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#1996113 - 08/24/10 10:18 AM Rear drum brake adjustments
Jimmy9190 Online   content


Registered: 02/17/07
Posts: 3004
Loc: Clermont, Florida
Just wondering here-when you adjust rear drum brakes, how tight do you adjust them? I adjusted mine on Sunday, I turned the star wheel so that the tire/wheel makes one full revolution when I spin it with one good hard push on the tire. When I turn the wheel by hand I can just barely hear the drums contacting the shoes. The rear brakes seem a bit tight now but the wheels are not hot to the touch after driving.

This is on my 2001 Dodge Dakota, 3.9 liter V6 and a 5-speed. 134,000 miles on it now. I did the adjustments because I had backed out of a parking space with the parking brake on but was still able to move the truck about 12 feet before I let off the parking brake. I haven't had to adjust it much before now, just a few times in the last 5 years. I still have the original shoes and they still have a good 3/16" of brake material left on them.

So how tight is too tight on the rear drum brakes? Thanks.
_________________________
Jimmy9190
2001 Dodge Dakota, 3.9 V6, 5-speed manual, 171K
Peak 10W30, Fram PH16


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#1996122 - 08/24/10 10:27 AM Re: Rear drum brake adjustments [Re: Jimmy9190]
XS650 Offline



Registered: 12/21/03
Posts: 12385
Loc: Northern CA
Aren't those self adjusting brakes?

If they are manual adjusting brakes, tighten the star wheel until the wheel is hard to turn (to center things
), then back off the star wheel until the wheel just spins freely. The brakes shouldn't be dragging. If it's stopping in one turn from brake drag, that's too tight.

But, it sounds like what you should have done was adjust the parking brake instead of the drums. There should be some adjustment to shorten the parking brake cable.
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Whenever you find yourself on the side of the majority, it is time to pause and reflect.

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#1996125 - 08/24/10 10:30 AM Re: Rear drum brake adjustments [Re: XS650]
Jimmy9190 Online   content


Registered: 02/17/07
Posts: 3004
Loc: Clermont, Florida
That's what I was thinking. I didn't have a lot of time on Sunday when I adjusted the brakes. I will take a better look at the parking brake cable when I get home today. There are adjustments for it too. The brakes are supposed to be self adjusting but that does not work very well.
_________________________
Jimmy9190
2001 Dodge Dakota, 3.9 V6, 5-speed manual, 171K
Peak 10W30, Fram PH16


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#1996180 - 08/24/10 11:25 AM Re: Rear drum brake adjustments [Re: Jimmy9190]
ARCOgraphite Offline


Registered: 05/17/09
Posts: 8484
Loc: N.H, U.S.A.
If the rear drum adjuster mechanism is working, jabbing the brakes whilst reversing at say 5mph once a weak (or so) should keep them adjusted up.
- Recently the (totally inept) toyota service center adjusted my rear brakes so tight that I can barely pull the E-brake handle to engage the first click. And the rear wheels get warm but not hot. All this BC they refused to bleed the system after re-surfacing the rotors when I reported a low pedal (NO pedal problems B4 repairs). Now I fear I will have rear lockup in the rain and snow. Reminds me to do some panic stop tests. Thankfully no ABS!
_________________________
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2014 Forester 6MT 5Door, OC#0 2106mi-FACTORY 0W20(?)+TokyoRoki 160 Filter

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#1996247 - 08/24/10 12:20 PM Re: Rear drum brake adjustments [Re: Jimmy9190]
firefighter Offline


Registered: 09/30/09
Posts: 105
Loc: Pennsylvania
Jimmy9190,
you have it about right, you might loosen up 1 or 2 teeth, however it is tough to tell from the computer. Self adjusters do not keep the brakes adjusted where they should be, they keep it close but you need to fine tune it by hand. Generally speaking you should never have to adjust your ebrake cable unless it is replaced. If you ebrake goes to the floor 99% of the time your rear brakes are out of adjustment.
Arcographite, why would cutting front rotors let air into the system as you are implying. If there was air in you would also have a spongy pedal. It does sound like your rear brakes were just out of adjustment, they may have made them a little tight , also why would they lock up any faster because they are adjusted up?

