GM Prizm/Nova 1985-1993 Repair Guide

Brake Drums

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REMOVAL & INSTALLATION




CAUTION
Brake pads and shoes contain asbestos, which has been determined to be a cancer causing agent. Never clean the brake surfaces with compressed air! Avoid inhaling any dust from brake surfaces! When cleaning brakes, use commercially available brake cleaning fluids.

  1. Elevate and safely support the vehicle. If only the rear wheels are elevated, block the front wheels with chocks. Once the vehicle is firmly on stands, release the parking brake.
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  3. Remove the rear wheel.
  4.  
  5. Make an index mark showing the relationship between 1 wheel lug and 1 hole in the drum. This will allow the drum to be reinstalled in its original position.
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  7. Tap the drum with a rubber mallet or wooden hammer handle. Remove the brake drum. It will not come off if the parking brake is applied. If the brake drum cannot be removed easily:
    1. Insert a screwdriver through the hole in the backing plate and hold the adjusting lever away from the star wheel.
    2.  
    3. Using another screw driver or a brake adjusting tool, turn the star wheel to reduce the tension (increase the clearance) on the brake shoes.
    4.  

  8.  


WARNING
Do not apply the brake pedal while the drum is removed.

  1. Before reinstalling the drum, perform the measurements and adjustments explained in the Adjustments section earlier in this Section.
  2.  
  3. Reinstall the drum, observing the matchmarks made earlier. Keep the drum straight while installing it; if it goes on crooked it can damage the brake shoes.
  4.  
  5. Install the wheel.
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  7. Lower the car to the ground.
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  9. Test drive the car at safe speeds and in a safe location to check the pedal feel and brake function. Adjust as necessary.
  10.  

INSPECTION



  1. Clean the drum.
  2.  
  3. Inspect the drum for scoring, cracks, grooves and out-of-roundness. Measure it to determine maximum diameter. A cracked drum must be replaced; do not attempt to weld a drum.
  4.  
  5. Light scoring may be removed by dressing the drum with fine emery cloth. If brake linings are replaced, always resurface a grooved drum.
  6.  
  7. Heavy scoring will require the use of a brake drum lathe to turn the drum.
  8.  

During manufacture, weights are used to balance brake drums. These weights must not be removed. After a drum is refinished or if there are vibration problems not traceable to wheel balance, the brake drums should be checked for balance. This can be done on most off-vehicle balancers; a bubble balancer is particularly handy for this check. If the drum is out of balance, it must be replaced.

 
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