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Thread: Problem changing clutch fluid in '97 manual CR-V

  1. #1

    Default Problem changing clutch fluid in '97 manual CR-V

    Hi. My clutch was acting funny for about a week before it finally completey gave up. Couldn't shift into any gears. The pedal itself felt a little odd, but was spring back up without any problem. The clutch fluid resevoir was completely empty and gunky.

    I followed the directions in this thread to the letter, and everything seemed to be going according to plan. However, after retightening the bleed nipple and slowly pulling the clutch pedal back out, the pedal remains "loose". In other words, I can push and pull it all I want. Feels REAL loose, almost like it's not attached to anything. Of course, the clutch remains completely non-functional.

    I went and looked at where the plunger goes through the firewall, and there was some fluid of some sort coming through. The carpet is a bit stained.

    Any ideas?

  2. #2


    Just noticed in another thread that the directions I followed might be slightly wrong. It seems I'm supposed to close the bleed nipple when I pull the clutch pedal back? Since I didn't do this, could this have introduced a lot of air into the system, which is causing the non-responsive clutch pedal?

    If so, how can I go about getting the air out. When I press the clutch pedal now, I get almost no "push" out of the bleed nipple to clear stuff out.

  3. #3


    Let me answer my own questions here. Yes, the problem was that I was sucking air right back in when I raised the pedal with the bleed nipple open.

    About 20 minutes of following the complete directions, and my CR-V feels like it's got a new clutch in it. Better than it's felt for years and years.

    Still a little concerned about the slight leak around the master cylinder. Cleaned it all up, and will keep my eye on it.

  4. #4
    Senior Member HondaSUV Mentor fox22's Avatar
    Join Date
    Nov 2005
    Toronto Ontario, Canada


    When bleeding brakes or clutch, it is best to get yourself a "one man brake bleeder". Normally, you have to close the bleed screw before you release the pedal. This device is basically a tube that goes over the bleed screw and is connected to a bottle with a bit for fresh fluid in it. When you pump the pedal, the old fluid is pumped into the bottle, but if the system tries to suck any bck in when you release the pedal, is just sucks in some of the fluid in the bottle rather than air. - I got one for 0.93$ at Princess Auto. It came with several sizes of tubing and adapters as well as a little bottle with a magnet to stick/hold it to the brake rotor or other metal part.
    Highways and straightaways, offroads and open roads, no matter where I go I'll still be makin' the show, but my car keeps me humble in the concrete jungle, despite the wear and tear it seems to always get me there.

  5. #5
    FFNC Site AdminHondaSUV Elder Racoon's Avatar
    Join Date
    Apr 2002
    A cornfield near Music City...


    A suction device is also an option, since you attach it to the bleeder screw, open the screw, then "suck" the fluid out. Once the fluid is clear you tighten the screw. Just make sure the master cylinder doesn't get sucked dry, a problem you need to watch for no matter how you bleed the brakes.

    The Racoon

    White Diamond Pearl 2014 CR-V EX AWD (Gen 4)

    Accessories: splash guards, body side molding, moonroof visor, Weathertech Window Deflectors, Weathertech floor mats, Weathertech cargo tray

    Milano Pink 1999 CR-V EX 5 Speed (Gen 1.5) - SOLD at 127,997 miles
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  6. #6
    Senior Member HondaSUV Senior
    Join Date
    Nov 2006
    Twin Cities, MN


    Quote Originally Posted by welcher View Post
    Still a little concerned about the slight leak around the master cylinder. Cleaned it all up, and will keep my eye on it.
    You probably need a new master cylinder. Keep an eye on the level. Any leaking is too much - though maybe the leak was due to all the fooling around trying to bleed the system.
    1999 CR-V EX 128K miles
    Supermarine blue pearl - a mouthful of a name for a nice blue color

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