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Clutch problem (hard gears switching) on 2012 GD i30 1.6 CRDI

j0n21 · 15 · 2727

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Offline j0n21

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Hi there,

First of all, my mother language is not english so i'm gonna do my best to explain the issue i've with my i30.

I've this car for 2.5 years now, it's a 2012 GD i30 1.6 CRDI with 185.000 kms.

Last week, i went to my garage cause my gears are hard to pass so i asked him to flush the gearbox oil. He says that won't do anything and for him my clutch is almost dead.
It doesn't slip, but i've to push the pedal all the way thru to switch gears.

I wanted to replace the clutch but apparantly on this car, there is a dual mass flywheel, so replace it too is more than recommended.
He asks me 500€ for clutch replacement and 1400€ if i change the clutch + flywheel,

What do you think?
Flywheel need replacement absolutely ?
is there a way that an gearbox oil change will improve shifting gears and make my clutch last longer if i don't want to change it now?
Is it hard to replace clutch by myself or it takes high skills and tools ?

thanks for all

have a nice day


  • 2012 GD 5 Door Hatch, Diesel 1.6lt, Manuel, White


Offline sundiz

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Gear box oil change does not fix clutch issues.  New oil makes the gears go easier on when compared to old used oil. When is the last time your gear box oil was changed?


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Offline j0n21

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Hi thanks for your answer,
Yes I understand that an oil gearbox change won't fix the clutch but maybe it's not a clutch problem after all ? Its worth to try I guess
Maybe the previous owner did it, I don't know but since I own the car I never did it. From 105k to 185k

Ps: the gearbox is more fluid since the temperature drops this week, is it normal ?
  • 2012 GD 5 Door Hatch, Diesel 1.6lt, Manuel, White


Offline sundiz

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If there is no clear record in the service book that your gearbox oil has been changed, I would assume it has not been changed. Some change it at 120tkm, but since you have not done it there is possibility it runs still on factory oil. But gear box oil change is fairly cheap job to do. If it does not work after oil change then it's brobably clutch issue. It would be good to check that there is no play or worn bushings in the gearbox linkage. That could cause issues in gear changes.
  • i30 cw 1.6crdi -08


Offline BrendanP

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I could be wrong about this, but I don't think the i30 GD has a dual-mass flywheel. It's fairly cheap to replace the gearbox oil, the recommended interval is about 140,000 km. I would try that first to see if it makes a difference, just make sure you use the correct grade oil. My partner's 2011 diesel has now done 350,000 and still has the original clutch, but the gears do crunch a little, especially when  selecting reverse.
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Offline The Gonz

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If this relates to excessive travel in the clutch pedal, I would be looking at the clutch lever pin, clutch dampener, etc.
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Offline j0n21

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Thanks for your answers, i've order 2 bottles of 75w85 and i will try an gearbox oil change soon since i've to do my annual oil change too.

I will let you know if it's better ;-)
  • 2012 GD 5 Door Hatch, Diesel 1.6lt, Manuel, White


Offline sundiz

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I hope you are going to see some improvement. I can notice better gear changes after gear box oil change at every 60tkm. Especially in cold weather.
  • i30 cw 1.6crdi -08


Offline Pnut

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I hope you will see some change with the fluid, but from my experience I would say it is a bad clutch where the clutch plate isnt able to disengage properly from the flywheel or pressure plate. Sometimes it is caused by a worn out pressure plate or broken springs, other times i have seen it caused by rust on the spline holding the clutch plate in place against the flywheel (last one i did has this issue). The pressure means the input shaft still spins slightly and therefore crunches into gear, you mostly notice from a stand still going into 1st or reverse but as it gets worse will happen more as you try to change between the others while moving.

Good luck ;)
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Offline j0n21

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So I did an gearbox oil change yesterday and the oil was brown and very stinky.
Bit unfortunately I didn't really notice any improvement..

I read a lot of posts about the damper and clutch slave/master cylinder.
What operations can I try before buy a new clutch kit ?

Checking for leaking I guess
Bleeding clutch but from slave or master cylinder ?
I already bought a new bolt to eventually replacing the damper

I see a lot of informations about FD but not GD,
Is there a lot of difference about clutch hydrolic system between them ?

Thanks a lot
  • 2012 GD 5 Door Hatch, Diesel 1.6lt, Manuel, White


Offline Pnut

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Often if it is air in the hydraulics you can pump the pedal up and down a couple of times and see some improvement straight after, bleeding the system may fix it if it is. However if there is air in the system it usually means leaking seals in either the master or slave cylinder so either its a cylinder rebuild with new seals or replace the whole cylinder.
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Offline Reefmagnet

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The clutch slave cylinder is located at the front of the motor and is exposed to water and dirt which can get past the seal and lead to failure which gives the symptoms you describe. Check behind the boot to see if it's weeping fluid. If it is that's the problem and it's an easy and cheap fix by replacing it.

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Offline j0n21

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Hi there,
I have some news.
I bleed the hydrolics from the slave cylinder nipple but it hasn't change at all. Maybe I did it wrong I don't know.
 The slave cylinder is pretty rusty (I was afraid to break the nipple) but it doesn't seem to leak...

I will try this week to remove the damper and replace it with a bolt and give it a nice bleeding right after.

If nothing change, maybe I will go with an slave cylinder replacement, the part is not expensive..

What's the risk of removing the damper ? I mean, it can damage the transmission or something else ?
Thanks
  • 2012 GD 5 Door Hatch, Diesel 1.6lt, Manuel, White


Offline AVP

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  • I30, GD, 1.4CRDI - 2014
As far as I know there is no risk in removing the damper, only that you would feel some vibrations in the clutch pedal when the plates are touching at bite point, that's what that damper is for. However, your problem might be the clutch master cylinder (the one under the pedal). That thing is made of plastic that wears off. My I30GD has only 60.000 km and I have to replace it. Sometimes it enters smoothly in gear, sometimes I have to push it hard even though the clutch pedal is all the way to the floor. I found this video of a guy with an Elantra that explains it in a weird way, however, it proves the point.

I was looking on this forum how to replace it and found your post... :)
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Offline AVP

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  • I30, GD, 1.4CRDI - 2014
I know this post is 1 year old, however, I want to give an update on this. I changed the master cylinder with a VALEO aftermarket one (half the price of the original - around 50 usd). The gears are now changing smoothly as they should. You have to remove the battery, air filter unit, ecu and the fuel filter (at least for diesel, you just unscrew the support from 3 bolts, and put it aside). Then you disconnect the cylinder from the pedal, disconnect it from the break fluid hoses and turn it anti clockwise from the firewall area. It's a tight space but manageable even with a standard wrench.
  • I30 crdi, hatch, 90hp


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