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Audi A4 Parking Brake Cable Adjusting and Replacement
 
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Pelican Technical Article:

Audi A4 Parking Brake Cable Adjusting and Replacement

Steve Vernon

Time:

3 hours3 hrs

Tab:

$120 to $240

Talent:

**

Tools:

10mm wrench, floor jack, jack stands, wheel chocks, safety glasses

Applicable Models:

Audi A4 (2002-05)
Audi A4 Cabriolet (2003-06)

Parts Required:

New cable

Hot Tip:

Double check adjustment before finishing up

Performance Gain:

Proper parking brake function

Complementary Modification:

Replace parking brake cables

Unlike most cars that use the inside of the rear drum for the parking brake system, the Audi A4 parking brake system uses the rear brake calipers to hold the car. The system is simple and the only down side is possible rotor warp if you are performing hard repeated braking and then set the parking brake. Adjustment is much easier than on the system that uses a traditional brake shoe inside the drum of the rear rotor. There are cables that run from the car to the rear caliper that is adjustable when installing new pads. Since the rear calipers are self-adjusting, as the pads wear the parking brake cables do not need adjustment after they are installed. These cables usually last a very long time but are subject to fail from road debris. If there is a cut in the cable sheath, moisture can become trapped and rust the cable out.

You will need to raise the rear of the vehicle as well as remove the rear console to perform this work. Please see our article on jacking up your vehicle and removing the rear console.

Cable Adjustment: Cable adjustment is only necessary when replacing the brake cable, calipers or discs.
Figure 1

Cable Adjustment: Cable adjustment is only necessary when replacing the brake cable, calipers or discs. Once the adjustment is set the parking brake is self-adjusting. With the rear of the car safely supported in the air and the rear console removed, you will have access to the brake handle adjustment mechanism. Note: in these pictures we have removed the entire rear console; you will have to also remove the front center console to remove the rear completely. To save time and reduce unnecessary work, you can just tilt the rear console forward enough to access the brake handle mechanism and leave the front center console in place. There is a long bolt that comes from the rear of the parking brake handle that a compensator (yellow arrow) is attached to. In the slots on each side of the compensator are the cables that run to the brake calipers (red arrows). Begin by applying the foot brake pedal forcefully at least three times. Apply the parking brake three times and then release.

Cable Adjustment: Use a 10mm wrench and adjust the compensator until the lever on the brake caliper lifts off the stop.
Figure 2

Cable Adjustment: Use a 10mm wrench and adjust the compensator until the lever on the brake caliper lifts off the stop. The distance between the stop and both rear calipers must be between 1-3mm (red arrows).

Cable Replacement - The parking brake cable enters the interior of the car to the brake handle through a grommet in the floor pan (red arrow).
Figure 3

Cable Replacement - The parking brake cable enters the interior of the car to the brake handle through a grommet in the floor pan (red arrow). Insert the cable in the grommet, attach to the hanger and into the clips on the swing arm (yellow arrows).

Cable Replacement - Insert the ball end of the cable through the retaining clip on the caliper and pull the cable through until the plastic clip clicks in place (red arrow).
Figure 4

Cable Replacement - Insert the ball end of the cable through the retaining clip on the caliper and pull the cable through until the plastic clip clicks in place (red arrow). Push the lever arm on the caliper forward (green arrow) while pulling the ball end of the cable (yellow arrow) into the end of the lever. Adjust the parking brake as described earlier.


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