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Old 21st September 2017, 09:19   #1
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Default Drove through water. Now, I cannot engage the clutch with the engine running!

Hello,

I have a 2013 Ford Ecosport (Diesel) with about 44k on the odometer. Everything was hunky dory when I parked my car last evening (no smell, no weird sounds). Today morning when I started my engine and tried to slot her in first, the gear refused to slot. Tried slotting the gear handle in other gears but couldn't slot them either.

After I turned the engine off, I could slot the gears. I pumped the clutch a few times and kept the engine running for a while and attempted to try my luck again with no success.

While I understand car basics, I'm not an expert by a long shot. I don't want to walk in to the service center with zero idea of what could be wrong, I'm sure they would love preys like us. Any advise on what could be wrong and any basic checks that I can do to zero in on the problem?

PS - I did wade through a lot of water the day before thanks to the infamous Mumbai rains. Thanks!
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Old 21st September 2017, 10:40   #2
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Default re: Drove through water. Now, I cannot engage the clutch with the engine running!

Your clutch disc is stuck to the flywheel.

Move the car to an open area free of obstructions, have two people push the car, slot key into ignition mode, and when enough momentum is gained, slot the car in second gear and then start the car.

As soon as car starts and lunges forward, press clutch with left foot and brake and accelerator with right foot. The clutch disc will release.

Keep clutch pressed for sometime.

Repeat if unsuccessful.

I have tried this with success on many cars with the old asbestos type clutch disc and the more modern clutch discs with success. In all cases, the discs were stuck to the flywheel due to water.

The trick here is to free the clutch disc using flywheel power.

Last edited by vigsom : 21st September 2017 at 10:45. Reason: Added the last line.
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Old 21st September 2017, 10:42   #3
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Default re: Drove through water. Now, I cannot engage the clutch with the engine running!

This could be an issue with the shifter mechanism rather than the clutch & gearbox itself.

Similar thread:
http://www.team-bhp.com/forum/techni...ing-swift.html
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Old 21st September 2017, 10:43   #4
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Default re: Drove through water. Now, I cannot engage the clutch with the engine running!

Quote:
Originally Posted by throttlehead View Post
Hello,

I have a 2013 Ford Ecosport (Diesel) with about 44k on the odometer. Everything was hunky dory when I parked my car last evening (no smell, no weird sounds). Today morning when I started my engine and tried to slot her in first, the gear refused to slot. Tried slotting the gear handle in other gears but couldn't slot them either.

After I turned the engine off, I could slot the gears. I pumped the clutch a few times and kept the engine running for a while and attempted to try my luck again with no success.

While I understand car basics, I'm not an expert by a long shot. I don't want to walk in to the service center with zero idea of what could be wrong, I'm sure they would love preys like us. Any advise on what could be wrong and any basic checks that I can do to zero in on the problem?

PS - I did wade through a lot of water the day before thanks to the infamous Mumbai rains. Thanks!
Get the clutch release bearing checked and replaced. 99% sure it is the clutch release bearing. Similar thing happened to me in my Fiesta 1.4P. No water was involved though.
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Old 21st September 2017, 12:07   #5
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Default re: Drove through water. Now, I cannot engage the clutch with the engine running!

Quote:
Originally Posted by throttlehead View Post
Hello,

I have a 2013 Ford Ecosport (Diesel) with about 44k on the odometer. Everything was hunky dory when I parked my car last evening (no smell, no weird sounds). Today morning when I started my engine and tried to slot her in first, the gear refused to slot. Tried slotting the gear handle in other gears but couldn't slot them either.

.. Any advise on what could be wrong and any basic checks that I can do to zero in on the problem?

PS - I did wade through a lot of water the day before thanks to the infamous Mumbai rains. Thanks!
I am not sure if the EcoSport has a hydraulic clutch, in which case you might want to also check the clutch-fluid level.

Keeping the engine turned-off, you can put the car in third gear and push the car with a rocking motion to try and separate the clutch plate from the flywheel - if that is indeed the problem.

Good Luck !
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Old 21st September 2017, 12:27   #6
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Default re: Drove through water. Now, I cannot engage the clutch with the engine running!

Is it working now?

