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My Car Kicks Every Time I Shift Gears. Why

Why does my car lose power and kick when shifting gears?

First things first - I have a 2003 Ford Focus with about 92k miles. I live in Miami and do mostly city driving. I do not currently have a mechanic, and as a woman, I do not want to take my car somewhere without having any idea whatsoever what is wrong, because I know from past experience that whoever it is will try to screw me over. I keep up on regular oil changes, however I admit that I do not regularly service the car.

The last month or so, I have noticed at red lights and driving at low speeds my car seems to lose power. It has never actually stalled, but I have been afraid of it happening. It seems to be worse when the A/C is on - if I turn it off at the red light, my car immediately seems to gain some power. However, it does happen whether or not the A/C is on. The other time I seem to notice a lack of power is when I am in reverse, backing out of a parking space. The problem seems to be worse in the mornings after sitting overnight, but still occurs anytime I drive.

Additionally, my car seems to kick when shifting gears. It kicks more violently when I am on an interstate and accelerating at high speeds. The kicking is more subtle in regular city driving. The acceleration in general is much slower than it used to be, but the kicking worries me more.

Finally, if this make sense, the car seems to be overall more "rumbly" than it used to be. Just sitting in park, the engine is noticeably louder, and when driving, the vibrations seems to be stronger than my car used to be.

If anyone can give me any advice, however small, I would appreciate it. I do not want to take the car to a mechanic completely blind because I know the mechanic will consider it a free-for-all on my bank account.

Why does my car momentarily lose power after shifting gears?

You've asked several questions here...and also given some information that may have an impact on the answers you might get.   You mention that the clutch is about to "go".  If this is the case, it is typically manifested by "clutch slip" which is when you press the accelerator and the engine speeds up, but the car doesn't go any faster..i.e. the clutch is "slipping" against the flywheel/pressure plate without transferring the increased rpm of the engine to the transmission.  If the clutch is indeed slipping, then this phenomenon is most noticeable right after you change gears, because your putting more demands on the engine (i.e. accelerating) and attempting to put more torque from the engine into the transmission (via the clutch) which causes it to slip more than it might in steady-state driving at a constant speed.   If you are experiencing a slipping clutch you most likely need to replace it and afterward the car should accelerate smoothly and there will be a synchronicity between engine speed and car speed.Now, if your clutch is NOT slipping and your experiencing a perceived loss of power after shifting gears, it may just be that the engine rpm are dropping off too far before you reengage the clutch and resume acceleration.  If this is the case, you may be taking too much time between disengaging the clutch (by pressing the clutch pedal) and re-engaging it (by lifting off the clutch pedal)  When shifting gears, the clutch pedal should be pressed and released fairly quickly as part of a smooth, movement synchronized with moving the shift lever from one gear to the next. If you are pausing in the middle of the shift, or taking too long to reengage the clutch, the engine rpm will fall and the engine will be making less power than it was at the higher rpm level it was when you initiated your gear change.  The idea is to keep the engine in a range of rpm that produces enough power to smoothly take up the level of acceleration you're trying to achieve while changing up through the gears.

Why does my car jerk slightly when shifting into reverse?

all automatics do this. Regardless of gear the magnitude, the jerk is a function of drivetrain and suspension slop, clutch pressure and condition, clutch engagement setting, transmission fluid properties, idle speed.If the jerk is extreme and changes engine RPM by more than 100RPM, you certainly have a problem. beware, it’s easy to get either ripped off or spend heavily. Start by checking idle speed, then inspecting/changing fluid, then inspecting suspension. then check the transmission and drivetrain for slop, wear, damage, starting at a driveshaft shop.Your low mileage car could suffer from the hands of an abusive and jerky driver, a driver who spent long hours shearing transmission fluid stopped in traffic, or a transmission defect.Without mechanical service, you can reduce the jerk by not stepping on the brake as you change gears, and shifting to neutral every time you must idle for more than 20 seconds.

Why is my clutch kicking out of first gear?

Sounds like the shift linkage. If the linkage gets out of adjustment (which it shouldn't, but I've had crappy dealership mechanics work on my cars before), it may have trouble shifting all the way into gear - especially since first gear has a longer throw (the shifter has to move further.) Sometimes, if you're not quite all the way in gear, the torque of the engine will pop it out again (and make that nasty grinding sound!) I had this problem recently with my '01 Focus - adjusting the linkage cures it.

Otherwise, it could be that the synchromesh has worn out, and it's not actually going into gear all the time. If the gears haven't matched speeds inside the gearbox, it will attempt to stop you from completing the gear change until the gears are up to speed. If you then release the shifter, the teeth on the gears (actually, the dogteeth on the synchro rings) can be touching, but not meshed together - giving you that sound we all love to hate.

Around what RPM do you shift gears?

I recently bought myself a 2012 Camaro. My previous car was a '98 Mustang GT and I would generally shift around the 3,000 RPM mark. I try to shift when I hit the 2,500 mark or so on my Camaro but every now and then the urge to have a little fun kicks in. Am I harming the engine or car by waiting to shift while hitting say 4 or 5,000, if only for a few seconds? I have a V6 model that's less capable than an SS of course. Any answers are appreciated.

Everytime I take a Left turn my Transmission slips and kicks back into gear when I straighten up?

Get some one to fix your dangerous car immediately and do not drive it anymore until you get it fixed..

best to call a mobile repair business or get it towed in to a shop

DO NOY DRIVE IT UNTILL ITS FIXED your endangering yourself and others on the road

The bolts deep down in the steering column are loose there are 4 of them...

it involves having it disassembled by a good tech/mechanic who has done these before and having them removed one at a time then Lock Tite (Blue) applied to the bolts and reinstall and tighten them to specs and then having column reassembled

I had a customer with same problem 5 years ago on a 1990 Chevy 4X4 with the tilt column

Walt