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Clutch life expectancy?



Hi all,

I have a '96 LT-4 with 63,000 miles on the odometer. My clutch went out last Friday, so I'm having a new Centerforce clutch installed today. Is 63k 'normal' for a clutch to die, or should I assume that the previous owner drove the hell out of it? I've only owned the car for four weeks, and I know I'm not THAT hard on clutches! :s

Welcome To The Corvette Action Center tx_murray!

There are any number of circumstances that determine the life of a clutch disk, pressure plate, or even the flywheel, the main one being one's driving habits. I'm sure you couldn't ride the clutch enough to wear it out in four weeks.

Sixty-three thousand miles is not uncommon mileage for replacement of the factory clutch assembly.

A clutch can last 100k like my 89 did or it can go away in 20-30k if you are really rough on it. 63k is about average I'd say for an average driver. Why are you getting a Centerforce? In my opinion the stock GM set is fine unless you are super hard on the unit. My stock 89 clutch lasted 100k and I replaced it with another stock set up you can buy as a kit for around $300.00 (clutch, disc, TO bearing and centering tool) The flywheel is another story altogether. There is a method spelled out in the GM manual to check if it needs replacing or not. It cannot be resurfaced. A new one will cost around $600 to $1000 depending on where you get it from. Be careful here, if you try to use yours and it is worn out it can be dangerous and very costly.
Corvettes of Dallas is installing the Centerforce. They recommended it over the stock clutch. I don't have the tools, shop, or knowledge to do the work myself. Thanks for the info on the flywheel. I'll find out about it today; I'm hoping it is still in good shape. I only drove about 30 miles (straight to Corvettes of Dallas) after I heard the TO bearing start chattering.

Tx murray, too bad about the clutch on such short notice. Bummer! I would be interested in what they find and the "out-the-door" cost as I'm getting to about the same odometer reading.
The damage ($)

I got the vette back today with a new clutch, new rear main seal, new rear tires, a CAGS adapter to get rid of the annoying "1 to 4" shifting, and a new LTPWS sensor for the right rear wheel. The guys at Corvettes of Dallas were friendly, helpful, and did good work. Total cost on the clutch was $1129 + tax.

It's good to have the car back! Now I can't wait until the 500 mile clutch break-in period is over....


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