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Preventive maintenance advice, clutch, DMF, Ball Joints, bushes etc

Discussion in 'T4 California Technical' started by Padraic, Mar 1, 2019.

  1. Padraic
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    Padraic VIP Member

    536
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    Location:
    Ireland
    Vehicle:
    T4 PopTop
    Year:
    2002
    Hi all, I'm looking for peoples advice/thoughts about a few preventive maintenance jobs im considering.
    I own my T4 California Freestyle 151hp for almost two years now and I'm planning to keep it for many more.
    I've done the Cam belt and water pump kit with VW parts last year.

    I've been experiencing clutch judder when moving off in 1st or reverse gear, worse when on an incline. From reading various forums etc, I've come to mixed causes/solutions. Some say it may be soft engine gearbox mounts, others say it could be clutch/DMF or oil getting on the clutch.

    So with potentially having to replace the clutch/DMF, I'm trying to plan out the best approach.

    First off, I'm thinking I will replace the engine & gearbox mounts during the upcoming small service and see if that is the problem causing the clutch judder.

    Should that not cure the clutch judder, I'm going to have to make the decision to replace the clutch kit.
    When the gearbox is out, I'm thinking it would be pragmatic to replace the front ball joints, wishbone bushes etc.

    What I'm struggling to decide is this,
    1. Am I better to get the clutch, ball joints, bushes etc done now at home with VW parts, with a mechanic I know and trust, rather that a potential breakdown when on holidays? A breakdown on hols could cause a long time delay and cost.
    Also with my line of work, I have limited holidays, so any disruption to our hols would be a disaster!!
    2. Considering the age of the Cali, its only a matter of time before I may need to replace the odd ball joint. So I'm thinking if I replace the lot now, I'll have a tight and reliable van to drive around.
    3. I have the cash now to do this work, and not too confident of work in the future, so It may make sense to get it done now.

    Even to me it sounds crazy to be taking out parts that are still good. But my Cali is 17 years old now, and if I carry out a complete suspension refurbishment, Clutch/DMF, brake system refurb, the Cali should be spot on and reliable for another 17 years.

    Any thoughts or suggestions would be greatly appreciated.
    Regards Padraic.
     
  2. Sleepyboy
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    Sleepyboy

    47
    2
    1
    Location:
    Towcester
    Transmission:
    Manual
    Vehicle:
    T4 PopTop
    Year:
    1996
    The clutch judder on mine was down to needing a new clutch/DMF.

    The parts aren't too expensive, even for decent ones - don't forget to change the slave cylinder as well!.

    I had to change both driveshafts as part of the job as well - the boots were split on one side and one of tthe joints fell apart on the other so I bit the bullet and replaced both.
     
  3. Padraic
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    Padraic VIP Member

    536
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    Location:
    Ireland
    Vehicle:
    T4 PopTop
    Year:
    2002
    It’s very difficult to get a definitive answer on the cause of the clutch judder, so I’m gonna bite the bullet and get the clutch kit done.
    The cost of the DMF and clutch kit from VW is €1300 inc VAT.
    I think I’ll price a Sachs DMF an clutch kit to see if there is much difference in price.
    Has anyone here used a Sachs clutch kit?
    My mechanic thinks I’m mad replacing the suspension bushes and ball joints when they are not gone, but I’m planning to go to France Switzerland and Italy later in the year, so I want trouble free motoring on those trips.
     
  4. 2into1
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    2into1 Née T4WFA. Now running 2017 150 DSG Ocean Lifetime VIP Member

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    Don't they all have clutch judder under heavy load / and / or when their is condensation on the clutch plate? Does it go away once warmed up?
     
  5. sidepod
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    sidepod Top Poster Lifetime VIP Member

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    The MOT will flag up your ball joints long before they get bad, I’d leave it till then.

    You may find the judder is your lower pendulum mount. They get saturated win oil and perish.

    Tricky to find the correct item for the Red i gearbox. I have part no if you need it.

    May be worth checking before committing to a clutch.
     
  6. motacyclist
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    motacyclist Colin Top Poster Lifetime VIP Member

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    Wow! My son had a new clutch, def and slave cylinder fitted to his T4 at the local clutch & gearbox centre and it didn’t cost anywhere near as much as that.

    Edit. Just spoke to him, it was £500 fitted, but he didn’t replace the DMF. The reason He did it was because the slave cylinder was leaking. He also said clutch judder was present on his still and thinks it may be due to something else.
     
    Last edited: Mar 13, 2019
  7. Padraic
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    Padraic VIP Member

    536
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    39
    Location:
    Ireland
    Vehicle:
    T4 PopTop
    Year:
    2002
    Mine has judder when moving off in first or reverse gear, worse when on an incline. Then it gets very bad when hot after a long journey.
    The last thing I want is to be on a mountain road with this issue.
     
