Question about 1996 Ford Ranger SuperCab

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96 Ranger Grinding Sound Moving Forward

Grinding sound which seemed to come from the front of the truck started two days ago when moving forward. I knew brakes were in the near future if not recent past so I replaced the rotors and pads thinking this would correct the grinding problem. The rotors and pads were in fact trashed after 40,000 miles of use. After completion the grinding noise is still there. Went back in and made sure everything looked right. No play in rotor indicating bearings. Rotor spins nice and smooth. Pads are tucked in their clips and seem secure, calipers are securely bolted down. After applying brakes caliper releases and wheel spins as before so I don't think the calipers are hanging up but then I don't know how much contact is normal contact for brake pads. The pads are in constant contact with the rotor which makes the rotor turn a bit slower when spinning. It makes a light swishing sound as the rotor turns with the pad in contact. This is my first rotor-pad job so I don't have any past experience to call on. The rotors are quite hot after a drive, as in owww, I shouldn't have touched that. Is it normal for the rotors to be very hot ? I noticed after backing up the noise was barely audible or completely gone. I did this several times and then the noise wasn't there at all when moving forward. But it came back eventually after having to take off quick at an intersection putting a lot of torque on the drive train. Then after backing up again it goes away so it must be something. Sometimes when it's noisy it sounds like rubber rubbing against something along with the grinding. The tires are not making any contact with something that I can see. Maybe this is not even related to the brakes? Just a coincidence that this happened and I just assumed it was the brakes because I was expecting the impending brake job. Any clue to this Ranger Mystery?

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  • gkwhlse1 Dec 03, 2008

    Rotors and pads were pristine new so there was no foreign material on them. I think now it's the rear brakes that wern't done. Maybe some rusted material grinding around in there.



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The key to this whole thing is the fact that the noise disappears after going in reverse. Sounds like a rear brake shoe is dragging. Runniing reverse pushes shoe away from drum until brakes are applied again. Won't hurt to check the rear when you do the front.

Posted on May 02, 2009

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Did you check the rotors to see if they were cracked or 'thin' ? Rotors sometimes get really thin with use.And they can crack. Or as in one case that I know of there was sand between the rotor and the pads. The pads were also new. Removed the gravelly sand and they worked fine.

Posted on Nov 27, 2008


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