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Funny rear brake question

Discussion in '1st Gen. Tacomas (1995-2004)' started by charijack, May 2, 2018.

  1. May 2, 2018 at 5:04 PM
    #1
    charijack

    charijack [OP] Member

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    Hi everyone,
    I've been getting ready to change brake fluid/re-bleed and possibly change out anything that needs replacing on my 2002 Tacoma TRD. Found it very odd that my driver side rear drum appears very, very different than my passenger side.

    The drivers side drum appears almost new, shoes barely worn, almost no dust about anywhere, and a sort of a trace of weird gummy residue present on outside rim of drum.

    The passenger side drum appears like what I would expect: Brake dust everywhere, worn shoes, etc.

    I've own this Tacoma for a couple years, put about 20k miles on it, and have never checked the brakes before. The brakes have always seemed very weak, but never had it pull to either side or lock up at all (it's actually somewhat impossible to lock these brakes except at low speed on asphalt in the wet).

    I don't have much experience working on drums.

    Drivers side 3.jpg
    Passenger side 1.jpg
    Drivers side 2.jpg
    Passenger side 4.jpg
     
  2. May 2, 2018 at 5:08 PM
    #2
    Tim7902

    Tim7902 Well-Known Member

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    Is it possible that the drivers side isnt adjusted out correct? Is it snug to pull the drum off and put on like the passenger side?
     
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  3. May 2, 2018 at 5:10 PM
    #3
    charijack

    charijack [OP] Member

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    It was slightly looser on the drivers side (no wear/dust) than the passenger side. For the drivers side, I had to pull quite a bit, used some moderate force to get it off, wiggling it back/forth. Was a touch more difficult on passenger, had to use hammer to tap around hub/etc. Could it just be an adjustment issue?
     
  4. May 2, 2018 at 5:12 PM
    #4
    koditten

    koditten Well-Known Member

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    Leaky seal? A little bit if gear lube will prevent the shoes from ever wearing.
     
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  5. May 2, 2018 at 5:15 PM
    #5
    Tim7902

    Tim7902 Well-Known Member

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    That's what I'm thinking. I've only worked on brake drums a few times myself but i know the rod right below the wheel cylinder with the gear on it rotates and locks against the 90 degree looking bracket. I was taught when replacing drum brakes to click the adjuster out until you feel drag on the drum. But from what force your saying it took to remove them, it doesn't sound much different from the other side.
     
  6. May 2, 2018 at 5:16 PM
    #6
    charijack

    charijack [OP] Member

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    When I wipe the shoe with a clean finger, there's a slight oily residue, leaves a light smudge on the finger. On the normal side wiping a finger just leaves brake dust on finger, and the shoe is smooth. That said, I can't see anything at all coming out from the axle seal area. Appears normal except no dust.
     
  7. May 2, 2018 at 5:17 PM
    #7
    charijack

    charijack [OP] Member

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    Yeah, not a big difference.
     
  8. May 2, 2018 at 5:22 PM
    #8
    Tim7902

    Tim7902 Well-Known Member

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    Wonder if theyre could be something wrong with your wheel cylinder not allowing the brake to work correctly ?? I've never seen a bad one. Only leaky ones. :notsure: pull the boot back a little on the wheel cylinder and see if any fluid is right behind the boot.
     
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  9. May 2, 2018 at 5:27 PM
    #9
    charijack

    charijack [OP] Member

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    Does anyone think it'd be a bad idea to pump the brakes with both drums off and see how the wheel cylinder works on both sides at the same time?
     
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  10. May 2, 2018 at 5:31 PM
    #10
    mwc273

    mwc273 Earning my EAF sticker, one mod at a time.

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    Yes. You'll pop out the cylinders without having something for them to press against. Don't do it!
     
  11. May 2, 2018 at 5:31 PM
    #11
    Tim7902

    Tim7902 Well-Known Member

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    Yea it'll pop a cylinder out and you'll loose your fluid
     
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  12. May 2, 2018 at 5:39 PM
    #12
    smmarine

    smmarine Well-Known Member

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    Only 1 of 2 things would cause an oily residue in the brake drum, and both will cause the brake to fail. It’s either a leaky wheel cylinder or an axle seal leaking. Need to diagnose which it is and fix it before replacing both shoes and drums.
     
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  13. May 2, 2018 at 5:41 PM
    #13
    charijack

    charijack [OP] Member

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    Alright, thanks guys. I suppose still possible even if I do it lightly? Yeah, probably have to find another way to check.

    I did pull the boots back on the cylinder and there was a tiny bit of fluid on one side. Didn't really look leaky to me, like maybe a 1/4 of a drop of fluid there. Wasn't seeping out the bottom of the boot or anything.
     
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  14. May 2, 2018 at 5:41 PM
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    Jamesboy2233

    Jamesboy2233 95.5 sr5

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    sounds like that may be the case for me... at 250k the original brake shoes had 1/3 of their life left
     
  15. May 2, 2018 at 5:42 PM
    #15
    charijack

    charijack [OP] Member

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    Okay, very good to know. I do have to accept there's definitely an oily residue in there that isn't present on the other side.
     
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  16. May 2, 2018 at 5:53 PM
    #16
    smmarine

    smmarine Well-Known Member

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    Should not be any visible fluid at all. You may have discovered your culprit. Also, if it’s diff oil, it will smell like ass. Brake fluid doesn’t have the stench gear lube does.
     
  17. May 2, 2018 at 6:01 PM
    #17
    ProForce

    ProForce IG @proforce.expeditions OB#5411

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    I vote bad wheel cylinder. If it was the axle seal youd have fluid in your drums. Looks like the cylinder isnt working at all, so you've essentially never applied the brakes on that side. Id keep the drum on on the good side, and lightly tap the brakes while watching. If you go slow and easy youll be able to see it expand without any risk. If it doesn't move, it's bad. Could be a massive air bubble in the line or cylinder, a pinched brake line, or a faulty cylinder
     
  18. May 2, 2018 at 6:01 PM
    #18
    charijack

    charijack [OP] Member

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    Good point about the ass, :) it's been awhile, but I've definitely smelled diff fluid before, and this doesn't have any particular oder at all as near as I can tell.
     
  19. May 2, 2018 at 6:02 PM
    #19
    charijack

    charijack [OP] Member

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    This sounds reasonable. I think I will do this and see what happens. It might take me a bit as I'm cooking right now, but I'll post the results.
     
  20. May 2, 2018 at 6:19 PM
    #20
    Tim7902

    Tim7902 Well-Known Member

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    Yep shouldn't be any fluid behind the boot at all. If there is any fluid there, that's your problem.
     

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