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Are my brake shoes reuseable?

Discussion in '1973-1991 K5 Blazer | Truck | Suburban' started by not4show, May 28, 2002.

  1. not4show

    not4show 1/2 ton status

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    I'm in the process of replacing the oil seal on the back side of my drum. However, since it was bad, gear oil had made its way into the brakes. The shoes have oil all over them, but they have probably 3/4 of life left on them or more. Can I reuse these shoes if I clean them up? Even with all that oil on the brakes it still stopped good.
     
  2. rampage

    rampage 1/2 ton status

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    The fronts do most of the stopping so you probably wouldn't notice that much of a difference if the rears weren't up to par. Oil soaks into the pads on the shoes and once that happens they don't work correctly any more. I'd replace them.
     
  3. Chaz88K5

    Chaz88K5 1/2 ton status

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    if ya have it apart you might as well replace em...just my .02
     
  4. dyeager535

    dyeager535 1 ton status Premium Member

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    I *guarantee* you'll have problems. I don't care how much braking the fronts do, having one rear wheel locking up every time you hit the brakes *still* makes you look like a moron driving a hooptie. Lol, no offense to anyone else of course! ; )

    I lost the axle seal in my car, and the fluid contaminated the pads. Worked fine when the brakes were cold, which was about the first 5 minutes of use. After that, every stop, no matter how light the pedal was pressed, resulted in that one wheel locking up solid.

    Shoes are dirt cheap. If you *really* don't want to spend, you could always get some out of a wrecking yard : ) May sound cheap, but rear shoes typically outlast most other vehicle components, (engine included) and as long as the pads are riveted and not contaminated or cracked, I would NOT hesitate to re-use a set.
     
  5. not4show

    not4show 1/2 ton status

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    Hmm....I really don't know how long I drove my truck in this condition, but I never had any brakeing problems in the first place. And, yes my rear breaks do work. However, when I saw oil starting to drip on the ground, is when I noticed a problem.
    I checked around today for a set of shoes for a 14 bolt and got prices from $55-$98 a set.
     
  6. 91K5

    91K5 1/2 ton status

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    I'd replace them if you can afford to, better safe than sorry.
     
  7. not4show

    not4show 1/2 ton status

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    Alright, I think I'll go ahead and replace the shoes. Is there any one brand better than the other? I mean, there's not much to a brake shoe. Most of them look the same. Thanks for the earlier replys.
     
  8. 91K5

    91K5 1/2 ton status

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    The best your going to get for a 14 bolt is the Raybestos PG Plus brakes. I'm using these now and they stop good, and they're supposed to be made of a compound that doesnt wear as fast for a longer life and is easier on the drums. They were about $65 from the parts store.
     
  9. dyeager535

    dyeager535 1 ton status Premium Member

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    As long as the pads are riveted, I'd be happy. In case anyone is wondering why I say riveted only, a lot of the "bonded" (glued) pads I see that have been on a vehicle for awhile, tend to seperate from the steel, and a brake shoe with no lining doesn't really help much, nor does the lining floating around inside the drum : )
     
  10. HarryH3

    HarryH3 1 ton status Author

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    I've had a leaking oil seal deposit gear lube on the rear brakes before. Mine would lock up that wheel if the road was wet at all. It can make for some interesting handling.
     
  11. 70~K5

    70~K5 1/2 ton status

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    When the shoes are cold you don't notice it much but once they warm up the oil starts bleading back out of the shoes. That being said I've had good luck hot tanking the shoes on my big rig when I lost a seal on new brake shoes. The shop I had change the seal when I was on the road had a hot tank and was able to save the low milage shoes on that axle side.
     
  12. not4show

    not4show 1/2 ton status

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    I bought shoes today, so I'll go ahead and replace them. I just think it's funny that I drove for no telling how long with oil in my brakes with no ill effects.
     
  13. 70~K5

    70~K5 1/2 ton status

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    You never got them really hot. I've seen big rig brakes get so hot they caused the wheel seal on the trailer to let go and then the oil in the hub leaked out and caught fire.
     

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