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Clutch Safety Switch Replacement

3 Signs It’s Time to Replace your Clutch Safety Switch

Your clutch safety switch holds the key to keeping your standard transmission vehicle safe and secure. Unfortunately, when your clutch safety switch needs replacing, it’s a dangerous situation. Even without a driver, your vehicle can move on its own, potentially causing damage to other vehicles or obstacles in its path. Prevent this danger and contact a mechanic to replace it right away.

What is a clutch safety switch?

Almost everyone has heard of a clutch. But what is the clutch safety switch? How does it work? How do you know about clutch safety switch problems or when it needs replacing?

A foot clutch allows your vehicle to start. Typically, the clutch safety switch is either on the clutch pedal or on the clutch master’s push rod. A clutch safety switch is also known as a clutch sensor or a clutch switch.

This clutch switch works when the driver presses down on the clutch, the safety switch closes. When the switch closes, it allows power to run through the ignition to the starter relay. Then, the starter solenoid starts the engine. When the clutch is released, the switch opens back up.

It sounds pretty simple. The clutch safety switch does its job when it’s open and lets your engine run. When the clutch pedal is pressed down, the safety switch is closed.

Clutch safety switches also have a second job: to disable cruise control if the clutch fails while cruise control is set. Usually, if the clutch safety switch fails, the engine will not start.

When your clutch safety switch shows the warning signs we’re talking about in this article, contact a mechanic right away. A clutch safety switch is not something to tinker with if you’re unsure of what to do. These switches need to be replaced; it’s not something you can simply repair. There are only a few steps for clutch safety switch replacement, though, making it a quick and easy repair on most vehicles.

What about automatic transmissions?

The equivalent to a clutch safety switch in an automatic is called a neutral safety switch. Because there’s no clutch, this safety switch is on the transmission itself, on the transmission linkage. When the transmission is in gear, this part prevents the engine from starting.

What happens when there’s a problem with the clutch safety switch?

Usually, issues happen when the switch is open, not when the clutch is being depressed. However, if stuck in an emergency, joining the two wires connected to the switch will allow the engine to start. Be very careful with this emergency workaround. With these wires joined together, the engine can crank into any gear and can be very dangerous. Move the vehicle to a safe location for repair as quickly as possible.

Watch out for any of these signs:

  • Your engine won’t start.
  • Or your engine starts when the clutch is released with the transmission in gear.
  • Cruise control won’t work.

How to Replace Your Clutch Safety Switch

  1. Remove the under dash panels on the left side of the dash near the clutch pedal.
  2. Disconnect the defective clutch safety switch and remove it from the bracket.
  3. Install the new clutch safety switch, adjusting it to actuate the switch without bottoming out when the clutch is pushed down.
  4. Connect the electrical connector to the clutch safety switch.
  5. Check the clutch safety switch to make sure it operates properly.
  6. Reinstall the shields under the left side of the dash.
  7. Start the vehicle and double-check to make sure the clutch safety switch is working correctly.

Prieto automotive trusted mobile mechanics can replace your switch at your home or office.

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