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Old 02-27-2001, 09:46 PM   #1
Scooby Specialist
Member#: 163
Join Date: Aug 1999
Location: Huntsville, Alabama
1999 2.5 RS
Rally Blue

Post Who else has clutch shudder?

I now have around 25k on the clock, and for the last 7k or so, I experience really bad clutch shudder when the car is cold. It is also hard to get into first gear when it is cold...I mean real hard. I was wondering who else experiences this as well. When the car warms up, it shifts perfectly, but when cold, it is a nightmare. Any advice, experience with the dealer, etc will be greatly appreciated!
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Old 02-27-2001, 10:00 PM   #2
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Member#: 756
Join Date: Jan 2000
Chapter/Region: MAIC
Location: Ashburn, Va
2003 Legacy L wagon
2009 Kawasaki C14


I don't have any experiences with dealers, but I have the clutch shudder when the car is cold.

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Old 02-27-2001, 10:25 PM   #3
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Member#: 1655
Join Date: Jun 2000
Location: Novato, CA
MY98 RS w/WRX Conv
I-Speed Tech


Yeah, I've got it too when it's COLD. But not for long, I've got a lightened flywheel and ACT clutch/PP to install.

My dealer really didn't care, told me it was normal. That's why I'm driving 2 hours to another dealer that is friendly and an i-club member to do my head gaskets.

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Old 02-27-2001, 11:20 PM   #4
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Member#: 369
Join Date: Oct 1999
Chapter/Region: SWIC
Location: Phoenix, AZ
12 CTS-V Wagon
17 GTI


I have it when it is cold outside. It seems if I pump my clutch a bunch of times before I start the car, and also pump the clutch while in nuetral the shudder doesn't affect me. May be coincidence though...
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Old 02-28-2001, 02:03 AM   #5
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Member#: 387
Join Date: Oct 1999
Location: Coquitlam, BC, Canada
2000 Impreza 2.5RS
Aspen White


YES, i've this stupid problem too.
(my00 coupe, the only mod i have is sparkco hot-wire)

i 've brought my car down to dealer last week, and left it to them for two days..and they admit that the clutch will shudder in cold start(i live in Vancouver, BC, Canada, so the temp range for last week is around -1 to 5).

and then they rearranged another appointment to check the clutch for me again...and i 've just dropped my car down the dealer 10 minz ago(12:10am)...and they will have a true COLD start in 8:00am....

i'll keep posting if they found out what caused this prob..


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Old 02-28-2001, 05:48 AM   #6
Member#: 1904
Join Date: Jul 2000
Chapter/Region: TXIC
Location: Austin, TX
2017 Impreza Sport
E36 M3/4/5


yeah guys, this is pretty common for our cars. The ACT clutch would probably fix that problem...

other than that, push your foot back on the pedal, and try again
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Old 02-28-2001, 06:04 AM   #7
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Join Date: Apr 2000

O.k. this is going to sound like I'm an idiot. I almost didn't reply, but I thought this might be a slight chance in h#ll for some clutch shudder problems out there.

I had the clutch shudder on my 00' coupe. Brought it to the dealer (who I really trust, their service manager is great). They let it sit overnight (cold outside) and felt the shudder too. THey had the car 5 days (gave me a loaner) because they didn't feel it was actually a clutch problem. After a half dozen calls to the Subaru tech line they decided to replace one of the o2 sensors. Guess what? it worked. No more shudder.

I know this doesn't make sense, but I thought it might be a possible solution to those who've had their clutch replaced only to have the new clutch do the same thing.

It's worth a shot...
If anyone's interested I'll see if I can scrounge up the part # for the part they replaced (just email me)

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Old 02-28-2001, 07:58 AM   #8
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Join Date: Nov 2000
Location: Coram LI NY
2001 2.5 RS


Well, I am not sure about shudder but....

When car had been sitting outside overnight it does do something strange a few first times I shift. It almost feels like "Better" clutch.

It just GARBS! Boom! Whole car shakes a bit as if all 4 are spinning.

It does not bother me much, cuz it goes away after like 5 shifts or so.

But I figured I'll mention it.

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Old 02-28-2001, 10:56 AM   #9
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Member#: 3849
Join Date: Jan 2001
Location: Hanover, NH USA
2002 WRX Wagon


So, here's a question about clutch shudder. I test drove a 2001 RS last month, and I tried a fairly fast launch (nothing hard, just getting away from a stoplight). The car starting bucking back and forth on me when I hit the gas. Was this clutch shudder? Or was it just a really lousy launch?
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Old 02-28-2001, 11:24 AM   #10
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Member#: 4188
Join Date: Feb 2001
Location: Toronto, Canada


I too was having this problem. I had taken it to the dealer previously for routine service and asked the service tech. to look into it. He said it was normal, nothing they could do. But from reading this board, I knew it was a defect.
Before my next service, I came here, printed off about 30 pages worth of peoples' experiences with the clutch shudder. Went to the dealer, and asked for the service manager. I showed him my documentation - he phoned up SOC, and within a week, I had a brand new clutch, pressure plate etc..
And that was with 17k km. Clutch shudder is now gone.