Exact thing happened to me last week after wading through about 6 inches of water. Parked my car at 9 AM in the morning, and it wouldn't slot at 6.30 PM. I started the car, idled for 15 mins, and it worked then. The service center guys tell me it was due to the clutch becoming stuck due to the water splashing into the clutch mechanism. If it repeats I was advised to get it checked, but it didnt recur, after 500-odd kilometers.
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Old 21st September 2017, 12:54   #7
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Default re: Drove through water. Now, I cannot engage the clutch with the engine running!

Quote:
Originally Posted by vigsom View Post
Your clutch disc is stuck to the flywheel.
What you say might be correct, but, usually this happens when there is moisture and the clutch and flywheel are in contact and left untouched for a long time. In this case its just one night.

Quote:
Originally Posted by throttlehead View Post
...I pumped the clutch a few times and kept the engine running for a while and attempted to try my luck again with no success.
...
Ask someone to do this for you. While pumping the clutch pedal, open the bonnent and see if the clutch fork is moving near the gearbox side. If its not moving you have lost fluid, or you have a ruptured pipe, or you have a broken clutch fork.

If it is moving, ie, pushing the pressure plate, then you can try what vigsom said.
Quote:
Originally Posted by Rohit_Quad View Post
Get the clutch release bearing checked and replaced. 99% sure it is the clutch release bearing. Similar thing happened to me in my Fiesta 1.4P. No water was involved though.
How is release bearing related to clutch not disengaging or not able to shift to gear.
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Old 21st September 2017, 14:14   #8
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Default re: Drove through water. Now, I cannot engage the clutch with the engine running!

Quote:
Originally Posted by throttlehead View Post
Hello,

I have a 2013 Ford Ecosport (Diesel) with about 44k on the odometer. Everything was hunky dory when I parked my car last evening (no smell, no weird sounds). Today morning when I started my engine and tried to slot her in first, the gear refused to slot. Tried slotting the gear handle in other gears but couldn't slot them either.

After I turned the engine off, I could slot the gears. I pumped the clutch a few times and kept the engine running for a while and attempted to try my luck again with no success.

While I understand car basics, I'm not an expert by a long shot. I don't want to walk in to the service center with zero idea of what could be wrong, I'm sure they would love preys like us. Any advise on what could be wrong and any basic checks that I can do to zero in on the problem?

PS - I did wade through a lot of water the day before thanks to the infamous Mumbai rains. Thanks!
You have driven through deep waters haven't you? and you have shifted gears while going through the water right?

Water has entered your clutch assembly and flywheel & clutch are stuck together. You need to leave your car alone for a day or two, let it dry inside and then go for a blip on the highway. Everything will be fine is how I see it as of now.
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Old 21st September 2017, 19:51   #9
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Default Re: Drove through water. Now, I cannot engage the clutch with the engine running!

Yes I did drive through a lot of water, and engaged gears (from N to First and back) several times . I'll attempt the solutions that you guys have recommended and relay back if they work.

I'm not sure if it is the shifter mechanism, I can engage the clutch when the engine is off - if that works, could it still be the shifter?

Fingers crossed, I hope I don't have to change the entire assembly. I've experienced several occasions where the chap from the service center forces you to buy the whole assembly and not just the broken part.
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Old 22nd September 2017, 11:49   #10
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Default Re: Drove through water. Now, I cannot engage the clutch with the engine running!

Quote:
Originally Posted by dhanushs View Post
How is release bearing related to clutch not disengaging or not able to shift to gear.
read below -
https://www.edmunds.com/car-technolo...operation.html

" To disengage the clutch, the release bearing is moved toward the flywheel by the clutch fork. As the bearing contacts the pressure plate's release fingers, it begins to rotate with the pressure plate assembly. The release bearing continues to move forward and pressure on the release levers or fingers causes the force of the pressure plate's spring to move away from the clutch disc. To engage the clutch, the clutch pedal is released and the release bearing moves away from the pressure plate. This action allows the pressure plate's springs to force against the clutch disc, engaging the clutch to the flywheel. Once the clutch is fully engaged, the release bearing is normally stationary and does not rotate with the pressure plate. "

I suggested cause the same thing happened to me. Gear slots when engine off and should be brutally pushed when engine turned on. So I did my research online and took the car to the Ford SVC with great difficulty. 2nd gear all the way. They listened to the problem and after a TD, said a gear box rebuild is required. I stuck to my guns and asked them to replace the clutch kit = Clutch Plate + Pressure Plate + Release bearing ( Looks like a prong thing, with a circular bearing at one end). And voila, all was well. They confessed and asked me how i knew that it was just the release bearing + Pressure Plate springs and not the internals of the gear box (Syncro's). I just smiled and left.

