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My Parking / Emergency brake was only grabbing with the brake in the full upright position. Then one day it would not work at all.
(Thanks to Chicago1 for supplying the detailed instructions from a former post)
The shop that did the state inspection stated the only way to fix it was to replace the whole brake handle unit at 246.00 for the part and 2 hours labor at 90.00 an hour. (They were WRONG).
I was advised that the part number for the unit is 10323590 and given the following response.
10323590, the part number you requested has been discontinued and is no longer available from GM. You maybe able to locate one from an aftermarket source, or salvage yard.
10323579 is a valid GM part number and is listed as a lever.
I listed the part number just in case others actually have to replace it............but I find it unlikely.
You have to pull the wheel, remove the caliper
and bracket assy and then the rotor.
Adjust the shoes so there a very slight drag on the drum when you reinstall it. WARNING! If you get the drum too tight, you will NOT get it off again until the brake shoes wear down further!:
Park Brake Adjustment
J 21177-A Drum to Brake Shoe Clearance Gauge
Park brake adjustment is not necessary after replacing the park brake lever or park brake cables. The park brake cables are tensioned automatically by cycling the park brake lever three times.
Do not operate the park brake lever with the rear disc brake rotor removed.
Place the inside measurement contacts of the J 21177-A at the widest point of the drum portion of the brake rotor (1).
Tighten the set screw on the tool in order to ensure the proper measurement when removing the tool from the drum.
Position the outside measurement contacts of the J 21177-A over the park brake shoe (1) at the widest point.
If the gap between the adjuster nut and the adjuster screw exceeds 5 mm (0.25 in) during the adjustment procedure, the park brake shoe must be replaced.
Adjust the park brake shoe-to-drum clearance by rotating the adjustment nut on the park brake actuator. Specification
0.38 mm (0.015 in)
Install the rear brake rotors. Refer to Brake Rotor Replacement - Rear in Disc Brakes.
Install the rear tire and wheel assemblies.
Apply and release the park brake lever three times .
Apply the park brake lever. Inspect the rotation of the rear wheels:
The wheels should not rotate forward.
The wheels should drag or not rotate rearward.
If the rear tire and wheel assemblies rotate forward or do not exhibit drag rearward, repeat the adjustment procedure.
Release the parking lever. Verify that the wheels rotate freely
Lower the vehicle
Now that the Emergency Brake has been adjusted........ test for tension (grab of the brakes shoes on the rotor). If there is no tension then the issue may just be the following problem in the brake handle assembly.
Take out the passenger seat and the rear portion of the center console to expose the Emergency Brake handle assembly.
Lubricate all areas near the lever and check for correct movement of the brake lever and rachet system...........mine was rusty and working intermittantly.
Reassemble and test,...........mine will now lock up the rear tires with a medium tug. I can now pass inspection and drift with confidence.......the Emergency Brake WORKS !
How well did the cable gromet fit where the cable goes through the tunnel? On my '98 it didn't seal at all and wouldn't stay in place due to stress the cable placed on it; it had to be held in place with sealant.
I agree, this operation to restore a basic function WAS a pain in the ***. This took more time then I ever expected to obtain a working E Brake...........all because of a minor lube issue in the handle assembly.
So what you're saying is that the E-brake isn't self-adjusting?
Yes and no. The mechanism at the base of the handle automatically adjusts to take any slack out of the cable but the shoes don't adjust. So if the brakes need to be adjusted you can pull the handle all day and it won't adjust them.
Did you actually use that brake drum checking tool? I think I've read a previous write up where the OP just turned the adjuster wheel until the rotor could barely go on and it worked just as well.
I don't think many will want to spend $100 on a tool for the e-brake. You can purchase a 24" caliper from harbor freight for $10 and you can find a 12" dial caliper for 25 bucks on amazon that can do much more for you than measure brake drums. Great write up, have it saved for when I do this. If there is a place that rents this tool (J 21177-A) I would definitely go that route!
However this may serve further interests, found it on another website...
Two issues here:
1) adjusting the slack in the cable can be done by rolling backward and pumping the e brake handle 5 or 6 times, this is designed in to adjust only the cable slack.
2 adjusting the shoe (ONE SHOE)... there is only "one'"shoe -- it's a Mono-shoe with a split.... this is the usual culprit. Before I left GM I tried to address this issue, but red tape made it impossible to get an adjustment check "On the line" at BG.
Adjusting the "Shoe is a simple matter of removing the wheel, caliper, caliper bracket, and rotor. (Note be sure the Ebrake is disengaged)
Once the rotor is off you can "click the star adjuster," rotating it in such a manner as to spread the Mono-shoe and increase the outside diameter.
The usual adjustment is around 20 to 40 clicks:
Adjust the star ten click and try to put the rotor back on.
It may be tight but if it goes on, it is not adjusted properly.
Adjust the star again ten more clicks, see if it goes on....
Do this at ten click and no more per each try.... somewhere between 20 and 40 clicks, the rotor will be impossible to put on.
Once you find this point, you then back off on the star 3 or 4 click until your can force the rotor over the shoe.
If you can force the rotor on by hand you are doing good...here is where most people fail in their attempt to adjust properly..,
Once the rotor sits flush on the hub boss, there will be alittle more clearance for the shoe, so forcing it on will not be a "too tight" issue.
You can not force the rotor over the shoe and have it too tight, it just wont happen.
Once you make this adjustment to both rear wheels, you should see that your e brake lever locks up the ebrake at about 45 degrees, 90 degrees being straight up...
Disengaging the ebrake will occur at about 35 degrees...
Once this is done properly, you will be able to stop your car with the ebrake doing 20 miles an hour and you will never feel the ebrake is inadequate.