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Old 02-28-2001, 03:29 PM   #11
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Chapter/Region: TXIC
Location: SA-TX (Hozer expat)
GC6 Supercharged


Hey yuusaku, which dealer do you deal with? I've just noticed the same thing starting on my 00RS. If we happen to go to the same dealer, it might save me the hastle of re-explaining the problem.
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Old 02-28-2001, 03:33 PM   #12
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Member#: 41
Join Date: Jun 1999
Chapter/Region: Tri-State
Location: Centerport(L.I.),NY,USA
2005 Black LGT wagon
2000 Silverado


Mine shuddered until I had my clutch, pressure plate and flywheel(?) replaced under warranty at ~ 11k miles. Now I'm at 24k and it happens once in a great while, usually after the car has been sitting or I just woke up
Yeti, what you experienced was normal Subaru drivetrain wierdness. It takes a little while but you adjust.
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Old 02-28-2001, 03:36 PM   #13
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Join Date: Feb 2000
Chapter/Region: South East
Location: Greensboro, Georgia
'06 Titan Crew Cab
'08 Forester LL Bean


I do, but that may have something to do with my pucked clutch setup(Primitive Racing Clutch)

[This message has been edited by STiTkacik (edited February 28, 2001).]
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Old 02-28-2001, 03:46 PM   #14
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Join Date: Nov 2000
Location: Etobicoke, Ontario, Canada
2001 Impreza 2.5RS
Blue Ridge Pearl


When it is cold and the idle is still running a bit higher, the engine will produce enough torque at that engine speed so that you shouldn't have to use the throttle to take off. Just ease the clutch out gently and the rest will happen. Once the clutch is fully engaged, use the throttle and keep the RPMs down until normal operating temperature is reached. This technique allows you to fully engage the clutch sooner with less shudder. The higher the revs, the more shuddering occurs. Works for me, hope it works for you.
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Old 02-28-2001, 06:48 PM   #15
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Member#: 2451
Join Date: Sep 2000
Location: Kansas City
2000 2.5 RS Coupes
BRP and a STM


You guys might think I am a moron. But I also had this problem. I took it to the dealer and it of course wouldnt do it while they were looking at it. I drove off and what do you know...started doing it again...so I pulled over and looked under the hood. And you know what I found? My OEM alarm horn that is mounted on the air box wasnt tight. And was rubbing up against **** in the engine compartment. I took it back to the dealer and showed them and asked them to move the horn a bit and tighten it up. They did and it quit. Mechanic said "well ill be damned...never heard of that before..." and off I went. Never had the clutch vibrations/noises again.
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Old 02-28-2001, 09:46 PM   #16
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Chapter/Region: SCIC
Location: SoCal & TX

Hey YETI that was a bad launch
I have clutch shuddder, very very extreme clutch shudder, but that's because of my 4puck metallic clutch. hehehe
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Old 03-02-2001, 01:28 AM   #17
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Join Date: Jul 1999
Location: Seattle, USA
1999 Imp RS
Rally Blue


yeti - bucking is a different problem than clutch shudder. It is supposedly due to a weak throttle return spring. There is probably info. available thru a search. You can get used to this.
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Old 03-02-2001, 01:38 AM   #18
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Join Date: Dec 1999
Location: Hoboken, NJ, USA

Only on cold and damp mornings. Cold and dry, no shudder. It ususally clears up after 5 minutes. I assumed it was moisture on the clutch surfaces causing the clutch to alternately slip/grip/slip. I have 13K on my00.

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Old 03-01-2001, 02:28 PM   #19
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Member#: 525
Join Date: Nov 1999
Chapter/Region: Tri-State
Location: Drives a Ford Interceptor
<<98 2.5RS(RIP)>>
02, Cobb stg 2.5, FMIC


Alot of RS's have this problem. The best cure I could think of was the ACT setup. It's not cheap but it's one of the best mods/fixes I've done so far.
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Old 03-02-2001, 07:08 PM   #20
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Member#: 4577
Join Date: Mar 2001
Location: Victoria, British Columbia
1998 2.5RS
Black Diamond Pearl


My RS is currently on clutch #5!!! All replaced under warranty. Every time the clutch is replaced, the shudder gets a little "better". Still, the new clutch shudders a few times when cold and, especially, when its cold and wet out.

Another "problem" I have with the latest clutch is that the pedal feel changes significantly in the course of a daily drive: as the car warms up, the pedal becomes easier to push, to the point where almost no effort is required to push it to the floor. Anyone else experience this?
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Old 03-03-2001, 04:55 PM   #21
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Join Date: Mar 2001
Location: Mississauga, Ontario, Canada

I have had my Impreza for 2 years now, and since day one I have had clutch shudder. In the beginning I thought it was a bad clutch cause the car was used, so my brother changed it. The shudder dissapeared for a while but is back and like you all say its usually bad when the car is cold and damp.
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