How to Find the Best Parking Brake Shoe
You don't have to worry about parking and leaving your vehicle even on uneven areas because you have a parking brake that keeps its wheels from moving whenever activated. But things go wrong, and you can't blame the graded pavement for a mishap in your brake. The best thing you can do is ensure that this part is always at its best working state. In case irregularity is noticed, especially with the brake shoe, get a replacement immediately. Doing so will restore the effective performance of your parking brake. When looking for a replacement parking brake shoe, here are some things to consider:
The material used in the making of the shoe is one of the most important considerations when purchasing a replacement for your gone-bad part. A brake shoe is not a lone part, though. It is made up of smaller parts that guarantee its overall performance and service life. Here are the parts and the materials that you should look for:
- Web. The web is the crescent-shaped part of the brake shoe. It represents the biggest part of the shoe and serves as housing to the rest of the brake's comprising parts. But not all replacement brake shoe products are made to last the extreme conditions of its function. You should see to it that the web of your new part is made from high-grade metals like graphite, zinc, lead, and brass. These materials are known for their durability and high resistance to heat, but if weight should be considered, aluminum will be a better material.
- Lining table. The lining table is where the friction material of your brake shoe is mounted or attached. Along with the brake lining, it is subjected to all the application forces of the wheel cylinder. It needs to be made from the same materials the web is made of.
- Brake lining. The brake lining is the friction material of the brake shoe, so it needs to have a high friction coefficient. Look for linings made from friction modifying materials like graphite and cashew nut shells, powdered metals like lead and zinc, and curing agents and fillers like rubber chips.
The fit of the replacement parking brake shoe matters, too. You should get a replacement that is made especially for your make and model.
The cost of a replacement parking brake shoe should be a consideration, but should not be the reason for you to opt on substandard replacements. Not all trusted brands are expensive, though. In fact, there are products from world-class brands like Beck Arnley and Wagner that ranges from $30 to $60 only.
Installing Your Car's Parking Brake Shoes
When things go haywire, you should always have a backup plan to adapt to unseen circumstances. The same goes for your car's brake. Aside from your brake assembly, you car is equipped with parking brake shoes. Parking brakes act as an additional safety feature for when your rear brakes go wrong. Although used only when needed, a parking brake shoe can also corrode or malfunction over time. So when your car is not stopping fast enough or when you feel like the brakes have lost its power, replace your car's parking brake shoe with this step-by-step DIY guide.
Difficulty: Easy to moderate
Tools you'll need:
- Jack and jack stands
- Lug nut wrench
- Brake cleaning fluid and rags
- Brake grease
- New parking brake shoe
Step 1: Using a lug nut wrench, unbolt the lug nuts on the wheel to prepare it for removal. Lift your car off the ground using a jack and jack stands.
Step 2: Completely pull out the lug nuts to remove the wheel from your car's frame.
Step 3: Now that you've removed the wheel, you should be able to get a good look of your drum brakes. Pull the hub off the drum. If the drum assembly is held by retaining screws or bolts, remove these fasteners before pulling out the drum brakes.
Step 4: Once the drum brakes have been removed, move on to the brake assembly. Unfasten the retaining clips that hold the assembly in place. Carefully slide the brakes off until it releases from the backing plate.
Step 5: One or two springs should connect your brake shoes to your brake disc. Remove these return springs by unhooking its ends. You can also use pliers to pull and unfasten one end. With the tension released, you can simply unhook the other end.
Step 6: Depress the spring and retainer to remove the hold-down pins on the brake shoe. Turn the pin clockwise to completely release it from the brake shoes.
Step 7: Disconnect the brake shoe from the parking brake cable. Using a pair of pliers, slip the cable from its mount and remove the retaining clip.
Step 8: Your brake shoe, depending on your car model, is held in place by either a self-adjuster mechanism or fixed metal strut.To remove either of the two, simply pull it from between the brake shoes.
Step 9: Pull the brake shoes away from the braking plate to completely remove it. Discard the old parking brake shoes accordingly.
Step 10: Before installing your new parking brake shoe, make sure that you clean and grease all parts thoroughly. Using a brake cleaning fluid and a clean rag, wipe everything down to remove dirt and other deposits found on your brake disc and assembly.
Step 11: Lubricate the backing plate, pivot point of the hold-down pins, and all other operating levers with brake grease. Install your new brake shoe and reassemble it in reverse order.
Step 12: Repeat steps 3 to 11 to complete the installation of the parking brake shoes on all your rear wheels.