How to Bleed a Saturn Ion Clutch

by Frank Whittemore

The clutch assembly in a Saturn Ion is hydraulic system and consists of a master cylinder, the hydraulic line and the slave cylinder. When the clutch pedal is depressed, the master cylinder is actuated. This transmits force through the hydraulic line to the slave cylinder, which disengages the clutch. When the clutch pedal is released, the hydraulic pressure returns to its original state and the clutch engages. If air gets in the clutch assembly, it will compress, preventing the clutch from disengaging. To resolve the problem, the clutch assembly will need to be bled to remove the air from the system.


Locate the bleeder valve on the slave cylinder. Loosen the bleeder valve with the box end wrench until you notice fluid dripping out of the valve.


Place one end of the plastic tubing on the nipple of the bleeder valve. Place the other end in the glass jar. Pour some brake fluid in the jar. Ensure that the end of the tubing is below the surface of the fluid.


Use the wrench to completely open the bleeder valve.


Ensure that the fluid reservoir is full. Have someone pump the clutch pedal several times, then hold the pedal down.


Watch the plastic tubing until all of the air runs out of the system. Refill the reservoir, as needed, and do not let it become empty.


Close the bleeder valve and pump and hold the clutch pedal again. Open the bleeder valve again. Repeat this procedure until no air is coming out of the valve.


Tighten the bleeder valve and release the clutch pedal. Check the fluid reservoir again and top it off, if necessary.

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