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1987 - 1996 F150 & Larger F-Series Trucks 1987 - 1996 Ford F-150, F-250, F-350 and larger pickups - including the 1997 heavy-duty F250/F350+ trucks

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Old 09-19-2014, 08:27 PM
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weird brake problem...

Hi all,

I had something happen today that seems to defy logic....

So this morning I made a dump run in my 97 f250hd 4x4 351 5 speed... while I was in the bed dumping all the junk out of it I noticed a faint smell of brakes, that smell you get when your brakes are dragging. I didn't think to much of it, because there was another guy next to me driving a junker, and I just figured out was so faint it must be him.

A few hours later the passenger side rear brakes locked up on me. So I pulled it apart expecting to see a broken spring, or something. There was nothing out of place, except that the e brake lever was partially engaged. Now I'm the only person who drives this truck and I know for a fact that I didn't touch the e brake pedal. In fact, when the brakes locked up I tried pulling the e brake release and it was already all the way up.

So my question is, what could cause the e brake to engage on one side suddenly, when the pedal wasn't touched? After pulling the drums off I found out what the problem was, but what caused the problem? I still have it all apart, and I don't want to put it back together again until I figure this out!

Thanks for any help!
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Old 09-19-2014, 08:36 PM
LeoJr LeoJr is offline
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I installed some side steps. 2 years later (I don't use them very often) I set the emergency brakes as we were pushing a skid of sod farther on the trailer and I didn't want all that pushing going against the auto trans parking pawl. I released the E brake and heading home. I knew 3 skids of sod was heavy but it was pulling really heavy. Turns out the E brake cable caught on the edge of a side step bracket and wasn't releasing one wheel completely.

Maybe the heavier than normal load caused the truck to sag and the cable is catching or pulling on something you did awhile ago?
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Old 09-19-2014, 08:55 PM
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Hmm... I'll look in the morning if there is something weird going on like that, but I haven't done anything new to the truck at all. And the dump load was nothing to write home about, the truck was barely loaded at all.
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Old 09-19-2014, 09:28 PM
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Could have a partially broken return spring on your e brake cables also. That and old cables could cause a slight drag, and as we know that's all it takes.
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Old 09-19-2014, 09:38 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by SteelHorse4x4 View Post
Could have a partially broken return spring on your e brake cables also. That and old cables could cause a slight drag, and as we know that's all it takes.
maybe, thats something i'll look at.

what i dont understand is why it suddenly happened and i havent used the e brake at all since april when i got my sticker...

i could see this happening if i had used the e brake, but it has always been a problem on the other side of the truck, so i go out of my way to not use it.
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Old 09-19-2014, 09:48 PM
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New cables are only what? 20 something each? replace them and then use the e brake occasionally so it doesn't freeze up. Sitting and not being used much is one of the hardest things on our old girls.
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Old 09-20-2014, 03:58 AM
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Maybe it got snaged on something at the dump?
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Old 09-20-2014, 07:27 AM
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i just looked at it again, no such luck on it being stuck on something...

the local dump is all paved, so i would have noticed running something over.

i plan on replacing the cables, but i just don't want this to happen again. there is nothing i hate more than having to take something apart twice, because i didn't fix the problem.
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