The doorhandle on my
Toyota is boring
Join Date: Feb 2008
Location: Brisbane, Australia
So I have had this problem on and off for a while. The first time, I was following a slow motorbike down a mountain and I felt the brake was dragging so I pulled into a convenient car park and was stuck for an hour. The brakes then freed themselves up and I drove carefully home. Fast forward maybe a month and I went on a mountain run, and the same problem happened. Let it sit for an hour, came back to it and drove home. But the last few times, there was only a little brake usage and always motorway speeds involved. First time was about a month ago, felt the brakes dragging on the highway so I pulled off at the next exit and waited an hour and a half for the brakes to unstick, took it to the mechanic and left it there. He replaced both the front and rear brake lines saying they were clogged (plus the front ones were worn). But I drove home that day when it was fixed, and found I had exactly the same problem. Called the mechanic, took it to him the next day and he drove the car for a bit saying it was my imagination but he was full of it because the next day I coaxed the car into exhibiting the same behaviour (braking down hills on one occasion, thrashing it a bit on another).
But then one day I drove down the highway, having only used the brakes once or twice before getting on and then finding my car is grinding to a halt! Waited an hour thinking I'd be sweet, but no dice. Called a towie in the end and had it towed to the same mechanic. He sent it down the road thinking it was the ABS, as he states he checked the brake master and booster, to find no problems. So I pick my car up from the other mechanic, he says he bled the brakes a few times and the car didn't have the problem anymore. He says that if I have the same problem again, I am up for an ABS unit at a cost of $2k. I drove the car all around the city last night, all fine except the front left brake squeal which made me think this hasn't been fixed. And then today, went on the same highway trip which stuffed me up last time. Exactly the same symptoms, exactly the same place on the highway!!!
So now I am $880 into the brake problem and so far NOTHING has changed. Driving at normal speeds I can often hear the left front caliper dragging with a squealing sound which changes if I apply the brakes. Do you guys think I just have to get the caliper rebuilt, or is it possible that it could be the master cylinder, servo or ABS unit even. The second mechanic that saw it said that it is possible that due to moisture buildup in the brake fluid that it could have corroded the insides of the ABS unit clogging up the valves. It is a 98 GTV V6, Ph1. Basically I drove on the highway and the lowest point of brake pedal travel kept creeping up and up until I was stuck on the side of the road with a brake pedal with all the feeling of a piece of wood. Then several hours later after being on two tow trucks to come home, the brakes were free enough for me to drive my car up the street to my place and put it in the garage.
Oh also, every now and then I will find the car has mysteriously lost half the brake fluid in the reservoir, but no signs of any leakage. Nothing under the engine bay, no pools near the wheels. I read on an this forum that someone had their brake booster suck brake fluid from the brake master into it... when they replaced the booster it was full of brake fluid..