Sticking Brakes but only in town

  #1  
Old 08-20-2017, 06:43 PM
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Default Sticking Brakes but only in town

Hi all,

I have a 05 saturn vue and love it very much. Recently I have been having trouble with my front driver brake (disk). While driving on the highway i have no issues, even driving for over an hour. on the other hand, driving in town, even for a little bit, the brake begin to stick more and more over time to the point where the wheel will be untouchable and the bakes will smoke(only happened once because I avoid driving in town at all costs because of this) and I do not have to touch the brake pedal to stop the car. I replaced the caliper and bled the line and it was fine for a while. If i let it sit overnight it generally is fine in the morning.

The pedal feels harder and harder the worse it gets.

I also have a small transmission fluid leak from the lower transmission cooler hose into the radiator. This slow leak does get on the control arm and wheel.

Need to take the car out of town and was looking for insight.

Best,
Chris P
 
  #2  
Old 08-21-2017, 06:48 AM
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Check for a collapsed brake hose or maybe your caliper guide pins need cleaning or replacing. IDK, I'm NOT and ASE Certified Mechanic. But that's the first things I'd check and do. Did you clean and replace the guide pins? They can get a build up of brake dust on them over time. And after cleaning, they need lubricating.
 
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Old 08-21-2017, 07:56 AM
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What you're describing is nearly identical to what was happening to both an old (96) New Yorker my ex had and a 97 Grand Voyager I have. The problem wasn't the caliper or the lines, it was the steering knuckle itself. You see, the brake pads and the rotor are sandwiched between the caliper. The caliper is bolted to the steering knuckle. What keeps the pads from slipping out of the caliper and rotating out with the rotor are these two stop arms that are part of the knuckle (I think that's what they're called). That's what holds them in position in relation to the caliper. What happens sometimes after 200K miles or so is the metal backing plates of the pads will wear a groove in those arms and when you hit the brakes hard enough the pads will get lodged in the grooves and can't retract. Stop hard going backwards and it'll often knock them free again. A quick and dirty temporary fix is to grind out those grooves to make a smooth even surface again.
 
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Old 08-21-2017, 08:05 AM
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A better, permanent fix would be to replace the knuckle with a good one. Sometimes those arms are bolted on to the knuckle as a unit, I can't remember if that's true for Saturns.

One thing you have to realize though is that this kind of overheating brakes can result in the knuckle, spindle shaft and wheel lugs becoming brittle from heat hardening. My ex's New Yorker was run like that so long not only was all the above severely heat damaged but the plastic wheel cover was melted.
 
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Old 08-22-2017, 11:19 PM
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And it may be as simple as a sticking caliper piston. Jack it up and spin the rf wheel, step on the brake and respin the wheel by hand. Now compare it to the other side. If both wheels are not spining free after releasing the brakes I would replace both calipers as a pair.
 
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Old 08-23-2017, 07:06 AM
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He stated in his first post that he replaced the caliper, Andy. I'm just wondering if he got a defective one out of the box. He didn't say where he got it, but if from the zone, I wouldn't be the least bit surprised.
 
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Old 08-23-2017, 08:46 AM
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I see, read every word! Thanks Rube.
Second attempt at a coherent answer.

If the booster or the master have been messed with the rod between the two may be a little too long. The rod length on the L series cars just passes through the booster. It is however adjustable, and I had to get it just right when I replaced the booster on the wagon. There is a happy medium between too tight and the brake light staying on.
 
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Old 08-23-2017, 02:31 PM
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This all sounds eerily similar to a Vue post for a 2nd gen Vue 2008 we had a while back where the driver had pretty much identical issues, including the "fix" that you could free the thing up by stopping, putting it into reverse, and going backward just a bit.

-----------------
TSB
#PIT4567: INTERMITTENT BRAKE DRAG OR PULSATION - KEYWORDS BIND BOOSTER CALIPER CYLINDER HYDRAULIC MASTER PEDAL STICK TORQUE (JAN 29, 2008)
Subject: Intermittent Brake Drag Or Pulsation

Models: 2008 Saturn VUE
[​IMG]​
The following diagnosis might be helpful if the vehicle exhibits the symptom(s) described in this PI.

Condition/Concern:
Some customers may complain about an intermittent brake drag, brakes getting hot or a brake pulsation. This can be caused if the brake pedal pivot bolt is over torqued.

Recommendation/Instructions:
Loosen the brake pedal pivot bolt.
Re-tighten the brake pedal pivot bolt to 18 Nm (+/- 2 Nm).

------
other net postings

This is the answer. It cost me lots of money and frustration to find it, and I stumbled upon it by sheer luck and us just giving it a try just out of "what the hell" frustration. I ever called Saturn to complain after seeing that this problem is ALL OVER THE NET and they gave me the run around, and refused to recognize their Saturns have a faulty break system.. Seems they are more comfortable with their consumers sitting on the side of the road with their tires on freaking fire, then recognizing any responsibility for the issue .The line to the caliper corrodes at the clamp, and blocks the fluid from flowing backwards and releasing the break pressure. Mine actually got so hot it melted my A/C hoses and lug nut covers. Go to Youtube and put in "Brake Hose Blocked, Stuck Caliper" and it will show you the video. I tried to post it but it will not the forum does not allow it. We actually did the wire test he does.

--------------------

Most dragging problems come from the booster rod.It is not allowing the master cylinder to completely release the pressure. There has to be some play between the rod and the master, it is adjustable. Because the lines do not flex, the lines must be removed and the master removed to access the rod adjustment. I reach in with a long pair of pliers to hold the rod from turning and then reach in with a 7 mm socket and give it one whole turn clockwise. That usually does it. (To verify this is your problem, jack up vehicle and tires will not turn, open line at master and wheels will free up.) EVEN A NEW MASTER or BOOSTER HAS TO BE ADJUSTED. i have repaired many this way.

Source: 2008 VUE XE Brakes dragging and locking - SaturnFans.com Forums

--------------

What???? Andy pegs another one on the head?

I suppose clamp corrosion would be accelerated being in an overheated environment, so I don't necessarily believe that to be a cause but more of an effect of the rod misadjustment.

No surprise to me.
Great to have you here, Andy...
 
  #9  
Old 08-23-2017, 09:52 PM
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I think we've got several good leads here on what to check for. It's funny how we have 3 completely different scenarios that can result in the same symptoms!
Hopefully the OP will be back to tell us what he found.
 
  #10  
Old 08-23-2017, 11:12 PM
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jamnar,

Remember the OP has a first gen VUE; the TSB is for 2nd Gen Vues.

Very likely boosters, masters, and rods are similar. The constant is that the brake pressure is not being fully released. If the side effects of brake overheating cause even more problems related to the inability of the brake pressure to release, so be it.
 

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