Jim Grant's Tech Tips
Chevy C10, Soft Brakes
Q: The brakes on my Ď89 Chevy 1/2 ton p/u truck feel
soft or spongy. I have been told that there was a recall for this. Can
was unable to find any recalls for a soft brake problem. But if your Chevy
pick-up has rear wheel Anti-Lock Brake System (ABS) then ALLDATA Information
Systems has a Technical Service Bulletin addressing low brake pedal problems.
Your condition may be caused by an internal leak in the Electro Hydraulic
(E-H) valve. The E-H valve is the part of the ABS brake system that controls
the brake fluid pressure to the rear brakes. The cause is often due to
small particles of foreign material, fluid contamination, preventing the
valving inside the assembly from sealing properly. Itís important to understand
that brake fluid is designed to absorb moisture and WILL become contaminated!
I cannot stress enough the importance of having the brake fluid flushed
and replaced with fresh fluid as part of vehicle maintenance. We have
been replacing costly ABS parts in our shop "only because" they have been
damaged by contaminated brake fluid. You should see how people lose their
balance when we tell them the cost of a 4-wheel ABS part! Then the look
on their face when you tell them that $5 of brake fluid and less than
1 hours labor could have prevented a $1000 repair bill. Is this a sales
pitch? You have the information. Itís your vehicle, brakes and wallet;
you make the choice.