Today, a good customer of ours called up to say his clutch was slipping on his 1990 Mazda Miata. After discussing with him the symptoms the car was displaying, I told him to drop it off with us. When he got here, I jumped in the car to verify his complaint. I did a quick slip test, where I hold the brake on, rev it up and drop the clutch to see if the clutch will hold and stall the engine (it didn’t), I pronounced it worn out. He gave us the “OK” to go ahead with the repair and asked when it will be done. “Today” I said, as long as we have no problems.
We pulled the transmission out and sure enough, the clutch disc was worn down to the rivets. The clutch pressure plate and the flywheel, both had heat spots on them, and the release bearing was worn out. The rear main seal on the engine, which is behind the flywheel, was leaking as well. We went ahead and installed a new seal to stop the leak which could have ruined the new clutch parts by getting oil on them.
We resurfaced the flywheel and mounted the new clutch parts. Like I had said before, the new parts consist of the clutch disc, the pressure plate, release bearing and a pilot bearing. After reinstalling the transmission, we refilled the transmission with fresh synthetic fluid and a friction modifier additive to help promote smooth gear selection.