Question about 2004 Chevrolet Cavalier

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I have 93 cavalier rs four door, and trying to get rear drum off. i tried to find the self adjusting hole,but none to be found. the drum will simply not release. i have banged ,pried and sprayed rust release. did some of these cars come with out a self adjuster window? thanks..

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  • Zaraki Jul 07, 2010

    Are there two 8 mm fine pitch thread bolt holes on the brake drum between the lug nut studs and across from each other?


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These can be tough to get off at times and you are correct in that many vehicles no longer have the oval shaped hole to gain access to the adjuster star wheel. What happens is that as the shoes and drum wear against each other a lip on the outer edge of the drum is formed. Since the shoes have self-adjusted themselves towards the drum as they wear they are now slightly further out than this lip is which makes it very difficult to get the drum to slide off over the shoes. I'm assuming that the drum is loose on the hub and you just can't get it to slide off over the shoes, but if the drum is stuck solidly on the center of the hub and won't budge at all then penetrating oil and tapping on the drum around the wheel studs and center hub will usually get it to come loose. I use an air hammer with a flat/blunt bit to rattle around the center of the hub area on the drum to do this but a ball peen hammer usually works in a pinch.

Posted on Jul 07, 2010

  • mclaen Jul 08, 2010

    This could have two drum retaining screws holding the drum on. They were often a tapered head screw with a philips head and usually they were very tight and could be difficult to break loose. I've had to take a small very sharp chisel and catch just the edge of the screw and tap it to get it to turn that first 1/16 of a turn and then they'll usually come loose.


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I have a 93 chevy cavalier the passenger rear tire locks up I've replaced everything and it's still locks up

Do you have abs system, if so, check for applicable abs codes, see if anything shows up? Go from there.

Dec 19, 2015 | Cars & Trucks

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1996 f150 4x4 -can't get the rear drum off to get to the breaks

Try these:
1. Most of the current shoe/drum systems on the rears have self-adjusters that are designed to advance the adjuster wheel when you back up briskly and slam on the brakes. You may need to push the flat metal self-adjuster tab out of the way of the starred adjust wheel. If you don't you can be only pushing on it so far and then it's just going to spring back.
Take a flashlight and look closely in the adjuster hole, see if you can find the metal tab. It will be on the far side away from the adjuster hole.
Push the tab farther away from the star wheel and then stick the adjuster tool in on the star wheel and give it another try.

2.You may be tightening the shoes into the drum instead of loosening them. Try turning the adjuster in the other direction.

3. Get some spray lube/ with a small tube to attach to the spray head.
Stick the spray tube in the adjuster hole and spray as much as you can of the adjuster.

Hope this gets the drums off for you...please let me know how it goes.

Apr 22, 2010 | 1996 Ford F150 Regular Cab

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1990 Buick Century custom, 3.3 V6, 4 door automatic. I have replaced the linings, wheel cylinders, both rear drums on this vehicle. When the linings are tight to the drum the brakes seem to operate...


Feb 09, 2010 | 1990 Buick Century

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How do I adjust the handbrake?

The parking brake on most vehicles are self adjusting. If the parking brake is not self adjusting you will to remove the brake drum/rotor and check to see which part is binding. If you wan to simply adjust the parking brake lever to make it tighter there should be an adjusting nut on the cable under the vehicle.

Oct 25, 2009 | 2002 GMC Envoy

1 Answer

Trying to remove rear brake drum cover,have already adjusted star wheel and still won't remove. what am i doing wrong? for a 93 plymouth grand voyager

  1. Raise and support the rear of the vehicle on jackstands.
  2. Remove the wheels and tire assemblies.
  3. Remove the brake shoe adjusting slot cover from the rear of backing plate.
  4. Insert a thin tool through the adjusting slot and hold the adjusting lever away from the star wheel.
  5. Insert an adjusting tool and back off the star wheel by prying downward with the tool.
  6. Remove the center hub dust cover, nut, washer, brake drum, hub and wheel bearings.
To install:
  1. Inspect the brake lining and drum for wear.
  2. Inspect the wheel cylinder for leakage. Service as required.
  3. Remove, clean, inspect and repack the wheel bearings.
  4. Install the brake drum and tighten the hub nut to 20-25 ft. lbs. (27-34 Nm), then back off the nut until bearing pressure is released.
  5. Retighten the nut finger tight, align the cotter pin hole and install the cotter pin.
  6. Adjust the rear brakes as described in the beginning of this section.

Removing the rear drum adjusting hole cover plug

Oct 07, 2009 | 1993 Plymouth Grand Voyager

1 Answer

Rear brake shoes

at the back of the drum there is a port hole use a flat screw driver or a brake adjusting tool and sure your drum is tight on the spindle when you adjust

Jul 01, 2009 | 1993 Lexus Es 300

3 Answers

How to adjust parking brake on a GMC Sierra 2500 HD Duramax 4wd?

The adjuster is just like on a car with drum brakes. It can be adjusted with the wheels still on the truck, but if yours is out enough that it doesn't work, an inspection is warranted. Axle seal failure is common and will soak the shoes.

Jacked both rear wheels off ground, and while slowly spinning wheel, tighten the star-wheel adjuster until you just hear and feel brake drums rubbing, then loosened slightly.
There's a plastic dust cover about 1/4" X 1" that you remove, and use a drum brake adjuster tool.

The driverside access hole is below axle, easily accessable. To tighten driver side rear parking brake, turn star-wheel adjuster down.

The passengerside access hole is found above axle, and difficult to see. Removed pass side wheel and used an inspection mirror.
To tighten passenger side rear parking brake, turn star-wheel adjuster up.

Good luck and hope this helps. Oh and the other thing to is that if you do smell axle fluid around the wheels and see oil leaking from the drum area. Then you have a axle wheel seal and or bearing gone bad too.

Apr 13, 2009 | 2002 GMC Sierra 2500HD

1 Answer

Can't get at rear brakes on 2002 Chevy Cavalier

you can apply heat with a propane torch in the center of the drum which helps it expand away from the should have an adjuster wheel in the slot . Maybe you lost it.....While applying heat, pound the drum with a rubber mallet on the front of the drum. the vibration should help pull it off. if worse comes to worse you can use a drum puller. it is basically a big puller that you place around the edges of the drum and tighten a bolt that goes in the middle. but it can be removed. One way or another.

Nov 16, 2008 | 2001 Chevrolet Cavalier

4 Answers

1997 p reg ford escort

check to be sure emergency brake is not engaged ..and that cable is not frozen/rusted keeping it from releasing at baking plate into back of drum..often there is a knock out...(dimpled.stamped impression in backing plate) where the adjusting hole should would need to slam that out (or in) with a heavy drift or screwdriver you are willing to hurt..then get to the star adjuster adn back it off
use lubricant around drum/backing plate area and at center (hub/drum) area where rust happens and pry with large screwdrivers 180 degrees apart between backing plate and drum wiggling and shifting positions around circumference...also a zerk fitting at that wheel cylinder and wiggle screwdrivers 'tween backing plate and drum to get shoes to close some....good luck

Oct 22, 2008 | 1997 Ford Escort

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