2011 tdi sportwagen 60k miles, driven very nicely for atleast 20k miles(when i bought it).

Im having a strange noise that only happens when the clutch is out and the engine is idling, definitely coming from the tranny side of the engine. The noise goes from loud to barely hearable randomly(usually its quiet) with no relation to being cold or warm.The slightest pressure on the clutch makes the sound go away.Im thinking its not a bearing but either the flywheel or clutch? i'm just scratching my head with the loudness coming and going? The sound is very consistent and follows crankshaft speed? I would describe it as a tick/scrapish kinda sound? Sounds exactly like a bad bearing?

To add there is 0 road going noise and the car drives perfect. Clutch feels the same as 40k

  • sounds like you had a diesel scandal done to your car xD I had that too! and since I had that car for past couple of months my dealership replaced first alternator, battery, both lover control arms throw out bearing Brake master cylinder, slave cylinder and clutch slave/release brg. causing leakage from my bell housing xD and thats just 6 months that ive used the car for !! now im looking for a way to undo the diesel scandal fix and cannot find one :( retunning car doesnt seem to work neither flashing back to stock BTW: if you had the diesel scandal done just address your concern to local VW a
    – Michal
    Sep 12, 2019 at 17:15

2 Answers 2


You may find that the throw-out bearing is the culprit, based on your description. As you've noted, slight pressure on the pedal causes the bearing to seat in the races, creating quiet.

When that pressure is gone, the bearing should not be spinning, but it might be. The spinning without load means there is contact somewhere. The slight contact load is causing the throw-out bearing to "bounce around" in the wear channels generating the noise you hear.

Even if light contact is normal and the bearing is designed to spin without load, yours sounds like it's on the way out.

  • Hmm but shoudlnt the bearing howl when you stop, put it in 1st with clutch in and rev the engine up? I want to say its the dual mass flywheel but its a very light sound very light as not a pounding against the bellhousing kinda sound
    – DatsunZ1
    Sep 12, 2019 at 19:11

I have seen one of the fingers that the release bearing rides against get partially dislocated, and hit the bearing and arm.

Unfortunately, one almost has to pull the tranny to diagnose.

One thing you could try is one of the flexible neck cameras and feed it in through the timing hole at the top of the bell housing. It will take a little fiddling to move the camera around, but you might get a better view of what is going on.

You could also pull the starter and look in through that hole. I have done that with two mirrors. The camera on the flexible neck will likely be easier.

My car parts store "rents" (for a deposit) out the camera, so looking cam be a no-cost option.

  • How obvious will the bent finger be? i have a camera so will definitely peak through the hole and see what i can! Do you think i could diagnose the dmf through the timing port and or starter port? thanks!
    – DatsunZ1
    Sep 16, 2019 at 15:24
  • 1
    In my experience you would see it. While you are there also look at the debris in there. FWIW, one clutch was missing 4 fingers which destructed. lots of metal particles, and the pieces were in the bell housing. You may have nothing to really worry about, but it's always nice to have a better idea. Get the camera on the end of the neck. Oh, I have not been able to really see the condition of a DMF that way.
    – mongo
    Sep 16, 2019 at 15:42
  • Did you get a chance to look yet? When you do, take a look, or even smear off some of the dust inside the bell housing. If you are really concerned about the DMF (I guess I would be-I don't like their reliability) you could slowly have someone turn the engine through while you are inspecting with the camera, and look for scuff marks.
    – mongo
    Sep 18, 2019 at 13:10

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