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Rear Disc Brake Caliper Piston Not Retracting

05-02-2007, 08:04 AM
I was replacing the rear pads on A 2000 Civc SI. I tried spinning it in clocwise but saw no change. So thinking I was turning it hte wrong way I gave it a few turns counter clockwise. I rechecked and it was out another 1/4 inch. Also I think my son might have inadvertantly but briefly stepped on the brake pedal. Although he will not fess up. I went back to spinning clockwise after checking the manual. It seems as if it went back a slight bit but then stopped. It will not retract any further.

I am considering trying to open the bleeder and trying to spin/push it back in. Is this a waste of time? Should I just replace the caliper?

Any thoughts or suggestions will be greatly appreciated.

05-02-2007, 08:32 AM
The most overlooked and important part of a "real" brake job
is cleaning the calipers out.
Most don't do it, you wouldn't believe the dirt and water that builds up
in some of them.
Brake fluid attracts moisture, (The master cylinder is vented)
and it will settle in the lowest point,the brake calipers.
I've had some customers with calipers so dirty that they couldn't retaract
at all. (And they wonder why their brakes don't last.)
I always disassembe them and clean them out, then they retract easily,
like they're suppose too. And the brakes last longer.
I've never needed to replace a caliper, only to clean it.

The fluid should be replaced every so often too, just like the maintenance
schedule calls for in the service or owners manual.
Mine says every 30K, to replace it-no one ever does that either.
There's a lot more to a brake job then just replaceing pads
if you want it to perform like new.:smokin:

05-02-2007, 11:57 AM
Thanxs for the reply Jim. I know what you mean about a complete brake job. That is how I got involved in this one for my daughter's boyfriend. He was complaining that his rear pads needed replaced and that one pad was like new and the other was worn out. He also complained that the caliper wasn't even a year old.

The top pin was frozen solid. I could rotate it but still had to pound it out with a hammer and punch. With the proper tool the piston slid right back in. I told the young man I would help him swap out the fluid on the weekend. What do you think about switching to a dot 5 silicone base fluid? The vehicle is mainly a commuter but does see some time on the 1/8 mile track.

Thanxs again,

05-02-2007, 12:28 PM
I really don't know anything about the fluid differences.
I do think that replacing it once in a while makes a big difference
in keeping everything clean and is probably more important than
what type you go with. Clean fluid is always the best:grinyes:

05-03-2007, 12:06 PM
I am not exactly sure but I think DOT 3 and DOT 5 are not compatible.

I would search for more information before switching fluids!


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