Chevy Cobalt Forum banner
1 - 20 of 31 Posts

·
Registered
Joined
·
64 Posts
Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Both rear tire sensors are out. I can break the beads myself and swap the sensors out. Threy are the rubber stem type. What brand has worked the best and not upset the tire balance? AC Delco? Standard? Schrader? Denso? Or other fine brand? What kind is recommended? Programmable? Not programmable? I have the key fob I just fixed and it works now. The steering wheel controls did not access the sensor functions. I have yet to test the fob for that.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
703 Posts
I just got a set of 4 for ~$25 delivered from eBay from a US source. They were delivered within 3 days. then ~$50 to discount tire to mount and balance. YMWV
You can’t argue with Schrader. They are top notch. Now your 08 Cobalt uses the 315mHz sensors. Unless your changing tire sets frequently you shouldn’t NEED programmable.
As far as balance... it takes a while to train someone how to do a very very good job balancing a wheel assembly. Each different sensor and battery weigh close. So unless you know what brand and how much it weighs....who can answer it before it’s removed and weighed.
I also spent ~$9 for a tpms sensor tool. It triggers the sensor to transmit and keeps you from needing to change the tire pressure

I’m certain you know the batteries in the sensors can last many years or can die in weeks. One can EXPECT the batteries to last between 3-7years.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
64 Posts
Discussion Starter · #3 ·
4 for $25? The ones I see are like $25 each! The '08 will keep the same tires on until they rot off. On the '05 I do summer/winter changes but no TPMS. I also do my own balancing but I still need to drag them to my buddy's shop. I was hoping to just break the bead and swap them out and maybe not affect the balance. I thought they were all pretty close in weight anyway? I like the idea of the sensor tool. I don't know that the car will co-operate yet.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
703 Posts
Search eBay For “GM TPMS 13586335 Tire Pressure Sensor For Chevy GMC Buick Set(4) 315MHz USA.”
They are working fine on my 08, the BC 4 each delivered to Texas for under $25 for the set of 4

Also look for info on “EL-50448 TPMS Reset Tool Relearn Tool Auto Tire Pressure Sensor For GM Vehicles”
Make sure you have a fresh 9V battery.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
703 Posts
All of these parts may be junk but they are working correctly for the past few weeks. Ask me in a few years if they are still working.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
703 Posts
@Oldslowandugly
Want to supplyan update to the forum on your adventure in tpms sensors?
I’m about to go through it again with some parts I expect to pick up this weekend. Some genuine GM Cobalt parts. I don’t think this year had the sensors stock. That will force me to speak with my local tire store for another mount & Ballance.
So $25 is cheap. +$40-$50 is reasonable. Satisfaction......Priceless
Wheel Automotive tire Rim Bicycle part Alloy wheel

Ya know, this is going to force me to change my wheel bearings.....after 100k miles. Seems reasonable. And matching new wheel studs...ok.seems good. What! :eek😲 I gotta get new nuts ?!? Oh my! Now will this increase road noise?
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
64 Posts
Discussion Starter · #8 · (Edited)
Whoa! They make 5 lug wheels for a Cobalt? What model, the SS? As for wheel bearings, at 100k it's a matter of "just because". I just went through this on my 180k Jeep and what a PITA these were. If you can't get them off, the method that worked best was the one where you place an impact socket between the bearing and the steering knuckle. As you turn the wheel it pushes the bearing right off. EZPZ. I haven't done anything about the sensors yet. My other cars are giving me too much grief right now.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
703 Posts
Yes on 5 lug and 4 lug Cobalts.
And yes the new hubs are the wheel bearings. Expect $25-$50 per corner.
Compare prices at rock auto parts house and GM parts houses on line.
The SS and certain LTs had 5 lug wheels.
BTW, these are ( I’m told by the owner) off an 06.
Now I need to decide if I really want to do 4 wheel disks, upgraded 11-5/8 front disks, or upgraded rear drums. In 4 lug or 5 lug. And yes, I have 4 lug now and ready to order the 5 hubs. I will have a few extra wires (ABS) that I’m not ready or convinced to install.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
703 Posts
@Oldslowandugly
Here is a nice link posted by @Coby7 in one of his threads. It makes the bearing swap/replacement a minor pita.
Enjoy
 

