Brake job/bleed issues - Subaru Forester Owners Forum
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post #1 of 9 (permalink) Old 11-14-2010, 01:16 PM Thread Starter
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Brake job/bleed issues

Over the weekend I had my front rotors resurfaced and installed new genuine OEM front pads. Rear drums and shoes were good.

Since its been a little over 3 years and 100k miles so I decided to bleed the brakes. I opened the bleeders on the front calipers when I pressed the pistons back in to accommodate the new pads to avoid pressing the old fluid back up into the master cylinder and ABS. I ordered a liter of the ATE Super Blue fluid on ebay and used that.

I got all the new stuff installed and bled the brakes, starting at the right-rear, then left-rear, right front, and left front, topping off the reservoir every time. I had an assistant press and hold the pedal down (engine off) while I opened the bleeder, closed it with a little bit still trickling out, tightened, and had the assistant release, and repeat till fluid was clearly blue. This is the way I've done it with other vehicles and haven't had any trouble with it. I've had a fleet of older vehicles and believe that it's good to get the old fluid out due to its absorption of moisture. Buick Reatta's with their Teves Mark II ABS are quite sensitive to moisture and I and my family have had several so I've bled quite a few quarts

However it seems that I let some air into the system I accidentally let the master cylinder get dry while bleeding the first time. I bled a lot of fluid through two more times and definitely saw some air get released. Air got in either when this happened or when I had the front bleeders open when I pressed the pistons back in.

It's stopping fine but the pedal has an excessive amount of travel. Should I have it power bled? Or is something else wrong?

'07 2.5X, '89 Buick Reatta, '94 Century wagon
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post #2 of 9 (permalink) Old 11-14-2010, 01:45 PM
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You can bleed until you find the air or have it power bled. ABS systems can be a pain to get air out of. The SVX I just parted out had bleeders on the ABS pump/module thingy. I wonder if the foz does too?

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post #3 of 9 (permalink) Old 11-14-2010, 02:25 PM Thread Starter
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You can bleed until you find the air or have it power bled. ABS systems can be a pain to get air out of. The SVX I just parted out had bleeders on the ABS pump/module thingy. I wonder if the foz does too?
Well aside from filling the reservoir I've bled out like a liter/quart of fluid and my extra two bleeds were to get out air...but I didn't think of the bleeders on the master cylinder, I'll check for those

'07 2.5X, '89 Buick Reatta, '94 Century wagon
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post #4 of 9 (permalink) Old 11-14-2010, 02:50 PM Thread Starter
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Alas i just checked the master cylinder and abs module (by the air box) but no bleeders.

Also it seems the brakes are dragging now. What did i do wrong? I followed the instructions or so i think, putting the squealer on the inside right pad against the pad, then the rubber coated shim between that and the pistons. Shiny bare shim on the outside pad. Left side had the pad, then rubber coated shim with the holes, then the just rubber shim. Shiny bare shim outside. I torqued the slide pins and mountinig bolts to spec.

This sucks i should have had the dealer do it at this rate

I did clean and grease the slide pins liberally though i had to poind the caliper over the new pads

'07 2.5X, '89 Buick Reatta, '94 Century wagon

Last edited by F14CRAZY; 11-14-2010 at 03:01 PM.
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post #5 of 9 (permalink) Old 11-14-2010, 04:17 PM
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the little c-notch channels where the ears on the pads slide are know to build up crap and get stuck
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post #6 of 9 (permalink) Old 11-14-2010, 05:15 PM Thread Starter
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the little c-notch channels where the ears on the pads slide are know to build up crap and get stuck
but I used the new pad holders (or whatever they're called)

'07 2.5X, '89 Buick Reatta, '94 Century wagon
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post #7 of 9 (permalink) Old 11-14-2010, 08:57 PM
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Yea you have new pad holders but sometimes the crud needs to be scraped out behind the holders (directly on the caliper bracket). But if you didn't have trouble inserting the pads into the slots then it should be fine.

I'm thinking the dragging has something to do with the resufacing job. I would try seeing if the caliper swings up freely or not. If it swings up freely, then you may only need to give it time to break in. If not, then you may have an issue with the caliper piston.

Describe the dragging noise more if this is still an issue...
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post #8 of 9 (permalink) Old 11-15-2010, 02:19 PM Thread Starter
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I realized that I forgot to leave the reservoir cap OFF while bleeding...I kept putting it back on after topping off the fluid. I bled all 4 with the cap off and pedal feel is back to normal

The brakes are still dragging a little bit but I only put on about 10 miles today. They're not squeaking or making any other noises, just dragging...kinda like regenerative braking lol. I'll drive it for a few more days and see how it goes but it sounds like they're going to wear in and be fine. I was back at the dealer today too (to see if my STI key arrived but it didn't) and the service manager said they should wear in as well.

Thanks for the help

'07 2.5X, '89 Buick Reatta, '94 Century wagon
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post #9 of 9 (permalink) Old 11-15-2010, 03:35 PM
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Some new pads are too thick with the shims on. Try leaving all the shims off and put it back together and see if it still drags. I also like to put a light coating of caliper grease on the edges of the pad where it slides in the caliper.

04xt/4eat, 16g, STI bits and bobs
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