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Discussion Starter · #1 · (Edited)
Hi all, new member - new owner here. I just bought a 2006 beetle for my daughter. I taught her how to drive it (its a manual) and she has been doing fine out on her own for the past week. Today she encountered a very steep hill with a stop sign at the top and rode the clutch hard trying not to roll back. The car, I'm assuming the clutch, started smoking so she shut the car off and called me. When I got there I could smell the clutch, it was pretty bad, and when I opened the hood, there is what looks like break fluid all over the place. It had sat for about twenty min and it was cooled off, so I drove it home. The drive home was fine, there were no issues with shifting and the smell eventually went away after 15 min. Everything seams fine. My question is where did all the brake fluid come from and is it even brake fluid? Any suggestions on what I need to check? Could a hose have come lose or could pressure have just forced it out? Thanks in advance for your expertise. (this beetle has the 2.5)

Bill.
 

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I'm guessing here, so take this with a grain of salt.

She overheated the clutch badly. Thankfully no damage that you're aware of. Clutches use either linkage or clutch 'master cylinders' that use brake fluid to work the slave cylinder.


Brake Fluid tells me something leaked during this. Please at the least check the master for the brakes and the clutch master if applicable. Even if someone left the cap loose? That could explain things. I would recommend having it checked to ensure no issues.

She's learning how to drive a stick. My wife uses the parking brake when on hills, loads the clutch..and then takes off the brake. That's just how she does hills. Me? I let the brake do the holding....and work the clutch/gas when I move forward up a hill. She's gotta find her style that works for her, but please let her know it's cheaper to replace a set of brake pads..then the clutch disc. She'll get the hang of it.

S-
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
Thank you for the reply - much appreciated. It was dark when this happened last night. I'll check the Brake Levels when I get home after work. She was doing great on average hills, but this one was very, very steep. I told her not to tackle hills like that anymore until she gets a little experience/time under her belt.
 

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Teach her the parking brake trick.

With the console brake, just keep a thumb handy and you can use the parking brake to keep the car from rolling backwards.

Just remind here to push the button down and then sometimes you have to pull up while pushing the button down so she does not think the brake is stuck one.

Fluid, no idea, need to check this out and make sure its not oil or something that blew/broke.
 
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