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Brake Piston


romod's Avatar
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08-19-03, 10:09 PM   #1  
Brake Piston

I have an 89 Ranger 2-wheel drive and it had been sitting for about a year and a half. Today I took it out and it ran alright for a while then it started dragging and pulling to the left and the front wheels were hot. I'm pretty sure the pistons are stuck and won't release into the caliper. Is there an easy way to get them to release then keep releasing,somebody told me to use wd-40 but that don't sound right how would that work?

 
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billys68ss's Avatar
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08-19-03, 11:46 PM   #2  
You can try any number of home remedies, but I dont recommend any of them. The calipers need to be replaced or at least rebuilt (not too many people rebuild anymore since the cost to rebuild compared to the cost of replacing with new or reman calipers is comparable). The piston is froze inside the caliper because of rust and contamination in the brake system. Replace the calipers, rear wheel cylinders and flush the system and you should be ok. Get loaded calipers with good Raybestos pads already installed. This would be a good time to inspect the hoses and such as well and replace as needed. I did a Ranger exactly like this about a month ago. I replaced everything pertaining to the front brakes from the steel lines down and then flushed it out. The brake fluid looked like cola syrup. The customer declined having anything done to the rear.

A side note to help all understand why this happens. Dot 3 brake fluid is made from polyglycol. This type of brake fluid is widely used because of its compatability with all metals and its ability to withstand temperature changes. The problem with it, is that it is Hydroscopic, which means that it easily attracts and absorbs water. When the brake fluid has absorbed as much moisture as it can stand it aids in the corrosion of the metal components. Since the caliper and piston are metal, the corrosion gets between them and causes them to stick to one another.
Hope this helps,
Billy

 
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08-20-03, 03:30 AM   #3  
Joe_F
I agree.

Brakes are not something to gamble with----do not skimp here.

Throw out the front rubber lines, they are useless, replace them with new ones.

My truck? This would be all new: Calipers, hoses, friction, wheel cylinders, hardwware. In this fashion, you know everything has been renewed and there is no problem. Resurface the drums and rotors and bleed the system.

 
romod's Avatar
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08-20-03, 11:05 PM   #4  
So should you change the fluid once in while or is it going to rust and corrode no matter what?

 
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08-21-03, 03:34 AM   #5  
Joe_F
It is never bad practice to do so. You remove the moisture from the system by doing so.

 
billys68ss's Avatar
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08-21-03, 04:23 AM   #6  
Manufacturers recommendations is to flush the brake system at least every 2 years. Not a lot of people do this and even fewer know about it.
Billy

 
romod's Avatar
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08-21-03, 09:22 AM   #7  
Thanks for all the info. Now it's out to look at them and see what kind of mess i got.

 
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