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Jim Grant Tech Tips Jim Grant Tech Tips
A collection of helpful articles based on reader submissions
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Below is a collection of Jim Grant's Tech Tips sorted by Vehicle Make. These Tech Tips were answers to questions submitted to Jim by users over the course of many years.
If you have any questions, please feel free to email us.



Lincoln - Mercury
  Jim Grant's Tech Tips

'90 Dodge Pick-up, Front Brake Lock-up

Q: The front brake on the passenger side of my ‘90 Dodge Pick-up locked up. I replaced the caliper, the brake line and pads still looked good. After a short drive it still feels as if the pads are hitting the rotor and the front wheel gets extremely hot. What’s next?

A: Have you ever had your brake fluid flushed? Read on and you’ll understand the question. I would suggest replacing the flexible rubber brake hose to that brake caliper. Moisture gets into everything, and brake fluid is no exception. Brake fluid absorbs moisture, it’s designed to do this and it is a must for our safety in a vehicle’s braking system. But, moisture/water contains oxygen. Oxygen is needed for us to breathe and the engine to run. In the braking system the contamination of the fluid by this oxygen makes bad things happen. The fluid becomes corrosive and starts damaging the braking system from the inside out. Just one of the many components that can fail to this inside attack are the rubber brake hoses. The inside of the hose will start breaking apart and actually block/restrict the flow of brake fluid. When you step on the brake pedal you easily create hundreds of pounds of pressure. This pressure will push through a restricted brake hose. But when you release the brake not all the pressure is released. It only takes a few pounds of residual pressure to cause a disc brake caliper to drag, resulting in heating. If replacing the brake hose is the fix, I suggest replacing the others, because they have been under attack as well. In our shop we have easy to use test strips and electronic brake fluid testers. You can buy the test strips in a parts store. You’d be surprised how many vehicles are in need of a brake fluid change/flush.

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