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  8. Sleepyboy
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    Sleepyboy

    47
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    1
    Location:
    Towcester
    Transmission:
    Manual
    Vehicle:
    T4 PopTop
    Year:
    1996
    I fitted a LUK clutch/DMF/slave cylinder - the parts were less than £300. Fitting was at mates rates but overall the whole job was about £500. It’s a false economy not to do the DMF when it’s apart - they are a wearing part and whilst it’s all apart it is worth swapping out.


    Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk Pro
     
  9. Padraic
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    Padraic VIP Member

    536
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    Location:
    Ireland
    Vehicle:
    T4 PopTop
    Year:
    2002
    I understand what you mean about the MOT flagging any issues, but the suspension is starting to feel like it’s getting sloppy. So rather than wait for failure, I was thinking of doing the lot, and have a nice tight feeling Cali. After all it’s 17 years old.
    I’m gonna investigate the pendulum mount. Might just replace it. I’ll get the part number from you please.
     
  10. Legin
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    Legin VIP Member

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    Location:
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    Transmission:
    Auto
    Vehicle:
    T6 Ocean 204 4Motion
    Year:
    2019
    I would fit a LUK clutch and DMF/Flywheel from a reputable factor. Clutch judder is most likely distortion on the flywheel or cover plate or contamination.
    If your joints and bushes pass an MOT then there not going to fail and prevent your journey. The dampers are what most likely makes things feel tired.
     
  11. Padraic
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    Padraic VIP Member

    536
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    Vehicle:
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    Year:
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    I think with the cost involved I’m gonna go with the Sachs clutch kit and DMF if needed.
    I’ll check the pendulum mount first to see if it’s the issue.
     
  12. sidepod
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    sidepod Top Poster Lifetime VIP Member

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    Prob the DMF.
     
  13. sidepod
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    sidepod Top Poster Lifetime VIP Member

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  14. Nick Stubbs
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    Nick Stubbs The Rodent. VIP Member

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    Location:
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    Vehicle:
    T6 Ocean 204 4Motion
    Year:
    2017
    Can you not get a single piece flywheel for these ?
     
  15. Sleepyboy
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    Sleepyboy

    47
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    Location:
    Towcester
    Transmission:
    Manual
    Vehicle:
    T4 PopTop
    Year:
    1996
    Yes you can and I considered it, however:
    - The cost differential between the two was not a lot in the scheme of things
    - The DMF should give a smoother take up of power following a gear change, putting a lot less strain on engine and gearbox mounts.
    The clutch/flywheel should last about 150k miles between changes - I didn't think I would be having to change it again for at least 10 to 15 years!
     
  16. Nick Stubbs
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    Nick Stubbs The Rodent. VIP Member

    130
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    Location:
    Derbyshire
    Transmission:
    Auto
    Vehicle:
    T6 Ocean 204 4Motion
    Year:
    2017
    Just thinking about the horror stories you hear about DMF 's I know the reasons for fitting them, I think the longevity of the device depends on how the vehicle is driven, I haven't had one fail but nowadays you expect a clutch to do at least 250.000 miles so not wanting to have to split an engine/gear box prematurely due to a DMF failure has got to be a bonus.
     
  17. Sleepyboy
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    Sleepyboy

    47
    2
    1
    Location:
    Towcester
    Transmission:
    Manual
    Vehicle:
    T4 PopTop
    Year:
    1996
    Absolutely agree with you - although in my experience on differing vehicles, I have not had a DMF fail prematurely to the clutch plates. When the clutch gets changed, the DMF has often been end of life and so gets renewed at the same time.

    The clutch/DMF/CSC kit and fitting cost me £500, and that should last over 10 years - I could have chosen to not replace the DMF and saved about £100 which would have been the case with a solid flywheel, not a great deal of difference when divided up over the time it will be in use.
     
  18. Legin
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    Legin VIP Member

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    Location:
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    Transmission:
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    Vehicle:
    T6 Ocean 204 4Motion
    Year:
    2019
    If you delete the DMF it just knackers the centre plate instead. Just had to replace a citigo clutch for this very reason at 35,000 miles. Sounded like a cement mixer.
     
  19. Padraic
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    Padraic VIP Member

    536
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    Location:
    Ireland
    Vehicle:
    T4 PopTop
    Year:
    2002
    Right, I got under the van today for a look at the pendulum mount, it seemed solid enough but hard to tell for sure with the guard still on, and the weight/load of the engine and box on it.
     

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