Need to remove undertray to access clutch slave cylinder to bleed the system - LotusTalk - The Lotus Cars Community
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post #1 of 33 (permalink) Old 06-05-2019, 01:58 PM Thread Starter
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Need to remove undertray to access clutch slave cylinder to bleed the system

A few times now my clutch has required pumping up while driving for a while, and the pedal seems a bit softer than normal on occasion. I'm hoping this is due to air in the system, and my car does have 25k miles on it, and presumably hasn't had a brake or clutch bleed for five years or so. If I'm not mistaken, 25k miles is the recommended service interval for the brake and clutch fluid.

When I bought it they did warranty work to install a heatshield for the clutch hydraulic line in the engine bay, and I believe replaced the clutch master cylinder, though I'd have to look for the paperwork.

What's the best way to remove the undertray and get sufficient access to the engine bay to access the slave cylinder for bleeding? Will a set of rhino ramps do it? With the ramps in place is it still possible to put a floor/scissor jack under the jackpoints, in case one of the ramps fails?

Should I try to put more heat wrap on the line when I'm down there?

Should I bleed the brakes after the clutch? (Shared reservoir.)

What's a recommended pressure bleeding system for single-person bleeding?

Thanks!

*Edit:* I found this thread (https://www.lotustalk.com/forums/f17...k-help-375865/) which has useful steps, and I also have the service notes, but it's hard to find concrete information on how high the car needs to be and whether ramps are a good lift for this situation.
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post #2 of 33 (permalink) Old 06-05-2019, 03:04 PM
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I have a 4 post lift, so I haven't done the the fluid change on jacks or stands. But, it should be doable although not as easy. There are several threads of getting the car up on stands so ramps are not in the way... https://www.lotustalk.com/forums/f17...-stands-94366/

Follow the threads on clutch/brake bleeding and you should be fine. Pretty much everything has been covered. There are several of them with good information including in the how-to section: https://www.lotustalk.com/forums/f417/

I only use Castrol React SRF as its rated as one of the best. To me its worth the extra money to not have an issue with loss of pedal. The recommended change interval is 2 years but most of us change it yearly as a precaution. Once again, its worth it to me as piece of mind.

Although mine had the preventative wrap placed on the line, I was not happy with how much was still exposed. So, I added a second (and more thorough) layer.
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post #3 of 33 (permalink) Old 06-05-2019, 03:22 PM
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It can be done from the top side but you will be working blind. I bled mine this way after the m/c install. Helps to have a vacuum bleeder. Good luck!

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post #4 of 33 (permalink) Old 06-05-2019, 03:37 PM
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https://youtu.be/swPGUZMLN-o

Incase I'm asking for help with something: 2011 Evora N/A C/R 6sp with BOE TVS 1900 S/C kit
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post #5 of 33 (permalink) Old 06-05-2019, 03:37 PM
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I use the Motive pressure bleeder when doing my car. It's definitely easier with a lift, but can be done with just jacks/ramps/stands. And when doing a flush, I believe the service notes mention to do the slave cylinder first, then the brake calipers. From furthest away from the reservoir to the closest (e.g. right rear, left rear, right front, left front).
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post #6 of 33 (permalink) Old 06-05-2019, 03:55 PM Thread Starter
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Wow! Every year? I must be the most negligent Evora owner out there. I should've done it at least twice by now, according to the book.

Thanks for the information and the video. Every so often I look up videos on how to lift the Evora for various tasks, and it seems the information out there has gotten clearer. I like the idea of jacking it up and setting the wheels on stands, rather than driving up ramps.

At least the good news is that this should improve my pedal problem and feel.

I'll check the threads and my service notes to find the proper procedure. Not sure how I'll do the brakes at the same time as having it on ramps, though, unless the nipple is accessible with the wheel on. (But I've been meaning to get the wheels off anyway, to do a rotation and check the brake wear.)
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post #7 of 33 (permalink) Old 06-05-2019, 04:08 PM
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To rotate tires I just use the rear jack point on 1 side and Jack the car up high enough both front n rear will lift.

I try n do clutch/brake fluid once a year.
Already replaced my clutch master with boe unit.

