I recently purchased a 1997 Ford WindstarGL with 138,000 miles and the 3.8L engine. The car had a some minor problems but for $900 I wasn't going to complain and since I knew the guy(family) I knew he wasnt selling just to get rid of a car that needed major engine repair or anything. The car runs and looks good but the engine is a little noisy. I've already addressed a few issues but have a few remaining. Some more important than others.
The most important one right now is the brakes! First you turn the car over and the brake light remains on. The pedal feels real soft and it seems as soon as I press down it the ABS light appears and stays on. The brakes work but I feel I have to put the pedal down all the way to get the stop but it does not feel like I am forcing the pedal down with all my strength or anything.
I was told, and I agree, start by replacing the pads, rotors, shoes, and then checking the level of brake fluid and filling as necc. Is this the right path? I've done this before a dozen or so times and feel comfortable doing it. Is this a good place to start?
Also, the emergency/parking brake lever works but has no effect so Im guessing the line is broken between the lever and the rear drums, how easy is the line to replace becuase I know I can get the lines for about $25 each depending on the side.
One more questions has to do with ABS, if I am changing the brakes and find a leak in a caliper or cylinder can I replace it with out special equipment? I was told (probably erroneously) that ABS needs to be handled differently, is that true? If it is then how do I go about it?
Thanks for my line of questions but I have to try and fix the brakes before Monday!
First thing is if the rear brakes are worn or misadjusted. The pedal will be low, start by pulling all 4 wheels and checking front and rear brakes.
You cable may not have snapped, rears could just be wayy out!