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Clutch Pedal Dropped to Floor

8thTon

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Gonna ask this here since most forums don't have the knowledge this place does: My wife has a 2016 Fiesta ST and this morning she called and said the clutch pedal went to the floor. She pulled over and pulled the pedal back up by hand. She pumped a few times, and all felt and worked fine - but of course it's not really.

I stopped on the way to work to look at it, and it has a common brake/clutch fluid reservoir, but it was not low (it's DOT4 too, so good thing I didn't add any without looking). So my question is how does a clutch fail temporarily? I'm guessing a seal in the hydraulic system is failing and is allowing fluid to pass sometimes? I cannot think of any way the mechanical part of the pedal & linkage could do this.

My wife was once a Ford service manager and drove SCCA, so I can usually trust her knowledge and descriptions.
 


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Like with a brake master cylinder... when the pedal suddenly goes to the floor... but following pumps of the pedal bring it back to normal. Inspection shows no leakage or failed components... replace the master.

It's most likely a failing master... or perhaps the slave.

Since the master lets the fluid bypass the seals... they typically show wetness in the pushrod area. That's where I would start anyway...
 

8thTon

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So the dealer is claiming it’s the spring in the clutch pedal assembly, $640 parts and labor. I can’t see how this is possible. To my understanding the spring of the pressure plate is what pushes the pedal bak up? Doesn’t the pedal spring just pull it up the last bit?

My wife said it went to the floor and stayed there.
 

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So the dealer is claiming it’s the spring in the clutch pedal assembly, $640 parts and labor. I can’t see how this is possible. To my understanding the spring of the pressure plate is what pushes the pedal bak up? Doesn’t the pedal spring just pull it up the last bit?

My wife said it went to the floor and stayed there.
Does that include muffler bearings and tire gaskets? Lol maybe they meant the pressure plate springs....

Sounds like hydraulic issue. Although when my pedal dropped once it was because the pushrod retainer clip broke and literally fell off the pedal. I wired it back in place for now until I replace the clip.
 

8thTon

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Does that include muffler bearings and tire gaskets? Lol maybe they meant the pressure plate springs....

Sounds like hydraulic issue. Although when my pedal dropped once it was because the pushrod retainer clip broke and literally fell off the pedal. I wired it back in place for now until I replace the clip.
Yeah, that's all I can come up with too, but just wanted a reality check before I get into it with them. Supposedly their Master Tech checked with the Ford hotline. It appears on the Fiesta that the pedal assembly includes the master cylinder, so perhaps this was what got lost in translation to the service advisor.
 

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Yeah, that's all I can come up with too, but just wanted a reality check before I get into it with them. Supposedly their Master Tech checked with the Ford hotline. It appears on the Fiesta that the pedal assembly includes the master cylinder, so perhaps this was what got lost in translation to the service advisor.
Yea I like to give benefit of doubt, so it was probably miscommunication rather than blatant dishonesty.

I bought a master cylinder from rock auto before I realized it was at the pushrod connection. It came pre-filled and bled, so its bolt in!
I was gonna save it just in case... but if you want, I would be willing to sell it to you discounted for saving me the time,hassle and shipping&restocking fees trying to return it. PM me if interested.
 

8thTon

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Yea I like to give benefit of doubt, so it was probably miscommunication rather than blatant dishonesty.

I bought a master cylinder from rock auto before I realized it was at the pushrod connection. It came pre-filled and bled, so its bolt in!
I was gonna save it just in case... but if you want, I would be willing to sell it to you discounted for saving me the time,hassle and shipping&restocking fees trying to return it. PM me if interested.
Thanks, but this is for a Fiesta and I'm trying to decide what to do at this point. I think we'll pick it up and see if there are any clues (small leaks around the master, etc.). No doubt it's going to do it again, but perhaps then it will be more obvious! I'm not doing the slave on that car, but I might do the master.
 

8thTon

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Near as I can tell this is the game they are playing: they know damn well it’s the hydraulic system, which would be covered under the powertrain warranty. However it’s intermittent and they can’t reproduce it, and they don’t know if it’s the master or slave cylinder. If they guess wrong apparently they must eat the cost.

However, the clutch pedal appears to include the master, so if they tell us it’s the spring and have us pay for replacing that (not covered), then the master gets replaced too and they have a 50/50 shot of fixing the actual problem without taking on risk.
 

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Near as I can tell this is the game they are playing: they know damn well it’s the hydraulic system, which would be covered under the powertrain warranty. However it’s intermittent and they can’t reproduce it, and they don’t know if it’s the master or slave cylinder. If they guess wrong apparently they must eat the cost.

However, the clutch pedal appears to include the master, so if they tell us it’s the spring and have us pay for replacing that (not covered), then the master gets replaced too and they have a 50/50 shot of fixing the actual problem without taking on risk.
That's not how it works. Warranty coverage is based off the base part number. If the pedal, master, and this spring are all one assembly it shouldn't matter which part of it failed, the whole assembly is covered under the warranty or it isn't.
 

8thTon

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That's not how it works. Warranty coverage is based off the base part number. If the pedal, master, and this spring are all one assembly it shouldn't matter which part of it failed, the whole assembly is covered under the warranty or it isn't.
What I meant was that if they can't tell if it's the master or slave cylinder and guess wrong, then it would cost them - but I'm guessing as to their motivation to tell me something that is clearly not true.
 

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Maybe try another dealer?...adsm08 is right, its covered or not, the whole thing. I have a few buddies that worked at dealerships. If theres a bad part in transmission, they replace the whole thing is how it usually goes.
 

8thTon

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Yes that what we’re likely to do - not sure what the problem is for those guys and I’m not really interested either. Another dealer we spoke to didn’t seem to think it was a big deal, which of course it shouldn’t be.

It happened to her on the way to work again, this time accompanied by resistance in pushing on the pedal. The hydraulic seal is clearly deteriorating.
 

8thTon

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We've been talking to the original dealer, and to one other who I think we will switch to. Original dealer is all over the place about what is covered and what the problem is - I'm just chalking it up to typical idiocy on the part of someone there. They had been pretty good up to now.

I read some stuff about failures on these new concentric slave cylinders that I found interesting. In addition to being much more difficult to replace, they are located around the input shaft inside the bell housing, so they will get coated with abrasive clutch dust. If that gets into the seals it can cause wear and small leaks/failure. I'd much rather have an external slave cylinder.
 

Eddo Rogue

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I've had the same issues finding good dealers. Luckily most of the ford dealers around here are pretty good. I did have a contrasting experience w/ the Honda dealers (my exes car). One was super shady, the other was exceptionally great...and they were maybe 15 miles apart.
 

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