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Clutch Master and Slave Cylinder Replacement
 
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Pelican Technical Article:

Clutch Master and Slave Cylinder Replacement

Jared Fenton

Time:

8 hours8 hrs

Tab:

$200 to $500

Talent:

*****

Tools:

All of them

Applicable Models:

Volvo C30 T5 (2008-13)
Volvo C30 T5 R-Design (2008-13)

Parts Required:

Clutch master cylinder, clutch slave cylinder

Hot Tip:

Don't make any plans for the day

Performance Gain:

Ability to shift gears again

Complementary Modification:

Change clutch

Hoo boy, this is probably the most involved DIY project for the Volvo C30. Overall, the C30 is a very easy car to work on, with easy access to most projects.. except for the one covered in this article. This is due to all the other components that must be removed from the car just to gain access to the clutch master and slave cylinder.

You'll also want to try and make the working conditions as comfortable as possible, as you'll be laying on your back, looking up underneath the dash. Spending a lot of time in this position can be very hard on the back.

As a rule, I recommend changing both the master and slave cylinder as a pair. I have seen too many instances where replacing only one led to the other failing in a short time. This can seem a bit daunting as the clutch master cylinder requires removing the instrument cluster, lower dash panels, MAF sensor, battery box and steering column. Replacing the slave cylinder requires removing the transmission. See the following articles for more information.

Mass Airflow Sensor Replacement

Battery Replacement

Battery Box Removal

Steering Wheel Removal

Airbag Replacement

Steering Column Removal

Instrument Cluster Removal

Transmission Removal

Clutch Master Cylinder - Shown here is the location of the clutch master cylinder (CMC) on the Volvo C30, just to the right of the brake booster.
Figure 1

Clutch Master Cylinder - Shown here is the location of the clutch master cylinder (CMC) on the Volvo C30, just to the right of the brake booster. You'll notice two hydraulic lines attached to the CMC. The feed line (yellow arrow) supplies the CMC with brake fluid from the brake fluid reservoir. The pressure line (green arrow) connects the CMC to the slave cylinder (SC) mounted inside the transmission.

Clutch Master Cylinder: Start by disconnecting the pressure line to the CMC.
Figure 2

Clutch Master Cylinder: Start by disconnecting the pressure line to the CMC. You can just make out the retaining clip on the CMC that secures the pressure line in place (green arrow). You'll need to reach under the connection with a small pick and pull the retaining clip downward. This will allow you to pull the pressure line (yellow arrow) out of the CMC. Be prepared for some fluid to spill out.

Clutch Master Cylinder: I've included this pic of the CMC removed to better clear up how to remove the feed line, as it is nearly invisible when the CMC is installed.
Figure 3

Clutch Master Cylinder: I've included this pic of the CMC removed to better clear up how to remove the feed line, as it is nearly invisible when the CMC is installed. Push the white locking collar (green arrow) in the direction of the yellow arrow. While holding the collar, pull the feed line (purple arrow) off the CMC.

Clutch Master Cylinder: Press the tab on the electrical connector leading to the CMC and pull it off (green arrow).
Figure 4

Clutch Master Cylinder: Press the tab on the electrical connector leading to the CMC and pull it off (green arrow).

Clutch Master Cylinder: Once you have removed the steering column, locate the inner mounting nuts for the clutch pedal assembly.
Figure 5

Clutch Master Cylinder: Once you have removed the steering column, locate the inner mounting nuts for the clutch pedal assembly. The pedal assembly must be pulled towards the rear of the car to remove the CMC. Loosen and remove the two inner 13mm nuts (green arrows) shown here. Be sure to also pull the wiring harness grommet (yellow arrow) out of the pedal assembly.

Clutch Master Cylinder: The outer, lower 13mm nut must be accessed near the hood release lever as shown here (green arrow).
Figure 6

Clutch Master Cylinder: The outer, lower 13mm nut must be accessed near the hood release lever as shown here (green arrow). You'll need a combination of a 1/4" ratchet extension and U-joint to remove this nut.

