Question about 1996 Honda Odyssey

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96 Honda Odyssey brake trouble

96 Honda Odyssey brake pedal is soft every now and then. When applying brakes the pedal will go to the floor but the pressure will be fine most of the time. Shoes, rotors, etc. look good. No visible leaks. Any ideas?

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I'm pretty sure that vehicle will have a vacuum booster for brake assist and it may be failing or you may have cracked or loose vacuum line.
Another possibility is a defective vacuum reservoir; a canister device, sometimes metal, sometimes plastic that supplies a bit of vacuum in case the engine shuts down.

Normally mounted on the firewall under the hood, the booster shouldn't be tough to replace and appears to be a metal drum, often with the master cylinder assembly directly attached.

Checking the operation of the power brake assist is easy; with the engine off, press firmly on the brake pedal and note whether it sinks noticeably when you start the engine.
If it does, then the vacuum booster is working, if not all the time.
Considering the random nature of the problem, I would try this several times to see if the resulting drop in pedal height is constant or not.

Posted on Sep 03, 2008

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