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brake warning light, why ?

Discussion in 'The Garage' started by R72K5, Dec 6, 2003.

  1. R72K5

    R72K5 Banned

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    needing opinions,

    the brake warning light is all the time in the truck except for everyonce in a while it will go out when pedal returns after applying brakes but as soon as you hit pedal again the light returns and stays on as usual.

    truck is 83 K20 and it sat for years untouched never ran once until recently and the brakes work fine no problems at all,

    i plan on bleeding out all old fluid out of system with new fluid when i can

    what do you think ?
     
  2. rick88blaze

    rick88blaze 1/2 ton status

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    It could be the sensor on the proportioning valve.
     
  3. Triaged

    Triaged 1/2 ton status

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    The light comes on because you have lost half of your brakes hydrolic system. My guess would be bad wheel cylinders. Having set that long it is already too late to just flush out all the fluid. The damage/rust is already done. If it was my truck I would just replave the entire system. It doesn't cost that much on a chevy.
    MC $12
    Wheel Cyl $4 each
    front calipers $13 each.

    For about $50 ($100 with tax here in CA) you can have a whole new system!
     
  4. Derf00

    Derf00 1/2 ton status

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    Does the '83 have the black box next to the resivor? If so, with the ignition off, disconnect the top plug on the box, turn on the ignition for 30 sec without starting the engine, shut it off, reconnect the plug, and give it a try. If you have a coumpter problem, this will clear it.
     
  5. boggerless

    boggerless 1 ton status Premium Member

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    those are junkyard prices in michigan. /forums/images/graemlins/grin.gif /forums/images/graemlins/k5.gifto /forums/images/graemlins/truck.gif
     
  6. Triaged

    Triaged 1/2 ton status

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    They are j/y prices out here too! The damn j/y wants as much as the part is worth rebuilt! I rebuilt some wheel cylinders once because I didn't have that much cash at the time. Later I found out that the rebuild kit cost more than a rebuilt wheel cylinder! Talk about learning a lesson on how cheep chevy parts are.
     
  7. bigblock44k5

    bigblock44k5 1/2 ton status

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    I would go with your plan of bleeding the brakes. Make sure to check your entire brake system for leaks though.
     
  8. 99firehawk

    99firehawk 1/2 ton status

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    You may just be low on fluid, if your pads are getting worn the fluid level will drop as the pistons and w/c move out to take up the slop, this will cuase a drop in fluid level.
    I would still check all lines, calipers and w/cs for leaks though.
     
  9. dyeager535

    dyeager535 1 ton status Premium Member

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    Doesn't sound like it, but have you made sure that the emergency brake switch isn't the culprit? No, it doesn't sound related because brake apply gets the light to come on, but it's easy to check.

    FWIW, I'd say that at least 50% of the time when a brake system is bled, that has been abused or sat for a long time, the master cylinder will fail. Sludge/corrosion builds up in the master cylinder bore, especially further in (which is where the piston goes when you bleed brakes, notice how far the pedal travels compared to normal) and apparently, when the old seals (probably somewhat hardened) get pushed into the sludge/corrosion, they get cut, which means the MC is no good anymore. End up with a spongy pedal that eventually fails at an inoppurtune time.
     

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