Serious Brake Problems - Nissan Xterra Forum
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#1 Old 11-26-2012, 02:40 PM
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Serious Brake Problems

Hello everyone. After a 12 hour drive through Honduras to Lake Atitlan in Guatemala, including hitting more than a few pot-holes on a gone-to-shit Honduran highway, and after clearing several mountain ranges, I was driving through pretty slow through a small town after coming down the last mountain range and I heard something fall off the x. I hit the brakes but the pedal went to the floor. We were going pretty slow so it was easy enough to stop. I walked back and found a brake pad on the ground. Has this ever happened to anyone?

We had stopped for about 15 minutes right before that but I could not touch that pad it was so hot. If this would have happened 30 minutes earlier we could have easily died, some of those turns had some major dropoffs. Yes, very dramatic. I was able to use the e-brake for the rest of the day by holding the handle back.

We were able to have the brake pads replaced. Now the problem is that the "Brake" light remains lit. Can anyone tell me how to get the light to go off? Also, the pedal is a more spongy than it was before, especially when the brakes are used a lot. Any problems there? Thanks in advance!

Drew Shuller
Comayagua, Honduras
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#2 Old 11-26-2012, 02:56 PM
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You must have a leak in the lines or low on fluid. When the system detects a leak or the fluid is low the light will come on. A soft brake peddle means either you have air in the system and you need to bleed the system or the rear brakes need to be adjusted.
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#3 Old 11-26-2012, 06:16 PM
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It's very possible that when the pad fell out the pistons in the caliper extended past there normal stop point. When this happens they will leak fluid and allow air into the system. You are going to have remove the effected caliper and inspect the pistons and seals to see if it is still leaking. You will then have to bleed the entire system to purge the air after confirming that there is fluid in the reservoir.

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#4 Old 11-28-2012, 11:17 AM
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Turned out to be low fluid...something that I should have known to check. Thanks everyone for the input.

Still wondering why my brake pad fell off!

Drew
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#5 Old 11-28-2012, 05:24 PM
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You are going to have remove the effected caliper and inspect the pistons and seals to see if it is still leaking. - RacerXXL

If the seals broke and the piston overextended that would cause fluid to run out. Fluid running out may cause the piston to retract and if that happens then the pad can fall out.

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#6 Old 11-28-2012, 10:29 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ShiftingSkys View Post
You are going to have remove the effected caliper and inspect the pistons and seals to see if it is still leaking. - RacerXXL

If the seals broke and the piston overextended that would cause fluid to run out. Fluid running out may cause the piston to retract and if that happens then the pad can fall out.
I agree, take that caliper off and inspect. Have someone sit in the captains seat while they apply the brake to see if the pistons are working properly.


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#7 Old 11-29-2012, 06:32 AM
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Good advice, will do. I have a good mechanic here in Honduras who should be able to do a good, 100% inspection.

I feel lucky to have found the guy that worked on the brakes in Guatemala. He had a good shop. As an FYI, parts and labor were $33.
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#8 Old 11-29-2012, 07:14 AM
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Lol. Awesome. that is very good pricing. Cant beat that.

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#9 Old 11-29-2012, 07:47 AM
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Yeah, labor is insanely cheap here. Mechanics are everywhere, but finding a good, non-sloppy one is insanely difficult.

I had a guy install a trans cooler and he used regular rubber hose instead of what needed to be used and the x barely made it back to his shop (pretty much across the street from my house, thank goodness) after spewing atf all over. I had to pay for the atf that wound up on the ground, too.

A coworker had a guy (who was supposedly a good transmission guy) do his gears on his Liberty and the rears failed within two weeks. I can't figure out how someone who has a general shop but holds himself forth as a transmission guy can screw up a gear install so bad.

My mechanic can rebuild my other friend's Land Rover and keep his 318i on the road, so he's pretty good, but he's more expensive and can be very slow. My x was wrecked before I bought it and they didn't put the a/c back together right and shit was failing right and left. The first mechanic that worked on the a/c didn't know shit and I was going back to his place every 10 days to refill. He couldn't ever fix the leaks, just keep going back is the way here. My current guy replaced the parts that weren't there, cleaned and evacuated the system, and relocated the radiator. I paid more for that but the a/c has been trouble-free since then. This is the kind of mechanic that is very, very hard to find in Central America.
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#10 Old 11-29-2012, 08:41 AM
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Sounds like what happened to me. Someone put my brake pads wrong so when they were low they didn't squek and two nights ago I was driving and my brake went behind my rotor. My brakes where pretty spongy before too. I just change my brake pads and now I'm fine. I was going to change my rotor but its a pain in the Butt.
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