I also tried releasing the tension from the underside of the handle to no avail. Is the adjusting hole on the passenger side? Is the correct hole the one farthest toward the front of the vehicle? I have also included a photo of the underside of the handle. Can you describe which place under the handle to push, pull down, or pry in order to release the tension?
Release the parking brake cable tension as follows:
Place the parking brake control (2780) in the "released" position.
While an assistant relieves tension on the system by pulling on the parking brake intermediate cable, insert a 4mm (5/32-inch) steel pin or equivalent drill bit into the hole provided in the parking brake control.
On the Aerostar, insert a steel pin through the pawl lock out pin hole. The pin must be inserted from the inboard side of the parking brake control (larger hole) at a slightly upward and forward angle, then swept downward and rearward to displace the self-adjusting pawl. This locks out the self-adjusting pawl.
96_4wdr, I appreciate the post. I have the Haynes manual and have read the instructions from several sources. Some of the procedures I have read are slightly contradictory. What I need to know is whether the adjustment hole is on the passenger side or drivers side and which hole is the adjustment hole. I spent hours and could not figure this out. My brakes are really tight and I'm sure the pressure at the handle needs to be released. If anybody has a more straight forward procedure that works, I'm all ears.
never had a stuck emergency parking mechanism...
several on the forum have had to release theirs....some of these do self tighten over the years due to design error
may have rusted or broken part in mechanism....try spraying with white lithium grease or penetrating oil PB Blaster spray and let set overnight...
great collection point for road shoe dirt, old french fries, etc
Yup, I really hosed the handle racheting mechanism down with PB Blaster a few times. My wife complained about the odor for days (I had a few chuckles, since the smell does not bother me!) Lubrication does not seem to affect the self adjusting mechanism. The handle has a self adjusting mechanism combined with all those mechanisms in the inner pix I enclosed as a link. My equalizer spring which provides the counter force to the self adjusting mechanism is rusted and should be replaced. The spring is discontinued and no longer available at Ford. The emergency brake handle is obviously over adjusted since it only takes a couple to 3 clicks to raise it to full force. I really need to release this brake handle cable tension. If you look at all the different procedures the pix are a little different. Some show the adjusting hole on the drivers side, some on the passengers side, and a different hole is referenced. I tried poking nails into all the holes and could not figure out how to release the blasted tension. I'm no novist either, I've been doing auto mechanics for over 30 years! This tension release has me stumped!
I did not have any luck with releasing the mechanism by the procedure in the manual. What I ended up doing is pulling back far enough on the cables to disconnect them at the T under the van (while somebody holds down the release button on the handle).
That allows you to remove the entire handle from the van. Then you play with it. I don't really remember exactly what I did, but I think I went in from the rear of the handle with a flat blade screwdriver while holding down the front release button.
Don't worry about the spring yet, it's really easy to work around that. I had to devise my own but it's pretty simple. I'll snap a picture and post it here later after I got home.
Much appreciated reply copper_90680. Now I don't feel like an idiot knowing that others have also been unable to follow the Haynes procedure. I'd also love more info on your diy spring. I will have to fabricate one too.
Hi Leonard, I have just had WWIII trying to replace a busted front break cable on my 93 Aerostar. Maybe some of this info will help: First of all, I call the lock pin a safety pin and I call the control assembly (part #2780) the "break handle mechanism". The local Ford dealer said they couldn't figure out how to rewind the break handle spring mechanism and gave the thing back to me busted! I got them to buy me a new break handle mechanism and they found a return spring for me in New Hampshire at another dealers (a good parts man can search other dealers parts dept.s to see if one is available). The new mechanism came factory direct with the safty pin inserted from the DRIVERS SIDE however, it's pretty obvious that you can't pull the pin from that side when it's installed and bolted down unless you remove the drivers seat, so I (carefully) drove the pin out from the passenger side with a drill bit then pushed the drill bit through with the safety pin from the passengers side leaving the safety pin in a position to be pulled from the passengers side. After I completed the job I noticed that I had the equalizer in upside down (as per one drawing in the factory service manual) The open end of the equilizer should be UP so if the cable breaks you don't lose the equilizer. When I tried to release the tension in the handle I ran into the same problem you did. By the way, to release the tension the handle must be the whole way down (released) and the safety pin should go in the large bottom hole on the passenger side of the control assemble (handle) directly below the rivet. As per the instructions I tried to push the pin in and up (as you did) but it just would not go. I think that with partially worn out rear breaks the tension spring rotates the hole up (counter clockwise (from passenger side) too far for you to reach it with the safety pin. I unbolted the control assbly. and with a lot of cussing and help from my wife I managed to pull it far enough forward for her to reinsert the safety pin. I like the idea above a whole lot better however - crawl under, pull the cable down enough that the holes line up and have a helper insert the pin. I think that way is a lot safer and easier but you do need an assistant. One other note, all the pictures in my Ford factory service manual show the safety pin (ok, lock pin) inserted from the passenger side! Lastly, they tell you not to cover the thing up - boot above or cover plate below - until you have the pin pulled and have the handle worked up and down a few times. This is an excellent idea because the front end of the front cable can easily jump part way out of it's retainer when the lock pin is pulled - it will wear out in about fourteen months this way. Make sure it is in the way it should be and lube it up well before you close. Hope all of this helps, please let me know. it drove me crazy for a while too.
