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Rear EJ drum brake question from a noob


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13 replies to this topic

#1 grossgary

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Posted 21 July 2009 - 10:14 AM

So this is my first drum brake work ever.

OBS has had some minor squeaking for a long time from the rear brakes, like a year. I figured it just needed new shoes/pads. I took it apart today and they don't seem all that thin.

Seems the pads are about 2 pennies thick - is that time for replacement or fine? How do you know when drum shoes need replaced?

I have a spare set of hubs that I was told are low mileage and those shoes/pads look about the same.

#2 Legacy777

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Posted 21 July 2009 - 11:06 AM

They sound like they've got enough pad left on them. Other than that, I'd just make sure everything is adjusted properly, and maybe apply a little grease to the pivot points where movement takes place.

#3 Fairtax4me

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Posted 21 July 2009 - 11:19 AM

Are you sure the squeaking is from the rear? Drums don't usually squeak unless they're really hot or the shoes are worn out. If the shoe material is riveted to the backing plates it may be time to change them.

#4 grossgary

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Posted 21 July 2009 - 12:21 PM

Pad material is 2 pennies thick, but I've never seen new ones so I have no idea what I'm looking at.

Shoes don't have any kind of wear indicators or marks on them to tell?

Almost sure it was rear brakes - typical "disc brake" squeal that went away with ebrake.

I'll grease those points with or without new shoes once I find out if these are good or not.

#5 john in KY

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Posted 21 July 2009 - 01:21 PM

Seems thin to me. Just stop at any auto parts store and ask to see just about any car brake shoe to get an idea of the general thickness. Take a look at the wheel cylinders. Probably a good idea to just replace them.

#6 avk

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Posted 21 July 2009 - 06:21 PM

Once a drum is off, replace everything inside that's mounted to the backing plate.

#7 Log1call

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Posted 21 July 2009 - 08:57 PM

If they still have friction material on them then it won't be causing the squeal. It's probably rust where the shoes rub against the pistons or backing plate or, there is dust in there causing the noise.

It's not recommended to blow the dust out anymore(hint) so you could wash them out and then go for a drive to dry them out. I'd also look for where they touch the backplate and smear a TINY SMEAR of grease on that spot while I was in there.

#8 tcspeer

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Posted 21 July 2009 - 11:05 PM

If you want a sure fix get you some new Wagner Thermo quite shoes, new drums, and new brake spring kit. Remove all of the old brake things and then clean with spray brake cleaner, keeping it off of the rubber boots on the wheel cyclinder, then use brake grease on the high parts of the backing plate.

If you dont want to go with this sure fix I have found that changing sides with the drums will sometime keep them quite for a good while.

And just take one side apart at a time, as many times as I have done mine sometimes I still need to look at the other side.

#9 Fairtax4me

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Posted 21 July 2009 - 11:33 PM

New friction material is anywhere from 3/16" up to over 7/16" thick depending on the size of the application. I'd imagine they should be near 1/4" when new for this size car.

#10 davebugs

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Posted 22 July 2009 - 06:58 AM

Last one I had lube on the backing plates solved it - an Impreza IIR.

I had a friend help. I pulled the workings out a bit and he put some lube back there for me. Shoes looked good. I didn't even dis-assemble anything but removing the drum.

#11 grossgary

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Posted 22 July 2009 - 07:53 AM

Last one I had lube on the backing plates solved it - an Impreza IIR.

I had a friend help. I pulled the workings out a bit and he put some lube back there for me. Shoes looked good. I didn't even dis-assemble anything but removing the drum.


The shoes were nearly identical to new ones, so I'm not replacing them. You just used brake caliper lube and put it anywhere there's metal on metal contact basically?

I'll give that a try.

#12 davebugs

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Posted 22 July 2009 - 08:14 AM

Yea. Actually I hit them with a little piece of scotchbrite first, then just a dab of lube(not anti-seize) on the little flat surfaces meant to steady the shoes. I forget how many spots per shoe but I believe atleast 2 and not more than 4 - but I could be wrong.

Most of the time I use anti-seize and caliper grease in about the same way other then slider pins (always get lube). Don't know why I chose lube for the backing plates.

Lately when tearing apart other folks work I'm seeing what looks like hard anti-seize. Of course I can't even tell if it was anti-seize or in some cases thread locker(yes I realize thats the other end of the spectrum).

On nuts/bolts I still use antiseize and not lube.

#13 bork

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Posted 07 January 2012 - 10:49 PM

I often wandered if the grease attracts the dust?

#14 avk

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Posted 07 January 2012 - 11:33 PM

I often wandered if the grease attracts the dust?

One possible answer is that the brake dust would cover everything inside one way or another.




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