Throwout bearing

I’ve been told my throw out bearing is going. . . every gear has a whine to it, a unique sound to my truck. It runs, goes into every gear I put it in, but people tell me that at some point when the bearing fails, I will go to put it into gear, and it just won’t move. My question- is this something I should fix now, or wait till failing, and second-- is this a job the average do it yourselfer can do? Thanks to any responders. Long live NPR!

The throw out bearing is normally only used when changing gears - when your clutch is pushed in. If you have a while all the time, you’re thinking about the wrong bearing. I’d be looking at the input shaft, or even the entire transmission.

Even manuals need oil changes. How many miles on this one, and when was it done last? And before that? And before that?

Check the level on the transmission fluid. Top off if necessary (or change it if it has not been done in the last 30 k). Then, drive it until you can drive it no more and deal with it then.

Not something I would attempt–you have to drop the transmission which is rather heavy. You can rent a transmission jack if needed.

The good news is it’s a RWD Chevy S10…should be able to find a used transmission in a scrapyard without any trouble. Just find one that was treated nicely…drain a small amount of fluid, and see what the condition is before you get it. Check the mileage. Lower mileage, and good looking fluid will be a hint of the condition…not a guarantee, though. RWD is much easier to change than a FWD.

New clutch, pressure plate, throwout bearing, and possibly a machined flywheel (worst case, a replacement from the same donor vehicle - if it’s there). You could rectify the entire situation in a few hundred $$, I would guess less than a thousand. That all depends on the rest of the vehicle. Is it worth fixing up? A few phone calls can get you prices so you can decide. Cheaper if you can do it yourself - not everyone can.

Having said that, it’s 16 years old. You could just junk and replace it.

I had the same part which commonly fails in our Subaru Legacy turbo wagon. It took $400($60/hr) in labor to replace a $30 part.

However while the mechanic was at it the he replaced the worn but not worn out clutch,pressure plate which turned out to be $400! in parts. Thankfully our flywheel although a bit blued was good because that is a $500 part!

DIY is definitely a possibility.

Clutch work on your truck is much easier than on many vehicles especially those with AWD or FWD - but still not really a DIY job unless you are pretty good mechanic. To access the clutch you have to remove the transmission and get it out of the way.

Before you tackle something like this you need to KNOW where this noise is coming from, not just a guess.

Before you do anything else, make sure that there is nothing contacting the engine or exhaust that shouldn’t.

chaissos is correct…If the tranny is making noise when the clutch is NOT engaged then it’s NOT the clutch…but probably the input shaft bearing. Does it make the noise in 4th gear?? If the noise only happens when the clutch is depressed then it’s the throw-out bearing (or some manufacturers call it a thrust bearing).

Check the level on the transmission fluid. Top off if necessary (or change it if it has not been done in the last 30 k).

This is a MANUAL transmission…There’s not an easy way to check the level of a manual tranny…There is no dip stick. Also a manual does NOT need to be changed every 30k miles. Most manufacturers don’t have a change interval for manual trannies…But 100k miles is probably a good idea.

What type of fluid does this tranny use?? GM for years used Dexron II or III for their manual trannies. I always thought Dexron was too thin…but I really haven’t heard an abundant amount of GM manual transmission failures…so I guess it works.

It could be internal to the tranny (perhaps the synchros) or it could be the throw out bearing. The throwout bearing fork moves the throwout bearing up and down the tranny input shaft when you press the pedal, pushing on the radial levers that allow the pressure plate to clamp and unclamp the clutch plate between the flywheel and the itself. The inner part of the throwout bearing will always be spinning at the same speed as the tranny input shaft. The outer part is connected to the release fork and does not spin. If the bearing between the inner and outer races is shot, it can whine whether you’re in gear or not. Typically, the bearing’s sound wil channge (if it’s shot) when you press the pedal, as it becomes axially loaded, but there’s no guaranty that it will.

I’ve attached a drawin gof a typical clutch assenbly including the throwout bearing (here called a release bearing) to help you understand.

I was going to say our throw out bearing was screaming at startup. The clutch only changed the pitch of sound.

Yeah, typically if a throwout bearing is the source the noise will change when you step on the pedal.

The pilot bearing between the input and output shafts will usually be loudest when the clutch is released in neutral and quietest in 4th gear. And that bearing is likely to indicate that the oil is low. The fill/check plug is on the passenger side of the case and it should be filled until it overflows the hole.