Go Back  F150online Forums > F-Series Trucks > 2004 - 2008 F-150
*** Soft Brake Pedal Resolved *** >

*** Soft Brake Pedal Resolved ***

2004 - 2008 F-150

*** Soft Brake Pedal Resolved ***

 
  #31  
Old 03-03-2007, 05:13 PM
rms8's Avatar
Senior Member
Thread Starter
Join Date: Sep 2006
Location: Northern Illinois
Posts: 1,316
Originally Posted by jims94vmx
sounds great so far. can you be more specific as to what we are looking at and where it adjusts? is this a rod that actually has to come out to adjust or when you pull the master you see a way to adjust? thanks.....

The actuator rod looks very similar to an adjustable-pushrod. Pull your MC forward and it’s right there. Just adjust it a turn or so (in silverbullet5.4’s case 1.25 turns) and that will allow the pedal to make more of a depression into the MC at the very top of the travel.
 
  #32  
Old 03-03-2007, 05:34 PM
Member
Join Date: Aug 2006
Posts: 49
[QUOTE=rms8]Look Capt. Obvious, no where did I mention that my booster was replaced. It was checked and verified good. Big difference in my book. No where did I say “my” mechanic was a genius either. You see, “I” am my own mechanic, but when it comes to service on a new vehicle under warranty, I let the dealership toy with it. And just for the record, I still pat my service dept on the back for killing two birds with one stone. Perhaps your 30 years of experience can see the logic in what I’m about to say…To adjust the rod you have to remove the MC. Makes sense to me to save the labor $$$ by just replacing it since it’s off rather than putting it all back together and rolling the dice that the rod was the problem. Just replace it, bleed the system and now you have just eliminated two of the most likely suspects in ONE round.

As I stated, perhaps you should step up and start a campaign to get experienced, qualified techs in the service departments. It would save so many people so much time. If it wasn’t for the UAW *******ing the big three with ridiculous benefits (when compared to 95% of the rest of us) and the senior executives raping the corporations, things would run a lot smoother, but then again, that’s just my humble opinion.

You see, I took my truck in one time for the brakes, and guess what, they are now fixed vs several others who have repeatedly taken their trucks into their own respective dealer only to be patronized or brushed off. This post is meant to provide them with a legitimate fix but more importantly a CONTACT so the BS stops. If they simply have their service manager call the service manager at my dealership (info in prior post) they will save mucho (spanish for a lot, LOL) time.

Thanks for misreading my post. And for the record, if I lock myself in my own vehicle, I’ll just call my roadside assistance number included in my ESP !




Hmmmm.
 

Last edited by powderburn2; 03-03-2007 at 05:46 PM.
  #33  
Old 03-03-2007, 07:03 PM
Senior Member
Join Date: Aug 2005
Posts: 647
Originally Posted by jims94vmx
sounds great so far. can you be more specific as to what we are looking at and where it adjusts? is this a rod that actually has to come out to adjust or when you pull the master you see a way to adjust? thanks.....
Here are the steps I took:

-Remove the two nuts holding the master cylinder to the brake booster, they are 1/2in bolts.

-Once the nuts are removed, slide the master cylinder straight away from the brake booster. As I mentioned before there will be alot of resistance due to the vacuum build up. You can rock the master cylinder back and forth and you will here the vacuum relieving, once it does you can slide the master straight back.

-Locate the rubber o ring and ensure it is still in place. It fits between the master cylinder and the brake booster.

-With the master cylinder pulled back(leave all lines and wires attached) just position it out of the way. You will clearly see a 7mm bolt that is threaded into the rod sticking out of the brake booster. The rod has a grooved shaft that you will need to hold with needle nose pliers to keep it from turning while backing out the 7mm bolt.

-Back the 7mm bolt out of the rod(counter clockwise) about 1/2 turn or how much you see fit. I tried half turns until I got the brake pedal to where I wanted it. It is possible loosen the bolt to much to the point where your brakes will drag, thats why I went in such small increments. It took mine about 1.25 - 1.5 turns to get it right.

-Bolt the master cylinder back in place and your done.

