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Rear Brake Questions

7943 Views 34 Replies 6 Participants Last post by  jsblanch
I was checking the driver's side rear brakes on my Dart last night because they seemed to be squealing when taking off at low speeds (only at that wheel). I have a few questions.

1) Just how tight are the pads supposed to be in their anti-rattle clips? I've never replaced brakes with this type of clip, but on mine, they literally needed to be pried and hammered out of the clips. Those springs that presumably are supposed to push them out from the rotor can't possible generate enough force to do anything of the sort. I put a bit of grease in the clips, but it didn't make them any less tight on reinstallation.

2) The metal backing plate of the inner pad is literally delaminating from the back of the pad and crumbling into rust. It made it challenging to get the caliper to slide back over it. Is this a problem?

3) After reinstalling the caliper, for which I has screwed the piston back in somewhat, I pulled the e-brake so I could more easily put the wheel back on (aligning the wheel to put the studs in is impossible if the hub can move). When I pulled up on the lever, it made a loud bang and pulled up a few extra inches. When I released it and pulled it back up, it was fine. I assume this was from pushing the piston back in (which I'd forgotten about) and is normal, but it sounded bad.

As for any other findings, the e-brake seems to be working fine on both rear calipers (I know @Exitus04 has had problems with his), though the spring is extremely rusty on the driver's side (the passenger side spring is pristine somehow). With everything re-assembled and the e-brake released, there is some noticeable drag from the brake. However, when I jacked it up I had already engaged the e-brake, so I'm guessing that actually driving the car loosens it up, as there is no sign that the brakes are dragging (grinding, excessive heat, uneven braking). I'm just feeling paranoid about it for some reason.
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Hey man... If paranoia is setting in then the best thing to do is be safe! I had a very similar issue when my rear calipers started to seize... they would cause added drag and i could feel the car resisting to go. The biggest issue that could cause is heat warp of the rear rotors or even heat fusion of the pad to the rotor...

The best way to check and see if the e-brake releases completely is to have someone sit in the drivers seat while you are under the rear end and watch the cable and the spring... there is a certain point on the caliper where the arm is supposed to touch when the e-brake is completely released. If the arm is not touching that stopping point, the caliper is starting to seize and the e-brake is NOT releasing all the way.
I can see that the e-brake is releasing. It literally couldn't move any further down, and both sides are in the exact same position. Like I said, I think the "bang" was because I had twisted the piston back in and hadn't applied the brakes yet before I yanked the handle up on the e-brake. However, is it normal for the pads to be held so tightly in the caliper bracket that they need to be pried/hammered out with tools? I mean, I had a hard time getting them back in and was considering taking my Dremel to the tabs. They have springs on the them to push them out, but those can't possibly do anything to budge those pads. And should the metal backing plate of the pad be falling apart in a pile of rust?
@jsblanch No the backing plates should not be falling apart, but you knew that. Also the parking brake mechanism only moves the piston maybe 1/4 of an inch MAX travel. I cant possibly think of anything in the system that would get bound up to cause a bang. The pads should move freely enough that when reinstalling the springs on the pads should be enough to cause you to swear and be a pain in the arse to reinstall the caliper back on because they want to push the pads out of the holders. It sounds to me that maybe your brake bad itself is starting to fail/rust/swell. Sounds like you would benefit from replacing the rear brakes. I just recently did all of my brakes and the rears were a lot more chewed up then the fronts. OR do the dremel idea to the ears on the pads to get them to slide better.
*sigh* Well, at least this might be an excuse to convince my wife to let me buy that Brakemotive kit. It's certainly not cheap, though. A little over CAD $200.00 for the kit, $40.00 for shipping, $45.00 for import charges. I guess $300.00 isn't that big a deal for something that will perhaps last the remaining life of the car, and that everybody who has purchased is happy with, but still, I see the USD amount and it reminds me that owning a car in Canada sucks.

