rear brake drum problem ??

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  #1  
Old 09-17-10, 07:10 PM
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rear brake drum problem ??

Hello..... why is it that when i install the rear drum back on and turn it, it turns freely. But when i put the wheel back on and start tighting the lug nuts then the wheel gets very hard to turn. I adjusted the shoes to where they are just backed off from draging on the drum and can turn the drum easily until i put the wheel back on and tighten the lug nuts. The shoes look fine and were replaced about a year ago and the springs and small hardware also. It is the drivers side rear wheel. The right side i checked and the wheel turns easily and when the parking brake is applied it holds like it should. This is causing the the left drum to get very hot but i can't figure out why this is happening. I can easily slip the drum over the shoes and spin it around easily, but when i put the tire back on and start tighting the nuts it gets harder and harder to turn. The car is a 2000 chyrsler town and country.....thanks to anyone that can give advice.
 
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  #2  
Old 09-17-10, 08:00 PM
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Put the drum on and three of the lug nuts. Tighten the nuts down and set the brakes. Then put on the tire/wheel. Or wait to adjust the brakes after you have the tire/wheel on.
 
  #3  
Old 09-18-10, 08:22 AM
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i did that and in fact i retracted the shoes as far in as they would go, but still when i slide the drum back on it turns freely but as i just start snugging up on the lug nuts it gets hard to turn and as i tighten them even more then i can hardly turn the drum. I guess i will maybe try pulling the shoes and all the hardware off and see if i can tell what is causing this. I put the new shoes on myself about a year ago and have done it several times before. Like i said the right side drum turn freely with no problem and everything on the left one looks exactly the same as it.... confusing??
 
  #4  
Old 09-18-10, 09:16 AM
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Sounds like a bent, or distorted rim to me. Swap out the rear rims Try the rim that tightens up on the side that doesnít tighten up. If the same thing happens the rim is as I say (bent, or distorted ) and must be replaced.
 
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Old 09-18-10, 10:06 AM
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Are you saying that this brake drag and heating up has been going on since you installed the brake shoes a year ago?

You can get a blue chalk stick at a lumberyard/Menards - wherever, chalk the edge of the brake shoes, tighten until you get the brake drag, spin the drum a couple of times, pull it off and see where the chalk transferred to the drum.
 
  #6  
Old 09-18-10, 10:29 AM
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you say the rim... are you talking about the drum.... I'm trying it with just the drum on, because there's no point in putting the wheel on if the drum is that hard to turn... no it has not been like that for a year, just noticed it when my wife pulled in the driveway a couple days ago and i could smell that something was hot and could feel the heat coming from that wheel. I already did try the brake drum off the other wheel but it does the same thing, goes on easily and spins but as soon as you start to tighen the lugs nuts to the drum it gets harder and harder to turn... and the drum off the one that is having the problem works fine on the other one....thanks, btw
 
  #7  
Old 09-18-10, 10:45 AM
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Make sure your clip springs holding the shoes to the backing plate are in place and check the adjuster to make sure it's seated in the shoes, then at the top the springs that pull the shoes together have the shoes seated at the top post. It sounds like a warped backing plate (kind of unusual) or a shoe out of place as it lies against the backing plate.
 
  #8  
Old 09-18-10, 11:58 AM
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its really got me puzzled, everything looks fine. i can take and switch the drums and it makes no difference. I turned the adjuster in until the clicking metal pc fell out of its slot, and tapped the shoes in as far as they will go, but does no good. Its like that the drum is going in to far and when i start to tighten the nuts it starts scrubbing on something. Is it possible it could be making contact with the backing plate somehow. Any other ideas would be appreciated very much.
 
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Old 09-18-10, 12:07 PM
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Well...no pro mechanic...but I'd put some washers or something on the studs and slowly tighten down checking for movement the whole time.

Dunno...is it possible the axle/spindle is getting pulled out somehow and flexing the backing plate?

I'd do what marbobj said and apply some chaulk (even regular kids chaulk) to all the possible surfaces and see where the contact is.
 
  #10  
Old 09-18-10, 02:17 PM
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ok i got some chalk on the brake shoes and it does appear that the contact is coming from the front shoe, did not get any transfer of chalk to the drum from the rear shoe but plenty from the front one. And the scrubbing sound appears to be coming from that side of drum. It also appears the front shoe is out farther than the rear one. The problem is i can't get the front shoe to retract anymore from where it is now.
 
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Old 09-18-10, 02:23 PM
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Possible that something went wrong with the brake spring hardware, and now the brake shoes are no longer riding on the high spots of the backing plate. Rule that out an let us know.
 
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Old 09-18-10, 02:38 PM
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1: ensure that the both pistons in the wheel cylinder move.
2: Check the parking brake cable moves.
3: As ASE Master said bent or warped backing plate
4: improperly turned drum

Check these and let us know
 
  #13  
Old 09-18-10, 05:17 PM
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thanks guys, i'll get back on this monday and keep you informed i have to leave for now, i really appreciate all the help.
 