Sorry I didnt take pics, I didnt think of it at the time.
 
  #34  
Old 03-03-2007, 08:21 PM
Senior Member
Join Date: Feb 2005
Location: Sarver, Pa
Posts: 273
Wow, rms8, thanks a ton for the info. Finally a legitimate, logical fix for the spongy F150 brakes. I thought I would have to just live with it for the next 100,000 miles. I remember toying with this on my old 1979 Ford until the feel felt right, can't believe that I hadn't thought of it before. Just a caution, don't get greedy, because the brake dragging may not show up right away. I drove my '79 for ~4000miles until one hot day when I was using the brakes a lot, and I noticed that the truck was pulling harder than usual. At first I thought the old 302 was giving up the ghost, but after a few more miles I realized that the brakes were dragging. I pulled over and let them cool for a while, and limped back home slowly. After I got home, I backed off the rod slightly and enjoyed ~15,000 more miles on the truck before I parted it out. It definately had the best feel from the brakes out of all of the old Fords that I have driven.

I will be trying this on my 05 in the very near future. I'd take it into the dealer, but it would take me much longer to set up an appointment, drive it there, TRY to explain to the dimwitted techs what the problem is, TRY even harder to explain what the solution is, wait for them to work on it, test drive it, then tell them that it still isn't right, wait even longer for them to work on it... you see where I am getting? This is actually about a 15minute fix and it would kill half of my day to take it to the dealer.
 
  #35  
Old 03-03-2007, 09:07 PM
Senior Member
Join Date: Sep 2004
Location: Northampton, pa
Posts: 486
Originally Posted by silverbullet5.4
Here are the steps I took:

-Remove the two nuts holding the master cylinder to the brake booster, they are 1/2in bolts.

-Once the nuts are removed, slide the master cylinder straight away from the brake booster. As I mentioned before there will be alot of resistance due to the vacuum build up. You can rock the master cylinder back and forth and you will here the vacuum relieving, once it does you can slide the master straight back.

-Locate the rubber o ring and ensure it is still in place. It fits between the master cylinder and the brake booster.

-With the master cylinder pulled back(leave all lines and wires attached) just position it out of the way. You will clearly see a 7mm bolt that is threaded into the rod sticking out of the brake booster. The rod has a grooved shaft that you will need to hold with needle nose pliers to keep it from turning while backing out the 7mm bolt.

-Back the 7mm bolt out of the rod(counter clockwise) about 1/2 turn or how much you see fit. I tried half turns until I got the brake pedal to where I wanted it. It is possible loosen the bolt to much to the point where your brakes will drag, thats why I went in such small increments. It took mine about 1.25 - 1.5 turns to get it right.

-Bolt the master cylinder back in place and your done.

Sorry I didnt take pics, I didnt think of it at the time.
how did you know the brake pedal was fine? did you do half turns, then put the mc back on and try? if so, it could take a few times to remove to get right. so far sounds easy enough. thanks for the great info!
 
  #36  
Old 03-03-2007, 09:47 PM
Member
Join Date: May 2005
Location: Colorado
Posts: 12
Originally Posted by silverbullet5.4
Here are the steps I took:

-Remove the two nuts holding the master cylinder to the brake booster, they are 1/2in bolts.

-Once the nuts are removed, slide the master cylinder straight away from the brake booster. As I mentioned before there will be alot of resistance due to the vacuum build up. You can rock the master cylinder back and forth and you will here the vacuum relieving, once it does you can slide the master straight back.

-Locate the rubber o ring and ensure it is still in place. It fits between the master cylinder and the brake booster.

-With the master cylinder pulled back(leave all lines and wires attached) just position it out of the way. You will clearly see a 7mm bolt that is threaded into the rod sticking out of the brake booster. The rod has a grooved shaft that you will need to hold with needle nose pliers to keep it from turning while backing out the 7mm bolt.

-Back the 7mm bolt out of the rod(counter clockwise) about 1/2 turn or how much you see fit. I tried half turns until I got the brake pedal to where I wanted it. It is possible loosen the bolt to much to the point where your brakes will drag, thats why I went in such small increments. It took mine about 1.25 - 1.5 turns to get it right.

