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Brake bleeding headaches!

Discussion in '1st Gen. Tacomas (1995-2004)' started by RaiderSix, Apr 12, 2008.

  1. Apr 12, 2008 at 4:15 PM
    #1
    RaiderSix

    RaiderSix [OP] Well-Known Member

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    I am trying to bleed the brakes on my 97 Tacoma (non-ABS) and having a hell of a time with it. I put new rubber hoses at both calipers and the rear and a new master cylinder on. I've bench bled the master cylinder 3 or 4 times, used an air compressor vacuum bleeder, and spent about 2 hours of pedal bleeding. I can not get fluid to come out at any corner of the vehicle. What am I doing wrong? :confused: Oh, and I just bought one of these: [​IMG]
     
  2. Apr 13, 2008 at 8:24 AM
    #2
    Janster

    Janster Old & Forgetful

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    Why did you change the hoses & master cylinder?

    What kind of problems were you having before?

    My husband and I have never had any luck with those *gizmo* bleeder things. We do it manually... You're better off having a friend help you.

    You crawl underneath and get ready to crack open the bleeder while your friend stays in the cab and presses on the brakes. When you say *DOWN* - your friend presses on the brakes as far as he can. Then....you crack open the bleeder. Your friend continues to press the brakes as it sinks to the floor while the bleeder is open. You close the bleeder and say "UP". Your friend releases the brake and do this all over again. You don't want to open or close the bleeder unless you have pressure on the lines (the brake pedal is pushed). NEVER pump the brakes - it'll break up the larger bubbles into smaller bubbles that are harder to see.

    Not trying to insult your intelligence on brake bleeding - just some things that my husband and I do/don't when we bleed. With a new master cylinder, it might take several bleedings to get a good pedal. We always start at the farthest wheel from the MC and work inward.

    Good Luck!
     
  3. Apr 13, 2008 at 11:56 PM
    #3
    ForeRunner

    ForeRunner Scotch before noon. Moderator

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    I have a friend who swears by Motive Products Power Bleeders.

    He races his STI every month at Infineon Raceway (Old Sears Point) and bleeds his brakes with the power bleeder after every track day.
     
  4. Apr 17, 2008 at 9:05 PM
    #4
    RaiderSix

    RaiderSix [OP] Well-Known Member

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    Okay, I just got the tool today and have to say it was worth every penny. I drained and flushed the clutch out with it and the pedal was solid. I had my friend work the clutch pedal afterwards and bleed it the usual way. He said it made no significant difference in the stiffness of the pedal. Which means that maybe this is the one and only "one man brake bleeder" worth messing with. My brakes are another story though. I put on another rebuilt master cylinder after bench bleeding it with my new tool. I checked the clearance between the actuating rod and the master cylinder piston. I then flushed the front and rear lines until fresh fluid came out the other side. I filled up all the lines using reverse flushing method and had a solid pedal. I decided to have my friend work the pedal so I could get any possible air out. The pedal didn't seem to get any harder. With him holding the pedal to the floor, I could easily turn the front rotor with my bare hands. Strangely enough, when I started the engine to see if they worked any better with some vacuum boost, the pedal had no resistance at all. It literally went to the firewall like there was no fluid in the system. Any ideas?:confused:
     
  5. Apr 18, 2008 at 3:50 AM
    #5
    Janster

    Janster Old & Forgetful

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    Bleed, bleed, and bleed again......
     
  6. Apr 18, 2008 at 9:04 PM
    #6
    alexh

    alexh Member

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    You probably don't want to hear about another tool but I have bleed/flushed all of my cars (3) brake systems several times with this all by myself. Almost makes brake bleeding a pleasant experience.

    http://www.motiveproducts.com/01products.html
     
  7. Apr 18, 2008 at 9:26 PM
    #7
    RaiderSix

    RaiderSix [OP] Well-Known Member

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    Yeah, I looked at those. A few reviewers said the cap was not as well made as it should have been to seal with pressure applied.
     
  8. Apr 20, 2008 at 1:20 AM
    #8
    BrianPK

    BrianPK Offroad Enthusiast

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    yyou need to bleed the brakes with the engine running because it's power assisted braking. the pedal went to the floor because they're not bled through.
     
  9. Apr 20, 2008 at 4:17 AM
    #9
    RaiderSix

    RaiderSix [OP] Well-Known Member

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    Well, after being undrivable due to many different conditions, my truck is finally back on the road. My brake bleeding problem ended up being 2 bad master cylinders. I had bought 2 rebuilt Cardone brand master cylinders and neither of them was worth 2 cents. I bought a rebuilt one from Napa and it did the trick. Got a good and solid pedal now and a big weight off of my shoulders. My truck was out of service for 84 days! Whew! :D
     
  10. Apr 20, 2008 at 6:10 AM
    #10
    Janster

    Janster Old & Forgetful

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    Where on earth did you ever hear of that? You do not need to have the engine running to bleed brakes.
     
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