How to change the clutch slave cylinder hose
If any of you with a manual tranny notice you have to fill up the clutch reservoir every few days, its probably because your slave cylinder hose has a slow sweat (common problem it seems). I changed it today in about an hour and a half (this writeup should get that down to half an hour). The hose itself costs around $40. I picked mine up at Cox Nissan (Bronx, NY), as they were one of the few who had it in stock. Here goes:
Tools needed - 10mm and 12mm wrench, 12mm socket. 1 - 2 bottles of DOT 3 or 4 brake fluid.
DISCONNECT THE + and - TERMINALS OF THE BATTERY
You'll be working right over the battery, the last thing you want is to graze the terminals (goodbye armhair). Also, you're gonna want the car to be cooled down for this, there's coolant hose etc right there. Wait at least 4 - 5 hours after a drive to tackle this...
Step 1: Remove banjo connector coming from master cylinder
This was pretty simple. There is a 12mm bolt on top of the 'box' side of the slave cylinder hose. Remove this with a socket wrench and an extension (you don't need the extension, but getting leverage down there is hard as ****). Clean it up, and then put the bolt aside. Get into the car and press down on the clutch 5 or 6 times to empty out the reservoir (might as well start off with clean brake fluid). The clutch will fall to the floor, so you'll have to pull it up with your hand. Seperate the banjo connecter from the box. Notice the brass washer that comes off with it; clean that up and set it aside.
'Box' end of clutch hose:
Step 2: Removing slave hose from motormount
The 'box' end of the hose is attached to the motormount by 2 screws, 10mm in size. Either a socket or wrench will work. You have to unclip the massive wire connecting the battery to the starter (leave the starter end of the wire attached, just push the wire over a little with the wrench while your removing any bolts), the clip will then come off with the box end of the hose.
Step 3: Removing hose from slave cylinder
Pain in the *** right here. This thing is on TIGHT so find the longest 12mm wrench you own and go at it. Just follow the other side of the hose up under the engine (you can see it if you get the angle just right from the intake side of the engine). I had a 5" long wrench so doing this by hand was/is impossible. To solve this, I just went caveman style - get the wrench to hang on the bolt, then grab a hammer... Cracked it loose in 2 tries. Unscrew the rest by hand. There are 2 washers on that bolt - one above the banjo connector and one below. Now that you know, you won't be dropping them somewhere inside your engine bay, right?
Step 4: Installing new hose
New hose (upside down):
Follow the steps you just took, backwards. Put the banjo connector on the slave cylinder side first (make sure you have one of those brass washers on each side of the connector). Screw that in tight. Do the same to the 'box' end with the hose attaching from the master cylinder. Attach the 'box' end of the slave hose + the cable holder piece (for the starter power cable) to the motormount.
Step 5: Bleeding the clutch
Once everything is nice and secure, you have to get all the air out of your hoses and replace it with brake fluid.
That's an excellent writeup (and site) on how to bleed your clutch lines.
Some more pics:
Reasons to put down some newspaper in your driveway:
'Box' end with banjo connector + washer still attached (bolt removed already):
Brake fluid that leaked onto the clutch boot from the old hose:
Step I had to take to prevent the fluid from totally leaking out everyday (this slowed down the leak to a once a week topoff of fluid). Also, notice the blood on the left connector :
There you go; no more worrying about getting stuck in traffic with no fluid! Total cost should be around $50, hose + fluid (+ bandaids for burnt knuckles).