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Guest Message by DevFuse

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Weird Brake Light Problem

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8 replies to this topic

#1 lhrocker


    Eat, Live, Breath Subaru

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Posted 24 November 2004 - 04:39 PM

My friend has a weird brake light problem with his 95 outback. When it is cold at night and when he starts his car first thing in the morining, the brake light stays on even after releasing the parking brake. After driving a couple of mile and the car warms up, the light goes away. He checked the brake fluid and everything looks good. One cold morning, he started the car and had the light come on, so he decided to work from home. At about noon, he started the car again and the light was gone. It seems that as soon as the car gets some sunlight, the light will not come on.

Any suggestions?


#2 frag


    Soob shade tree mechanic

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Posted 24 November 2004 - 04:46 PM

Same thing happens to me sometimes. It's the brake lever switch that gets stuck. Since mine behaves right now I did'nt do anything but I may have to replace it in the future. Haynes should show you how to get to it.
To confirm it's the switch, the next time the brake light stays on, go outside and look at your headlights : the DLRs should be off, since it's the same switch that put them on and off.

#3 lhrocker


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Posted 24 November 2004 - 05:04 PM

Thanx - and by the way, I am actually talking about the brake light on the dash.

#4 JohnnyB


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Posted 24 November 2004 - 06:49 PM

I had this same problem a while back, it turned out that NTB had improperly adjusted the parking brake while I was getting some new tires or a rotation and the brake was dragging.

#5 mattocs


    Subaru Legacy Lover

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Posted 24 November 2004 - 06:51 PM

Mine was always on. And as soon as I had my front brakes and roters redone (they were BAD) it never came back. I don't know if they ajusted it or it just went out with the new brake parts :confused:

#6 ferret


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Posted 24 November 2004 - 08:17 PM

As far as checking the Brake fluid level, did you just look thru the plastic resevior or take off the cap? I had this on my 82, 85 and 90 legacy. There is a rubber bladder as part of the brake resevoir cap so as fluid is pumped into the calipers and stays there as the disk pads wear, the bladder moves down as not to allow air into the system, yet still allow the fluid level to go down.

What happened to me, and probably you, the bladder has come down in the center of the cap, so from the outside, the fluid level looks good, but in the center, it's pushing down enough on the float (used for low fluid level detection) to trigger the reed switch and turn on the brake lamp on the dashboard. What I did to fix it was add a little fluid until it was time to replace the disk pads.
That's when I also replace the fluid completely.
My experiences and $.02

#7 lhrocker


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Posted 25 November 2004 - 01:49 AM

I will check that out. I did take the lid off and fluid looked okay, but I didn't check the bladder. I had my brakes completely done in February of this year (rotors, pads, drums, shoes) and though I put about 20K on the car, I hope it's not pad wear already.


#8 lhrocker


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Posted 29 November 2004 - 12:14 AM

I checked the break fluid cap today and found that the bladder has been expanded. I topped off the brake fluid and replaced the cap. My question is should the bladder stay expanded or should it be pushed back up?

#9 Setright


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Posted 29 November 2004 - 06:18 AM

Push it back up. Carefully, with a fingernail to avoid skin contact.

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