As for the "bang", all I can say is that when I pulled up on the handle, there was a loud bang from the driver's rear and the handle jumped up about an inch. When I released it and then pulled it back up again, all was well with normal tension and position. Possibly it was the rusty-ass spring coils coming apart (I had sprayed some PB Rust Buster on it), although I confirmed that the parking brake was working fine beforehand on both calipers. I use the parking brake all the time (regular usage reduces the chances of it getting seized, and in any case, calipers are cheaper and easier to replace than broken DDCT transmissions), and it's been working correctly for 2 days since my inspection/disassembly.
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@jsblanch if you are getting the brakemotive kit check out CBI shipping. You can setup a PO box and it costs $5 USD to pickup the package. I've used it multiple times, my girlfriend lives in Mississauga and it usually takes an hour and 10 mins to go from her door to CBI including crossing the border
Wouldn't you still have to pay the import fees, though when you bring it back across the border? I've never been a fan of cross-border shopping, so I don't know the ins and outs. Also, I may have let my passport expire. Oops.
You have to pay tax on anything over $200. There's no duties because it's manufactured in the US. The kit is currently listed at $156 USD which is roughly $202. I doubt you'd pay taxes on it. Even then with 13% taxes you'd get it for $228 CAD that's a pretty hard price to beat
That's assuming I could get away with not bringing my wife and younger daughter and having to make, at a minimum, a mandatory trip to a Cheesecake Factory (which would result in probably at least 4 cheesecakes also being imported back into Canada). At that point, I might as well just have it shipped straight to my door and have their customs broker deal with it (it would still be under $300.00, and nobody would be disappointed that I got the wrong flavor of cheesecake).

The fact that Americans can get car stuff for a lot cheaper and not have to deal with border hassles is making me pretty salty right now.
SO if you ordered it, shipped it to a willing US address, drove down and picked it up, put it in your trunk and drove home you could get in trouble at the border?
If I declared it, no, but it's still a hassle. Does Brakemotive offer free shipping in the US? That would really be the only thing that would make the difference in cost between doing this and having it shipped to my door significant enough to make me waste half a day driving to Niagara Falls and back (shipping alone would cost me about $40.00 to my door). And that's still assuming that this feat could be accomplished without either my wife or daughter tagging along and causing even more of my hard-earned loonies to end up south of the border.
I completely agree with @Bullfrog here... I did notice that putting a little bit of brake grease on the pad ears helps it to slide and not rattle or make goofy noises while driving... Other than that, it could just be that time for a new set of brakes. Brakemotive should be able to ship to you since they are right here in Chicago about 8hr drive from you in Mississauga! Hopefully the shipping doesnt make everything too expensive!
So I spent a couple of hours yesterday afternoon, seeing what I can do about freeing up the rear brake pad. Man, do those things ever corrode. It wasn't too hard to get the driver's side pads off, since I had done so the other day, but the passenger side. Oh boy. Let's just say that I didn't know a rotor could flex that much trying to pry a brake pad out. The outer pad now has a small chip missing from the pad surface as a result. The inner pad... I really should have take a picture of that hot mess. It has a deep gouge in the pad surface because the rotor inexplicably has a ridge in the middle of the friction surface about 2mm wide. On top of that, about 5mm of the inner edge of the pad surface is completely chewed up, because apparently the ridge of rust on the rotor is harder than solid steel. Anyway, I was able to get them all out and I took my trusty Dremel to the ears on the pads. Other than the friction surface, almost everything is coated with about a millimeter of combined corrosion and baked-in crud. That's about how much I had to grind off to reach metal, at any rate.

I've done a bit of research (for the sake of comparison) to see what it would cost to buy brakes at retail locally. I now feel better about the price of the Brakemotive kit, even with the injurious exchange rates and either the cost of shipping them to my door or the inconvenience of driving to Niagara Falls and bringing them back across the border. Decent quality brakes for the Dart are both hard to find and expensive. I found Brembo pads and rotors on sale locally, and might have considered those... except that Brembo apparently doesn't make those parts for the Dart. If I'd gone that route, I could have even taken advantage of their free tool loaning service to borrow a rotor puller (corrosion is absolutely going to be a big issue for me in that regard). [INSERT BAD WORDS OF YOUR CHOICE HERE] Y'all Americans have no clue how good you have it with the cost of car parts.
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Someone on Facebook installed the brembo rotors on their dart. 33S60221 is the part number for the front and 33S60222 is the rear. I believe they were listed for the Giulietta. They had previously had the brakemotive kit on their car and said the brembos were much better. Were you looking at the ones on sale at Canadian Tire?

My brakes are still good but I will probably be replacing them in the spring. Let me know if you get the brembos.
You're right, I did more digging and found a better application tool for Brembo brakes that lists the Dart. They list pads and front rotors, but no rear rotors. Hmmm. Actually, PartsSource has Brembo brakes on sale 20% off. They're owned by Canadian Tire, though, so it wouldn't surprise me if both had the same sale. Maybe I'll head over there and check it out today.
Someone on Facebook installed the brembo rotors on their dart. 33S60221 is the part number for the front and 33S60222 is the rear. I believe they were listed for the Giulietta. They had previously had the brakemotive kit on their car and said the brembos were much better. Were you looking at the ones on sale at Canadian Tire?

