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Hello Everyone,

I just bought a 98 Rav4 AWD with manual trans. I love it a lot, however, when starting out in 1st gear, upon releasing the clutch *sometimes* I get a horrible shudder or shake enough to make the dash jump. Does this mean the clutch needs to be replaced? I have been reading the forum and have read other posts with this problem, but other people say they have noticed it coming from the back of the vehicle. I don't think this is coming from the back, but I can't tell for sure. I just don't want to pay $1600 CAD to get the clutch done if it is still going to do this afterwards.

thanks for all your input.
 

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If you are talking about a shake when you let out the clutch pedal that seems like the clutch is slipping or chattering, I've had that almost since day one, and my clutch has worked fine all along. In my case it usually occurs during the first few miles of driving after I start my Rav in the morning. Once everything has warmed up a bit the clutch works fine. I've heard this happens with a lot of clutches so I'm not worried about it, and my clutch seems be working fine after almost 75K miles. I think the clutch disk just needs to heat up a bit for it to work correctly.
 

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If you are talking about a shake when you let out the clutch pedal that seems like the clutch is slipping or chattering, I've had that almost since day one, and my clutch has worked fine all along. In my case it usually occurs during the first few miles of driving after I start my RAV in the morning. Once everything has warmed up a bit the clutch works fine.
Same here with my '99 RAV4 at 120K miles.
 
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Is this in the sort of situation where in a 2WD car you'd expect to Spin the wheels.

Because in a low powered 4WD car you aren't going to screech the wheels so it's the clutch that slips
 

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try starting off with as low RPM as possible. happens to me when the engine is real hot with heavy load or trying to slip the clutch at higher RPM (going through deep water).
 

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Mine shudders a bit on cold take off, but after about 2 or 3 take offs and its warmed up, its OK.


$1600 to replace a clutch? :?
 

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I wonder if the way AROUND this problem is to warm the engine up for a minute or so and press the clutch a few times !!??

IS it likely to overcome the problem ??
 

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My rav does it, and I dont think there is anything you can do about it other than replace the clutch parts and hope it does not come back.

An engine at idle takes a LOOOONG time to warm up, so its best to just try to take off easy for the first few miles.

The chatter comes from the clutch itself, but is transmitted through the drivetrain and can seem like its something else.

Its not unusual in some vehicles, just do a web search on clutch chatter...

Using a different clutch brand might help, but might have side effects.

You can screw up a clutch by abusing it (overheat), or contamination, oil, grease, silicone, leaking rear main seal, rust, water, etc.

I think its a big job to replace the clutch in the awd rav's so I will live with it till the clutch starts slipping under load, then you know its shot....

Brett
 

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I'll add my two cents: I've had two ravs, a 2000 I bought new and my current '96 with 86,000mi on it. The 2000 did it from day one and the '96 does it, too. But not too often and mostly before it's warmed up. I've never had to replace a clutch on the ravs.
 

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I asked for a clutch replacement price at the dealers while I was ordering rear alignment adjusters, $1600.00 with a new flywheel, and talking with the tech, asked if vehicles with clutch chatter showed anything in common, and he told me its the flywheel that is usualy the problem, cracks or ridges in/on it.

$1600.00 is likely not a bad price with all the labor involved, but I am sure they are high judging from other prices I heard quoted for work while I waited.

11.6 hours of labor was quoted....

Maybe next spring I will think about doing the job myself, who knows....

Brett
 

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In our case I noticed it on wet days - what does that indicate ?

It seemed better with more revs and slower clutch release .
 

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Zincubus said:
In our case I noticed it on wet days - what does that indicate ?

It seemed better with more revs and slower clutch release .
Assuming you have a fwd, and your clutch and tires are good, then it's just what a rav4 does. Or it may be your tires, not that they're bad, but maybe they're just not made for wet conditions.
 

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On my rav, its got nothing to do with tires.
I suspect the wet changes the friction coefficient of the clutch, or forms a light rust on the flywheel, like you get on brake disks after a car wash (and the car sits).
The flywheel is just steel, so will rust up if exposed to moisture.

Or, the clutch itself absorbs some moisture.

I think the main cause is wear and tear on the clutch over time.
Clutch chatter is not rare, or unusual, as you learn after doing a google of it.
It seems a lot of different brand cars have the problem, and a lot of subaru's...

Brett
 

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I just noticed one of our front tyres was REALLY low on pressure .

Could that have been the reason for the judder - afecting the 4wd grip ??
 

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i replaced my 4wd rav clutch in 4 hours, noticed some hotspots on the flywheel but had to just fit the 3 piece clutch kit without the flywhheel, it judders slightly when cold but i am not taking the box back out
 

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My truck's clutch did the same. It was much worse on humid days. When I replaced the clutch, it still looked fine and the pressure plate, flywheel, and release bearing looked near perfect. But the new clutch set eliminated the bad behavior. Got it for cheap on eBay, and did all the labor myself, so only about US$100 for that job.
 
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