COMMON CLUTCH ISSUES
Clutches have a relatively long life quite often lasting for more than last for more than 120,000 km if you use them correctly and keep them well maintained. If treated badly, clutches can create issues at less than 50,000 km. Vehicles that are consistently overloaded or tow heavy loads frequently can also behave badly with relatively new clutches.
The main cause of clutch-related issues is that the friction material of the disc wears out. The friction material on a clutch disc is very similar to the material on brake disc pads. Over time, the material wears away. Once the material wears to its minimum thickness, the clutch will start to slip, and eventually, it won't create drive to the rear wheels.
The clutch material only wears when the clutch is depressed during gear changes, where the speed of the clutch disc and the flywheel are spinning at different speeds. When the clutch pedal is not depressed the clutch plate and flywheel are clamped together and rotating at the same speed. If the clutch is slipped a lot during gear changes, the clutch will wear out a lot faster.
Another issue experienced with clutches is sticking. If your clutch does not release correctly, the gearbox input shaft will continue to rotate and will either cause grinding of the gears or failure of gear engagement.
Issues likely to cause stuck clutch could include the following:-
Broken or stretched clutch cable.
Leaky or sticking clutch slave or master cylinders.
Air in the brake fluid.
Incorrect clutch adjustment.
Poor quality clutch components.
Other noises from the clutch could be contributed to a worn out or faulty thrust bearing. The thrust bearing transmits the pressure from the pedal to the spinning pressure plate. If faulty with could cause a squealing or grinding noise.
If your clutch is creating noise, not behaving as it should or if you have any doubts take your car into to have it checked - earlier is always better and most often cheaper!