The car's flywheel is a solid round unit that sits on the vehicle's steering axle. The flywheel acts as the link between the engine and the clutch. Since the 1990s, the double flywheel (dual mass flywheel) has mainly been used in new cars. The flywheel helps dampen the sound of the engine and reduce vibrations – especially when it comes to diesel engines.
If you suspect that the car's flywheel is defective, start the engine and listen for any thumping noises when the car is in neutral. Try giving the engine full speed and then checking for vibrations in the car that should not be there.
Also check for the following:
If you experience one or more of the above signs, it is a good idea to have the car's flywheel examined in more detail at a garage.
At the garage, a mechanic will disassemble the flywheel and examine its surfaces. If stains of different colours are visible on the surfaces, this indicates that there has been an overheating of the flywheel.
The location of the stains is important to keep an eye on. If the stains are only on the contact surfaces themselves, there has only been short-term overheating.
However, if blue-coloured areas are found on the outside or at the mounting rivets, it is more serious and the flywheel will most likely need to be replaced.
As a rule, the flywheel has a very long service life – almost unlimited – but if the flywheel has been worn, which usually happens if the clutch is used incorrectly, then it cannot be repaired and must be replaced.
Replacing the car's flywheel requires special tools and, for most car owners, will be a garage job.
Most garages recommend that the clutch is replaced at the same time as the flywheel, as it requires removal from the gearbox. This is a time-consuming process so it is wise to have both replaced at the same time.
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