Incase I'm asking for help with something: 2011 Evora N/A C/R 6sp with BOE TVS 1900 S/C kit
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post #8 of 33 (permalink) Old 06-05-2019, 04:11 PM Thread Starter
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To rotate tires I just use the rear jack point on 1 side and Jack the car up high enough both front n rear will lift.

I try n do clutch/brake fluid once a year.
Already replaced my clutch master with boe unit.
I have to take the front clamshell off to swap in a new condenser and a tighter mesh grill behind the existing one (damn rocks), so maybe when I'll do that I'll examine my MC and replace with a better unit if necessary.
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post #9 of 33 (permalink) Old 06-05-2019, 06:00 PM Thread Starter
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For those who know: what's a good height for wheel stands/ramps? I see these that have a 10" lift:



But I saw in this thread (https://www.lotustalk.com/forums/f170/ramps-327961/) they were recommending these,


), which are only 6.5" lift.

Anyone have recommendations for a good height?
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post #10 of 33 (permalink) Old 06-05-2019, 07:21 PM
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I have to take the front clamshell off to swap in a new condenser and a tighter mesh grill...
I did the condenser replacement job a couple of years ago on my '11, and it can be done without removing the front clamshell. See wordy post here.

Re lifting the car for the clutch hydraulics, I personally think you're going to have a hell of a time getting the back end high enough to access the clutch slave if using just jacks and stuff under the wheels. I concur with Playdoh that attacking it from above and employing some external hydraulics is the easiest path. Just my opinion.

But if you do want to jack it up at the back, placing a large jack squarely under the the rearmost subframe rail is -- again, in my opinion -- the best and safest way to raise the back end. Front wheels must be chocked, jack pad must be centered, and you must use something soft but grippy (e.g. a thin wood block) between jack and frame rail. Then with the car up in the air, you can put something (like your ramps) under the back wheels and lower the jack -- then scoot underneath only when you're certain the car won't move. But again, I don't think this is going to give you good access for the clutch slave from below, and it will also make it totally unreachable from the top.

Good luck. Let us know how it goes.
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post #11 of 33 (permalink) Old 06-05-2019, 07:37 PM Thread Starter
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Originally Posted by West-of-Hethel View Post
I did the condenser replacement job a couple of years ago on my '11, and it can be done without removing the front clamshell. See wordy post here.

Re lifting the car for the clutch hydraulics, I personally think you're going to have a hell of a time getting the back end high enough to access the clutch slave if using just jacks and stuff under the wheels. I concur with Playdoh that attacking it from above and employing some external hydraulics is the easiest path. Just my opinion.

But if you do want to jack it up at the back, placing a large jack squarely under the the rearmost subframe rail is -- again, in my opinion -- the best and safest way to raise the back end. Front wheels must be chocked, jack pad must be centered, and you must use something soft but grippy (e.g. a thin wood block) between jack and frame rail. Then with the car up in the air, you can put something (like your ramps) under the back wheels and lower the jack -- then scoot underneath only when you're certain the car won't move. But again, I don't think this is going to give you good access for the clutch slave from below, and it will also make it totally unreachable from the top.

Good luck. Let us know how it goes.
I wouldn't mind attempting it from the top, but I was concerned that, having never seen the slave cylinder in that car, I wouldn't have enough information to know where to access it. Doing it blind for the first time seems like I'd be groping fruitlessly. Is there enough access to get a camera in there? How far down is it? I bet I could rule out wrapping the line in additional insulation, too.

Thanks for the tips on jacking the car up

I had heard too that it was possible to do the condenser (and drier) change without removing the front clamshell, but I read here the other day that it's actually not that hard to remove them.

If I went the top-down route for the bleed, what sort of tools would I need to push fluid through?
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post #12 of 33 (permalink) Old 06-05-2019, 07:57 PM
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Bleeding, flushing brakes is easy. But accessing the clutch bleed is an interesting experience. One of those “touch it or see it, but not both” deals.

The Motive pressure device is great. We used ATF and alternate blue and amber. Yes you can still get the blue (banned in US as a danger to us all) online.

