Question about Chevrolet Silverado 1500

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CANT GET REAR DRUM BREAKS TO DECOMPRESS - Silverado 1500 Chevrolet Cars & Trucks

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  • kasseyallgai Jul 26, 2009

    THANKS I DID THAT BUT NOW ITS NOT ADJUSTING ANY MORE IN EITHER DIRECTION. I DONT THINK THE DRUM IS "STUCK" BECAUSE I CAN MOVE IT. IT FEELS LIKE IT WONT DECOMPRESS.

  • kasseyallgai Jul 26, 2009

    i would have to say that this is the most helpful! my only problem is i have a lift blocking the drum breaks. im working on it right now, but thanks so much for all your help your awesome! ill try to log back on and let you know if i get it...

  • yadayada
    yadayada May 11, 2010

    have u used a brake spoon to back off the rear brake shoes?? to do this knock out the access plug at brake backing plate, it is near the bottom, oval shaped slot.

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With high mileage on the drums, the shoes wear into the drums, creating a grove and a lip on the front end of the drum. It's this lip that keeps the drum from coming off.
You did not say what you have tried to do to get the drums off but I hope these steps help.
You need to get to the back side of the brakes and take out the little rubber plug to gain access to the star adjusting wheel on the brake self adjuster. If there is no rubber cover, there is an oblong indentation(knockout) that you need to knock out.
Once you have access, you have to turn the star wheel clockwise or from top to bottom to retract the shoes. But to accomplish this , you have to move the self adjuster pawl that rides on the star wheel away from the star wheel. You do this by inserting a small screw driver through the hole and push the pawl toward the outside of the drum. In other words just push the screw driver straight in. This will allow you to turn the star wheel. The star wheel will turn the opposite direction (from bottom to up), but that way expands the shoes.
The other thing to do is to rap the drum several times with a dead blow hammer to loosen the shoes away from it. Some drums can be quite stubborn, so keep trying to work it out then back in and so on. Try spraying the inside through the rear edge with brake cleaner.
It's difficult to see the star wheel and the pawl. It's all pretty much by feel. Also the drum itself has a knockout, so you can catch the pawl from the front and pull it away from the star wheel. Many times these self adjusters don't work, so if you turn the star wheel from top to bottom without messing with the pawl, that's good. Just make sure you adjust the new shoes after you you install them, especially if the self adjusters do not work.
Hope this works...



Posted on Jul 26, 2009

  • Joel Friedenberg Jul 26, 2009

    If you got the drum to move, then it will come off eventually. Just keep moving the drum out , then in, etc. Keep tapping around the drum to loosen the shoes up. Spray some brake cleaner into the back of drum. Good Luck !!

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The brake shoes are adjusted out with a Brake Adjuster. This is a mechanism located at the bottom of the brake shoes. It is cylindrical in shape, and is composed of four pieces. It can be placed in two different positions, Left to Right, Right to Left.

The four pieces are a cylindrical shaped piece that has a slot on one end, and is threaded in the middle on the other end. The brake shoe metal backing goes into the slotted end. Then there is a spring washer, and a cylindrical shaped male threaded piece, with a Star wheel on it. On the end of this piece, is another piece which is a cap with a slot in it. The other brake shoe metal backing goes into this slot.

There is a Self Adjuster mechanism that allows the Brake Adjuster to turn, to keep the brake shoes spread for the, brake shoe to brake drum, clearance needed.

Looking at the back of the metal backing plate, (Backside of brake drum), there is a oval shaped stamping in the backing plate. If a brake job has been done in the past, there should be an oval shaped rubber plug in it. If a brake job has not been done, this oval shape needs to be knocked out with a punch, and hammer.

Viewing inside this oval port you will see the teeth of the star wheel, on that brake adjuster. You will need a flashlight, and it may be hard to recognize your first time.
This shows you what an average brake adjuster looks like not installed, for clarity,
http://auto.howstuffworks.com/auto-parts/brakes/brake-types/drum-brake2.htm (View all 6 pages)

That brake adjuster star wheel needs to be turned, so that the brake shoes will draw in to the inside. The brake springs pull in on the brake shoes. You turn the star wheel of the brake adjuster, with a Brake Spoon. Your local auto parts store will have one.

After time, the brake shoes will wear metal out of the inside of the brake drum. They take out metal that matches the width of the brake shoe. This leaves a lip on the outside edge of the brake drum. (To the inside of the vehicle) You have to adjust the brake shoes in far enough, so that they clear this lip when removing the drum.

Posted on Jul 26, 2009

  • joecoolvette
    joecoolvette Jul 26, 2009

    Advice:

    1.Make sure the vehicle is supported on jack stands, (Under the FRAME), and there are wheel chocks in front of the front tires.

    2.Do one side at a time so you will have the other side to refer back to.

    3.Wear a dust mask, as brake dust is VERY detrimental to your respiratory system! It is advisable to place a large pan underneath the brake being worked on, and use soapy water, and a brush to clean all of the brake mechanism, (Backing plate, brake shoes, brake adjuster, etc.), after you remove the brake drum. Wear protective gloves. The dust will leave marks on your hands that a good auto parts hand cleaner may NOT touch!

    Then after the area has dried somewhat use Brake Cleaner. Get the kind that is environmentally safe. Not only for the environment, but the other kind Stinks when you use it. (Smells)


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If you look on the side of the drum there is a rubber plug . Remove the plug and use a screwdriver to release the tension by turning the jacking screw.

Posted on Jul 26, 2009

  • mike fuson Jul 26, 2009

    Take a rubber malit and hit the side of the drum while pulling on it with your free hand , may take a while but it will come off. Hope this is helpful.

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