·
Say What again!
Joined
·
6,363 Posts
Yes on 5 lug and 4 lug Cobalts.
And yes the new hubs are the wheel bearings. Expect $25-$50 per corner.
Compare prices at rock auto parts house and GM parts houses on line.
The SS and certain LTs had 5 lug wheels.
BTW, these are ( I’m told by the owner) off an 06.
Now I need to decide if I really want to do 4 wheel disks, upgraded 11-5/8 front disks, or upgraded rear drums. In 4 lug or 5 lug. And yes, I have 4 lug now and ready to order the 5 hubs. I will have a few extra wires (ABS) that I’m not ready or convinced to install.
Ahh yes...the weirdo cars with 5-lug drums. There is an out-of-state-plated Cobalt that shows up at a house across the street on occasion and, while walking by it the other day, I noticed it too is one of those rare specimens.

I, myself, have always looked at the TCE brake kits, but really I'd need a disk-brake rear axle to swap in so I've got the mounts back there to change from the rear drums I have now. I'd also need a different master, since I do not expect the disk/drum master will work with disk/disk due to the sheer pressure difference required. The TCE brakes are massive Wilwoods, and probably overkill, but some of that will honestly add to the visuals of the car. They also don't sell them anymore, but I'll bet they still would be able to.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
64 Posts
Discussion Starter · #12 ·
After just doing the rear drum brakes I have to ask- why do drum brakes even exist anymore?!? It was bad enough with the old style retainers but that big "W" spring is the nightmare invention of a deranged enginerd from hell. I could have replaced all four wheels disc pads in a quarter of the time it took to do just one drum. If I had the parts I would absolutely swap over to discs. I had a 1977 Trans Am and I swapped a '79 disc rear in. What a night and day difference! Yes, I had to scrounge up the 4 wheel disc master cylinder and combo valve, and a dual diaphragm power booster, but, man, it was worth it. I have a 1968 Firebird project and I went so far as to adapt the '79 disc rear to the '68 chassis. I am all in on 4 wheel discs. The other thing is the oddball 4 lug wheels. I had to buy a set of used '08 wheels for use with my winter tires. Normally I can get all kinds of 5 lug wheels easily like I use on my '05 Sunfire. But 4 lug? Not so easy. As for the wheel bearings, I have seen them practically fall out. I also have seen them require C-4 to budge them. Probably best to start oiling with a good penetrating oil all around the flange they sit in.
 

·
Say What again!
Joined
·
6,363 Posts
I, an engineer, feel entirely the opposite about the W-spring. It's gotta be the absolute easiest thing in the world compared to the 400,000 springs you normally deal with in the drum brake. Makes changing drums and shoes an absolute 5-minute job - incredibly easy.

Drums aren't really used all that often anymore, actually - remember, these cars came out over 15 years ago.

Drums have plenty of advantages over disk brakes. They're far cheaper, generally a good bit lighter than disk brakes, and are considerably less susceptible to weather - no frozen slides, no rusted/pitted rotors.

Unless you're going for multiple/repeated stopping where brake fade becomes an issue, rear disks serve basically zero improvement other than being an appearance mod.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
64 Posts
Discussion Starter · #14 ·
I also just did the rear drums on a 1980 Trans Am and it took me far less time than the Cobalt. Maybe I am just too old, clumsy, and set in my ways. I can do rear discs in minutes and no cursing involved. I guess if you do brakes all day it is easy but I'll bet if you took a poll, most Cobalt/G-5 even Sunfire/Cavalier owners would admit they send their car out for rear brake jobs. Now, I don't know how old you are MP81, but can you remember power assisted 4 wheel drum brakes? I had a '68 Buick LeSaber with those. Because drums are self-actuating, the power assist was so over bearing it would put you through the windshield if you were not careful. But as you said, get them hot or wet and they were useless.
 

