Flywheel Resurfacing: What Every Truck Owner Should Know

July 26, 2021 3:44 pm Published by Leave your thoughts

Like any automobile or piece of heavy machinery, a semi-truck needs its share of maintenance. This includes routine pre-trip and post-trip inspections, as well as replacing any components as needed. One particularly unique from of trucking maintenance is the flywheel inspection.

The flywheel in a semi-truck is a gear-like metallic disc that sits between the transmission and the clutch. It works in tandem with the clutch to receive and supply power to and from the transmission and the engine. Because it’s used constantly, the flywheel is subject to its share of wear and tear. Here’s what you need to know about the flywheel resurfacing process.

What are the signs that a flywheel needs to be resurfaced?

While it’s true you should have your truck’s flywheel inspected regularly, sometimes the truck itself will tell you there’s an issue. Here are some signs there’s a problem with the flywheel:

  • Gears that slip: The flywheel is a crucial part that helps with the clutch’s connection between the transmission and the engine. If you notice gears that slip or a delay when switching gears, it could mean extra stress is being applied to your flywheel, and this could cause damage.
  • You smell something burning: If shifting gears causes a burning odor to appear, this could mean there’s a complication with your clutch and/or your flywheel. A burnt rubber or electrical burning smell usually means it’s the clutch, while a burnt toast smell indicates it’s the flywheel.
  • Your clutch trembles or shivers: This can also be referred to as chattering or vibrating. Shifting gears should be a smooth process. If you’re experiencing a vibration underfoot and/or a shuddering sensation when you change gears, you likely have issues with your clutch and/or your flywheel.

What does flywheel resurfacing entail?

Over time, your semi-truck’s flywheel will be subject to copious amounts of friction and heat. As with any surface, this repeated exposure can lead to weaknesses, blisters or cracks on the flywheel. This occurs because the heat isn’t distributed evenly and keeps wearing on the same spots.

The resurfacing process, as the name implies, uses a machine to trim an extremely thin layer of metal off of the flywheel’s surface. This removes the worn and cracked metal on top and exposes the more even and more suitable metal surface to the disk. It also offers added friction, because the new surface is made coarse instead of smooth.

How long does it take to resurface a flywheel?

This depends on several factors, ranging from the size of your truck to the type of resurfacing you elect to use. For example, simply grinding your flywheel’s surface can usually be done in under five minutes.

However, if you use the cutting method for flywheel resurfacing, this requires the use of a brake lathe, and the process will take considerably longer due to the amount of time it takes to set that up and make sure the flywheel is aligned correctly.

Call for flywheel resurfacing today

It’s helpful to know some signs that your flywheel might be having trouble and how often you should be conducting regular flywheel inspections. Understanding what the flywheel resurfacing process involves and how long it takes can aid you in the upkeep of your semi-truck.

For flywheel resurfacing and any other problems your truck may have, give us a call at Complete Truck Service, Inc. We can help with any inspections or maintenance your semi-truck requires, and that includes flywheel resurfacing!

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