  #14  
Old 09-20-10, 03:01 PM
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well today i completely removed the shoes and all hardware down to the backing plate. Then i put the drum on the spindle and tighten down a couple of nuts just to see if it would turn with out scrubbing. Turned freely with no problems. I re-installed the shoes and reversed them before putting them back on. The shoes almost look new with hardly any wear. All the springs and hardware look to be fine. Put the drum on and spun it to make sure it turned ok, and it did. But as soon as i put a couple of nuts on the drum and start to hand tighten them the drum gets tighter and tighter, to the point i can hardly turn it. As it goes around it does get to a spot that it is kind of easy to turn, but as it goes on around it gets very tight again. The adjuster mechanisim is backed off to where it is loose. I have not even pressed the brake pedal since doing this. I definately cannot drive it like this, because everything gets very hot as you could imagine. the other side works fine and adjusted correctly, and switching the drums makes no difference.
 
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Old 09-20-10, 03:18 PM
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(Quote) I re-installed the shoes and reversed them before putting them back on.

Since rear brake shoes should near be installed in reverse order, tell us why you decided to install them in reverse order?

Still waiting for the answers to the questions that continue to go un-answered.
 
  #16  
Old 09-20-10, 03:29 PM
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I didn't know that you could reverse the shoes! there is a primary and secondary the shorter brake pad goes to the front and the longer to the rear....
 
  #17  
Old 09-20-10, 03:38 PM
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well i just wanted to see if it made any difference at all without driving the car. the shoes look exactly the same when put them side by side on this town and country. I'm just trying to get to the root of the problem. And i was just looking at the action of the wheel cylinders ( did'nt have anyone to press the pedal for me til today). There is only 1 piston working or pushing the shoe out on drivers side and it is pushing the rear shoe out. So i checked the passenger side and it has only 1 working piston also and it is pushing the foward shoe out. Is it possible that these cylinders are suppose to work that way. That cylinder on the drivers side was replaced about a year ago when the shoes were replaced. Could someone please verify that for me, thanks
 
  #18  
Old 09-20-10, 04:18 PM
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well i said the same thing til i went to auto zone and got them and asked the guy about it. He checked them and i checked them and all 4 shoes were exactly alike in size and appearance. In fact sunday i went to advance and had the guy there to bring out a box of shoes so we could check them and all 4 shoes are the same when stacked on top of each other and all the holes match up perfectly. And there is nothing printed or stamped on them that indicates that one is any different than the other.
 
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Old 09-20-10, 04:48 PM
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Not sure if it would be worth the time or expense, but wouldn't it almost be easier to convert the rear brakes to disc?
 
  #20  
Old 09-20-10, 04:57 PM
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i don't know but sure wish thats what they were
 
  #21  
Old 09-20-10, 07:05 PM
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oren,

As with any system in a vehicle the braking system (as it applies) to your issue has basics that must be ruled out before moving on to a more complicated resolution. Post your findings for the following.


A bent or distorted backing plate?

A bent or distorted rim?

Does swapping out the rear driverís wheel with any one of the other three wheels resolve the issue?

A bent or distorted drum?

Have you tried the drum from the right side on the left side to see if it impacts the issue?

Are the brake shoes riding on the high spots of the backing plate?

Is any of the brake hardware, missing, broken, or distorted?

Is the center hole of the drum distorted, or is there a build up of rust around the hole, that could be keeping it from bottoming out onto the spindle?
 
  #22  
Old 09-20-10, 08:04 PM
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Thanks ase master: ok in answering the questions you posted: After carefull examination with a good light it does appear that the drum may be contacting the backing plate around the top left and right sides, because it looks like score marks in 2 or 3 places along the high spots. Would this possibly mean that the plate is warped or bent, because the car has not been in an accident or anything. If that is what is causing the problem then can it be fixed or can i get a new one, if so where. I checked advance and auto zone web site but they do not even list it. Would i have to get one from a salvage yard. Now i know it does not have anything to do with the rim because i've switched the tires around and did not do any good. I also tried the right hand drum on the left and did not help, but the left hand drum works fine on the right side. All the hardware is intact and in good condition. The center hole of the drum is not distorted and ther is no rust build up.
 
  #23  
Old 09-21-10, 04:18 AM
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oren,

Your last post finally addresses all my questions. Thatís a good thing. The process of elimination has revealed a backing plate issue. Donít you just love the process of elimination and how it works? Doesnít matter how the plate came to be bent, distorted or warped. All that matters is to fix it. Straightening out the plate is much easier than replacing it.


To straighten it out;


Strip off the brake pads and all the brake hardware right down to the bare plate

Use a canister of map gas (not propane) to heat up the areas on the plate that are rubbing on the drum.

Donít get carried away with the heat, and heat up the areas too much. Youíll change the temper of the metal, and that will new issues.

Just apply a little heat at a time so the metal becomes soft enough to bend when hit with a sledge hammer.
 
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