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Dodge Repair/'04 Dodge Dakota: no clutch pedal return action


QUESTION: The other day I was listening to music and went to apply my brakes and my truck seemed like it didn't want to stop. when it did finally stop I noticed the engine was off, so I had no power steering and I also noticed that my clutch would not come off the floor. I think my clutch cable may have broken. Is it possible that the truck stalled when the cable broke. Or, was it hard to stop because it was essentially still in gear?

ANSWER: Hi Eric,
It may not be 'either/or but 'both/and'. If the clutch pedal connection to the clutch fatigued then when you tried to use it the engine and the transmission were still at least partially if not fully connected so as you slowed by means of the brake pedal and the release of the accelerator pedal the engine would have slowed it rpm to less than idle speed and would have died finally. At the same time the vacuum supply provided by the engine when it was turning over was reduced similarly and so the power braking action would have been reduced gradually so it felt harder to stop.
I would check out the clutch pedal connection to the clutch lever, which is hydraulic rather than a cable by the way, get that aspect repaired and then see if things go back to normal. First, see if the clutch hydraulic fluid reservoir is full or not. You may have a leaky system which allowed too much fluid to be lost.
I have the '04 manual which describes the hydraulic system and can copy those pages and attach them to an email I can send to you. I need to know your email address

Thanks for the rating and nomination. If you tell me your email address don't use the @ symbol, instead use "at" of it gets erased automatically.

---------- FOLLOW-UP ----------

QUESTION: Thank you, I did happen to check my fluids a couple of days before and the clutch fluid was full and clean. The pedal just seems to be flopping around, That's why I thought it may have been the cable. It was still in gear when I tried to stop that's why I thought it may have been the torque of the engine making it harder to brake, it never crossed my mind about the vacuum supplied to the brakes may have made it harder to stop. Could any of those have made a difference as well? My email in , if you could send those pages to me I would greatly appreciate it.

ANSWER: Hi Eric,
As you can read, your email address didn't come through to me.
I forgot to say that when you tell me your email address you have to not use the @ symbol because the address will be automatically erased. Instead use "at" so that won't happen.
Thanks for the rating and the nomination, both of which you can do again if you would be so kind. I'll send the pages about the clutch master/slave cylinder and the clutch pedal.

---------- FOLLOW-UP ----------

QUESTION: Sorry about that, it is ericlutman at Could the torque of the engine still in gear made a difference in my not being able to stop?

Hi Eric,
I just copied and sent the pages. I believe that as you slowed the engine finally refused to idle and at about that point the engine intake manifold vacuum source was too weak to operate the power brake assist which then makes it very much less helpful in braking.
If you would be so kind as to do another rating and nomination of me I would be most appreciative.

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Roland Finston


Free fast answer to your repair question about a Chrysler/Dodge/Plymouth car, minivan, SUV, or truck. Problems with electronically controlled engines and transmissions as well as body wiring problems are my specialty. This free troubleshoot advice forum helps you diagnose faults, minimize repair costs or do-it-yourself.

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