Wow DaddyMouse. Much appreciated thorough explanation. You covered every detail. I now completely understand how to deal with the self adjusting mechanism.
This topic has been on the forum for several years and nobody explained it as well as you have. I really appreciate you taking the time to explain.
Thanks for taking the trouble to crawl under the vehicle copper_90680. I had read your post on the thread "94 Aerostar Rear Brakes Grabbing" but couldn't quite visualize. A true saying that a pix is worth a thousand words. I will just carry my rusty equalizer spring with me to the hardware store to find a similar one. Between the hardware store and AutoZone I'm sure to find something similar. The cable clamp is a super idea since it provides a way to adjust the spring for more or less tension. I'm definitely all set to do the repair. This is a great formum. I had no idea what my problem was when I started the thread "94 Aerostar Rear Brakes Grabbing". I don't think I would have come up with these solutions.
I never did get the brake cable tension to release. I have been avoiding problems by not using the emergency brake. My driveway is on a slope so I weekly test if my brakes are locked by putting the van in neutral and foot off the brake. The van will roll backward on the driveway.
I hit a deer a couple of weeks ago and have been repairing damage on my Honda Civic.
I had the wife assist me trying to release the brake cable tension. I had her push the emergency brake button while from under the car I tried to pull on the emergency brake cable forward of the equalizer bar. I could not get the cable to budge.
One way to get it to release is to get a long screwdriver and shove the tip under the handle in the front so it points toward the back and drivers side. towards the bottom. There is a place in there that you can push in that will release the handle fast. You may have to push hard and pull up on the handle and go down with it as you push on the screwdriver. I can do it in less than 10 sec everytime, you can to if you find the spot. We carry a screwdriver in our 94. LOL
99 F350 5.4 Lockers,Warn winch,Hubs..MDII Plow, 200 amp alt timbrens,Revo's.2 24 " LED bar lights THREE 96 aero*awd 4.0 ext. GREEN,BLUE,WHITE.Blue for parts//rust
2010 SUZUKI SX4 AWD CVT NICE USAF 76-80
CX500 TURBO ORIG OWNER
When the parking brake doesn’t release your brake shoes will heat up with all the castrophy what goes with it.
If all the cables and the equalizer counter spring (Ford part # FO9Z-2A651-A) are in good condition. Also the cable to each lever in the brake drum is moving freely. Then the next thing to check is the pall on the adjuster cam in the parking brake assembly and see if it moves freely. Through dryness and rust this pall on the cam might be stuck (frozen) on its shaft. Looking in from the back it is the left pall. The right pall is from the release **** which runs on the stationary cam.
For oiling and make things movable again, the easiest thing to do is remove the whole parking brake assembly (PBA). As a pre caution; On the rear of the assembly is a hole on the stationary cam plate where you can put temporary a 5/32 bolt to prevent the adjuster cam from slipping back to far. Now with large pliers gripped over the spring move that cam all the way forward so you can put in the pin through the second whole which lines up with the opposite hole. You might have to put a small screw driver in the RH side pall (looking from the back) to release the pall.
Note! Do not remove the pin till you have the PBA installed back again. Now you can loosen the 8 mm bolts with a 13 mm wrench and disconnect the switch connector and remove the PBA. When removed; Blow all the dust and dirt out the emergency brake assembly.
Oil the shafts from the palls and cam. Turn it upside and take a small screw drive and move the pall lever back and fort till it moves easily by it own spring. Then install the PBA back by first hooking up the cable. And pull the main cable backwards underneath the van. Be sure to remove the 5/32 bolt you installed earlier.
There is no short cut because you have to see if the pall is moving easily.
While you still have the PBA off it is a good idea to check the switch for its condition.
Again: Looking from the back in; the left pall is for the adjuster cam and the right pall is running on the stationary cam and connected to the emergency brake ****. If the brakes lock up because of this PBA seizure. Put a screwdriver in the back and hit the left pall
When servicing the rear brakes and installing new shoes be sure to move the adluster cam on the PAB forward so the cables will moved all the way back. Then adjust the brake adjusting cams till drum still fits over with little drag. On the road test you can do more adjusting by a backup driving speed of about 8 km and step on the brakes will auto adjust the brake shoes. Do this a couple times. On the road test check also if the drums get to hot. If getting to hot release the brake adjuster a few notches. Be sure to put the rubber caps back.
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