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Hand Brake

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#1 PRJ357



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Posted 29 June 2011 - 07:21 PM

I have changed my focus to a newer 09 plate. Soon after I parked it at home I noticed it had rolled down the hill and has caused slight damage to the bumper. Has any else experienced similiar problems with the HB.

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#2 jeebowhite


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Posted 30 June 2011 - 11:05 AM

Could just be due to recent high temperatures maybe drum expanded as it got hot. Do you normally notice the handbrake doesnt click till its nearly at 70 degree angle?? Can you activate handbrake now and try drive off? Will probably be fine i suspect? Test and let us know!

#3 fully focused

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Posted 30 June 2011 - 01:21 PM

Assuming it's a manual, remember to leave it in gear next time.

#4 p38fln


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Posted 30 June 2011 - 02:28 PM

What style parking brake does that car have?

i've seen three styles -

Front disc and rear drum, parking brake activates the same rear drum brakes as the brake pedal - parking brake adjusted by going backwards and pumping the brakes while rolling backwards

Four-wheel disc brakes, parking brake activates the same rear disc brakes as the brake pedal - rear brakes are adjusted by setting the parking brake. General Motors used this design for a while, it looked fine on paper, but so many people refused to use the parking brake that the systems would rust and seize, causing a lack of rear brakes entirely

Four-wheel disc brakes with mini-drum parking brakes inside the rear disc brakes - this design seems fairly common now, though the parking brakes aren't nearly as powerful as they used to be since they are very small. I'm not entirely sure how to adjust the parking brakes on this style - I'm assuming similar to the old style drum brakes, apply the parking brake while rolling backwards.

Something else to check for along with simply being out of adjustment - look for broken, cut or missing cables, especially after the "Y" in the cable going to the rear brakes. Its fairly common over here for someone to get mad at their parking brake after it seizes and remove or cut the cable so that the brake doesn't do anything.

All parking brakes should be able to hold the vehicle on any hill without rolling - if they don't, you have a problem. Remember, set the brakes, leave the vehicle in gear, and turn the steering wheel so your wheels will roll into the curb if the brakes release.

#5 Mr Ford

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Posted 08 July 2011 - 11:46 PM

do you have drum brakes? if so the handbrakes are quite stiff and in my opinion not very good. you could have the rear brakes adjusted at a ford dealer as there is a proceedure to set them up, it doesn't always work but usually makes some improvement. Try push the foot brake then pull up the handbrake.

#6 oldman



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Posted 05 August 2011 - 01:14 PM

I have a 2007 Focus ST. Last night I parked on a hill and about 15 minutes after parking the car rolled back and hit 2 other cars. I realise I should have left it in gear and turned the wheels into the curb..... but I didn't. The police attended and agreed the handbrake was fully applied. What puzzles me is why it worked for 15 minutes then started to fail.

A similar thing happened with a Citroen I had about 25 years ago. In that instance it transpired that if you applied the handbrake when your foot was on the foot brake then the handbrake would loosen it's grip as the hydraulics settled.

Is it possible that for some reason if the handbrake is applied with the foot brake also applied it doesn't engage as fully as when the handbrake is applied with the foot brake off ? Why would it grip for a while then loose grip ?

Any mechanics out there have any useful suggestions or observations ?


#7 Danny87


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Posted 08 August 2011 - 07:19 AM

I know there's some cars which are known for problems like this, for example Punto's had/have a problem with the handbrake levers which operate the rear drums bending, but in most cases all that ever caused was the constant need to adjust the handbrake to compensate until the troublesome items were replaced.

It is certainly possible that if your brakes have overheated (especially drum brakes, they are at more risk of overheating when compared to disc brakes) they cool down and result in problems like this.

I know it's a little late to say it, but always leave your car in gear. I personally do this automatically now, but that's because I've always driven around in old wrecks :D. But even in my Fiesta which is the newest and tidiest car I've ever owned personally, I still do it automatically and it's a habit I don't think I'll ever get out of, of course it's not a bad thing.

#8 steveh400



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Posted 09 August 2011 - 05:21 PM

The problem with the handbrake is that when you are driving the car the discs warm up when you apply the handbrake all seems well but when the discs cool down the pads loose grip when you park your car leave it in gear

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