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Parking brake issue

 
Old 01-11-2019, 01:47 PM
  #1  
jaki30
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Default Parking brake issue

Need help. Bought 04 CE in May. Parking brake was weak. Handle went all the way up. Barely held car, but, I always park it in gear. Went to prep to r&r parking brake and found r/h cable disconnected from parking brake actuator lever
on backing plate.
First question is has anyone ever had the cable disconnect from the actuator arm? 2nd question is should I try just connecting the cable to the actuator arm and see if the pb works? I donít know how long it has been disconnected. My concern is if I use the actuator, it may cause the pb to lock if it is corrode or possibly frozen.
Would appreciate any comments, opinions or suggestions. Thanks.
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Old 01-11-2019, 06:42 PM
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Default Have fun adjusting the parking brake - have to remove rear calipers

In order to even adjust the star wheels on the parking brakes you have to remove the wheel, caliper, and rotor. The caliper is held on with threadlocked bolts torqued to 120 foot pounds.
Need a breaker bar or maybe a 5 foot pipe on the end of your socket wrench. Heat on the bolts will help but its still a lot of fun breaking the bolts loose.
Sounds like someone had trouble with the PB and maybe it was locking up. You could raise the rear of the car on jack stands and try connecting the cable and pulling the stalk inside the car to see if the wheels stop with the brake drum inside the rear calipers. If it works fine. If not be prepared to take the wheels, calipers and rotors off and see what you have to do to fix it.
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Old 01-11-2019, 07:31 PM
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I think I see a new set of pb in my future. If they are original, they are 14 years old, and so is the grease.
Thanks. I may try hooking it up just to see what happens. The star wheel is probably frozen from non use.
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Old 01-11-2019, 07:33 PM
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I think I see a new set of pb in my future. If they are original, they are 14 years old, and so is the grease.
Thanks. I may try hooking it up just to see what happens. The star wheel is probably frozen from non use.
just hoping itís not the cable. The service manual looks like a pita to install new cables.
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Old 01-11-2019, 08:25 PM
  #5  
gimp
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Cable is self-adjustable. You basically go into reverse at a couple mph, neutral, and as it's rolling back you just yank the parking brake. Do that a couple times.

It's likely to be the parking brake shoes, not the cable, though.

Mine after 13 years was in remarkably good condition. I hit it with a hose and the gunk came out just fine. I recommend hose first, then failing that, penetrant like PB blaster.

Here's what ya do. Jack the rear. Chocks the fronts. Take off parking brake. Rotate the wheels by hand. Feel the resistance? Hear the light "hssshhhhhh" noise? That's your normal rolling resistance and rolling noise. Remember that.

You'd probably want to give it about ten clicks on each side and re-check. Put the brake rotors back on, put the wheels back on (feel free to keep the caliper off), hand-tighten it (no real need to torque it all proper), and make sure it turns just fine with the parking brake off. You want it to feel and sound like it did before you started.

Then pull the parking brake up. First, you should see that its highest position is now lower than it was before. Second, you should be completely unable to turn the wheels by hand.

How high is the parking brake handle now? Does it feel "normal" or still higher than you think is okay? If it's higher, give both sides another five clicks.

Notes to remember:

You want to make sure you're spinning the star adjusters in the right direction, on both sides. The way to do this is to adjust them, put one rotor on, make sure it spins fine, pull the parking brake, make sure it stops spinning. Release parking brake, take rotor off, put the other rotor on, repeat.

Why do this? Because if you put _both_ on, remember, both axles spin through the diff, so it only takes _one_ correctly adjusted parking brake shoe to stop you from being able to spin things. So if you put them both on, and one is good and one isn't, you may think they are both good. So check that each side independently is properly adjusted, and of course make sure it works well together, and of course make sure that with the parking brake off you're rolling freely.

Which direction do you spin the stars? I cannot for the life of me remember. Each click is too small for me to see the parking brake shoe expand or contract. Shrug.

Oh, and if the stars are hard to turn by hand, get a little flat-head screwdriver and a little hammer and use that to tap-tap-tap on the stars the same as you would turn them with your fingers. The impulse helps them turn. You will see and feel them click through positions as you do this. No need to hit it hard, little taps will do.
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Old 01-14-2019, 11:14 PM
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C5s are notorious for poorly-adjusted parking brakes. follow the instructions above & it'll hold just fine.
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Old 01-16-2019, 12:19 AM
  #7  
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Corvette America (and others) have decent parts diagrams that can help a lot. You don't want to pull the shoe if at all possible. There is one c-shaped shoe per axle, with the shoe backing acting as the return spring. The very, very stiff return spring. Re-installing the retaining spring is a google search unto itself.
Applying the parking brake while backing will have no effect. Unlike general drum brakes, there are no self adjusters in the hubs. The auto adjust mechanism is entirely within the brake lever, where the aged grease is known to create issues with the adjuster pawl. It's also entirely possible for the hub adjuster threads to be seized -- my r/h adjuster was. Have you pulled the r/h drum yet? You will have to remove the caliper bracket to do so, and the large bolts are quite snug, but I didn't find a super cheater bar necessary. GM says the bolts have to be replaced -- both the bracket and caliper mount bolts. Don't think hardly anyone does so, most clean well and use thread locker. Wagner H7426 or H7260 hardware kits are available at many parts shops (or Amazon) that have the adjuster parts if you need them. The Corvette specific suppliers get about three times as much for them...
https://keenparts.com/CorvettePartsD...=50054&year=C5
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Old 02-02-2019, 05:15 PM
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Has anyone had this problem intermittently? I know it's weird, but a friend and I did the adjustment procedure, and it was fine that day, but a day or two later, I had nothing again!
Then today I made a few trips, and it was fine again, engaging about 1/2 the way on the hand lever, then later the lever goes all the way up.
I don't think we had both calipers off at once, as gimp outlined above. That does make sense. We did move both adjusters, but maybe we tightened one and loosened the other?
Would holding the foot brake while pulling the lever make it hold better? I did notice that it seemed that way, once.
The adjusters were hard to turn, and I had the impulse to use PB blaster on them, but didn't fearing contaminating the shoes.
I would hate to repeat the procedure needlessly. I need to drive the car some more and observe. I just got the car last month.
Any advice?
TIA
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Old 02-02-2019, 06:26 PM
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There is a ratchet mechanism on the passenger side of the brake handle. They get gummed up over time. Clean off the old grease and lube with grease or graphite. It isn't a difficult job but you do have to remove the center console.

When mine started acting up, if I applied pressure on the handle, towards passenger seat, the lever would engage more frequently.
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Old 02-02-2019, 07:50 PM
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Oh, thanks, I'll try that side pressure trick!
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