How to tell if rear brake caliper(s) are sticking
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  1. #1
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    How to tell if rear brake caliper(s) are sticking

    We had new rotors and pads put on our 02 V6 4Motion about a year or so ago. A couple months ago I noticed a repetitive squeak squeak squeak coming from one of the rear wheels at low speed. As soon as I touch the brakes, it disappears. The squeak has improved. i'm assuming a pad is rubbing against the rotor enough to cause a squeak.
    I raised the rear of the car and there is a certain amt of drag on each wheel when I turn them by hand. Neither wheel spins super freely. I would say each wheel turns a 1/2 turn with each push.
    How much drag is too much? The brakes do not grind and both outside pads look like they have plenty of material on them.
    How can I tell if one or both of the calipers are sticking? Thanks

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  3. #2
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    I'd pull temp readings off the rotors using an infrared thermometer after a drive and see what the temps look like. If the left is radically different from the right, or both are way hotter than the front, I'd say you have a problem.

    You may just want to pull the pads and treat the backs with Brake Quiet (from the bottle, not the spray can) and see if that helps.

  4. #3
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    Quote Originally Posted by sirwired View Post
    I'd pull temp readings off the rotors using an infrared thermometer after a drive and see what the temps look like. If the left is radically different from the right, or both are way hotter than the front, I'd say you have a problem.

    You may just want to pull the pads and treat the backs with Brake Quiet (from the bottle, not the spray can) and see if that helps.
    Thanks. Have purchased one online. Will check temps and post them.

  5. #4
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    To answer question about sticking.

    You will need to take the caliper off and collapse it to verify with any certainty if it is sticking or not.

    Alot of times this squeak noise can be caused by a bad parking brake mechanism on the caliper(note this is part of the caliper) Causing the lever to stick therefore not letting the parking brake function disengage properly.

    While you are re-prepping the pads you can use a screw driver to see if the mechanism returns or is stuck etc...

  6. #5
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    I'll check that out too. I had replaced pads and rotors once so I know how to screw down the piston. Can parking brake lever/mechanism just be lubricated?

  7. #6
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    So I took used infrared thermometer and all 4 rotor temps were the same. I removed right rear wheel and took of pads. They were not particularly worn. What I did notice is that I had to pry them out of calipers. The tabs/ears were really wedged in calipers. These are vw pads. I used a file to clean rust off calipers and also slightly filed edges of backing metal of pads where they ride over the caliper. Then I lubricated these parts and put brake quiet on pads. Shouldn't pads slide freely in calipers? Thanks Dave

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