Clutch replacement

Toyota Corolla / Geo Prizm

Clutch went out last week. Decided to replace it myself instead of paying a mechanic, since I have a few days off from work.

Started with the trusty Chilton manual: (click on any picture for full-size image). It has the 4A-GE engine.


Removed the hood, removed the battery, and removed the air cleaner box and intake tubes.


Removed the tires, brake calipers and rotors, then drained the transmission gear oil, and removed the left and right drive shafts.





Disconnected slave cylinder, speedometer cable, shift linkage, back up switch wire, removed starter, left and bottom motor support brackets, main crossmember, upper and lower transmission bolts, and dropped the transmission:



The clutch:


And up close:



Old clutch next to new clutch:



As you can see in the pictures, the pressure tangs are bent, and the clutch disk is trashed.

Got a new kit at O’Rielly’s for $119.

While it is open, I decided to go ahead and replace the rear main seal. Here is the the flywheel removed and rear main seal exposed:


I replaced all the seals on the front end last spring, so when I reinstalled the oil pan, I used ultra-black RTV. It does not leak! But it is very difficult to remove, so I spent several hours today cleaning the oil pan and baffle.

Rear main seal and oil pan removed and surfaces cleaned:



New rear main seal kit:



New rear main seal installed:




And oil pan cleaned and reinstalled.



Installed the flywheel. Use a piece of square aluminum rod and sharpened the end to hold the flywheel in place when torquing the bolts. Put the sharpened end in the teeth on the ring gear.

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Installed the new clutch. Used the alignment tool the came with the kit to align the splines. Also used thread locking compound on all the bolts on the flywheel and the clutch.

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Cleaned the transmission, installed new throw-out bearing, and re-installed the transmission onto the motor.

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Re-installed the muffler. Use anti-seize compound on all the bolts so able to take apart easier in the future.



Re-installed the motor mounts and support brackets.

While re-installing the clutch slave cylinder hydraulic line mounting clips, wrench slipped and broke the bimetallic vacuum valve. Had to spend several hours on the internet just to find the name and what it does, and then found it at ORielly’s. It was spendy – $63 bucks. It was tight clearance and very hard to remove, so I bought a deep-well 15/16 socket, and used a grinder to cut a slot in it so I could use a ratchet to re-install.

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Re-installed the brake rotors, calipers, tires, and under panels.

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Re-installed the air-cleaner box and tubes, the cooling fan, coolant reservoir, and all the other wires and switches.

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Put the hood back on, added anti-freeze, added oil, added gear lube.



Connected the negative battery terminal, double checked all fittings and connections, and turned the key. Started right up, took it for a drive, dumped the clutch a few times and burned the tires, and everything functions perfectly. Dang I am good. Too bad it takes me so long.

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