My brakes are still good but I will probably be replacing them in the spring. Let me know if you get the brembos.
I didn't get a chance to check this out today (random road trip to Brantford just because, and got to drive in some pretty epic rain on some less-than-epic roads), but I don't think it's the slotted Brembo rotors that they sell. They sell OE replacement rotors. I believe (after much digging) the part numbers are:

08.9460.40 - Rear Rotor
08.9460.41 - Premium UV Coated Rear Rotor
09.9363.20 - Front Rotor
09.9363.21 - Premium UV Coated Front Rotor
P18031N - Premium Ceramic OE Alternative Rear Brake Pads
P18032N (2014+) or P37019N (2013) - Premium Ceramic OE Alternative Front Brake Pads

For some reason, Brembo has a different part number for front pads for 2013 Darts, doesn't show the front rotors applying to some model years, and doesn't show the rear rotors applying to other model years. This is per this site, which I linked to from the official Bremo site: Automotive Aftermarket Catalog - MyCarParts. Googling the part numbers for the pads makes me wonder if these even exist, because there are zero hits for them that refer to "Brembo".

Just for fun, I priced out brakes from Canadian tire using Wagner rotors (they seem to have mostly good reviews) and MotoMaster OE Plus pads (which seem to be pretty much universally disliked). It comes to a pre-tax amount of $434.34. Seriously, that's not even funny any more. So... I'm pretty sure a Brakemotive kit is in my near future. This isn't red alert ultra-critical, as my brakes work fine, and there's lots of pad life left, but that one pad is in pretty rough shape, and the amount of rust on the rotors outside the friction surface is kind of gross.
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Also note if you do get the brakemotive kit there will be some braking noise like playing card in spoke of a wheel sound. I just heard mine for the first time very distinct last night and it was driving me crazy of what it could have been. You can only hear it with the windows down and near a wall.
I'm not surprised. That's the price you sometimes pay for having slots and holes in the rotors to may your brakes look good. Also, I believe the pads are higher performance than OEM, and that tends to mean "noisier" too.

Anyway, it will go nicely with the faint "wub-wub-wub" from at least one of my tires at 30-45mph. They're not cupped, as far as I can tell, and there is no vibration. I've been doing some reading, and it seems to be a fairly common issue with uni-directional performance tires. There are also reports that these particular tires (BF Goodrich g-Force COMP-2 A/S) get loud as they wear, and I concur with them. I can't complain, though. I knew there would likely be trade-offs with putting a tire classified as "ultra high performance all-season" on a daily driver, and for the incredible performance that these tires deliver, it's worth it. For me, anyway. Other people are apparently completely unreasonable, and they want an ultra high performance tire that is perfectly silent and lasts 80,000 miles.
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Im fine with different noises as long as I know what/where they are coming from. So have you decided/purchased your replacements? Are you going to post pics of how bad the rear rotors are?
The pads need to be removed to capture the true glory of corrosion inflicted upon them. I will try to remember to take pictures when I do get around to replacing the brakes. I haven't taken the rotors off the car, but I can also feel that the back sides are in rougher shape that the visible portion. Corrosion and debris seems to be a bigger problem on the inboard side of the brakes than the outboard side, and unfortunately, that's the part you can't easily see.

