Ford Mustang/Capri 1979-1988 Repair Guide



Disc brakes require no adjustments.


See Figure 1

Drum brakes are self-adjusting and require a manual adjustment only after the brake shoes have been replaced, or when the length of the adjusting screw has been changed.

  1. Raise and safely support the rear end on jackstands.
  3. Remove the rubber plug from the adjusting slot in the brake backing plate.
  5. Insert a brake adjusting spoon into the slot and engage the lowest possible tooth on the star wheel. Move the end of the brake spoon downward to move the star wheel upward and expand the adjusting screw. Repeat this operation until the brakes lock the wheel.
  7. Insert a small screwdriver or piece of firm wire (coat-hanger wire) into the adjusting slot and push the automatic adjuster lever out and free of the star wheel on the adjusting screw.
  9. Holding the adjusting lever out of the way, engage the topmost tooth possible on the star wheel with a brake adjusting spoon. Move the end of the adjusting spoon upward to move the adjusting screw star wheel downward and contact the adjusting screw. Back off the adjusting screw star wheel until the wheel spins freely with a minimum of drag. Keep track of the number of turns the star wheel is backed off.
  11. Install the rubber plug in the adjusting slot of the brake backing plate.
  13. Repeat this operation for the other side. When adjusting the brakes on the other side, the adjusting lever must be backed off the same number of turns to prevent side-to-side brake pull.
  15. Remove the jackstands and lower the vehicle.
  17. Prior to driving the vehicle, pump the brake pedal to obtain a firm, responsive pedal.
  19. Complete the adjustment by applying the brakes with minimal pressure, while driving the vehicle in reverse. Move the vehicle forward after each stop, and repeat several times.
  21. Road test the car. If new brake linings have been installed, allow a short break-in period before hard breaking, wherever possible.

Click image to see an enlarged view

Fig. Fig. 1: Use a brake adjusting spoon to turn the star wheel