So try and get the Gear box opened and checked. It could be as simple as one of the springs from the pressure plate getting dislodged due to water.
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Old 22nd September 2017, 14:15   #11
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Default Re: Drove through water. Now, I cannot engage the clutch with the engine running!

Quote:
Originally Posted by Rohit_Quad View Post

" To disengage the clutch, the release bearing is moved toward the flywheel by the clutch fork. As the bearing contacts the pressure plate's release fingers, it begins to rotate with the pressure plate assembly. The release bearing continues to move forward and pressure on the release levers or fingers causes the force of the pressure plate's spring to move away from the clutch disc. To engage the clutch, the clutch pedal is released and the release bearing moves away from the pressure plate. This action allows the pressure plate's springs to force against the clutch disc, engaging the clutch to the flywheel. Once the clutch is fully engaged, the release bearing is normally stationary and does not rotate with the pressure plate. "
This doesn't explain how the release bearing will halt the changing gear process when the vehicle is ON.

Also, what kind of failure are you expecting in a release bearing?
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Old 22nd September 2017, 14:44   #12
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Default Re: Drove through water. Now, I cannot engage the clutch with the engine running!

The tried and tested Indian method of 'off - let it be - on' worked! I could slot the car in gear, although I went home pretty late from work yesterday so couldn't drive her around to check if all was well, but the gears slotted perfectly after the engine was on (atleast when it was stationery)

I'll check for leakages as suggested over the weekend and drive around a bit, but things look up as of now. Will keep you guys posted. Many thanks!
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Old 25th September 2017, 20:35   #13
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Default Re: Drove through water. Now, I cannot engage the clutch with the engine running!

Hi guys, I've been driving the car for a few days now and everything is back to normal. Thank you everyone for your help and support, definitely saved me a couple of grands.

Cheers!

Mods, please close / merge the thread as appropriate.
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Old 13th July 2018, 13:46   #14
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Default Re: Drove through water. Now, I cannot engage the clutch with the engine running!

Quote:
Originally Posted by vigsom View Post
Your clutch disc is stuck to the flywheel. ...
The trick here is to free the clutch disc using flywheel power.
Quote:
Originally Posted by dhanushs View Post
What you say might be correct, but, usually this happens when there is moisture and the clutch and flywheel are in contact and left untouched for a long time.
Hello All, waking this old thread rather than creating a new one. Last Sunday i drove slowly thru a flooded patch in 1st gear (probably 50 meters) and not sure of the depth but I guess it couldn't have been more than a foot or so. Came out OK on the other side, no unusual sounds etc, and the car drove normal. also stopped for about 30 minutes, and it re-started first crank and ran all the way home perfectly.

Now the car stood unused for next 5 days, and today when trying to start it, had the following experience:

1) loud screech alarm rang as soon as the ignition was switched on (not cranked)
2) Car seems stuck in 1st gear (was parked in 1st), cannot shift out to neutral even with clutch pedal completely depressed
3) Trying to crank with the car still in 1st and clutch fully depressed, car lunged forward (as it would if you were to crank in gear without pressing the clutch).

I'm guessing my problem seems to be what is described here, need any advice you can share please. Honda City 2007, clutch (including bearing and slave cylinder) are newly replaced a couple of months ago and run barely 500 - 700 kms since then, so I dont think any part failure contributes.

Suggestions and advice please.

Edit - would trying to rock it back and forth help, since it's stuck in 1st and hence can't try a push start ?

Last edited by //HB : 13th July 2018 at 14:13. Reason: afterthought
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Old 13th July 2018, 14:51   #15
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Default Re: Drove through water. Now, I cannot engage the clutch with the engine running!

Quote:
Originally Posted by //HB View Post
Hello All, waking this old thread rather than creating a new one. Last Sunday i drove slowly thru a flooded patch in 1st gear (probably 50 meters) and not sure of the depth

3) Trying to crank with the car still in 1st and clutch fully depressed, car lunged forward (as it would if you were to crank in gear without pressing the clutch).
From your description the clutch is definitely not disengaging. I am not sure if the Honda City has a cable operated or Hydraulic operated clutch? But that would be the first step to check-out.

The chances that water entered the gear-box and displaced the oil is very slim, so the gear not shifting could be due to some interlocks?
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