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Old 01-26-2009, 07:14 PM
406 ss monte's Avatar
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my brakes suck, i need help bad

i'm working on my wife's 85 monte carlo that has a bone stock 305 in it. every thing is stock.

about two years ago i change front rotors & pads & it just didn't seem right. well i lived with it, but about a month or so ago i change front pads & rear shoes. the back brakes started locking up a little in my gravel driveway going down hill. i had never put rear shoes on it so i put them on too thinking that might fix that. well it still does it. after i go down the road about a 1/4 mile the rear brakes stop locking up. i checked them & loosened them up, made sure they were clean & they were clean other than brake dust. no grease or brake fluid on them at all.

the brake pedal just sucks. it has for two years now. the pedal will go down about half way & then it starts getting real hard to mash. i can mash it hard & the car doesn't slow down that much. i can slam them & they wont grab hard like they should. they will not lock up at all. i changed the brake booster tonight & that was a waist of time, just as bad as it was.

can the master cylinder do this? what about the proportioning valve?

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Old 01-26-2009, 08:52 PM
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I assume youve bled the brakes and checked all the rubber hoses. They can swell and preven the pressure buildup at the caliper.
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Old 01-27-2009, 06:46 AM
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sounds like the booster is not working, hard power brakes is an indicator, do some research for yourself at this link, I am not connected with that company but when I find ACCURATE information I try to spread the word

http://www.mpbrakes.com/technical-su...r-boosters.cfm
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Old 01-27-2009, 09:33 AM
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First thing I always suggest is stop using those cheapo $8 pads, even though they are lifetime guaranteed.
Who cares, if "lifetime" ends at the next block when you plow into somebody?

They will never be worth a damn for stopping,
their ought to be a law against selling that garbage,
and those cheapo made rotors too.

I suggest Wagner Thermoquiet pads, install them properly, and break them in properly.

Be careful of high performance pads and hype.
Some won't stop well when cold, and only begin to perform when they build up heat.

JMO

added
Installed properly means TURNING THE ROTORS AND DRUMS, and breaking them in properly, and flushing the fluid.
You cannot put new pads on old rotors and expect to have brakes.

What you have is glazed pads because they were put on shiney rotors.
Throw them away.

Last edited by ScoTFrenzel; 01-27-2009 at 09:42 AM.
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Old 01-27-2009, 01:28 PM
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Replace the vacuum hose to the booster. Make sure to use 11/32" vacuum brake hose specifically. It will seal on the hose connections and hold up internally longer than most vacuum hose. It is available at most parts houses.
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Old 01-27-2009, 01:50 PM
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I agree with the above, cheap pads dont pay off. I also like the Thermo Quiets.
When you changed the pads did you clean and lubricate the pad sliding surface. Also if it has the pins that float in the caliper are they free. We sand blast all caliper mounts so the pads will sit in and slide freely. This can also be accomplished using a fine file or rotary disk tool. You should NEVER have to modify new pads. I have see them that someone used a grinder on instead of properly cleaning the caliper and caliper mounts. You could also have a brake hose issue, but that will usually not cause a low pedal, rather it will generally cause a high hard pedal. Usually a low pedal is caused by air in the lines or poorly adjusted rear shoes. The rears that drag is usually fluid on the pads or something is assembled wrong.
You need to have someone who understands brakes look at this, brakes are nothing to fool with.
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Old 01-30-2009, 02:02 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by 406 ss monte
i'm working on my wife's 85 monte carlo that has a bone stock 305 in it. every thing is stock.

about two years ago i change front rotors & pads & it just didn't seem right. well i lived with it, but about a month or so ago i change front pads & rear shoes. the back brakes started locking up a little in my gravel driveway going down hill. i had never put rear shoes on it so i put them on too thinking that might fix that. well it still does it. after i go down the road about a 1/4 mile the rear brakes stop locking up. i checked them & loosened them up, made sure they were clean & they were clean other than brake dust. no grease or brake fluid on them at all.

the brake pedal just sucks. it has for two years now. the pedal will go down about half way & then it starts getting real hard to mash. i can mash it hard & the car doesn't slow down that much. i can slam them & they wont grab hard like they should. they will not lock up at all. i changed the brake booster tonight & that was a waist of time, just as bad as it was.

can the master cylinder do this? what about the proportioning valve?
Does it keep the "Brake" light on the dash lit when the parking brake is off? If it does, this is a sign that the system is unbalanced. This is common with brake jobs where the pistons were backed off for the R&R and not carefully pumped back when the job was completed. The solution here is bleeding the master to reset the piston position.

The pedal going down then getting hard is a sign that the vacuum booster is out to lunch.

Rear barkes grabbing in reverse is a sign of several possible things with drum brakes.
- The primary and secondary shoes are reversed.

- The automatic adjusters are reversed left side to right side or they
are installed backwards.

- The backing plate is worn out, there are dimples that support the
side of the brake shoe's metal base; these are a metal to metal
wear point needing periodic lubrication. Normal wear groves these
and the brake shoe base will get caught in these wear grooves,
snapping into and out of the groove.

- The return springs are shot. When dropped on a hard floor surface
these springs should ring. If one thuds, a new one is needed.

Bogie
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Old 02-01-2009, 08:16 PM
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One thing I remember about my plow truck was that the junction block had needed to be "reset". Follow the lines from the master down to the frame. You should find a junction block where those two lines split. IIRC, on the top left side of it, you'll find a little "pin" type of deal. If you can, push it back in if it's in the out position, then re-bleed your lines. Worked for my situation, hopefully it will for yours as well.....

In a while, Chet.
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Old 02-04-2009, 03:39 PM
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well i put on a proportioning valve & it helped the front brakes, but the back still locks up.

i took the brake booster off my 85 ss monte carlo & put it on her 85 ss monte carlo. i know it was good. same thing with both boosters.

the brake light has not came on.
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Old 02-04-2009, 04:08 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by 406 ss monte
well i put on a proportioning valve & it helped the front brakes, but the back still locks up.

i took the brake booster off my 85 ss monte carlo & put it on her 85 ss monte carlo. i know it was good. same thing with both boosters.

the brake light has not came on.
You may still want to bleed the master, the light will come on if there is disparity in the rest position of the master's piston. However, if there is air in the master cylinder bore itself the light may not come on to that, while the pedal will be weird as will the brake action.

Without a pressure bleeder tool, the process isn't a lot different from wheel cylinder bleeding. First get some extra brake fluid and a roll of aluminum foil. Use the foil to form a catch basin under the master that collects the spill fluid you'll make and direct it away to can or bottle for catchment.

With the proper size fitting wrench and a helper sitting in the car, loosen the front fitting and have the helper slowly push the pedal all the way down. Then close the fitting and have the helper slowly allow the pedal to raise while you keep the fluid topped up. If there were bubbles, you'll want to do this till there are none. Then go to the rear fitting and repeat the process.
Slow action on the pedal is key, quick movements can trip the BRAKE light in which case you go thru this process till you put it out.

After this it's also a good idea to bleed the wheel cylinders as well.

Bogie
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Old 02-04-2009, 04:51 PM
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i'll try bleeding the MS this weekend. also, i'm going to check the rear brakes one more time for anything i might have over looked.
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