1998 Chrysler Sebring Reoccuring Issues

  • 6 CYL
  • FWD
  • 87,000 MILES
I've been having problems with my front brakes and rotors. They've been replaced a number of times but every time I replace them both rotors are either warped or cracked. Also, the drivers side brake pads are usually completely worn and in pieces while the passenger side brake pads still look relatively unworn. I've had nearly everything in the front end replaced so everything is new and shouldn't be causing problems. I even had a new brake line installed, but this problem has occurred 3 or 4 times. I notice the problem when I brake because the steering wheel will shake and it seems to brake in what I can only describe as like a pulse, almost as if the brake pads are not in contact with the rotor at all times when I brake. Does anyone have any ideas as to what could be wrong?
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have the same problem?
Tuesday, March 16th, 2010 AT 12:05 PM

1 Reply

First, park on a slight incline, put the transmission in neutral, and release the brake pedal. The car should creep ahead by itself. If it doesn't, a brake is sticking. That would explain the overheated and cracked rotors. Jack the front end up and try to turn the tires by hand. Suspect the left one to be tight based on your observations about worn pads.

When the brake is sticking, loosen the lines at the master cylinder just a little. If the brakes release, suspect fluid contamination with petroleum product. Proof will be found by inspecting the rubber bladder seal under the reservor cap. If it balloons up and is soft and mushy, ALL rubber parts in the system must be replaced and the steel lines must be flushed and dried. The lip seals in the master cylinder will swell and grow past the return ports, blocking them and trapping the fluid.

If the brakes don't release at the master cylinder, open the bleeder screw for the stuck caliper. If you see a tiny spurt of fluid and the brake releases, look at the rubber hose. If there is a metal anchor bracket in the middle of the hose, there is likely rust buildup under the part that is crimped around the hose. Use a large pliers to peel that crimp open just a little. The rust buildup constricts the hose. Fluid will be forced past the restriction by heavy foot pressure on the pedal, but the fluid can't flow freely back to the reservoir. Two other clues to this problem are you won't be able to easily pry the piston into the caliper housing with a screwdriver, like normal, and the brake pedal will be higher and harder than normal.

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Tuesday, March 23rd, 2010 AT 4:02 AM

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