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Civic drum brakes #4602483
12/13/17 10:47 AM
12/13/17 10:47 AM
Joined: Jan 2012
Posts: 208
NY
greasegunn Offline OP
greasegunn  Offline OP
Joined: Jan 2012
Posts: 208
NY
So I struggled through a rear drum brake shoe replacement on my 2010 civic. Disassembly was rather straightforward except for removing the drums which had been on since 2010 in the rust belt. I took my time and got them off.

Re-installation was more of the problem. After securing the front shoe to the backing plate with the spring clip I moved on to the rear shoe. I attached the upper spring between the two shoes and then pulled the back shoe into place. However, there was a lot of play in the cylinder piston and the rear piston popped out. I eventually got the shoe on but Iím wondering if there is a trick to this? Would cracking the bleeder valve have stopped the piton from moving?. Is there and easier way? I pretty much followed the factory service manual procedure. While Iím not likely going to have to do this again on my car I may have to do my sonís car in the next few years so any tips you have would truly be appreciated. Thanks in advance for your help.

Re: Civic drum brakes [Re: greasegunn] #4602492
12/13/17 11:04 AM
12/13/17 11:04 AM
Joined: Sep 2004
Posts: 7,803
Marshfield , MA
andyd Offline
andyd  Offline
Joined: Sep 2004
Posts: 7,803
Marshfield , MA
Drum brakes are a pain. I don't work on them enough to get the process down. One thing I do is to get the drums off both sides but to work one side only so you have something to look at. The last 2 jobs, IIRC, I started off with new hardware. Cheap enough for a Ford or a GM. Also make sure the e-brake cables are free. I have a few funny looking tools to work on the springs and clips. You can do them with screwdrivers and pliers, but why struggle? As for the pistons and cups. I make sure I can open the bleeder, or the cylinder gets added to the parts list.


'16 Camry LE STP synth 0w20 and STP filter. the Fridge

1994 Ranger ,the Rat, 5w30 dino, STP filter

'16 Camry SE, Valvoline HM 0w20 and OEM filter
Thick oil is better grin2
Re: Civic drum brakes [Re: greasegunn] #4602509
12/13/17 11:32 AM
12/13/17 11:32 AM
Joined: May 2012
Posts: 100
Marietta, GA
TOMJ Offline
TOMJ  Offline
Joined: May 2012
Posts: 100
Marietta, GA
Drum brakes are a PITA. Having owned our '93 Civic since it was new, I have done the rear brakes several times and each time I struggle with the same issue.
You just have to go slow, take your time and try not to get too frustrated.
It is also a good idea to get a new hardware kit as those springs do tend to stretch a little over the years.


1992 GMC C1500 Mobil 1 HM
1993 Honda Civic Mobil 1 HM

2007 Honda VTX1300 R Mobil Delvac 1300

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Re: Civic drum brakes [Re: greasegunn] #4602519
12/13/17 11:46 AM
12/13/17 11:46 AM
Joined: Jun 2002
Posts: 6,438
MI
doitmyself Offline
doitmyself  Offline
Joined: Jun 2002
Posts: 6,438
MI
I had the same problem (piston pop out) a few weeks ago on my Patriot. Live and learn.

The video below shows the problem and the method he used to get around it, starting around minute 7:10. I used a combination of screwdrivers and c-clamp vise grips to lock the shoes from pushing the pistons out the other side. Hopefully a pro will share his tricks.


Re: Civic drum brakes [Re: greasegunn] #4602641
12/13/17 02:36 PM
12/13/17 02:36 PM
Joined: Nov 2016
Posts: 1,283
WI
HoosierJeeper Offline
HoosierJeeper  Offline
Joined: Nov 2016
Posts: 1,283
WI
Only drum brake experience I have is with parking brakes (the ones that work in the rotor hat) and I loathe it.

Here's how I recommend how to do drum brakes
1. Call your favorite shop
2. Drop vehicle off

That way if there's any noises or anything, you take it back. Doesn't cost you 2 weekends of trouble shooting. I'd also recommend OEM drums, many if not most aftermarket ones are out of round from the factory, so do check them and true them up if need be.


