the play in the pedal?
Is it cranking but not starting, or is it not cranking at all?

I doubt it's the clutch switch, although, if during the slave replacement and bleeding, the pedal was used a lot, a weak switch might have finally failed.

But depending on what's happening regarding starting, I'm thinking a wire or connector might have been disturbed during the slave replacement work.
 

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Discussion Starter #7
Is it cranking but not starting, or is it not cranking at all?

I doubt it's the clutch switch, although, if during the slave replacement and bleeding, and the pedal was used a lot, a weak switch might have finally failed.

But depending on what's happening regarding starting, I'm thinking a wire or connector might have been disturbed during the slave replacement work.
Its not cranking. I thought the battery was dead, but there is power. I press the clutch pedal down and now it does nothing. Even after the replacement of the slave cylinder, the clutch pedal doesn't feel right. I'm thinking that the cylinder wasn't the problem.

Eric
 

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Its not cranking.
Check the wiring in that top area around the slave cylinder. I'm not familiar with the layout, but generally there's some harness connectors and wires/cables nearby. If, when the ignition switch is moved to Start, there's no noticeable "click" or "clunk" from the starter solenoid, one thing to look at is the single small wire going to the spade terminal at the back of the starter solenoid. It might have been pulled off, all or part way.

Also, check fuse #21, 7.5 Amps in the cabin fuse box. It's identified on page 12-11 of the Owners Manual.

The clutch low pedal and no-start situation are not likely directly related.
 

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Discussion Starter #9
Update: Okay, the car starts, but I have to have the pedal on the floor. And when the clutch is engaged and in gear while driving, it still slips. I beleive it may be just an adjustment, but I've seen several posts saying I shouldn't have to adjust it. I don't want a temporary fix if something else is going on...
 

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Would appear to be two issues.

Okay, the car starts, but I have to have the pedal on the floor.
The clutch switch that affects the ability to start is mounted on the clutch pedal assembly under the dash. (See attached FSM pages for the switch, and locating diagram. The fact that the clutch itself seems to be slipping is more a factor of the mechanics of the clutch release mechanism.

The clutch switch is open (no continuity) when the pedal is up. When the pedal is depressed, the switch closes. As noted in the attached FSM pages, with the pedal at the floor, there should be a gap between the switch plunger and the pad on the pedal that contacts the plunger. This would be something to check if the pedal has to be unusually pressed down on the floor.

when the clutch is engaged and in gear while driving, it still slips.
Was it slipping?

Does the pedal still have that "no-resistance" range of a few inches at the top?

I suspect there's something mechanical with the clutch that caused the initial pedal symptom, and it's still there.

Is the clutch lever moving with the slave cylinder push rod?

Although the symptoms don't match, Subaru clutch release levers have a history here of cracking. The lever bends, and doesn't properly move the throw-out bearing. Not quite the same as the loose pedal, but perhaps the 6-speed system is different. (Just a thought . . .)
 

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Discussion Starter #11
Although the symptoms don't match, Subaru clutch release levers have a history here of cracking. The lever bends, and doesn't properly move the throw-out bearing. Not quite the same as the loose pedal, but perhaps the 6-speed system is different. (Just a thought . . .)
Well, it seems your last comment was the correct one. The clutch release fork looked like it had a hole blown through it.
Local auto parts houses don't have it so I have to wait till tomorrow and go to the dealership. Oh joy!

Eric
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Well, it seems your last comment was the correct one. The clutch release fork looked like it had a hole blown through it.
What are they making the levers out of these days?

Can you tell if it wore thin until a piece broke off, or is it not excessively worn but a piece just broke away? I wonder if the ball pivot wasn't lubricated, causing premature wear, or, the release bearing is/was binding on the transmission shaft, requiring more pressure on the lever to move the bearing leading to a fracture. The ball pivot, shaft and lever contact with the bearing are supposed to be lubricated.
 

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Discussion Starter #13
What are they making the levers out of these days?

Can you tell if it wore thin until a piece broke off, or is it not excessively worn but a piece just broke away? I wonder if the ball pivot wasn't lubricated, causing premature wear, or, the release bearing is/was binding on the transmission shaft, requiring more pressure on the lever to move the bearing leading to a fracture. The ball pivot, shaft and lever contact with the bearing are supposed to be lubricated.
Actually, you can see the stress cracks that lead to the pivot point. I circled the stress crack locations in red. They are obviously older than the hole in the center.
It was well lubricated, but for some reason, the fork wasn't very thick. The new one I picked up today is MUCH thicker.

As always, thanks to all who put forth ideas. I appreciate the help.

Eric

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