Question about 1996 GMC Sierra

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Hard to push brake pedal down to stop.

Step on brake pedal and air leaks out from the shaft that goes in through the fire wall to the master cylinder .

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1. Check brake fluid level and look for leaks in the brake lines and at the calipers.
2. Bleed the brake fluid completely and replace with fresh fluid (google search: how to bleed brakes). Then bleed air by having someone press the brake pedal 4-5 times, then press and hold while you open the bleed valve and close when fluid streams out. start with the rear wheel (if 4wheel disc brakes) then move to the front.
3. Replace Master Cylinder (sorry, but if 1 or 2 didn't fix it, this is the last option) This is usually over $150, and will involve step 2 again when completed.

Good luck, hope this helps.

Posted on Sep 29, 2009

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Posted on Jan 02, 2017

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1 Answer

I have a 1994 bonneville that you have to push brake pedal to floor and fluid empties within 1 day. Is it the master cylinder or the line?


check all brake lines and wheel cylinders for leakage. if no leaks its probably the master cylinder. symtoms are-- pedal will sink to floor when stopping or not. or master cylinder leaks from behind "it", and runs down brake booster. if booster goes bad the pedal will be very hard! good-day !

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99 ford explorer brake pedal goes to floor. Booster or master cyl. ?


Not likely that the booster is an issue. The booster would not be able to overcome the brake fluid compression.
First open and inspect all brakes for leaks, adjustment, etc. Check all brake lines.
So if no leaks, did the fluid go low in the MC? If so, pad consumption would eat more than a MC reservoir of fluid, and not require MC replacement, but rebleeding and top up of fluid. If the pads are worn, and you replace them, often this will expel air back through the MC.

If you determine the MC is faulty, bench bleed the new one before install, or you will have lots of problems getting air out....

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My Lincoln Navigator 2003 has an air leak somewhere, however when I push the brake I don't hear it, but if the brake is pushed too long it goes down to the floor. What do I need to do to fi it?


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98 wrangler - brake pedal goes all the way to the floor. The master cylinder and all brake lines are free of leaks. I'm not losing any brake fluid anywhere. I replaced the booster that is attached to the...


You changed the master cylinder and vacuum booster and have no leaks anywhere, but did you bleed the entire brake system after you did this work? A little bit of air in any of the lines will make the brakes ineffective.

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If there are no brake line/fitting leaks and no crimped or bent brake lines/hoses:
The key to my answer is the sound of air leaking...
Check the Brake Booster to the rear of the Master Cylinder.
1. Check the Vacuum Hose going to the Air Resonator with the one way check valve. Make sure the Vacuum Hose does not have cracks, holes, etc.; or does not collapse with the engine on. If there are any problems with the hose - replace the hose. With the engine on: remove the Hose for the Resonator and check for a vacuum. CAREFULLY: Remove the Resonator and reconnect it to the Vacuum Hose. Again check for the presence of a vacuum coming from the inside of the Resonator. If the Hose had a vacuum, but the Resonator does not = Replace the Resonator. If there is a Vacuum - Reconnect the Vacuum Hose and Resonator to the Brake Booster

2. Checking the Brake Booster Seals:
a. While the Engine is running: Push in the brake pedal. Stop the Engine while keeping the Brake Pedal pushed in.
(1) If there is a change = the Brake Pedal sinks to the floor: The Brake Booster has a Air Leak.
(2) If there is no change = GO TO TEST 2 (#3 below)

3. Turn the engine on and wait a couple of minutes and turn the engine off. Push in the Brake Pedal several times.
a. If the Pedal goes down farther the first time, but continues to rise = gets harder after the 2nd, 3rd time the Brake Booster is fine.
b. If the Pedal continue to go farther down on each push = the Brake Booster has a leak.

One seal in particular - located where the Brake Booster is attached to the Fire Wall - located behind the Brake Pedal Arm. Check the mounting bolts for tightness. With the engine on and a partner pushing on the Brake pedal: try to determine if that rear seal is where the air is leaking from.
Any Air Leak in the Brake Booster Main Seals = a new (remanufactured) Brake Booster must be purchased, as these are not repairable.

Let me know if this helped. or if you have additional information or questions. Feel Free to contact me at FixYa.com!

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No such thing as vacuum lines to the master cylinder. You do have a vacuum line on the brake booster (power assist). When you step on the pedal do you hear a whoosing sound down by your pedal. This is a leaking Booster. Needs replacement.

When you step on the brake does the engine rpm change. This is a leaking check valve (one way air valve).

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is your pedal hard to push? if so maybe booster. does your pedal slowly drop all the way to the floor? if so definately the master cylinder (leaks internally)

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