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Clutch wont bleed need help deperate

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Just got my defender back last Monday after a week having gearbox reconditioned and new clutch assembly fitted. Drove home from transmission specialists and it was like a dream all gears where silky smooth I was delighted.

The next day drove it again and it felt a bit sticky on the gears, again drove day after and it was a bit worse. Surmised it was possibly the slave cylinder as the clutch pedal felt light not much pressure similar to a car ! usually needs more foot pressure to activate.

So ordered a new clutch slave cylinder (genuine part this time too) and decided to fit it today, went in easy enough although I thought there was a little too much movement in the push rod (was still connected to the clip though).

I used my easy bleed system and bled the cylinder till no air came out and disconnected it all. However, when I went to press the clutch pedal it went straight to the floor and stayed there.

I thought I had not bled it enough so tried to reconnect the easy bleed and start again but must have damaged the thread on the reservoir cap and fluid leaked everywhere.

Next resort got my son out of bed and decided to revert to the old foot technique, this didn't work either fluid was being forced through and air but no pressure in the pedal, still sticking to the floor after being depressed.

Decided to put old slave back on I new it worked before removal(even if there was a minor leak, blow me same issue could not bleed it pedal has no pressure.

Spoke to guy at transmission garage he said fetch it in Monday and they would look at it. Problem is I cannot drive the damn thing so only course of action is the get it delivered by a recovery vehicle extra cost to me.

Does anyone have any advice as I am at my wits end, if its a fault on the clutch assembly when it was fitted, its definitely going back Monday and they can sort it, but if its something I have done or not doing please advise was planning a short break next week so in dog house with my missus again.

After all the expense and time put into it over last 12 months I seriously considered getting shut of it today thats how fed up I am at the moment.

So if anyone can help or give advice I would greatly appreciate it.


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Are the spring returns still attached (either old style straight or td5 type)? When the pedal is on the floor is it "actuated" ie are the gears engaging with no drive, or is it not working the clutch at all?

Have you taken the access panel off the top of the housing (6 screws inside the engine compartment side) to check the rod adjustment at the master cylinder?

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Yes the springs are still attached to the pedal (its a 300TDI by the way). Not actually tried to actuate the gears but suspect the clutch is not working at all so have not tried.

I have checked the access panel off the top of the housing to check the rod adjustment at the master cylinder I can move it back and forth using a screw driver.

When you get it so far with the screw driver the spring actuates and the pedal goes back to its normal position.

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Aha that's it I didn't know there is a right or wrong way to fit the slave so fitted it with the bleed nipple at the bottom to make access easier.

Will this cause my problem ? I also fitted the new one this way too as I didnt know there was a right and wrong way.

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Serious;y is it as simple as swapping it over, I cannot believe I struggled with it most of today and the solution was that simple.

Kicking myself now.

Suppose if I go back to my basic principles when I was a process engineer and thought what is different about the set up it was that I had the slave the other way around, obvious really.

But I never for one minute thought it would have an impact, just thought it would make life easier for bleeding having the nipple at the bottom.

Oh well you live and learn, I will swap it back to my new slave cylinder and fit the correct way tomorrow.

Let you know how I get on.

Many thanks for the advice and help

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I have a slave cylinder with the bleed nipple at the bottom on The 109 and it works fine for me. Usually gravity bleed them, never used an eazibleed on the clutch. Only problem I have is an incredibly badly worn hole in the pedal top, but I have a new take off 300 pedal to go in when I get 5 minutes.

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You can bleed the clutch with it unbolted and just connected to the pipe. This is by far the easiest way to do it, as 100% of the air is expelled and you get a perfect clutch straight away, and it doesn't matter which way up you refit the slave. Any air that's introduced to the system afterwards will mean that if the bleed nipple is at the bottom, you'll never get it out


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swapped over to new slave and fitted with bleed nipple at top, this time it worked fine fully bled and clutch pedal pressure is much improved bite is now at the top too.

I am much happier now and relieved too.Thanks for all the advice it worked better than I thought it would, much appreciated..

Regards Ian

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For anyone else coming across this and wondering, if you have the later type of clutch pedal spring, the clothes peg style which makes the pedal lighter, the spring beyond a certain point will push the pedal down rather than return it, so you will need to work the pedal by hand. Once the air has gone all will be well.

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