15 Jeep KL Limited V6: Formula Shell 5W20
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Re: Civic drum brakes [Re: greasegunn] #4602761
12/13/17 05:04 PM
12/13/17 05:04 PM
Joined: Mar 2008
Posts: 7,312
USA
slacktide_bitog Online content
slacktide_bitog  Online Content
Joined: Mar 2008
Posts: 7,312
USA
You may be able to convert to rear discs, and there is probably a how-to guide somewhere. It's easier to do on some cars than others, and I;m not sure where your Civic falls in that spectrum.

Re: Civic drum brakes [Re: greasegunn] #4602787
12/13/17 05:43 PM
12/13/17 05:43 PM
Joined: Sep 2015
Posts: 1,589
USA
mk378 Online content
mk378  Online Content
Joined: Sep 2015
Posts: 1,589
USA
Every car is a bit different but I have found it often works to hook up the big springs on the top and bottom first, then fold the shoes down against the backing plate. Then install the nails and clips that hold them down. This is a lot easier than trying to stretch the springs into place.

Re: Civic drum brakes [Re: greasegunn] #4602816
12/13/17 06:21 PM
12/13/17 06:21 PM
Joined: Oct 2014
Posts: 12,558
Idaho
CT8 Offline
CT8  Offline
Joined: Oct 2014
Posts: 12,558
Idaho
The secret is,,, you have to be smarter than the brakes.


2015 Ford F150 2.7
2018 Ford F350 6.2
Re: Civic drum brakes [Re: greasegunn] #4603100
12/14/17 04:15 AM
12/14/17 04:15 AM
Joined: Jun 2015
Posts: 537
New York
NoNameJoe Offline
NoNameJoe  Offline
Joined: Jun 2015
Posts: 537
New York
Quote:
Would cracking the bleeder valve have stopped the piton from moving?

Something to also keep in mind is that there's a spring inside the wheel cylinder. It pushes outward so that even when the hydraulic effect is not there, the cups inside push on the pistons and the whole thing doesn't tilt in the bore into some weird position where fluid and pressure could leak. Even if the wheel cylinder were completely void of fluid, pushing on one end is going to push on the other.

On the bleeder question, if there were a large amount of fluid, opening up the bleeder would have lessened the hydraulic effect on the other piston, whether you pushed one piston in manually or did it at the pedal with the master cylinder, it would be an open in the brake circuit, the fluid is going to go the path of least resistance out the bleeder than than push on the other components as much.

Another way to consider it is if you left the bleeder open and pushed on the pedal, do you expect the wheel cylinder on that corner to compress the shoes in any meaningful way? I don't think it would unless you push so quickly that you overcome the size of the leak and the rate at which fluid is lost, which is in this case the opening of the bleeder. But when you're pushing on the piston at the cylinder you're probably exerting smooth, slow pressure, so yes this might have helped. What you're describing is similar to how it's easier to push the caliper piston in when the bleeder is cracked open on front brakes.


2015 Civic LX Coupe
Re: Civic drum brakes [Re: greasegunn] #4603106
12/14/17 04:30 AM
12/14/17 04:30 AM
Joined: Jan 2011
Posts: 2,826
N.Ohio
Lubener Offline
Lubener  Offline
Joined: Jan 2011
Posts: 2,826
N.Ohio
Never had that happen. Cracking open bleeder might have helped but the internal spring would put pressure on the other piston. I would have been more upset with all the brake fluid getting on my new shoes. No big deal to reassemble the cylinder and bleed.


The "thinking" man's friend.
Re: Civic drum brakes [Re: doitmyself] #4603118
12/14/17 05:28 AM
12/14/17 05:28 AM
Joined: Jan 2012
Posts: 208
NY
greasegunn Offline OP
greasegunn  Offline OP
Joined: Jan 2012
Posts: 208
NY
Originally Posted By: doitmyself
I had the same problem (piston pop out) a few weeks ago on my Patriot. Live and learn.

The video below shows the problem and the method he used to get around it, starting around minute 7:10. I used a combination of screwdrivers and c-clamp vise grips to lock the shoes from pushing the pistons out the other side. Hopefully a pro will share his tricks.


