Choosing the Right Wheel Cylinder Repair Kit
Wheel cylinders are vital parts to your car's brake system. Its job is to exert the right amount of brake fluid into the system depending on how hard you pressed the brake pedal. The wheel cylinder is composed of a steel cylinder containing a piston, and covered by two rubber caps on both ends. The peripheral parts of the wheel cylinder are usually the ones that corrode first which makes it more convenient to rebuild the cylinder rather than to replace it entirely. Because of this, the wheel cylinder repair kit was created-to make wheel cylinder rebuilding much easier. Some manufacturers provide different sets of wheel cylinder repair kits-to know what parts are essential or not, here's a short guide to help you choose the right wheel cylinder repair kit.
Rubber caps are important parts of the entire kit as they are usually the ones that get broken first. Make sure to buy repair kits that include the best quality of rubber caps. Rubber caps should be leak-resistant, and made from durable rubber material such as polymer-based composites among other variations. Aside from keeping the piston securely placed inside the cylinder, the rubber caps also prevent brake fluid leaks.
Wheel cylinder-honing tool
The wheel cylinder-honing tool is used to remove mild corrosion from within the metal cylinder. This is an important tool in cleaning the wheel cylinder during the rebuilding procedure, so make sure to buy repair kits that include high quality honing tools. The best cylinder-honing tools are usually made from stainless steel springs with rubber holders to control the rotational movement it needs to do once inserted onto the cylinder.
Brake cylinder pistons
The brake cylinder piston is the most important part of the wheel cylinder. It plays a vital role in pushing the proper amount of brake fluid to gradually slow down the vehicle to full stop. Without stainless steel pistons, the wheel cylinders will easily corrode, and you might have to rebuild the wheel cylinders more often.
Wheel Cylinder Repair Kit Instructions in 5 Steps
Have you ever wondered how you are able to gradually stop the car by just slowly stepping on the brake pedal? This feature of gradual braking is made possible by your car's wheel cylinder. The wheel cylinder pushes a certain amount of brake fluid depending on the effort you exert on the brake pedal. It is made of a steel spring and a set of rubber and steel pod bushings to push the brake fluid effectively. The wheel cylinder is an important aspect of your car's brake system as it prevents the vehicle from surging to a sudden stop. Sudden stops can cause potential damage to your engine among other parts of the vehicle, so make sure to rebuild those broken wheel cylinders right away. Here's a short guide to help you use a wheel cylinder repair kit.
Difficulty Level: Moderate
Tools you'll need:
- Rubbing alcohol
- Brake fluid
- Wheel cylinder repair kit
- Jack stands
- Drill bit
Step 1: Remove the broken wheel cylinder by first disassembling the wheel assembly. Use the jack stands to raise the clearance of your vehicle.
Step 2: Use the wrench to remove the tires leaving the axle exposed. Locate the leaking wheel cylinder at the topmost part of the axle. You'll know when a wheel cylinder is broken or leaking if the brake fluid is weeping out of the component. Search for leaks in the rubber bushings at both ends, and replace them if the cylinder itself is still perfectly useable.
Step 3: Remove the brake line by applying brake fluid, and using a wrench to unbolt the rubber cap from the broken wheel cylinder. Remove the stones inside the cylinder as well as the corroded piston. Once the two rubber caps, and the piston has been removed, insert a piece of cloth onto the cylinder, and clean it using rubber alcohol.
Step 4: Use a wheel cylinder-honing tool that comes with the wheel cylinder repair kit to remove the corrosion inside the cylinder. Drill in the replacement pistons carefully avoiding stones to drop from the bore.
Step 5: Install the new brake lines, and rubber caps on both sides of the cylinder. Clean it with a brake cleaner, and reassemble the wheel assembly. Remove the jack stands, and test for leaks.
Wheel cylinders are usually rebuilt rather than replaced since the cylinder lasts longer than its peripheral parts. As such, the parts that corrode the first are the ones replaced using a wheel cylinder repair kit.