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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I am very familiar with driving a manual and plan on getting a 5-speed, although I was never really clear on certain aspects of clutch operation and expected lifetime.

I am understanding of the ways a clutch can get abused and fried if you do not engage it properly, such as in prolonged stop-and-go traffic. The friction between the clutch plate and engine is fierce if the clutch is not fully engaged. That I understand, but I some people say you should not "ride the clutch" or keep it in all the way while you are idle, because this can wear it out. I don't see how that is possible if you are stopped and idling and have the clutch pedal down all the way ... it is not anywhere near connecting to the flywheel if it the clutch is fully engaged, right? You could sit there forever and not "wear it out", correct? I had some friend (not sure he was too smart) say he wore his clutch out by holding it down at stoplights (or so someone told him). I've never had to maintain a car with a manual transmission, so I don't know what causes unnecessary wear and tear on them. It's not going to stop me from buying one, I just want to know how to treat it the best.
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