Ford Escort/Lynx 1981-1990 Repair Guide




The conventional hydraulic front disc brakes require no periodic adjustments and in fact are not adjustable, but are instead self-adjusting. The proper pad-to-disc contact is maintained at all times by the hydraulic line pressure. The only service procedure that could be considered an "adjustment" is the bleeding of the hydraulic lines which involves purging any air or contaminating substances (water, dirt, etc.). If your believe this may be necessary, refer to the section entitled "Bleeding the Brake System" for information on bleeding the brakes.


See Figure 1

The rear drum brakes are self-adjusting. The only adjustments necessary should be an initial adjustment, which is performed after new brake shoes have been installed or some type of service work has been done on the rear brake system.

After any brake service, obtain a firm brake pedal before moving the vehicle. Adjusted brakes must not drag. The wheel must turn freely. Be sure the parking brake cables (rear brakes only) are not adjusted too tightly. A special brake shoe gauge, tool No. D81L-1103-A or equivalent size (for brake measuring) Vernier caliper, is necessary for making an accurate adjustment after installing new brake shoes. The special gauge measures both the drum diameter and the brake shoe setting.

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Fig. Fig. 1: Use this special gauge to take the guesswork out of adjusting your rear drum brakes

  1. Measure and set the special brake gauge, tool No. D81L-1103-A or equivalent size Vernier caliper, to the inside diameter of the brake drum.
  3. Manipulate the adjuster mechanism until the brake shoes are set to the same diameter measurement as the rear brake drum. To adjust the brake shoe outside diameter for 1981-90 models with 7 inch brakes, pivot the adjuster quadrant until it reaches the correct notch. For 1981-90 models with 8 inch brakes, turn the starwheel for the correct shoe diameter.
  5. When a good brake shoe-to-drum fit is achieved, install the hub, the drum and wheel(s).

Complete the adjustment by applying the brakes several times. After the brakes have been properly adjusted, check their operation by making several stops from varying forward speeds.