I haven't ordered the replacements yet, but I will probably opt to have them shipped to my door and eat the shipping/customs broker fees. It turns out my passport is expired and I don't feel like renewing it right now just to pick up brakes in Niagara Falls. I also have to confirm at the local parts store how their tool loan program works, because I'm not doing this without a proper brake rotor puller. Not only is that the correct way to remove rusted-on rotors without risking damage to the hubs and bearings, but I'm trying not to injure myself. Needless to say, anti-seize compound will be used liberally with the new rotors, like I've successfully done with my wheels. I'm also thinking of painting the calipers and brackets while I have everything apart. I'm thinking gloss black for the brackets and red for the calipers. That, or perhaps all matte black. I have to decide if I want "stealth" or "pop," I guess. I know you painted your calipers (yellow, as I recall, which would look pretty cool with a dark blue car). Did you smooth out the casting seams and other imperfections, or just clean and paint them in place as-is?
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When i painted mine i took a wire wheel to the whole thing and knocked down the large casting marks, and yes i did yellow on blue and they pop with the wheels i have on now. I didnt go overboard, but if i had a 2nd set of calipers i would have dissasembled them and probably taken them to get powder coated instead of using paint. I think some areas i made to smooth and the paint didnt have anyplace to 'bite' into real well and chipped. Bright colors also show every bit of dirt and imperfection of your painting process. If you want to paint them i suggest gloss black.
Yeah, I'm leaning toward all black as well. While I'm at it, I should probably paint the chrome bits (like the badges) black, as well as the gray trim in the fog light bezels, and get smoked license plate covers (not sure how legal those are, though). I do like the "murdered out" look with a black Dart. The dirt showing up on all the shiny black parts is contrast enough. :crazy:
@jsblanch if you're painting the calipers I'd recommend getting G2 caliper paint. They sell it at garage16 in Mississauga it's more expensive than the caliper paint sold at Canadian tire ($70 vs $30) but I know people that have had it on for 5+ years and it looks brand new. I originally did mine with duplicolour from CT but it flaked and chipped after a year. Especially considering the time it takes to properly prep them I'd rather do it right the first time
Thanks for the heads-up! $30 did seem to be suspiciously cheap. I still haven't decided if I'm going to paint them. It's kind of a shame that Dodge put in so much effort making the Dart a sexy, visually-appealing car, and then opted to put ugly bare cast metal calipers and brackets on it.
Yes the duplicolour is crap. I got my first chip in it after 6 months. I prepped them a lot better this time. I got a wire brush attachment for my drill and took off all the old paint and cleaned it really well. Some people take the calipers and everything off the car but I found that taping everything off properly and then taking out the bolt to lift the caliper off worked really well
I think I use my drill more with a wire brush than I do with drill bits! It's great for cleaning cast iron BBQ grills. Yeah, I'm hoping not to remove the calipers, because I like to keep all of the corrosive brake fluid right where it is, inside the braking system. But those rear calipers sure don't have much freedom of movement when you unbolt them, that's for sure.
Hi @jsblanch just curious, after how many years ownership and driving did you replace your brakes? I am debating whether its time to replace mine? Did you do the Brembo's or did you get parts from Chrysler directly?
I haven't replaced the brakes yet. I've owned my Dart since May of 2013 and have 72,000kms on it. The brakes are working fine. I'd love to be able to rebuild my rear calipers, but a nagging arm injury has made that challenging. Pro tip: Don't rearrange heavy stuff in your garage when you're really angry.
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My Avenger brakes started making the sound of heavy sandpaper rubbing against bricks at about 30,000 miles. Dealer said lots of pad left and rotors fine. I couldn't stand the noise. It just creeped me out everytime I did not have the radio on blasting. Dumb, perhaps, but I had them resurfaced and new pads at about 33,000 miles. Curious thing about dealers: I was willing to pay more for an "upgraded" package of brakes on all four but they said they would only install oem parts. Not sure why. Seems odd that you have to go to a tuner shop or other independent to get upgrades like Brembos or whatever. I've never had luck with independents years and years ago. I remember one of them replacing an oem muffler on a Buick I had with a generic muffler. The replacement hung way lower and seemed almost comical that they would use such an item. It rattled like hell too. Never did get it corrected after four visits. Took it to another independent and they said they would have used the same muffler. Said getting a look alike muffler or oem would be too expensive for an "older" car (about 10 yrs old) . Asked that indy about "upgrades" and they more or less said "Bring your bigger wallet".
And since I don't fix my own stuff... well..... whatever. So much for upgrades.
But back to the brakes..... I probably should have just lived with the noise since it was "safe". This is why I used to trade out or go with lease cycles. I really really hate repair/replace car work. If it weren't for the comfy ride and V6 power I'd probably be leasing something cheap again.
Sorry for the rant. :eek:
Dealerships make money selling you OEM parts, that's why they want to use OEM parts. Also, they may not want any liability hassles if they install low-quality aftermarket parts from an unknown source. If you insist on dealership service, you don't really have much choice but OEM parts.
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what did you try to hulk smash?
Nothing quite so violent. I was pissed off that I got basically zero notice that all of the driveways in our townhouse complex were being torn up and replaced and that garages needed to be fully accessible to be able to back paving equipment into them. Instead of being a sensible person and waiting for some assistance to pack stuff up like tools to bring into the house and to move heavy stuff to the back of the garage, I used adrenaline and bullheadedness. Since then, my right elbow and forearm have been frequently inflamed, sometimes to the point where it's hard to use a computer mouse. It's almost certainly "tennis elbow" or something like it. Cranking a wrench on my car is not really something I want to do these days. I'm not looking forward to changing the oil in my Dart, because I can't use my ramps (not enough clearance). Rebuilding my rear calipers is just not something I want to tackle right now, much as I dislike not having my parking brake available. Just thinking about squeezing pliers to compress springs/clips hurts.
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