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Emergency Brake Repair

Fatima Rangwala
Troubleshooting the emergency brake can be quite a task. One of the most important safety mechanisms in a car, it's important you learn everything about this brake's functioning.
Doubtlessly, brakes are one of the most important parts of a vehicle. A parking brake, also known as an emergency brake, prevents the vehicle from rolling down, after it has been parked in a given space. It is a highly essential component, and in case it fails to function, immediate repair is the first priority.
There are many different circumstances where an emergency brake might fail to work. In most cases, you will have to take your car to the mechanic to fix the problem. Weak brakes, grinding sounds, brake fluid leakage, etc., are some of the common problems.
However, along with learning to ascertain whether it needs repair or not, you must also be able to tell why it needs to be repaired―recognizing the cause behind the problem.

Common Emergency Brake Problems

  • Brakes heat up (both front and rear)
  • Brake heats up (only rear)
  • Emergency brake light stays on
  • Parking brake switch
  • Loss of brake fluid from master cylinder
  • Worn out brake calipers
  • Brake light on dash switches on
  • Caliper mounting screws skin on top of rotor
  • One wheel locks up/car pulls to one side
  • Interior brake pads wear out and not exterior
  • Adjustment level required for parking brakes
  • Remove residual valve
  • Gravity bleeding
If you come across any of these problems, discuss them with your mechanic and get a replacement done immediately. Repairing the brakes might cost anywhere between USD 150 to USD 300, depending on several factors. For example, the level of brake damage, new parts that might be needed as a replacement, cost of those parts, services charges, etc.

When do you Need a Replacement

An emergency brake in a vehicle is an extra handbrake, or you can say a surplus security provided, just in case the car's main brake system experiences a failure. At times, operating these handbrakes might lead to rusted cables, which ultimately leads to replacing both, the brakes and the cables. These cables are a bit complicated to work with initially, but once you start working on them, you'll get the basic idea behind the job.

Repairing an Emergency Brake

A proper installation of the brake cable is vital because that's when you will be changing the buggered wheel nut stud. If you are aware of the location of the cable, remove it finding the cut out, and line it up with a matching surface. Now, slowly slide the piece into its proper place. Next, you will have to use a retainer clip to clasp the brake cable into its position. The clip might come over the installed cable. If it does, pound it inside by using a small rubber hammer, to keep it in its proper place.
Now, pass the brake cable slowly onto the hook, moving the emergency brake lever at the same time; it will ease the process. Use a screwdriver to rotate the lever in a clockwise direction to create a play in the working area, so that the cable slips in smoothly onto the mounting hook. Once all this action of cable fitting is done, slowly release the brake lever and let it snap back into its place.
Repairing the emergency brake on your own is a job you must undertake only if you know the working of these brakes. If you're even a little unsure, take help of a professional mechanic.