-Bolt the master cylinder back in place and your done.

Sorry I didnt take pics, I didnt think of it at the time.

Thanks for the info. I just completed mine and it sure maid a difference. I started with a ¾ turn did a road test and decided another ¼ would suite me fine. Only took about ten minutes on each disassembly / assembly. Hope it holds for the long term.

One question… should we tread lock the MC nuts?
 
  #37  
Old 03-03-2007, 10:28 PM
rms8's Avatar
Senior Member
Thread Starter
Join Date: Sep 2006
Location: Northern Illinois
Posts: 1,316
Originally Posted by COLOKR
One question… should we tread lock the MC nuts?

No, do not put any sort of thread lock on them. As far as the tiny bit of adjustment goes, as I stated early on in the post, every 1/16th" makes a dramatic difference. Keep in mind that the brake pedal travels on an arc, so the ratio of pedal travel to rod travel is not linear.

I'm glad to see that peeps are benefiting from this minor discovery and are once more pleased with their F150!
 
  #38  
Old 03-04-2007, 01:03 AM
Patman's Avatar
Global Moderator &
Senior Member

Join Date: Aug 2005
Location: DFW
Posts: 20,800
Originally Posted by Wookie
Not for the parking brake. The primary brake is a disk but the parking brake is a drum brake that is on the inside of the brake rotor. Pull your rear wheels and rotors if you don't believe me.
First of all you mean disc brake. Second, how would me pulling off my rims on my 03 prove me wrong about my original statement of mid 99/early 00 is when they stopped using drums?

And i will find evidence to prove me right too
-Patrick
 
  #39  
Old 03-04-2007, 09:52 AM
Senior Member
Join Date: Sep 2004
Location: Northampton, pa
Posts: 486
hey, just out of curiosity, how does this nut end up moving anyway to cause the soft pedal? i don't remember mine being soft originally, then it got to where i always double pumped the brakes as i am coming to a stop....even that isn't as hard as before.....just curious. can't wait for a nice enough day to try this. maybe this thread should be stickied at the top. i bet if we did a poll there are allot of us with this problem...see ya.
 
  #40  
Old 03-04-2007, 10:38 AM
Senior Member
Join Date: Sep 2002
Location: Cabot, AR
Posts: 2,165
Originally Posted by Patman03SprCrw
First of all you mean disc brake. Second, how would me pulling off my rims on my 03 prove me wrong about my original statement of mid 99/early 00 is when they stopped using drums?

And i will find evidence to prove me right too
-Patrick
You're about as sharp as a bowling ball. I will type this real slow so that you can keep up.

The PARKING brake is a drum. The drum is located inside the rotor, under the center area where the studs protrude. The shoes press against the center portion of the rotor.

The primary brakes are discs that you can see when you look through your wheels.
 
  #41  
Old 03-04-2007, 11:15 AM
Senior Member
Join Date: Nov 2005
Location: Dfw, TEXAS
Posts: 1,652
Originally Posted by rms8
Your dilemma is most unfortunate indeed. My advice would be to start fresh with a different dealership. Having the experience in auto mechanics that I do, I can honestly say that I feel 100% confident that the problem I was experiencing with the brakes on my truck has been resolved. The simple fact that they took the time to check the actuator rod speaks volumes. This is a little known part which can play a very large role. As I stated in a few posts above, if this rod is not set correctly, it can give the brakes the feeling of being very soft because it is not fully depressing the piston within the MC. If you simply push the pedal one more time you have effectively doubled the pressure.

Think of it this way. I have a 347 in my stang. It’s a 302 with a longer stroke made possible by a longer rod (and crank). Now apply that analogy to the length of the rod which is pushing the piston in the MC. If the rod is too short, then each time you press the pedal you’re only getting, say for arguments sake, 50% travel. You can attain that stiff feeling in the pedal if you just press the pedal one more time. This is like pumping the brakes, but you only need pump them once to attain this vs pumping several times for brakes with air in the lines or a very weak MC.

