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So I have been chasing many little things going wrong with the front end of the car. A vibration that would come and go. And randomly get worse. It seemed to be associated with the brakes but it was inconsistent. The vibration would start, usually on the highway. I could hit the brakes and the vibration would get way worse, almost like a death wobble. Then after hitting the brakes a few times it would go away.

I did find a bad CV axle and seals in the transmission on the right side. Also the lower control arm bushing that’s in the rear position was bad. Actually the bushing looked fine but the rubber had started to separate from the metal. I thought, great this should fix it. It definitely improved things which I don’t feel like those were a waste to put on. In fact I’ll probably do the bushing on the other side this weekend and maybe the other seal on the transmission where the axle goes.

As luck would have it though, the brakes started sticking. This caused vibration, now on the left side. I was hoping it was just the control arm bushing. But I noticed as this started, the fuel mileage had steeply dropped. The car didn’t seem to have a problem accelerating at first, but the brakes would gradually start to hold without touching the brakes. Also the brakes had started to overheat. Upon inspection, the caliper pins seemed to be binding. I had greased them when I put brake pads on the last time. But the rubber piece that goes at the end of one of the pins had swollen up. I removed it during the time I replaced the one bushing. There was now no reason the pins would be sticking or binding. It got worse again, now not coming and going. So I figured the brake hoses were probably going to be the issue. This seems to be fairly common. I see them do this kind of thing even on newer vehicles. They supposedly collapse internally. I haven’t ever cut a hose open to see what it looks like but I think I may do that with the ones I took off the car.

It seems that the brake hoses have alleviated the sticking or binding issue. Has taken care of the major vibration the car was having. Also has gained the fuel mileage that was lost. Drove the car around for about an hour and a half just to see if it would act up again and the brakes worked great like they should. The hoses must have been going bad for a while. They were the original ones. I was worried it may have been the calipers or even a bad master cylinder or abs unit. At least I hope I won’t have any problems with those parts.

The two little rubber bushings in the pic below are the ones that seems to have swollen and caused the pin to be hard to move. I replaced them. Nobody seemed to know exactly what they do. But I believe they may help the caliper push back to keep the pads from dragging. Any time I install them they seem to push the pin back out. So I suppose that’s what they do. Either that or are some kind of vibration damper. In any event they are needed. They fit on the slot at the end of the top caliper pin.

The problem with the brakes cause my fuel mileage to drop dramatically. It would only manage to get 18-20 mpg. On my drive I took after the new hoses, it averaged 30.5 mpg. Mainly driving 65-70 mph with several stops and a portion was 35-45 mph just driving around town. I didn’t end up using the new caliper pins so I’ll return those and probably get the control arm bushing and transmission seals. Later on I’m going to replace the control arms with the aluminum ones. The bushings were only $10 each so I figured why not just pop those in for now.


BrakeBest Caliper Guide Pin/Boot Kit Rear  Primary Image

BrakeBest Caliper Guide Pin Kit  Primary Image
 
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