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Old 28th June 2012, 14:57   #1
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Default DIY: How to adjust the clutch cable of a Maruti Alto

I have been having this problem in my car since quite a while now, and from the looks of it, so have many others on the forum as well. Although some members are saying that it is completely normal, I don't quite agree. This is because, for over 50k of the life of my car, the clutch has been fine. Only over the last year or so this problem has surfaced, and as usual, MASS claims there is no problem and everything is fine.

The problem is that the clutch engages right at the end of the pedal movement. Which means that for a major part of the clutch release, there is absolutely no effect and the car doesn't move at all (if it's in 1st gear). Obviously this was causing a lot of inconvenience, and my first instinct was clutch wear. However, I don't think there is any slipping, since the RPMs match the speed the car is doing, and I also used the handbrake technique to check for any slipping. Negative.

After a lot of R&D, I finally figured out that by tightening or loosening the clutch cable, the clutch free play can be easily adjusted to as to calibrate at what point in the movement of the pedal the clutch will engage. This cable is attached to a nut beneath the car, near the Front Left wheel, and by turning this nut, the cable can be tightened or loosened.

The basic rule is that turning the nut clockwise tightens the cable, and turning it anti-clockwise loosens the cable. The clockwise and anti-clockwise orientation is considered when the nut is looked at from the front side of the car.

If the clutch engages too late, then the cable is too tight. If the clutch engages too early, then the cable is too loose. Accordingly, adjustments can be made.

When an adjustment is made, the free play of the pedal changes, and this can be felt simply by depressing the cable. No need to start the car. Hence, it is best if two people can do this. One can make the adjustments, while the other sits in the car and gives feedback regarding the setting.

Important Caution: This must never be done with the engine on, to prevent bodily injury.

Note: This applies for Cable operated clutch only. For a hydraulic clutch, I don't think this is applicable.

I have shot and attached a video where this entire process is demonstrated.
Sorry about the background noise, it was raining quite heavily.

Any corrections/suggestions/questions are welcome.

Last edited by swarnava.m : 28th June 2012 at 15:02.
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Old 29th June 2012, 13:21   #2
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Default Re: DIY: How to adjust the clutch cable of a Maruti Alto

Thread moved from the Assembly Line (The "Assembly Line" Forum section) to the Technical Section. Thanks for sharing!
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Old 10th December 2013, 09:54   #3
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Default Re: DIY: How to adjust the clutch cable of a Maruti Alto


This link has a nice pictorial description of the problem and its solution. Went searching for it as I can not access the video from office and came by this.
Overall, the website is also very nice with high-res images depicting various auto parts.

Hope TBHP finds this useful!
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Old 26th February 2016, 11:03   #4
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Default Re: DIY: How to adjust the clutch cable of a Maruti Alto

Any idea how to adjust the Throw-out Shoulder Stop?
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