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#1996330 - 08/24/10 01:20 PM Re: Rear drum brake adjustments [Re: firefighter]
ARCOgraphite Offline


Registered: 05/17/09
Posts: 8484
Loc: N.H, U.S.A.
Originally Posted By: firefighter
...
Arcographite, why would cutting front rotors let air into the system as you are implying. If there was air in you would also have a spongy pedal. It does sound like your rear brakes were just out of adjustment, they may have made them a little tight , also why would they lock up any faster because they are adjusted up?
Well, going in no spongy/low pedal b4 they cut the rotors - assumed they bled the brakes after serviceing. Myself, I Dont bleed when servicing pads - I use a C-clamp to open up the caliper (only rec for NON ABS, not rec for ABS - can cause damage). I dont know what kind of proportioning valve Toyoda uses in the Vitz. Hopefully it will work well. Usually if you have 1 rear drum up tight and the other back a turn or two, in a hard stop the rear that's up will lock first and spin you, IME.
_________________________
2014 Nissan Note S 5MT, OC#0 1165mi-FACTORY 5W30+Nissan China Filter
2014 Forester 6MT 5Door, OC#0 2106mi-FACTORY 0W20(?)+TokyoRoki 160 Filter

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#1996533 - 08/24/10 03:56 PM Re: Rear drum brake adjustments [Re: Jimmy9190]
firefighter Offline


Registered: 09/30/09
Posts: 105
Loc: Pennsylvania
Arcographite,
I still don't understand first post you said they refused to bleed the brakes, then in your reply to my post you said they probably bleed the brakes and that was the cause of the low pedal shrug. Second If you had one rear brake up tight and one Back a turn or two on the adjuster, why would of both wheels have been getting warm as you stated in your first post, if one was that far out to cause a problem as you claim it can than your one wheel should've been cool. I am not trying to start an argument, I just don't like to see people blaming shops all the time, so I am trying to understand what you are saying.

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#1996549 - 08/24/10 04:08 PM Re: Rear drum brake adjustments [Re: firefighter]
mechtech2 Offline


Registered: 09/05/06
Posts: 19479
Loc: Chicago Area
If you adjust them tight, they will eventually wear down to whatever is the limit by the internal adjuster. They will get looser, in other words.
I do not want ANY drag on a drum. 1/8" more pedal travel is not a big deal to me. I may go for a LITTLE drag with brand new shoes - this is OK then.
Drum brakes are adjusted by several ingenious methods. Make sure yours are clean and lubed. Manual adjustments get you close, but they should adjust themselves as you drive [back up, brake normally, use the P brake].

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#1996744 - 08/24/10 07:34 PM Re: Rear drum brake adjustments [Re: mechtech2]
Jimmy9190 Online   content


Registered: 02/17/07
Posts: 3004
Loc: Clermont, Florida
I re-adjusted the brakes tonight, they were really tight, tighter than when I adjusted them on Sunday. I remember on Sunday I could turn each wheel about one full rotation with a good hard push, but tonight neither wheel would go past about half a turn. Either I set them too tight on Sunday and didn't realize it or the self adjusters tightened the shoes further over the last 2 days. Or maybe it's both.

I loosened the adjusters up, I think it's just a shade tighter now than it was before I did the adjusters on Sunday. Each wheel will turn a good 2 & 1/4 rotations now when I give the wheel a good push. And on both wheels I can still barely hear the shoes rubbing the drum. I went to an empty parking lot and did a bunch of forward and reverse stops, enough so that it made me dizzy, and the brakes are working fine and the truck is rolling/moving without any resistance again. I tested the parking brake and it held the truck steady when I applied it and tried to back up.

All is well now. Thanks for all the info here. I think I had the right idea on Sunday but I just tightened the brakes too much.
_________________________
Jimmy9190
2001 Dodge Dakota, 3.9 V6, 5-speed manual, 171K
Peak 10W30, Fram PH16


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#1997251 - 08/25/10 08:59 AM Re: Rear drum brake adjustments [Re: firefighter]
ARCOgraphite Offline


