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replacing brakes

Discussion in '1973-1991 K5 Blazer | Truck | Suburban' started by Jonathan, Jun 24, 2001.

  1. Jonathan

    Jonathan 1/2 ton status

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    I'm fairly sure I need new brakes (soft pedal, getting harder to stop, etc.). Is replacing brakes a job I could do without much trouble. I've never messed withe automotive brakes before. What is a good brand to buy should I decide to do it myself.

    77 Blazer, 350, NP203, K&N, 31-inch Cooper Discoverers
    <A target="_blank" HREF=http://www.Jonathan.coloradok5.com>http://www.Jonathan.coloradok5.com</A>
     
  2. Smitty

    Smitty 1/2 ton status

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    If you've got a soft pedal I'd be looking for air in the lines or expanding flex hoses, maybe even the master cylinder. Be sure to do a visual of the shoes & pads before laying your money down for new ones.

    Smitty
     
  3. Jonathan

    Jonathan 1/2 ton status

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    I have been told before that I might need a new master cylinder. How can I tell for sure? How could I tell if I have expanding flex hoses?

    77 Blazer, 350, NP203, K&N, 31-inch Cooper Discoverers
    <A target="_blank" HREF=http://www.Jonathan.coloradok5.com>http://www.Jonathan.coloradok5.com</A>
     
  4. CaptCrunch

    CaptCrunch 1/2 ton status

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    Try this Johnathan... take all four wheels off and remove the rear drums... take a look in the rear and see if there is a big mess or wetness coming out of the wheel cylinder (It is a cylinder w/ a brake line in the back through the plate and on each end it has a little foot to push the shoes) If they are leaking then need to be replaced. Look at the shoes themselves... they have small holes in them w/ a rivet in the bottom... how far to the rivet? Usually they have abou 1/8 to 2/16".... if it is just about to leave the shoe level even w/ the rivet they need to be replaced. Next look at the fronts and most pads have a wear indicator that looks like a piece of metal that will scrape the rotor. Many times it is on the back pad.... if you can't find it then try an see how much pad is left... again 1/8- approx 1/4" is about the norm... any less and they need replacement. check each side because they wear uneven. I would get a good Haybes manual and it shouldn't be difficult... if it looks ok you may jest need to bleed them, but usually that means you have other problems in the system.

    -Mikey
    1987 Chevy K5 Blazer- 350 TBI
    <A target="_blank" HREF=http://www.geocities.com/milnerlives_2000/blazer.htm>http://www.geocities.com/milnerlives_2000/blazer.htm</A>
     
  5. Jonathan

    Jonathan 1/2 ton status

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    Thanks. can I do this one wheel at a time? I have a haynes manual I'll read the brakes section. I would have done it earlier, but this is more fun.

    77 Blazer, 350, NP203, K&N, 31-inch Cooper Discoverers
    <A target="_blank" HREF=http://www.Jonathan.coloradok5.com>http://www.Jonathan.coloradok5.com</A>
     
  6. CaptCrunch

    CaptCrunch 1/2 ton status

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    I usually rip apart one side at a time. Then you have something to look at incase you brainfart and forget where something goes...plus you can only be one place at once so might as well do one then the other IMO. You will probably need some tools for the rears though... The little washer remover is nice to have and every once in a while I use the brake spring pliers end to remove springs... I usually just use vise grips to hold and pull on the springs during assembly... the brake pliers slip too much for me. Fronts are pretty simple, but sometimes a big pair of pliers is nice to fully compress the caliper... otherwise do it w/ a screwdriver or prybar before disasembly. Good luck.

    -Mikey
    1987 Chevy K5 Blazer- 350 TBI
    <A target="_blank" HREF=http://www.geocities.com/milnerlives_2000/blazer.htm>http://www.geocities.com/milnerlives_2000/blazer.htm</A>
     
  7. 84_Chevy_K10

    84_Chevy_K10 Banned

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    I agree, do it one side at a time. When you're done, bleed the brakes and if the pedal is still crappy just put a new, not rebuilt, master cylinder on it.

    I need new wheel cylinders, my right rear leaks like a $#@#@. I need to get to that soon.

    If you use a prybar on the front brakes you'll most likely break what's left of the pads, so make sure you've got new ones. A C clamp on the old pads when it's already apart will work also. Don't put the clamp directly on the piston though, use an old pad. Take the top off the master cylinder when you do that as well, it will make it somewhat easier.

    Tim
    '84 Chevy K10, lifted, loud, fast, and 3/4 ton axles
     

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