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MG MGF Technical - Clutch pedal on the floor after long storage

Hi Everyone,
I am back after many years away.
The MGF has been covered in the garage (long storage) for a couple of years and when I got in to start it up the clutch pedal is down and on the floor. Checked out the reservoir and all good. Looked under car , no leakage. Car had no problems when left and covered up for storage.
OK super genius technical what's wrong with it.
Fire suggestions at will on how to fix this. Fingers crossed its a simple fix. Lets troubleshoot!
Thanks in advance,
Sue Wilson

I had this on a Sprite last year, after four months in a Peak District garage over winter.

The clutch plate had built up so much surface rust that it wouldn't free off. There are some (pretty alarming-looking) videos on YouTube suggesting ways to free it off, from memory (although check before trying!!) starting the car in gear (it should select gears with the engine off) in an effort to jump the car forwards, freeing the clutch off. If that doesn't work it'd need a tow to a garage who can get it up on a lift and try a more direct approach to freeing it.

The good news is that my clutch survived all of this and cleaned up nicely with use, a good excuse to drive the car.

Of course this is just one idea - but it is exactly the symptom that my car showed following a similar period of inactivity.

Hope that helps,

Piers Colver

Welcome back! The cylinder seals (master and slave) sound to be intact if there is no visible leakage - which would suggest it is the relatively common 'seized release arm'. Does the pedal have very little resistance down to the floor?
Over time the F clutch release arm gets corrosion on it which collects and increasingly prevents the arm from moving freely in it's housing. It eventually seizes when the release spring is no longer strong enough to return it. This effectively leaves the clutch pedal depressed at the clutchplate.
There is an O ring on the release arm designed to keep dirt from getting in; which sadly prevents you lubricating it to free it off. You might try getting some very thin lubricant or WD40 type stuff in past the seal on the release arm (yes of course it is a sod to get at). If that fails (as it probably will) unfortunately your only solution will then be disassembly to get at the release arm.
This has happened on both of my 18 year old ones (when they were 14 years old, but had 100,000 miles difference on their odometers). To do this job on a front engined car is easy peasy and cheap. On an F it is more than a day's labour. At which expense you are better off putting in a new clutch and greaseable release arm - this is already expensive, but will fail again if you refit the old bits.
I hope you can work the arm and get it moving again - Good Luck!

Thankyou Piers and Charless,

Opps! Correction...

I just went and checked the clutch pedal and it is not actually on the floor...sorry but thankyou for the technical advice if the clutch pedal does ever actually stay on the floor now I know what may be the cause if it ever does happen in the future.

Again sorry for thinking the pedal was on the floor.


I just went to the F and checked again. The clutch pedal is in the appropriate position BUT I can press down on the clutch pedal with my index finger(too easy)and it springs back nice and quick. So it has spring but no pressure? Started the car and depressed the clutch to try and put the car into gear while the car is running. The gear stick will move but not engage into gear so just left it in neutral and took foot of clutch and the pedal sprung back. When de-pressing clutch it does not feel like it is building up pressure.

So good spring back of clutch pedal but gears will not engage.



Sue Wilson

Same as above I am afraid. I sounds like your release arm is seized in the position it would be when the pedal was pressed fully down. You can select gears with the clutch disengaged as normally, but you are no longer able to re engage the clutch afterwards even though the pedal lifts back up to it's normal position. The hydraulic links between pedal and clutch plate sound to be working fine but the final mechanical link has seized in the 'operated' position
The picture below may help explain what I think may have happened.
Have a look around Dieter's encyclopedic website - it is the most comprehensive MGF technical resource available.

Thanks Charless for your help. I am going to somehow try and look at it over the weekend and have a good look to see if there is any leakage around the seals etc. Thanks Sue
Sue Wilson

sounds like the clutch plate siezed together to me. I'd whack it in 4th and turn her over.*

* don't do this if still in the garage. Especially don't do this if still in the garage and you need to reverse, rather than drive, out.
Leigh Reid

Haha, Thanks Leigh for the hot tip.
Already have thought of that Leigh the other day when I started the MGF up but as its in the garage and facing my mazda, which I couldn't move at the time due to being blocked in and the rear of the MGF is against a brick wall...well, I thought, not a wise idea. Still have not had time to have a look underneath. Will do soon.
Sue Wilson

Sue, this current thread on the MGF register sounds to deal with a similar problem to yours:
Hope you get it fixed.

Me too!
Thanks all.
Sue Wilson

OK, finally got round to looking at the Slave Cylinder. I have removed, cleaned and replaced the seals using slave cylinder kit UUB100180. As you can see in the pic, the slave cylinder also has a tiny filter which has part number LB 3729023A STRYLON marked on it. Unfortunately I put a whole in the little filter and was wondering if it can be replaced and where can I purchase one from? If not, does the slave cylinder really need it as the mesh on the side of the tiny filter is OK and it covers the outlet hole that requires filtration. Wonder why these little filters are not part of the kit?

Sue Wilson

This is the little slave cylinder filter with the hole in it.

Sue Wilson

I'd suggest a call to somewhere like brown and gammons to see if the filter is available separately, if not you're looking a a new one I suspect.
Leigh Reid

OK, Thanks Leigh I'll send B&G an email as I have no idea where I would get one in Australia UNLESS someone out there has a little filter left over from an old slave cylinder they don't use anymore?

How much should the lever arm move if it is not ceased? I have the slave cylinder off and I can move the lever arm back and forth about 1-2 cm.
Sue Wilson

Received the gunson Ezebleed in the post from UK and decided to just put the slave cylinder back on with new rubber kit and split filter and bleed it. Left the car up on block and wacked it into gear and 'Hey Presto', the rear wheels are turning. Start the beast and take it for a little drive 1st gear fine, 2nd fine, 3rd...hey whats this! won't go in, little bugger...then it finally engages with a slight push then into 4th...all OK. Test drive over and I wack it in Reverse then 'cruuuunch' and in it goes. I did not renew the master clutch rubbers only put the slave cylinder kit and sprayed penetrating spray around the clutch arm and cleaned it up. The arm was not ceased. I can drive the car but its just hard to get it into the gears. Do you think I need to renew the rubbers on the master cylinder or go the whole hog and renew the clutch plate and the clutch arm while I am at it. How difficult is it to get into the gear box on an MGF? Do you work from the top or the bottom and if from the bottom, how high do you need the car of the ground for easier access to the gear box. Any 'how to' tutorials anywhere?
Sue Wilson

This thread was discussed between 02/02/2014 and 13/07/2014

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