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Tightening up the parking brake cable

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6.0L Power Stroke Diesel 2003 - 2007 F250, F350 pickup and F350+ Cab Chassis, 2003 - 2005 Excursion and 2003 - 2009 van

Tightening up the parking brake cable

 
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Old 03-14-2019, 06:47 PM
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Tightening up the parking brake cable

My truck's cable has about 1/4" to 1/2" slack when released. It has no problem when I press the parking brake pedal to hold the truck on slope.

It's when I release it that the sensor's pin is not pushed in and the light is on. I can use my hand to pull it up and it would be enough to push the pin in. I looked into it and the cable is a bit loose. I just can't see anywhere to tighten it up. No bolts/nut under the truck. I was hoping there is some kind of tensioner near the pedal but I didn't see anything.

So how would you do it?
 
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Old 03-14-2019, 07:56 PM
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Spring-loaded take-up wheel in the assembly. Either the spring tension is poor or the cable has too much drag in it.
 
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Old 03-14-2019, 08:08 PM
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The cable is pretty loose, I can move it with my hand when I released the brake. I suppose I need to take the assembly out to tighten the spring then.
 
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Old 03-15-2019, 11:11 AM
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I took the pedal assembly out and saw one spring that is meant to soften the retracting pedal when released. I don't see any spring for tightening it. It's also hard to see any auto slack take up mechanism.
I wonder if there is any.

At the bottom of the truck, there is no cable adjuster near the equalizer. Maybe all I need is to adjust each rear brake to make them tighter. Maybe take them apart and clean up the inside of the drum. I always had a hard time removing drums. Do these have star adjusting nuts or some sort of hydraulic auto tensioner. I read somewhere backing up while applying the main brake would tighten it.

I read the service manual, but my brain just didn't cooperate with me. I will give it another shot.

 
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Old 03-15-2019, 11:47 AM
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Here's the Dura patent for our parking actuator, first designed in 1993 for a Ford platform.

https://patents.google.com/patent/US5309786

And two images of the parts. No adjustment of the take-up reel or spring, they usually break. The spring is item 22, inside the drum.






You may be out of adjustment of the shoes, but if you have some parking ability they probably haven't exploded.

There is a typical star wheel adjustment at the axle itself, manual adjusting not automatic. It works just like a normal star wheel, but don't ask me to remember which direction so I added some text I have in my notes.








The yellow arrow highlights where the retaining pin is that typically rusts out (there is another pin 180 degrees on the other side) and the red arrow where the rubber plug is to access the star wheel.



 
Attached Files
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Parking Brake Adjustment.txt (600 Bytes, 6 views)
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Old 03-15-2019, 02:18 PM
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A friend of mine had the peddle assembly fail where items #50 and #52 rivets hold the two parts together.
When they started to fail the cable got loose and when it failed all the way the cable would slip between
the two sections and get stuck. The parking brake would no longer apply after that.
 
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Old 03-15-2019, 08:35 PM
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Thanks Jack for the pictures and info. I will adjust it and see how it goes. I park in a slope so doing thing like this is hard.
 
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Old 03-15-2019, 08:44 PM
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That would definitely screw things up. Wheel chocks front wheels?
 
 


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