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post #13 of 33 (permalink) Old 06-05-2019, 08:02 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by MGB View Post
I wouldn't mind attempting it from the top, but I was concerned that, having never seen the slave cylinder in that car, I wouldn't have enough information to know where to access it. Doing it blind for the first time seems like I'd be groping fruitlessly. Is there enough access to get a camera in there? How far down is it? I bet I could rule out wrapping the line in additional insulation, too.

Thanks for the tips on jacking the car up

I had heard too that it was possible to do the condenser (and drier) change without removing the front clamshell, but I read here the other day that it's actually not that hard to remove them.

If I went the top-down route for the bleed, what sort of tools would I need to push fluid through?
As long as the engine is relatively cool, you can just find the slave cylinder bleeder by feel. While straddling the engine (stand in trunk, facing the right side), reach with left hand and find the heat shield that has the chimney and vent pipe along the bulkhead. Along the left-hand side of that heat shield is a small indent, and within that small indent you'll find the slave cylinder bleed nipple. It's in the most awkward spot. It's even more awkward to get a hose onto the end, but it's doable.

I have the Motive and it makes it fairly simple to do a one-man bleed. You'll probably also want a bleeder bottle. I got one with a magnet.

And you can bleed the calipers with the wheels on, if the outside bleed nipples are visible. Otherwise you'll have to rotate the wheels to get room. The inside bleed nipples are accessible from the back-side, so wheel position matters less there.

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post #14 of 33 (permalink) Old 06-05-2019, 08:04 PM
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https://www.lotustalk.com/forums/f17...-bleed-277321/

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post #15 of 33 (permalink) Old 06-05-2019, 08:31 PM Thread Starter
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Thanks for the instructions, I'll print them out and use them when I tackle this. Also thanks for the link, XHILR8N. I've seen that thread before, but, as the poster says (and you all say), you can't see it very clearly, you have to feel it. But it gives me a rough idea.

I was planning on getting the Motive, but I wasn't sure if it was suitable for this top-down procedure until now.

The blue stuff sounds good, in that you know when you've hit new fluid.

I've had bad luck with those small, magnet-attached bleeder bottles slipping and spilling. The magnet unglued from one of them too. Of course I need to take serious measures to keep it off my paint.
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post #16 of 33 (permalink) Old 06-06-2019, 05:15 AM
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As long as the engine is relatively cool, you can just find the slave cylinder bleeder by feel. While straddling the engine (stand in trunk, facing the right side), reach with left hand and find the heat shield that has the chimney and vent pipe along the bulkhead. Along the left-hand side of that heat shield is a small indent, and within that small indent you'll find the slave cylinder bleed nipple. It's in the most awkward spot. It's even more awkward to get a hose onto the end, but it's doable.....................
Here's a visual to go with agentdr8's excellent description. (Note that I have BOE CAI).
It was actually good to take this pic with a flash this morning, as I see I have some dust on my hoses. I'll get them cleaned up later today.
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post #17 of 33 (permalink) Old 06-06-2019, 05:37 AM
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When I did mine, I did it on a lift from underneath all by feel. At 240lbs I can't stand in the trunk without needing to replace the trunk afterward, haha!

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post #18 of 33 (permalink) Old 06-07-2019, 11:01 AM Thread Starter
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ATF Blue is a bit hard to find. Where do you all find it? Do you resort to international sellers?

Lotus seems to recommend React Performance DOT 4, but that also needs to be imported. I was hoping I could find a high-boiling point DOT 4 domestically.
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post #19 of 33 (permalink) Old 06-07-2019, 11:15 AM
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Castrol React SRF, wet boiling point of 518 degrees F.

https://www.summitracing.com/parts/c...FY2cswodBrgOeg
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post #20 of 33 (permalink) Old 06-07-2019, 01:11 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by agentdr8 View Post
As long as the engine is relatively cool, you can just find the slave cylinder bleeder by feel. While straddling the engine (stand in trunk, facing the right side), reach with left hand and find the heat shield that has the chimney and vent pipe along the bulkhead. Along the left-hand side of that heat shield is a small indent, and within that small indent you'll find the slave cylinder bleed nipple. It's in the most awkward spot. It's even more awkward to get a hose onto the end, but it's doable.

....
With BOE CAI for S1 cars and GRP CAI for S2 (4xx) cars you can actually see the slave cylinder and other transmission parts including shift linkage from above.

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