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1999 Ford Focus Noise When Changing Gear

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Manufacturer: Ford. Model: LX. Year: 1999. Colour: Blue. Fuel Type: Petrol. Engine Size (CC): 1796.

Yesterday I noticed my car is making whirring sound when I press the clutch to change gear. I had not driven the for four days and didn't notice the sound when I last drove.

This may or may not be relevant, last Thursday I did drive through a partially flooded road.

Many thanks


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It could be the clutch thrust bearing, i don't know how the water may have affected it (rust etc?) it may be that the sound was there already and you are listening more carefully for faults

If its "on its way out" it may take ages before it fails, gradually getting louder, if its just a "glitch" it may just get quieter again with a little use

You can make it last longer by keeping it in neutral in traffic (not leaving it in gear with your foot on the clutch) as much as possible, and keep your foot off the clutch as much as possible in normal driving

When it goes its a gearbox-out job (big labor cost) as far as i'm aware, usually, the whole clutch is replaced

if the clutch (thrust) fails, you may be able to still drive the car, you could start it in gear, - it would get you home or drive it to the garage (tricky in traffic though) you can even change gear wo a clutch (watch your syncromesh though - "slick" it in/ take your time/ don't force it)

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Yes it sounds like the clutch release bearing is on the way out. On the focus the bearing is integral with the concentric slave cylinder, so it involves clutch+cylinder change. It's about a 3 hour job and will cost you £300-£400 at an independent garage (obviosly more at a main agent) If it gets worse change it asap as it will take the cylinder with it if it fails and leave you stranded. It may stay the same for ages though so keep an ear out for any deteriation.

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