You are here:

Chevrolet Repair/'02 Cavalier

Advertisement


Question
QUESTION: Hi Tom,
I asked you for advice about our 2002 cavalier brake lockup problem a while ago. You were very prompt and helpful. We did not come back to rate, as I couldn't find the link. Once I did the site wouldn't let me post.
You advised us that the brake proportioning valves were a common issue with these cars. As of now, we have thoroughly cleaned the brake components and drums, replaced shoes, wheel cylinders, and the two proportioning valves. Nothing has fixed our problem, and it's getting worse. When the brakes are applied, it feels like the back lock up first, with the left rear being the worst. The car actually will skid, and there is a noise which sounds like something losing power. A little vibration present in pedal, but not like grinding. When pedal is released, there is a "kick" like something was stuck and is being released. We are planning on replacing the drums, but are at a loss as what to try next. After reading all the forums online, there should be a recall on these cars braking systems! Thank you in advance!

ANSWER: HI SHELLY,,THE SOUND YOU ARE TALKING ABOUT IS FROM THE ABS SYSTEM. IT IS ENGAGING,,THIS COULD BE CAUSED BY A FAULTY WHEEL SPPED SENSOR OR ABS MODULE... I WANT YOU TO REMOVE THE ABS FUSE OR RELAY IN THE UNDER HOOD FUSE BOX...FLIP THE COVER UPSIDE DOWN TO FIND THE LOCATION OF THE FUSE OR RELAY..REMOVE IT AND DRIVE IT LIKE THIS...YOUR ABS AND RED BRAKE LIGHT WILL BE ON THIS IS OK..THE ABS SYSTEM WILL NOT WORK LIKE THIS BUT YOU REGULAR BRAKE SYSTEM WILL WORK JUST FINE...LET ME KNOW IF THE PROBLEM GOES AWAY.. THIS IS NOT A BRAKE DRUM PROBLEM. THE LOCKING UP PROBLEM SOUNDS LIKE THE BRAKE SHOES ARE WAY OUT OF ADJUSTMENT...LET ME KNOW WHAT HAPPENS AND WE WILL GO FROM THERE..GOOD LUCK TO YOU,,,TOM.

---------- FOLLOW-UP ----------

QUESTION: I saw what you suggest doing online, and we did remove the ABS fuse relay from under the hood. No change. We did this just the other night. Thanks!

ANSWER: HI SHELLY, OK SO WE CAN RULE OUT THE ABS SYSTEM...HAVE YOU ADJUSTED THE REAR BRAKES..ADJUST THE SHOES SO WHEN YOU SPIN THE REAR WHEELS THERE IS JUST A LTTLE DRAG ON THEM..THERE HAS TO BE SOME DRAG ON THEM OR ELSE THE SHOES WILL SNAP AND LOCK UP IN THE DRUM ITSELF WHEN BRAKING...ALSO IS THE PARKING BRAKE FULLY RELEASED..MAKE SURE THE ACTUATOR ROD BETWEEN THE FRONT AND REAR SHOES ARE LOOSE AND NOT TIGHT..MAKE SURE THE TOP SIDE OF EACH BRAKE SHOE IS TOUCHING THE ANCHOR PIN ON THE TOP SIDE WHERE THE SHOES REST..IF PARKING BRAKE IS NOT FULLY RELEASED THIS WILL ALSO CAUSE A LOCKING UP CONDITION AND SNAP WHEN BRAKE PEDAL IS RELEASED.... DOES THE BRAKE PEDAL FEEL NORMAL ??? LET ME KNOW ABOUT THIS AND CK THE ABOVE AND GET BACK TO ME...GOOD LUCK TO YOU,,,TOM....

---------- FOLLOW-UP ----------

QUESTION: We have adjusted the brakes, but will do so again and re-check all you've suggested...we have to try something. I will print this out so my husband can follow it to the letter :) Thanks again, and I will let you know how it goes.

Answer
HI SHELLY,,MAKE SURE YOU ARE ADJUSTING THEM AS I SAID ABOVE..AS YOU ROLL THE REAR WHEELS YOU WANT A DRAG ON THE WHEEL [NOT TO TIGHT OR THEY WILL HANG UP.]THIS WAY YOU KNOW THEY ARE ADJUSTED CORRECTLY..PLEASE GET BACK TO ME ON THIS...IF I COULD FEEL OR SEE THIS CAR I AM SURE WE COULD GET TO THE BOTTOM OF THIS..ALSO WERE THE REAR DRUMS EVER MACHINED ?? IF THEY WERE AND MACHINED VERY COURSE,THIS MAY CAUSE YOUR PROBLEM AS WELL...BUT IF THEY WERE NOT MACHINED THEN THIS IS NOT THE PROBLEM..I KNOW YOU SAID YOU REPLACED THE SHOES AS  WELL..[MAKE SURE THERE IS NO GREASE ON THE SURFACE OF THE SHOES..] ALSO YOU DID NOT TELL ME IF THE PEDAL FEELS NORMAL ? YOU CAN TELL ME THAT ON YOUR NEXT QUESTION.. LET ME KNOW,, TOM....

Chevrolet Repair

All Answers


Answers by Expert:


Ask Experts

Volunteer


TOM SHEETS

Expertise

PLEASE READ ALL OF THIS BEFORE ASKING ANY QUESTIONS. IF THIS CHEVY SECTION IS MAXED OUT.YOU CAN REACH ME IN THE OLDS/BUICK SECTION. Will answer questions from 6:00am to 10:00pm all days [EST][[[ NO DIESEL OR PAINT QUESTIONS]]] will answer all 1965 to present QUESTIONS ON ALL GM'S on mechanics of these cars. Keep in mind i am not there in person i am going on what you are telling me !! PLEASE IF ASKING A QUESTION GIVE ME AS MUCH INFO AS POSSIBLE. THE MORE THE BETTER. SUCH AS YEAR,MAKE,MODEL,ENGINE SIZE. THIS WILL HELP ME HELP YOU. I will not be able to answer all questions because of some situations that i would really need to be there and see things for myself,such as electrical issues. In many cases i would need wiring diagrams. I can also give you an estimate on what the cost would be at our repair shop as an idea to help you. Keep in mind that my answer is ONLY MY ADVICE,ck with your mechanic as well.. >> THANK YOU, TOM..

Experience

I have been a ASE certified master mechanic for over 30 years and certified IN ALL 8 CATEGORIES,[engine repair,engine performance,auto trans,manual trans,clutches,steering and suspension,brakes,electrical systems,heating and air/cond. I am also a state CERTIFIED inspector for over 30 years. I do computer work [pcm]fault codes,pcm flashing,state inspection monitor readiness,repairs on exhaust,fuel service,[injection and carburetor,] charging system problems, running issues,alignments,frame problems,tire balance,struts and of course standard and anti-lock brakes.

Organizations
nys state auto repair industry and ase group.

Publications
N/A

Education/Credentials
high school,4 years of tech school,and many many hours of auto training with many gm classes and aftermarket training classes..

Awards and Honors
ASE MASTER TECH CERTIFIED IN ALL 8 CATEGORIES.NYS INSP LICENSE AND A/C CERTIFIED

Past/Present Clients
MANY CUSTOMERS IN OUR BUSY SHOP.

©2016 About.com. All rights reserved.