·
Say What again!
Joined
·
6,363 Posts
I'm 31, so I thankfully never had the terrifying experience of driving anything with four-wheel drums. They absolutely do not belong up front in a car. Driving an '88 Ranger with manual steering and manual brakes (and a 2.3L Turbo and a T5 5-speed) was more than enough fun for me.

I have disks up front and big finned drums out back on my '81 Z28 and, though I've not driven it nearly enough to really see how hard it stops (probably not a bad thing...), nor have I had to pull them apart. I'd have to ask my Uncle (who bought the car new, and sold it to me back in 2016), but I wouldn't be surprised if they're original drums. Rear drums seemingly last forever.

But I did have to do the rear drums on my '98 Cavalier I had, and having done the Cobalt's years before, I was stunned by how much less complex the Cobalt's were. They (the Cobalt's) literally took me no time at all, whereas the Cavalier was a much more annoying affair. That single large spring was a life changer. Put one end in the hole, and use a pair of channel locks to drop the other end into its hole. Then put the adjuster in and span it out. Done!

I just did the rear brakes on my Volt, and I did the rear brakes on our Cruze (diesel) last year right around the same time, both rear disks, and I'd much rather do the Cobalt's drums over those, and those are pretty straightforward brake changes that take very little time. The Cobalt was simple - and doesn't have slides that magically get stuck.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
703 Posts
Well poo, just lost the post just before posting. Let’s try again.
I will be putting these 11-5/8” brake system on the BC.
I bet the rotors will clean up well. And, after cleaning and a little paint the calipers will work well.
Rim Bicycle part Automotive tire Auto part Wheel


I still need to verify that the backing plates & shoes from the 4 lug drum brakes will work with the 5 lug drums. And the rock auto parts house confirmed wheel hubs will be $25-$50 each.
After 120k miles new wheel bearings may reduce some of my road noise. Now to order a new molded floor carpet and sound dreading/ insulation for the floors. Fresh Clean black rear seats ready to install and waiting. Need to pick up the fronts. I may be forced to recover the fronts. I hope I get a good set of fronts...those Ricarro’s wound hurt.
 

Attachments

·
Registered
Joined
·
64 Posts
Discussion Starter · #17 ·
Well, I have to hand it to you, you make it sound easy. I don't know anyone who thinks that way. Yes, the rear drums do seem last a long time. Both the '08 Cobalt and '80 TA had the factory original shoes still. But that could be a failure of the proportioning valve too. The rears may not be seeing the proper pressure to operate. If the fronts seem to wear fast that would explain it. The easiest discs I ever did were on my Dad's Saturn. Remove a bolt, loosen the other, and the caliper swings up. Then you swap out the pads and slap it back down like you were re-loading an M-60 machine gun. The easiest thing I ever saw. EDIT: Nice brakes! Drilled and slotted rotors too!
 

·
Say What again!
Joined
·
6,363 Posts
Just to refresh my memory, since it's been a while: yep, just as easy as I remember:

Do you know what brand D&S rotors those are? Most of them suck. I'd honestly avoid almost all of them, unless they're something OEM (which many use blanks anymore anyway) or a high-end brake brand, where they've cast the holes in. Great spot for multiple stress fractures/cracks otherwise.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
703 Posts
Suppose to be from a stock 06 SS doner car.
These should just slap on to my 08 spindles. Same as
05LS/LT/SS-08LS/LT different spindles 08up SS
I will need to deal with the unneeded ABS sensors included with each 5lug hub...zip ties work well just Incase I get a wild hair to install a full ABS system on the BC, non ABS Cobalt
 

·
Say What again!
Joined
·
6,363 Posts
Might've been stock - but those rotors aren't. Originals were blanks.

And yes, they should fit right on your 5-lug spindles, as they're no different base all the way to SS.
 
1 - 20 of 31 Posts
Top