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#682591 - 16/07/14 01:33 AM Parking brake catching on something
soaringDude Offline
Junior Member

Registered: 11/07/11
Posts: 5
Hi folks,

A couple of weeks ago my parking brake started to have a strange feel to it at times. After I stop the car and pull the parking brake, about 50% of time it feels as if it is catching on something when it is about 1-2 inches up and then it comes up smoothly the rest of the way up. The brakes work just fine engaging and releasing and this catch does not happen all the time.

I have been looking at parking brake drawings and trying to figure what could cause this and googling/searching this forum also didn't turn anything up. Any ideas on what could be causing this and where I should start?

#682595 - 19/07/14 09:26 AM Re: Parking brake catching on something [Re: soaringDude]
The WHO Offline

Registered: 08/06/14
Posts: 14
Loc: NC
SoaringDude, There are a few things I would consider in your situation. However I have a question. What year Xterra?

1. It is possible if you have a pull handle, something could have dropped down into the mechanism, like say a quarter...........etc.?

2. I would chase the entire cable from start to finish. Remove all trim, covers and or anything in which impedes/obstructs the view of the cables operation. Have someone operate the brake slowly and you view the operating mechanisms from start to finish checking for an obstruction.

3. Remember this is a cable actuated device. Cables cut, fray, corrode, stretch and brake! So with that being said it is entirely possible that your cable has corrosion, frayed or cut through the protective guide which it is housed in. If this is the case chasing the cable from start to finish you might find it, if not, your going to have to disconnect the cable at the drum/disc and the pull handle to operate the cable by hand. This test will allow you to feel the tension/force necessary to engage. With the cable free at both ends it should move freely, if there is friction/drag or tension at any point before the cable hits the stopping point I'd replace or determine the cause.

4. Remove the rear tires, drums and or anything obstructing your view at the braking end to see if you have anything causing the issue there.

The order in which you choose to check these things has no precedence but all are quiet possible. Hope this helps as I did not know your year.

Edited by The WHO (19/07/14 09:41 AM)

#682666 - 17/10/14 01:11 PM Re: Parking brake catching on something [Re: The WHO]
soaringDude Offline
Junior Member

Registered: 11/07/11
Posts: 5
Thanks for the reply, for some reason my notification never showed that I got a reply. I accidentally saw this now searching for another old post. The car is an 05.

I still have the same problem and given how inconsistent it is, haven't been able to pinpoint it.

I checked #1 multiple times and couldn't find any foreign object that could be interfering with the mechanism.

I haven't taken and chased the cable all the way end to end, but have looked at the two ends (lever & wheel/drum/shoe). Can't really see the problem, but so far I haven't felt the "catch" when the wheel has been off so makes it real hard to guess what is causing it. Will keep looking... Thanks for the suggestions.

#682671 - 21/10/14 09:49 AM Re: Parking brake catching on something [Re: soaringDude]
TJ Offline

Registered: 08/03/01
Posts: 7756
Loc: Lawrenceville, NJ, USA
On the BACK of the drums is a lever mechanism that the ebrake cable pulls on to set the brake drum tension.

That tends to get rusty and can get either progressively stiffer to operate and/or have "catches" where it sticks then grabs, etc...more inconsistently. So, go to the diff side of the brakes and look at the lever in back, and the plunger inside the drum that it pulls on (Open the drum).

If you manually pull the lever it should operate that plunger. If not, you need to work it free with rust dissolver, etc...such as PB Blaster (NOT WD-40, etc).

Don't get the de-rust solvents on the rubber parts though, as it dissolves them too, and then you have other issues, and so forth.

You can apply brake grease (I like the synthetic versions) to the moving parts to extend the time befor you have to do it again.
- TJ

2001 Xterra '03 VG33, SE 5 spd, 305/70/16's, Revolvers, UBSkidderz, Doubled AAL's, 3"SL/2"BL, winch/bumpers, skids, sliders, OBA, Snorkel, pine stripes....

Friends don't let friends drive stock.


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