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Cold Weather Braking


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13 replies to this topic

#1 nipper

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Posted 08 December 2008 - 11:47 AM

This is just a PSA for all the recent outback owners.

In the bitter cold on the first start after a few hours, you may find that you have no brakes when you first try to stop the car. You have plenty of brakes, but the check valve for the power brake booster is frozen by the minute amount of water vapor in the system.

The car WILL stop, but it will take a lot more force to do it. What you can do:

If you use a remote starter, you will not have this probelem, as engine heat will melt the ice.

Pump your brake pedal (hard) a few times in the driveway before you pull away.
Try stopping a few times when you first move the car (one foot or so) try it three times.
DO NOT PANIC if it happens to you, just press the pedal really hard. The car will stop and then the ice will be broken after the second application usually.
Clean the check valve.
Replace the check valve.

Personally i either use the remote starter (below 25) or just test the brakes as i back out of the driveway (below 30). Once you break the ice in the line, it wont come back again untill the car sits for hours in the cold not running.

I just wanted to post this as winter comes upon us there are usually quite a few posts on this.

There was a recall for Master Cylinders with poor stopping in the cold, but by now i think they should have all been fixed.

nipper

#2 RallyKeith

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Posted 08 December 2008 - 12:44 PM

This is good advice no matter what year or car you drive.

There also a chance of moisture entering the "power brake booster," or what ever you want to call it, from the passanger compartment and causing a freeze condition. Snow brought in and melted onto the floor mat causes a high moisture content in the air directly below the booster. We've discussed it on the board in the past as it has happened to several of us. If I find that thread I'll post it back in here.

Safe driving, and Stopping!

Keith

#3 nipper

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Posted 08 December 2008 - 12:58 PM

Yes thats one place, the other is when the engine shuts off, vecume pressure goes to atmospheric, then as the temp drops you get condensation and a frozen check valve.

Remember, that generally the colder it is outside, the longer it will talke for things to warm up and respond as they should. It doesnt mean there ia anything wrong with the car. Power windows may be frozen , as well as power mirrors. Lubricate door lock cylinders now with graphite and hinges and lock mechanisims/latches with white lithium grease. Lubricate the power antenna if so eqipped.

Electrically heated mirrors can be used at any temp (i found above 80 they dont do much) to get moisture off them.

Keep a can of deicer NOT in the car, but at home and at the office (doesnt do a lot of good frozen in the car).

Dont use the wipers to clear off the ice and snow from a parked car, you may strip the wiper arms.

And dont forget the winter blinker fluid.

nipper

#4 jp98

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Posted 08 December 2008 - 02:57 PM

I had the frozen brakes for a couple of years. My problem was after driving 40 miles to work on the freeway and then getting off and trying to stop. That is when the peddle felt rock solid until I stopped and broke it loose with some pressure. I took the vacuum line off of the booster and sprayed some WD40 into the booster and didn't have any more problems. It wasn't to bad if you knew that what was happening when if first happened but the first couple of times that it did it to my Outback I was looking for a way out.

Jim

#5 nipper

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Posted 08 December 2008 - 03:17 PM

I had the frozen brakes for a couple of years. My problem was after driving 40 miles to work on the freeway and then getting off and trying to stop. That is when the peddle felt rock solid until I stopped and broke it loose with some pressure. I took the vacuum line off of the booster and sprayed some WD40 into the booster and didn't have any more problems. It wasn't to bad if you knew that what was happening when if first happened but the first couple of times that it did it to my Outback I was looking for a way out.

Jim


Blus like that too. sometimes still catches me by surprise first thing in the morning. When gas was high i was going to fix it, but now with the gas so cheap, i can use the remote starter :)

nipper

#6 subyfreak

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Posted 08 December 2008 - 08:50 PM

Thank You Nipper. My wife's 01 OB does this sometimes and I was thinking it was a ABS related problem. This describes the symptoms exactly and gives the cause. So spraying some WD-40 in the brake booster vac line will help this?

#7 nipper

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Posted 08 December 2008 - 08:55 PM

Thank You Nipper. My wife's 01 OB does this sometimes and I was thinking it was a ABS related problem. This describes the symptoms exactly and gives the cause. So spraying some WD-40 in the brake booster vac line will help this?

WD 40 will work, as well as just replacing the check valve. Remeber WD means Water Drier :)

i have to do it myself once i get over this cold.

nipper

#8 howards11

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Posted 09 December 2008 - 12:02 AM

Yes thats one place, the other is when the engine shuts off, vecume pressure goes to atmospheric, then as the temp drops you get condensation and a frozen check valve.

Remember, that generally the colder it is outside, the longer it will talke for things to warm up and respond as they should. It doesnt mean there ia anything wrong with the car. Power windows may be frozen , as well as power mirrors. Lubricate door lock cylinders now with graphite and hinges and lock mechanisims/latches with white lithium grease. Lubricate the power antenna if so eqipped.

Electrically heated mirrors can be used at any temp (i found above 80 they dont do much) to get moisture off them.

Keep a can of deicer NOT in the car, but at home and at the office (doesnt do a lot of good frozen in the car).

Dont use the wipers to clear off the ice and snow from a parked car, you may strip the wiper arms.

And dont forget the winter blinker fluid.

nipper


I like to spray WD40 into the locks rather than the graphite. Seems to do the trick !

~Howard
:banana:

#9 nipper

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Posted 09 December 2008 - 10:17 AM

I like to spray WD40 into the locks rather than the graphite. Seems to do the trick !

~Howard
:banana:


Its not a lubricant really, for locks its graphite. Thats the proper lubricant.

nipper

#10 howards11

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Posted 09 December 2008 - 11:40 AM

Its not a lubricant really, for locks its graphite. Thats the proper lubricant.

nipper


Can you get SPRAY graphite ?

~Howard
:eek:

#11 bratman18

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Posted 09 December 2008 - 11:42 AM

Can you get SPRAY graphite ?

~Howard
:eek:


yup you can buy it in a spray can. I think it's actually called graphite lubricant. I think I actually have some someplace.

#12 nipper

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Posted 09 December 2008 - 11:44 AM

Can you get SPRAY graphite ?

~Howard
:eek:



Yes. In fact i have a lock deicer that is spray graphite.

http://www.autobarn.net/chv500.html

#13 nipper

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Posted 09 December 2008 - 11:45 AM

yup you can buy it in a spray can. I think it's actually called graphite lubricant. I think I actually have some someplace.



hehe a little goes a long way. I am stil using the same can that my father bought in the 1980's.

nipper

#14 bratman18

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Posted 09 December 2008 - 11:49 AM

hehe a little goes a long way. I am stil using the same can that my father bought in the 1980's.

nipper


:lol: same here, my grandfather gave me a can about 5 years ago and it's still pretty much full!




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