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Handbrake Not Disengaging


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#1 Oxide

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Posted 18 October 2012 - 09:12 AM

I got in my car this morning after not driving it for a couple days, it was parked on a very slight slope and it has been relatively cold.

When I went to pull off I disengaged the handbrake and tried to move off but it felt like the handbrake was still engaged. The light on the dash had gone out saying it was disengaged and I tried pushing it further down but it still felt as if it was stuck on. Tried to pull of again with a bit more power and after hearing quite a loud clunk it moved off fine.

Done hill starts since then and used the handbrake which is working fine but it seems to do this after I've left my car parked up for a few days, is this normal?

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#2 leftathome

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Posted 18 October 2012 - 09:23 AM

You don`t say how cold it was the previous nights but if you`ve had as much rain as we have in Sussex then it may be one of 2 things. Either the brake froze on due to dampness or more likely there may have have been a slight forming of rust which would have stopped the brake releasing completely. I also park my car on a slight incline and on occasions have just left the car in gear ( especially on nights when I`m expecting a frost ).

#3 Oxide

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Posted 18 October 2012 - 10:10 AM

Not sure just how cold it was but it certainly wasn't warm. It could easily have been frozen even though there was no frost on the windscreen or windows.

If it was rust is it worth having it looked at?

#4 leftathome

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Posted 18 October 2012 - 11:24 AM

I wouldn`t worry. Mine still does it occasionally after I`ve washed the car and forgotten to drive it around afterwards.

#5 alexp999

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Posted 18 October 2012 - 12:02 PM

Completely normal, had it in every car I have ever driven. Caused by either a bit of rust (brake discs can go gold with a thin coating of rust just by washing the car), or from water freezing.

Its obviously more common in winter, the handbrake light on the dash, is controlled by a switch on the lever, so as long as the lever is all the way down, the light will go off, even if the brakes have not released.

This is why its recommended not to leave the handbrake on if possible when you are leaving the car for any length of time, better to leave it in gear. To give you a good example, when we came back from a holiday last winter, we went to move my mum's car, and one of the rear brakes had got so stuck, that it dragged all across the gravel on the drive, like a limp leg, and only released (with a pop) when the tyre got the grip of the road.

We had it checked out and all was good, but like I say, completely normal, and much more likely if you have rear discs.

#6 jimrex

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Posted 18 October 2012 - 12:21 PM

As above - I think it's more prone on cars with disks brakes on the rear, but I've noticed it before as well. There's been a lot of heavy rain about so the rust theory is probably the case here :)

#7 artscot79

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Posted 18 October 2012 - 12:37 PM

under the car you will see the handbrake cable where it connects to the hub a good spray with wd40 and a smear of grease then work the handbrake that usually works in really cold weather if you can dont put the handbrake all the way up they can stick in very wet cold weather mate

#8 NorthSussex

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Posted 18 October 2012 - 01:05 PM

It's rust on the discs, they rust within an hour or so from rain or washing the car, perfectly normal, they release with a pop, all my cars with rear discs have done it.

#9 Oxide

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Posted 18 October 2012 - 03:43 PM

Cheers for all the responses guys, makes me feel a lot better. It's certainly not a nice noise when you dont know what it is.

#10 Brigante

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Posted 18 October 2012 - 03:56 PM

Was just about to comment on this myself saying it was perfectly normal but can see I've been beaten way too it lol.

I noticed mine doing it a few times reversing off the Missus drive, feels like the brakes stuck on like you said then theres !Removed! loud pop lol thought what the #### was that first time it happened.

Like everyone said ususally when it cold or been raining.

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