Registered: 05/17/09
Posts: 8484
Loc: N.H, U.S.A.
Originally Posted By: firefighter
Arcographite,
I still don't understand first post you said they refused to bleed the brakes, then in your reply to my post you said they probably bleed the brakes and that was the cause of the low pedal shrug. Second If you had one rear brake up tight and one Back a turn or two on the adjuster, why would of both wheels have been getting warm as you stated in your first post, if one was that far out to cause a problem as you claim it can than your one wheel should've been cool. I am not trying to start an argument, I just don't like to see people blaming shops all the time, so I am trying to understand what you are saying.
Oh the toyota service police on BITOG - watch out! No, some guys at this sevice center are absolutely terrible and moronic and careless and deserve plenty of blame - this is just one instance of many where the car went in for minor service and left the shop with major issues. Furthermore, you did NOT read my posts carefully. You are increasing my blood pressure.
- Background: I was a NIASE master tech in the early eighties so I have some experience.
Toyota serviced the car for front end vibration and resurface the rotors (they should have replaced them). When I got the car back the pedal was low and spongy. I brought the car back and suggested they bleed the brakes (assuming they bled them whilst performing the rotor job.). They said the tech could find NO problem and Toyota did not recommend bleeding the brakes(?!) I said the car was unsafe and they brought it back in. When I got the car back I could barely apply the e-brake to the first click and the rear wheels were slightly dragging and warm but the car was able roll on a slight incline with the brakes off. At the very least the E-barek is not adjusted to spec. At the very MOST they used no logic in the remedy of my problem as the car did not have a low or spongy pedal going into the shop. Spongy typ = air in the line, and jacking up the rear adjuster to compensate for another issue is moronic. Actual order of recent repairs 1) Align front end, 2) mount and bal 2 front tires, 3) remedy warped roors. Visit 2: Repair DS/F wheel bearing. Visit 3: 1) Remedy spongy brakes, 2) remedy low clutch engagement, remedy poor alignment.

I gotto break off and get back to work ...
_________________________
2014 Nissan Note S 5MT, OC#0 1165mi-FACTORY 5W30+Nissan China Filter
2014 Forester 6MT 5Door, OC#0 2106mi-FACTORY 0W20(?)+TokyoRoki 160 Filter

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#1997269 - 08/25/10 09:15 AM Re: Rear drum brake adjustments [Re: ARCOgraphite]
steve20 Offline


Registered: 06/19/07
Posts: 3065
Loc: NJ
so why don't you fix it yourself?


Steve
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Love my 427 Chevy

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#1997380 - 08/25/10 10:55 AM Re: Rear drum brake adjustments [Re: steve20]
ARCOgraphite Offline


Registered: 05/17/09
Posts: 8484
Loc: N.H, U.S.A.
Warranty. only 35K miles. I do minor servicing but nothing major anymore. Plus wheel hub bearing and rotors can get costly.
_________________________
2014 Nissan Note S 5MT, OC#0 1165mi-FACTORY 5W30+Nissan China Filter
2014 Forester 6MT 5Door, OC#0 2106mi-FACTORY 0W20(?)+TokyoRoki 160 Filter

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#1997420 - 08/25/10 11:25 AM Re: Rear drum brake adjustments [Re: Jimmy9190]
firefighter Offline


Registered: 09/30/09
Posts: 105
Loc: Pennsylvania
Arcographite,
I feel sorry for you, I was just trying to clarify sorry if you took it the wrong way, but there is alot of mechanic bashing, some warrented some not. In the begining you said low pedal, not spongy. then you added that in later when I asked How doing rotors would leave air in. Some things were just not adding up, sorry if you had a bad experience at the dealer(why not go to another if it is so bad), but I was trying to peice together what you were saying for my own knowledge.
My backround: my handle is what I do as a volunteer, I am a ASE master certified tech, along with my ASE L1 certification. The shop I work for specializes in electrical testing and tough mechanical problems.

I still don't understand if they bleed the brakes during the service why would this have caused a low pedal? In your original post you said low pedal no mention of spongy then when I asked about that you got defensive and called me the toyota police, I thought that was pretty good though.

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#1997426 - 08/25/10 11:33 AM Re: Rear drum brake adjustments [Re: firefighter]
ARCOgraphite Offline


Registered: 05/17/09
Posts: 8484
Loc: N.H, U.S.A.
Too much Bra-Kleen inhalation will do that to the best of us wink I'm going to stop my thread hijack now. I was getting a bit tired 'bout posting this subject since I had another thread or two alreading going about my service. Look in my post history.
_________________________
2014 Nissan Note S 5MT, OC#0 1165mi-FACTORY 5W30+Nissan China Filter
2014 Forester 6MT 5Door, OC#0 2106mi-FACTORY 0W20(?)+TokyoRoki 160 Filter

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#1997443 - 08/25/10 11:42 AM Re: Rear drum brake adjustments [Re: Jimmy9190]
firefighter Offline


Registered: 09/30/09
Posts: 105
Loc: Pennsylvania
Arcographite,
No harm no foul, atleast out of this jimmy9190 got his brakes adjusted properly smile2. I liked that about huffing to much brake clean that was pretty good.
Have a great day everyone

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