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Manual transmission shifting difficulting (into 1st from stop)


Topher

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My 2000 Accord with a manual transmission is have a slowly-worsening problem. The car has something like 160K miles on it.

 

Sometimes when I'm at a stop and go to put it into 1st, it will go just fine.

Other times, it simply refuses to go into gear. I stop pushing the gearshift, let up on the clutch, push the clutch back in, and try to shift into first again. It then goes in, frequently with a crashing of gears.

 

I was guessing that some part that helps the gears mesh in the transmission (synchromesh rings? Sounds good :-) was wearing out, leaving the gears in a non-meshing position, and spinning part of the transmission (by letting the clutch out) gave me another shot at getting the gears to line up. But I spoke to a mechanic who come recommended to me, and he said that more likely it was leakage in either the clutch master or slave cylinders. This leakage would make it as if I had slowly let out the clutch, even though I had the pedal to the floor. Then, because the clutch wasn't fully disengaged, some part would be spinning, and it was this spinning that prevented me from shifting into 1st. I find this very unintuitive, but then I really don't know squat about transmissions.

 

It is also the case that the clutch is wearing out; I'm starting to detect slippage when I accelerate hard. This mechanic proposed to change out the clutch pressure plate, disk, slave cylinder, pilot bearing, and fluid for $880 parts & labor. We didn't really discuss how this would fix the shifting difficulty, but my thinking is that replacing the slave cylinder while he's in there working on the clutch would make sense (if indeed his analysis is correct); then if I still have the problem we could work on the master cylinder.

 

Can anyone tell me if this is even plausible?

 

Thanks

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Yup, it's plausible.

 

Leaking clutch hydraulics and a worn clutch. My bet is if you sit there and pump your clutch pedal repeatedly you will build enough hydraulic pressure to shift sans grind. He's right about what needs to be changed, and a master cylinder may be in your immediate future if the clutch hydraulic reservoir has run dry.

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Yup, it's plausible.

 

Leaking clutch hydraulics and a worn clutch. My bet is if you sit there and pump your clutch pedal repeatedly you will build enough hydraulic pressure to shift sans grind. He's right about what needs to be changed, and a master cylinder may be in your immediate future if the clutch hydraulic reservoir has run dry.

Out of f*ckin nowhere.

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If the hyrdaulics are not leaking then often times on higher mileage transmissions the synchros are not grabbing properly causing hard shifting. It does sound like either the master or slave or both are potentially leaking but I will provide the following information incase that is not the case.

 

We will in that case change the fluid with a 50/50 mixture of Honda Manual transmission fluid (or 5w30) and BG Synchro Shift II. We get the BG through a vendor, but you can look them up on line, call them and get your local reps. name and get it from them, or, often times you can find a dealer that carries it (start with a Subaru dealer). Older model manual shift Subaru's are know for a hard 3rd gear, thus sometimes you will find a dealer that stocks it for their use that will sell it to you. The master Honda tech that I work with calls the BG SynchroShift II the "miracle manual transmission drug" to fix hard shifting (assuming all other compents are working fine). Use only a 50/50 mix in Honda's. I know the Subaru goes full strength in their cars as a side note.

 

You can go to www.bgprod.com or www.bgfindashop.com for their store locator site.

 

Good luck.

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