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Manual Transmission Hard to Shift into First Gear

Transmission issue symptoms
From a stop, the manual transmission hard to shift into first gear, but no grinding sound is heard. If this problem happens to you it only indicates a severely misadjusted clutch linkage.

The reason why you cannot ship into first gear
(1) Severely misadjusted clutch linkage.
Severely misadjusted clutch linkage.
When you step on the clutch pedal, the clutch linkage is supposed to disengage the clutch so you'll be able to shift into gear. Specifically, the clutch linkage causes the clutch disc to pull away from something called the flywheel (i.e. the two parts become disconnected). If the clutch linkage is just somewhat out of adjustment, grinding usually results when shifting into first gear but most likely you're still able to get the vehicle into first.

However, as is indicated in the problem, manual transmission hard to shift into first gear and grinding doesn't occur when you try. This generally means the clutch linkage is severely out of adjustment. This is not suggesting this is positively the cause of this problem but rather that it's a very likely cause. There are other possible causes but most are difficult to diagnose by anyone other than a qualified mechanic.

How to Identify Transmission Problem Symptoms in Your Vehicle
Experiencing issues with your vehicle's transmission? Learn how to identify common transmission problem symptoms with this helpful guide.
Read more » Transmission Problem

What to do?
First, see if you can shift the car into second gear from a stop. With some cars, this will be possible even though shifting into first is impossible. Shifting into second from a stop means that you won't have to get the car towed. If this doesn't work, have it towed to a garage specializing in clutch work.

We suggest finding a reputable car repair shop to do the job. Ask the mechanic to adjust the clutch linkage. If this doesn't fix the problem, a "teardown" of the clutch assembly will probably be required and unfortunately, this won't be cheap.

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