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Old 04-17-2013, 06:08 AM   #1
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VW van brake problem


Hi guys.
The brake pedal on my LT35 (Sprinter) is almost on the floor before it brakes the van but the pressure when it gets there seems normal ie. don't have to press hard on the pedal.. There is almost no resistance on the way down and I'm hearing a slight clonking noise but not all the time.
Pads and discs are good and I had an issue with the handbrake shoes locking up a while back after a frost but a few whacks with the hammer freed it up.
Van is a T reg (99)
Heres hoping someone can help. Thanks.
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Old 04-17-2013, 06:59 AM   #2
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VW van brake problem


If you have regular rear brakes you may want to check and see if the auto adjusters are working, there is a chance they stopped working and the brakes are having to go further out before they make contact.
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Old 04-17-2013, 07:38 AM   #3
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VW van brake problem


No need to check the auto adjusters, they are not working. You can try going in reverse and putting the brakes on to reset the brakes. I would tear into those rear shoes asap.
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Old 04-17-2013, 09:50 AM   #4
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VW van brake problem


Thanks guys but the LT35s and Sprinters have discs all round for the main brakes. They do also have shoes on the back but only for the handbrake.

Am taking a chance that it's the master cylinder and am going to pick one up shortly. If not I'm gonna be 50 plus out of pocket but I don't have a choice. I don't have a second vehicle so can't just tear it down and then go look for parts and as usual I need the thing working now.

Last edited by toxo; 04-17-2013 at 09:54 AM.
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Old 04-17-2013, 11:14 AM   #5
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VW van brake problem


Quote:
Originally Posted by toxo View Post
Thanks guys but the LT35s and Sprinters have discs all round for the main brakes. They do also have shoes on the back but only for the handbrake.

Am taking a chance that it's the master cylinder and am going to pick one up shortly. If not I'm gonna be 50 plus out of pocket but I don't have a choice. I don't have a second vehicle so can't just tear it down and then go look for parts and as usual I need the thing working now.
In that case I would say you are right, that is all there is left, probably trash or the residual check valve is going south.
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Old 04-17-2013, 07:59 PM   #6
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VW van brake problem


Quote:
Originally Posted by toxo View Post
Thanks guys but the LT35s and Sprinters have discs all round for the main brakes. They do also have shoes on the back but only for the handbrake.

Am taking a chance that it's the master cylinder and am going to pick one up shortly. If not I'm gonna be 50 plus out of pocket but I don't have a choice. I don't have a second vehicle so can't just tear it down and then go look for parts and as usual I need the thing working now.
Your take is very likely to be correct. You almost guaranteed to have dual chamber master, with one chamber leaking through, causing piston to go down, and then 2nd chamber picking up and giving you pressure.
But MS-s are normally easy rebuilt. You can buy rebuilt kits for almost any. 30 minute son a bench and there you go.
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Old 04-18-2013, 04:29 AM   #7
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VW van brake problem


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Your take is very likely to be correct. You almost guaranteed to have dual chamber master, with one chamber leaking through, causing piston to go down, and then 2nd chamber picking up and giving you pressure.
But MS-s are normally easy rebuilt. You can buy rebuilt kits for almost any. 30 minute son a bench and there you go.
This would make sense because the problem got worse each time I used the van and the pedal got lower each time before the brakes were activated as if a leak was gradually getting worse.
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Old 04-18-2013, 05:05 AM   #8
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VW van brake problem


Have you checked for leaks?
Have you verified that there is fluid in the Master Cylinder?
If there is a leak, did you let the MC run empty, then fill it back up again?

If no leaks, then most likely MC is bad.
It would also be wise to visually inspect each brake pad / shoe.
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