Clutch Master Cylinder: Shown here is the upper, outer 13mm nut (green arrow).
Figure 7

Clutch Master Cylinder: Shown here is the upper, outer 13mm nut (green arrow). You likely won't be able to see this without a lot of effort and contorting yourself underneath the dashboard. A 13mm ratcheting wrench makes this job considerably easier. Just feel for the nut and slide the wrench on. Also pull the wiring harness grommet (yellow arrow) out of the pedal assembly.

Clutch Master Cylinder: Now here's where it starts to get a bit complicated, as there is very little room to take pictures.
Figure 8

Clutch Master Cylinder: Now here's where it starts to get a bit complicated, as there is very little room to take pictures. The idea here is to unlock the CMC from the clutch pedal assembly and then remove it from behind the assembly. You want to pull the clutch pedal assembly towards the rear of the car enough to get a pair of channel locks around the CMC in between the pedal assembly and the firewall (green arrow). You need to rotate the CMC counter-clockwise to detach it. Once detached, you'll need to press in the plastic tabs that connect the CMC pushrod to the clutch pedal arm (yellow arrow). There's a tab on either side of the arm, although it's impossible for me to get a pic of this.

Clutch Master Cylinder: This picture shows the clutch pedal assembly removed from the car with the CMC attached to give a clearer idea of what you need to do to remove it.
Figure 9

Clutch Master Cylinder: This picture shows the clutch pedal assembly removed from the car with the CMC attached to give a clearer idea of what you need to do to remove it. Grip the CMC with a pair of channel locks (green arrow) and rotate it counter-clockwise to release. Then press in the plastic tabs (yellow arrow) on either side of the clutch arm and pull out the pushrod.

Clutch Master Cylinder: This picture shows the pushrod connection up close.
Figure 10

Clutch Master Cylinder: This picture shows the pushrod connection up close. The idea here is to compress each end of the clip (green arrows), then pull it out of the clutch arm in the direction of the yellow arrow. When installing the new CMC, simply push the new clip into the clutch arm until it seats in place.

Clutch Slave Cylinder: The slave cylinder is much easier to replace than the CMC.
Figure 11

Clutch Slave Cylinder: The slave cylinder is much easier to replace than the CMC. The only down side is that the transmission must be removed in order to access it. Pull out the small metal retaining clip on the connector (green arrow) and carefully pull the feed line (yellow arrow) off the SC. Be ready for some fluid to drain out.

Clutch Slave Cylinder: Now loosen and remove the 8mm bolt (green arrow) holding the SC to the transmission.
Figure 12

Clutch Slave Cylinder: Now loosen and remove the 8mm bolt (green arrow) holding the SC to the transmission. At this point, you can slide the new one into place. Secure the mounting bolt and press the feed line onto the hydraulic fitting.

Once the CMC, SC and the whole driveline is re-installed, you'll need to bleed the hydraulic circuit of air.
Figure 13

Once the CMC, SC and the whole driveline is re-installed, you'll need to bleed the hydraulic circuit of air. This can be done using the old fashioned pump, pump hold method or by using a power bleeder like the one shown here from Motive Products. This tool is invaluable when doing this kind of work.

The process for bleeding the system is similar to bleeding the brakes, but you may want to spend a bit longer time checking and double-checking that all air has escaped the system.
Figure 14

The process for bleeding the system is similar to bleeding the brakes, but you may want to spend a bit longer time checking and double-checking that all air has escaped the system. The clutch hydraulic circuit can be troublesome from time to time. Use some clear tubing over the bleed nipple and use an 11mm wrench to open the bleed valve. Make sure you have a suitable container to catch the escaping brake fluid. Watch the tubing for air bubbles in the line. Open the bleeder screw and let the system bleed until there are no more air bubbles coming out. It's also important to keep an eye on the reservoir level. If the level drops below the clutch feed line, you'll have to start bleeding all over again. You may also need to have a helper quickly push down and pull back on the clutch pedal to remove all the air from the circuit.

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