Hello. Yes the hydraulic brake fluid can cause the clutch to burn out and fail. The master cylinder is located next to the firewall on the left passenger side of the engine. The master cylinder is right above the clutch. When the master cylinder breaks leaks it will travel down and can drain directly onto the clutch assembly. This leak may be caused by the master cylinder itself, or by the brake lines going into it. Make sure to repair the brake line or master before you replace the clutch, or this is bound to happen again. It is not my first impression that this mechanic is trying to scam you, we cannot speak for or against this individual. Getting a second opinion and inspection may be best.
How to Identify and Fix Common car Problems ?
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Causes of clutch fluid leaks from the clutch system:
Worn master cylinder seals – Your car`s clutch master cylinder has seals that prevent fluid from leaking out. These seals will degrade over time, which may eventually resulting in them leaking brake fluid from above and around the clutch pedal.
If the cylinder develops any internal issues, it will directly affect the feel of the pedal. A leaky cylinder may cause the pedal to feel mushy or spongy, and in more severe cases, will lead to a pedal that will sink to the floor and stay there when depressed.
Common reasons for this to happen: Leaking Hose from Brake Master Cylinder: One of the most common reasons to notice brake fluid leaking around your clutch pedal is a hole in the delivery hose that sends fluid from the brake master cylinder to the clutch master cylinder.
Common signs of a clutch fluid leak are difficulty shifting or grinding noises while shifting, clutch pedal staying close to the floor, and dirty or low clutch fluid. Bar`s Leaks Hydraulic Manual Clutch Fluid with Stop Leak stops small leaks (adding fluid once per month) and medium leaks (adding fluid once per week).
The master cylinder usually has a plastic reservoir that holds the brake fluid, mounted with rubber grommets. The grommets allow for some movement caused by the pedal and fluid pressures. These grommets can leak brake fluid (a clear liquid) that can be seen with the naked eye.
After a few years, the seals in your brake master cylinder can wear out and start to leak. It is possible to repair this type of leak instead of having to replace the entire cylinder. If, however, your master cylinder is broken or is faulty, you should replace it.
Like other components of the clutch system, the clutch master cylinder can exhibit very characteristic faults. It is therefore very important to be aware of all of them. Depending on the vehicle model, repairing the clutch master cylinder is usually quite simple, as well as inexpensive.
If you can follow the path of the leak back to the brake lines or master cylinder under the center of the car or the rotors or drums near the wheels, brake fluid is likely leaking.
Cause: Chronic master cylinder failure due to fluid leaking past secondary seal in the master cylinder bore. A defective master cylinder pushrod seal in the power brake booster allows vacuum to draw fluid past secondary seal of the master cylinder. Solution: Replace both master cylinder and power brake unit.
If the brake fluid in your clutch system becomes contaminated, it can cause severe damage to the slave cylinder and clutch master cylinder.”
“Oil on your car`s clutch can really ruin your day, especially when you consider that it may cause permanent damage. Unfortunately, oil, coolant or even rainwater can get into your clutch and ruin it beyond a simple drying out or burning off.
Most clutch leaks occur at the master cylinder (under the dash) or at the slave cylinder (on the side of the transmission). Look for wetness around the shafts on both of these cylinders. When the internal seals fail fluid can leak out when the shaft enters the housing.
Faulty ABS Module
The ABS pump in the braking systems tends to carry some braking fluid. Some seals hold it in place, but if they get worn out, it can cause the fluid to start leaking out.
One of the most forgotten or misdiagnosed components is the seal between the master cylinder and the brake booster. If the seal or O-ring is leaking, it can cause a driveability issues with poor idle quality and lean DTC codes. Also, it can cause a hard brake pedal complaint from the driver.
If brake fluid is leaking into the vacuum booster, the brake fluid can cause the rubber diaphragm to fail in the brake vacuum booster. So it`s possible when fluid is leaking into the brake booster that the brake vacuum booster may need to be replaced.
A: Brake fluid leaks are often caused by a worn seal in the master cylinder, caliper, or wheel cylinder. If you suspect your car is leaking brake fluid, call a tow truck to take your vehicle to a service provider for a brake fluid inspection. Brake fluid leaks can lead to total brake system failure.
Clutch Failure Symptoms
Like all mechanical and hydraulic devices, the master cylinder will eventually wear out. Depending on use, the typical master cylinder might last 60,000 to 200,000 miles. Highway commuters use the brakes less often than city taxis, for example, so their master cylinders tend to last longer.
Clutch fluid leaks usually come from the pipes that carry the hydraulic fluid, or from damaged or faulty seals in the hydraulic components. It`s okay to drive with a minor clutch fluid leak, but if all the fluid leaks out you won`t be able to use the clutch, so it`s safest to book your car in to get it checked out.
Filling the Clutch Master Cylinder
Most vehicle`s require SAE J1703, US FMVSS or 116 DOT 3 brake fluid in the clutch master cylinder.
When your vehicle leaks brake fluid, it typically leaves a trail that can range from a light, yellowish hue to a dark brown that resembles motor oil. If you suspect your vehicle is leaking, check on the ground under the vehicle, around the master cylinder, on the brake lines, on the rotors and on the drums.
The fluid dripping from your car is probably brake fluid. When fresh, brake fluid is light yellow in color but gets darker as it ages. If not maintained, it can even look like a dark brown. If you touch it, you`ll notice its oily, slippery feel.
Your vehicle shouldn`t lose brake fluid in normal operation. The level drops only slightly with wear of brakes. So, if the level is down, there`s a chance there`s a leak somewhere.
The level in the brake fluid reservoir falls because the clutch also uses fluid from the same reservoir. There are compartments in there so that a leak in clutch system will not run the brakes out of fluid.
Pressing the clutch and raising the RPM to 4000 to 5000 can be destructive for the entire car clutch system. A few wheel spins might make you replace your clutch place or even the entire clutch system.