How to Bleed Drum Brakes
Cars loaded heavily, particularly during long trips, are placing severe stress on its drum brakes and entire brake system. Sometimes, the hydraulic fluid inside the brake system should be changed, or gears within the brake system should be replaced. When your car’s hydraulic circuit is unlocked, air is initiated in the system. Hence, brake bleeding is the method of removing the system’s air, so the brakes will work appropriately.
Step 1 – Remove the Tires and Wheels
Lift the car’s front, with an automotive jack, then support it using jack stands placed beneath the front frame. Lift up the car’s rear part as well using an automotive jack placed below the rear axle. Loosen the lug nuts which attach the wheels towards the hubs, with a lug wrench. Remove the wheels from the hubs, with your hands.
Step 2 – Bleed the Drum Brakes
Load the master cylinder tank using fresh brake fluid. Ensure the fluid level within the tank periodically in this procedure. Never let it run dry at any time. Put the bleeder screw along the brake caliper down the front wheel of the driver's side. Join a clear plastic tubing length with the bleeder screw. Submerge the tubing’s other end inside a jar half-filled of new brake fluid.
Next, pump the brake pedal then clutch it alongside the floor. Have somebody to assist you in the process. Unlock the bleeder screw using a wrench then let some fluid to leak out. You will notice small air bubbles with the fluid. Lock the bleeder screw using a wrench then have your assistant let loose the brake pedal.
Step 3 – Check Out Air Bubbles and Tires
Go over the process until there are no air bubbles seen mixed with the fluid within the transparent plastic tubing. Repeat as well the process you utilized on the front wheel of the driver's side for the passenger's side. Do again the process employed on the front wheels along the driver's side back wheel. When your car is equipped with back drum brakes, its bleeder screw will be along the inboard part of the car’s brake backing plate. Again, go over the bleeding process for the final wheel along the passenger side’s rear wheel.
Step 4 – Reinstall the Tires and Wheels
Raise the wheels on the lug studs with your hand. Bolt the lug nuts on the lug studs with a lug wrench. Then lower your car and re-tighten the lug nuts with a lug wrench. Confirm the fluid’s level within the master cylinder regularly as you bleed the drum brakes. If the level drops under the required fill line, put in more fluid. Employ fresh fluid that you just bled coming from the brakes. Start your car’s engine after bleeding the entire brakes then press on its brake pedal. Finally, you might need to perform this constantly to hold new brake pads that just installed. Turn the engine off and hold on the pedal, then bleed the brakes once more once the pedal sinks between 15-20 seconds.