I saw this video - was not impressed with the zip tie solution - but gets an "B" for creativity - if he could have incorporated duct tape he would have got an "A" grin


Perhaps your idea of using C-Clamps to secure the shoes is the way to go. I've also thought about stretching the spring and inserting spacers to keep it elongated and then install the elongated spring and then remove the spacers

Re: Civic drum brakes [Re: TOMJ] #4603123
12/14/17 05:31 AM
12/14/17 05:31 AM
Joined: Jan 2012
Posts: 208
NY
greasegunn Offline OP
greasegunn  Offline OP
Joined: Jan 2012
Posts: 208
NY
Originally Posted By: doitmyself
I had the same problem (piston pop out) a few weeks ago on my Patriot. Live and learn.

The video below shows the problem and the method he used to get around it, starting around minute 7:10. I used a combination of screwdrivers and c-clamp vise grips to lock the shoes from pushing the pistons out the other side. Hopefully a pro will share his tricks.


I saw this video - was not impressed with the zip tie solution - but gets an "B" for creativity - if he could have incorporated duct tape he would have got an "A" grin


Perhaps your idea of using C-Clamps to secure the shoes is the way to go. I've also thought about stretching the spring and inserting spacers to keep it elongated and then install the elongated spring and then remove the spacers
Originally Posted By: TOMJ
Drum brakes are a PITA. Having owned our '93 Civic since it was new, I have done the rear brakes several times and each time I struggle with the same issue.
You just have to go slow, take your time and try not to get too frustrated.
It is also a good idea to get a new hardware kit as those springs do tend to stretch a little over the years.


Thanks for your feedback. I did use new springs, retainers, and c-clips. The self adjusters looked OK and I simply cleaned them up a reused them to save some $.

Re: Civic drum brakes [Re: slacktide_bitog] #4603125
12/14/17 05:35 AM
12/14/17 05:35 AM
Joined: Jan 2012
Posts: 208
NY
greasegunn Offline OP
greasegunn  Offline OP
Joined: Jan 2012
Posts: 208
NY
Originally Posted By: doitmyself
I had the same problem (piston pop out) a few weeks ago on my Patriot. Live and learn.

The video below shows the problem and the method he used to get around it, starting around minute 7:10. I used a combination of screwdrivers and c-clamp vise grips to lock the shoes from pushing the pistons out the other side. Hopefully a pro will share his tricks.


I saw this video - was not impressed with the zip tie solution - but gets an "B" for creativity - if he could have incorporated duct tape he would have got an "A" grin


Perhaps your idea of using C-Clamps to secure the shoes is the way to go. I've also thought about stretching the spring and inserting spacers to keep it elongated and then install the elongated spring and then remove the spacers
Originally Posted By: TOMJ
Drum brakes are a PITA. Having owned our '93 Civic since it was new, I have done the rear brakes several times and each time I struggle with the same issue.
You just have to go slow, take your time and try not to get too frustrated.
It is also a good idea to get a new hardware kit as those springs do tend to stretch a little over the years.


Thanks for your feedback. I did use new springs, retainers, and c-clips. The self adjusters looked OK and I simply cleaned them up a reused them to save some $.
Originally Posted By: slacktide_bitog
You may be able to convert to rear discs, and there is probably a how-to guide somewhere. It's easier to do on some cars than others, and I;m not sure where your Civic falls in that spectrum.


Thanks. I looked into this but not sure I want to spend the money. This job was probably the first and last for my 2010 civic as the first set of shoes went 98,000 mi. Not expecting my Civic to go another 7-8 years in the snow belt. More likely to rust out, hit a deer or get in an accident after which it will be considered totaled.

Re: Civic drum brakes [Re: Lubener] #4604359
12/15/17 10:48 AM
12/15/17 10:48 AM
Joined: Jan 2012
Posts: 208
NY
greasegunn Offline OP
greasegunn  Offline OP
Joined: Jan 2012
Posts: 208
NY
Originally Posted By: Lubener
Never had that happen. Cracking open bleeder might have helped but the internal spring would put pressure on the other piston. I would have been more upset with all the brake fluid getting on my new shoes. No big deal to reassemble the cylinder and bleed.


Fortunately the fluid did not hit the friction surface. You are also correct in that it was no biggie to reassemble the cylinder and bleed the brakes. Now cracking the 7 yr old bleeder screw in the rust belt was a bit of an issue - but a bit of PB blaster helped with that.


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