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Old 12-03-2007, 05:35 PM
jor jor is offline
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Brake Push Rod Adjustment

Well, it ain't a hotrod but I'm still hoping for some advice. My 87 suburban was up on blocks for months and during that time I replaced the front & rear brakes, cylinders, calipers, booster and master cylinder. I have been struggling to overcome a low pedal and thought it was air in the lines. After bleeding it a couple of hundred times and even taking it to a local brake shop for a vacuum bleed, I determined that there just ain't no air in the thing. About out of ideas, I took off the booster and adjusted the push rod out about five turns. I put it back together and now I have a high pedal but not much in the way of brakes. I figure I'm on the right track but how do I get this adjustment right?

The book says 33" eye to eye but the rod has one eye where it connects to the brake pedal and then disappears into the booster. The little push rod on the master cylinder side is not adjustable. Thanks.

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Old 12-03-2007, 05:51 PM
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How sure are you that the new booster is not defective?
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Old 12-03-2007, 05:53 PM
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The low pedal is usually a indication that the shoes need do have shoes on the rear don't you? If so adjust them manually....the automatic adjusters sometimes do not always work. Or you could back up and stop hard a couple dozen times and see if that makes a differance....that should do it if the auto adjusters are free and working properly.
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Old 12-03-2007, 06:32 PM
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I'm pretty sure the booster is good as it hold vacuum and it is definitely assisting. Re the rear shoes, they are adjusted properly, maybe even a bit tight and I've done the back and stop a bunch of times. The thing is that the pedal stayed low for everything I've tried except the push rod adjustment. I made it about 1/4" longer and immediately got a hard pedal but not good braking. I figured I adjusted it too long so I'm looking for the right method to adjust it properly. Thanks for your replies.
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Old 12-05-2007, 05:23 PM
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The clearance between the pushrod from the master cylinder to the booster should be very very small, several thousandths only.
We had this same problem on the Track Car and solved it by remounting the master cylinder with a much tighter clearance and readjusting the pedal to booster shaft/pushrod.
Worked dramatically well after correct adjustment done, even better after a real correct adjustment of both front and rear drum brakes.

One other thing to look at is the ID of the drums, if they are used. The maximum ID is cast into the edge of the drum on the wheel side. Some drums CAN be cut as much as 1/8" or more making the drum a full 1/4" or more larger, way out beyond safety specs, and giving a poor braking due to giant clearances and potential swelling of thin drums due to heat buildup.
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