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Discussion Starter #1 (Edited)
SOLVED: Sudden clutch noise: Car is driving me nuts

So my wife comes home last night, calls me out to listen to the car. It's idling in the driveway and sounded completely normal, then she pushed in the clutch pedal. It made a whirring/grinding noise, almost like sticking a piece of paper against fan blades. It also made the headlights dim.

I got in the car and did it a few times, and there was no felt vibration, just a horrible noise and the dimming lights. The clutch isn't slipping at all, and there is no noise when driving under load.

A little quick history: I've had motor mount trouble, and am running a Steeda mount on the drivers side, and the urethane bushed dog bone. I've got a solid rubber mount on the passenger side, but I think it may have collapsed just like all the others...Gonna order a Steeda mount for that one shortly.

I've searched all over the place and cant find anything that resembles the noise, and after the car sat for 30 minutes, it doesn't do it any more. Any help would be great.
 

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Hello! Sorry to about your troubles. For those of us using tapatalk who can't see your signature, what year is your focus? What engine?
 

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Discussion Starter #5
Throwout bearing? If so, that was my first thought, but all of them that I've had go bad in other vehicles were noisy all the time, even when under load.

The thing that has me stumped is why it only occurred when the clutch pedal was pushed in, and then it seems to have quit after the thing was shut off and restarted.
 

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First things first then. Check your gear oil in the transmission. There should be a bolt on the side of the gearbox, unbolt it and stick your finger in there. If you feel oil, check the color and smell. It should look like motor oil but thicker. If you don't feel anything, well. Your low on oil.
 

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Discussion Starter #9
Yeah, I'll double check that, I did change the tranny fluid with that wonderfully expensive Ford stuff in June of 2012...I've been under the car since, oil changes, motor mounts, etc...and not seen any leaks, but who knows, maybe it found a way to burn it.
 

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I wonder if the pressure plate lost a finger and it was getting caught up in the clutch assembly until I fell to the bottom of the bell housing. Unfortunately the transmission has to come out to find out what's going on. If its the original clutch and depending on the miles I bet that's your issue.
 

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Discussion Starter #13
I bought the car from my mom in 2010, It's got 125,000 miles the large majority of which are highway. Clutch is the original.

I wonder if it broke either a pressure plate spring, or one of the coils on the friction plate, and was working on falling down through the rotating assembly and has now worked it's way to the bottom of the bell housing?
 

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That's what I'm thinking. My clutch was done at 68k... When I bought it. That's most likely your case. I'm surprised no one else had anything to say about it. But I'm willing to bet its something in the clutch assembly. Weather its the pressure plate finger (spring), or a spring in the clutch disk.
 

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Discussion Starter #16
Yeah, I'll make sure to post up in here when I find out...I'll add fixed or solution found to the title.

Gotta get my back better before I wrestle the thing out of there...I'll be back.
 

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Never mind on your location lol. I was hoping you were closer to me. I would help you take it apart. Doing it yourself is a pain
 

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Discussion Starter #19
Yeah, that's a long ass drive to make for a few hours of work...We have awfully good beer out here though.

Once upon a time, I was an active duty Marine...Then I worked in and out of different shops, particularly a high end German place. Then I went back into the Army until I was jacked up in Afghanistan in 2011...Bad enough to be put on the retired list and sent home.

Taking this apart cant be any worse than a Carrera C4, I just have to get over the rough spell I've been having this past month, and get back to the point I can roll around under the thing to work on it. I'm guessing it works like a Honda or Acura? All the goodies disconnect from underneath and drop out the bottom? I'll go look in a book.

Stand by for the follow up, I'll take pics.
 

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First let me thank you for your service to our country. You are truly a hero.



It is a Mazda transmission, really cool design. It has double synchros on all the gears and single synchro on reverse. That's why you have to lift the ring to put it into reverse, its to avoid accidental reverse engagement lol. But both axels have to be pulled (duh lol), tranny mount, and bell housing bolts. It should be pretty straight forward. I'm trying to remember what mine is like. I have an 03 SE, with 77k. But I have the SPI SOHC and the IB5 gearbox.
 
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