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Vauxhall Chevette
Brakes trouble shooter
How to use a pedal

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FAULT CAUSE CURE
Excessive brake pedal travel 1. Brakes need adjusting or replacement. 1. Adjust or renew brake shoes.
2. Air in system. 2. Bleed hydraulic system.
3. Leaking or contaminated fluid. 3. Bleed hydraulic system.
4. Faulty master cylinder. 4. Fit new master cylinder.
Brake fade 1. Incorrect pad or lining material. 1. Fit new pads or shoes.
2. Old or contaminated fluid. 2. Renew brake fluid.
3. Excessive use of brakes or car overloaded. 3. Check vehicle load.
Spongy brake pedal 1. Air in hydraulic system. 1. Bleed system.
2. Shoes badly lined or distorted. 2. Fit new pads or shoes.
3. Faulty hydraulic cylinder. 3. Check hydraulic circuit.
Brake pedal too hard 1. Seized wheel cylinder or caliper piston. 1. Replace seized component.
2. Glazed friction material. 2. Fit new shoes/pads.
3. No clearance on master cylinder operating rod. 3. Adjust push rod if possible.
Brake pedal requires pumping or pedal sinks to floor 1. Brakes wrongly adjusted. 1. Adjust brakes.
2. Air in hydraulic system. 2. Bleed system.
3. Fluid leak from component or brake pipe. 3. Check hydraulic circuit and replace parts as necessary.
4. Loss of fluid from master cylinder. 4. Check hydraulic circuit and replace parts as necessary.
5. Seized caliper piston. 5. Replace caliper.
Brakes grab when applied 1. Contaminated friction material. 1. Replace (don't clean) pads or shoes.
2. Wrong linings fitted. 2. Replace (don't clean) pads or shoes.
3. Scored drums or discs. 3. Fit new drum or disc.
4. Rusty drums or discs. 4. Clean or replace drums or discs.
Brake squeal 1. Worn retaining pins (disc.) 1. Fit new pins.
2. Faulty damping shims or shoe retaining clips. 2. Fit new shims or clips.
3. Dust in drum. 3. Remove dust from drums/shoe.
4. Loose backplate or caliper. 4. Tighten caliper or backplate.
5. Linings contaminated with brake fluid or hub grease. 5. Replace leaking cylinder and contaminated shoes or pads.
Brake judder 1. Distorted discs or drums. 1. Replace discs or drums.
2. No clearance at master cylinder operating rod. 2. Adjust rod if possible.
3. Shoe tension springs either broken or weak. 3. Replace tension springs.
4. Wheel cylinder or caliper piston seizing. 4. Fit new caliper or cylinder.
5. Faulty self-adjusting mechanism. 5. Check mechanism.
6. Seized handbrake mechanism. 6. Check handbrake operation.
Brake pull to one side 1. Contaminated friction material on one side (grease, oil or brake fluid.) 1. Replace shoes/pads in axle sets.
2. Loose backplate. 2. Tighten backplate.
3. Seized cylinder. 3. Replace seized cylinder.
4. Faulty suspension or steering. 4. Check suspension and steering.
Handbrake ineffective 1. Worn rear shoes or pads. 1. Fit new pads/shoes.
2. Brakes require adjusting. 2. Adjust brakes.
3. Faulty handbrake linkage. 3. Check linkage and operating mechanism.
4. Cable or rod requires adjustment. 4. Adjust cable or rod.
Servo (where fitted) late in operation 1. Blocked filter. 1. Clean or replace filter.
2. Bad vacuum sealing or restricted air inlet. 2. Tighten vacuum hose connections and check hoses.
Loss of servo action 1. Air leak in servo -- vacuum low. 1. Either overhaul servo or replace.
Loss of fluid (Servo only) 1. Servo seal failure. 1. Replace or overhaul servo.
2. Scored servo bore. 2. Replace or overhaul servo.
Loss of fluid -- general 1. Wheel cylinder or caliper seal failure. 1. Replace wheel cylinder/caliper.
2. Damaged or corroded fluid pipes. 2. Inspect and fit new pipes.


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