If your truck is still under warranty, take it to a different dealer and have them check the rod since you already have a new MC, or you can simply pull the MC forward and pull the rod out, note how long it is and go from there.

As I said, knowing what I know through 15+ years of building motors/working on cars, I can say that my previous issue with the brakes is now a thing of the past. I can’t imagine how they can be solid at this point and in just a few months go soft again, UNLESS Ford has a very serious problem with QC on their MC’s.

Keep us posted on the progress of your brake issue!
I guess i forgot to mention that part.. I've been to three different dealerships
 
  #42  
Old 03-04-2007, 11:23 AM
rms8's Avatar
Senior Member
Thread Starter
Join Date: Sep 2006
Location: Northern Illinois
Posts: 1,316
Originally Posted by Jwool15
I guess i forgot to mention that part.. I've been to three different dealerships

Wow, that does stink.

You should try adjusting the rod yourself. As you can see already, several in this thread have tried it with stellar results!
 
  #43  
Old 03-04-2007, 12:34 PM
Senior Member
Join Date: Nov 2001
Location: Southaven MS
Posts: 361
WOW all I can say is HOLY CRAP!!!!!!!!!!

My brakes have sucked every since I bought this truck.
I adjusted my rod this morning and cant freakin believe how much better my brakes are.
I started out with one full turn and that made a big improvement but still not quite what I wanted.
Adjusted it another 1/2 turn and HOLY MOTHER OF BRAKES! they felt awesome! Just a tiny bit of pressure on the pedal gave firm,solid,fantastic brakeing!
After thinking about it for a few minutes I was a little concerned that they may drag being that tight so I back off my adjustment 1/4 turn.

Bingo! 1 and 1/4 turn was the perfect length. It now has a tad of freepay yet the brakes are drasticly improved,firm,solid.


THANK YOU THANK YOU THANK YOU to rms8 for posting the fix and to Silverbullet for the excellant how-to.

I highly recommend this to anyone with the spongy brake problem.

Andy
 
  #44  
Old 03-04-2007, 02:13 PM
Senior Member
Join Date: Feb 2005
Location: Sarver, Pa
Posts: 273
Just a thought, has anyone who has adjusted the rod length checked their brakes lights yet to make sure their lights are coming on when the brakes first start to grab? If you go to far with the rod lenght this will cause an issue, but I just wondered if anyone has checked it yet?
 
  #45  
Old 03-04-2007, 02:26 PM
rms8's Avatar
Senior Member
Thread Starter
Join Date: Sep 2006
Location: Northern Illinois
Posts: 1,316
Originally Posted by ford141
Just a thought, has anyone who has adjusted the rod length checked their brakes lights yet to make sure their lights are coming on when the brakes first start to grab? If you go to far with the rod lenght this will cause an issue, but I just wondered if anyone has checked it yet?

If you adjust the rod too far out, the brakes will actually be engaged before you depress the pedal. On the Wilwood MC in my Stang, I adjusted it just a bit too much. It WAS NOT Noticeable while making a test drive around the block. 5 miles down the road though was a different story!!! The brakes actually overheated. I pulled over and let them cool. I then “limped” the stang back home and readjusted. In answer to your question, the brake lights were coming on before the pedal started to firm up. I had just the slightest bit of free travel in the pedal, but apparently it wasn’t enough.

So, again, a word of caution when performing this, just take your time and by all means DO NOT make large adjustments. Make very tiny adjustments. As I stated before, less than a 1/16” is a HUGE difference in this area. HUGE! Don’t let this deter you from doing the adjustment yourself. It’s incredibly easy. There are only two nuts securing the MC to the booster.

Good Luck !
 

Thread Tools
Search this Thread
Quick Reply: *** Soft Brake Pedal Resolved ***


Sponsors

Archive - Advertising - Cookie Policy - Privacy Statement - Terms of Service

© 2019 MH Sub I, LLC dba Internet Brands

We are a participant in the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program, an affiliate advertising program designed to provide a means for us to earn fees by linking to Amazon.com and affiliated sites.
 
  • Ask a Question
    Get answers from community experts
Question Title:
Description:
Your question will be posted in: