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S3 Front Brake Problem - Suspension/Brakes/Wheels/Hubs/Steering/Geo - The Lotus Forums Jump to content
Jon K

S3 Front Brake Problem

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Hi All,

I am having problems with the front brakes on my 82 S3 na.

The problem is that when I go for a drive the front brakes start to warm up and then start to bind on. When I get home I jack the front of the car up and they are binding quite badly and the wheel is warm, if I leave the brakes to cool off they are perfectly free again.

The discs on the car are in good condition and I have had the calipers rebuilt by Bigg Red. Today I fitted new pads because I thought maybe it could be pad related but this has made no difference.

I only found the problem because the old pads were really noisy and when I went for a drive the squeal was getting embarassing as it became more constant.

Anyway the calipers seem to be rebuilt very well and I can move the pistons very easily so I have basically run out of ideas.

If anyone has any ideas that would be great, it would be nice to get some use out of the car.

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If it's not the calipers then that only leaves the servo or master cylinder.

Next time they're stuck on loosen off a brake hose, if fluid squirts out under pressure freeing the brakes then to problem is with one of those. :thumbup:

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Recently had this issue with Felix's SE. There was no pedal-piston clearance, and as the car warmed up, the brakes locked. Solved by introducing a few mm slack at top of pedal travel.

At top of travel, can you lift your pedal at all?

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Thanks for the advice guys.

I took the car for a spin and then jacked it up straight away and sure enough they were binding, so I cracked off the bleed nipple on the end of the master cylinder and let a few drops of fluid out and hey presto wheel spins fine.

Knowing this I then pumped the pedal quite hard a good few times and it seemed OK, then tried it with the engine running and it then started to bind again, released nipple again and fine.

So from this I guess it probably needs the master cylinder and then do you think from your experience the servo or the one way valve or both?

I also checked the pedal clearance and there is a couple of mm so it seems OK

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Run it until they bind, then pull the vacuum hose from the servo. If they free off, then it's likely to be the valve.

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Knowing this I then pumped the pedal quite hard a good few times and it seemed OK, then tried it with the engine running and it then started to bind again, released nipple again and fine.

If it only happens when the servo is functioning I'd guess you've found the problem. :thumbsup:

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