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Old 03-18-2011, 09:00 PM   #1
downshift93
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2002 SC1
Default 02 SC1 manual trans or clutch is out, Need help with diagnosis

So I was on my way to work yesterday and I went to go when the light turned green, and all of the sudden the best way I can describe it as was I heard a noise and my car wouldnt pull itself any more. The engine runs great and I never had any problems with my clutch or any gears slipping. It the SOHC engine and its a manual transmission.

I cant tell if its the actual transmission or just the clutch. When I push the clutch in it feels normal like it always has, but now you dont have to push the clutch in order to put the car into any gear. and also when the engine is idle and I put the car into a gear it sounds sort of like theres something metal thats turning but its not where it should be and it sort of makes a small clanking sound, and also when I put the car in gear now and its idle the speedometer shows that Im going like 10 MPH when Im just standing there.

I dont want to take it to a shop and have them tell me it needs a whole new transmission when it could only need a clutch. I will be at the mercy of the shop because Im not having it towed to different shops to get different opinions lol. If anyone could help me figure out maybe if it sounds like just the clutch or the transmission that would be awesom!! I appreciate your help!! This is my only car and Im really stuck because its almost impossible to get a ride into work :-/

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Old 03-18-2011, 09:36 PM   #2
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2003 L-Series 3.0L Sedan
Default Re: 02 SC1 manual trans or clutch is out, Need help with diagnosis

If the car doesn't move its a broken cv joint. There are two, one for each front wheel. When one breaks the transmission can't transfer any power to the good cv joint so the engine/transmission just spins in place. There's an easy test.

With the engine off, e-brake released, and first gear engaged, push the car forward or backward. The car shouldn't move when a gear is engaged but if any cv joint is broken you can push the car; a broken cv joint is no longer part of the differential that normally transfers power to both wheels. A broken cv joint no longer allows a mechanical coupling to the transmission. The differential doesn't hold the car in place anymore so it can be pushed even when 1st gear is engaged and the engine's off.

Last edited by fdryer; 03-18-2011 at 09:44 PM..

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Old 03-18-2011, 09:40 PM   #3
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2002 SC1
Default Re: 02 SC1 manual trans or clutch is out, Need help with diagnosis

the car doesnt move at all. If the car has 2 CV joints and 1 broke would the other wheel try to move that had the good CV joint? would a broken CV joint allow me to very easily shift gears without pushing in the clutch?

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Old 03-18-2011, 09:50 PM   #4
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2003 L-Series 3.0L Sedan
Default Re: 02 SC1 manual trans or clutch is out, Need help with diagnosis

Your unfamiliarity with differentials can confuse you and anyone else about how they work. A broken cvj just lets the engine/transmission rev while never transferring any power to the good cvj. Its a property of simple differentials.

If you can shift to any gear (engine running) and that car won't move its a broken cvj.

If two gears can be selected and the car moves its a broken shift bushing on the shift console.

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Old 03-18-2011, 10:05 PM   #5
downshift93
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2002 SC1
Default Re: 02 SC1 manual trans or clutch is out, Need help with diagnosis

ooh okay, well I dont think its a shift bushing since I cant select 2 different gears lol. So to replace a broken CV joint do you have to replace the clutch or transmission? Im sorry for such a dumb question, I just know nothing about transmissions lol. How much would you say a reasonable rate would be for a shop to put on a new CV joint? Im pretty mechanically inclined, do you think its something that I could try and take on myself?

I appreciate your help!!

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Old 03-18-2011, 10:53 PM   #6
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2003 L-Series 3.0L Sedan
Default Re: 02 SC1 manual trans or clutch is out, Need help with diagnosis

Constant velocity joints are the two driveshafts extending out from the transmission to each wheel hub. No clutch or transmission repairs. The cvj is replaced. You can clearly see a broken one. Google pictures of good ones and failed ones.

Don't go by what I suggest. Go out and try the test for a broken cvj. No engine running and 1st gear selected and engaged. Or 4th gear as if you were trying a push start. Just leave the ignition OFF and try pushing the car; if the car moves easily instead of being immovable, one cvj is broken.

There are never any dumb questions. Dumb is never asking. If we can't read and learn we ask and hopefully get answers. Saturnfans.

Cvj's range from around $50 to $100+ and not for a beginner as the wheel hub and some parts have to be disassembled requiring more than average skills. You can get a good idea by searching for posts showing others doing their own repairs. There may be a youtube video by richpin or other people with similar videos about taking apart front suspensions to remove and replace a cv joint.

Last edited by fdryer; 03-18-2011 at 10:59 PM..

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Old 03-18-2011, 11:04 PM   #7
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2002 SC1
Default Re: 02 SC1 manual trans or clutch is out, Need help with diagnosis

so I went out just now and put it in first gear and pushed it back and the car moved without any problem at all. this makes me feel a million times better knowing that Im not going to have to put in a new transmission or clutch!! I still dont quite get why I can move from gear to gear now without having to push in the clutch lol. But I trust your knowledge!

is there a way that I can tell if its my drivers side or passengers side CV joint that will need to be replace? you basically just replace that whole axil on whatever side the CV joint is Im assuming.

Thanks for saying that wasnt a dumb question!! I appreciate you being nice and all of your advice and help!! I was really really stressed out about this but now that you pointed out its the CV joint and I did the little test to confirm it I feel much much better!!!

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Old 03-18-2011, 11:35 PM   #8
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2003 L-Series 3.0L Sedan
Default Re: 02 SC1 manual trans or clutch is out, Need help with diagnosis

I'm guessig its dark where you are right now so it may be hard to see a broken one but you can look anyway. Turn the steering wheel either all the way right or left and look in the wheel well opening. You might be able to see over the engine and down between the wheel fender and engine (or xmission). Members replacing their broken cvj's posted pictures of almost everything they did. Google helps too with image searches.

During daylight you'll need to jack the front end up to see a broken one.

A risky but doable visual to see a broken cvj in action; with another person's help you can use him/her to have the engine running, gear selected and engaged, and hold the brake pedal down with the e-brake applied (since you know the car can't move anyway). Either it can be seen over the engine or from below as half the cv joint spins (from the xmission side) while the other half stands still that goes to the wheel hub. The break will be obvious.

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Old 03-19-2011, 01:23 AM   #9
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1996 SW2
Default Re: 02 SC1 manual trans or clutch is out, Need help with diagnosis

There are actually four CV joints; two outer and two inner. The outers, however, are much more likely to fail, but the effect is the same. And in either case, the fix is to replace the whole axle. Another not-too-uncommon failure is for the passenger-side shaft to break right about in the middle. There's a weight on the shaft on some cars at that point, and water gets in between the weight and the shaft, the shaft rusts and fatigues, and...

One tell-tale of a broken CV joint -- try to "drive" the car, and look at the speedometer. If it moves, that fingers a CV joint or axle shaft.

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Old 03-19-2011, 04:57 AM   #10
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2003 L-Series 3.0L Sedan
Default Re: 02 SC1 manual trans or clutch is out, Need help with diagnosis

Quote:
Originally Posted by downshift93 View Post
.... when I put the car in gear and its [at] idle the speedometer shows that Im going like 10 MPH when Im just standing there....
The car's moving while standing still...........

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Old 03-19-2011, 06:36 AM   #11
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1999 SL2
1994 SL2
Default Re: 02 SC1 manual trans or clutch is out, Need help with diagnosis

I would almost put my money on that the right side is the problem. The right side axle had a rubber donut on it for viberation reasons. I have seen them break right ehere that rubber donut is from rust. The shaft just snaps without warning.

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