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Parking Brake Cable Replacement
 
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Pelican Technical Article:

Parking Brake Cable Replacement

Nick Czerula

Time:

3 hours3 hrs

Tab:

$150

Talent:

***

Tools:

10mm socket, plastic prying tool, T15, T25 Torx, MINI tool 34 6 330 or 12mm inside diameter pipe

Applicable Models:

R56 MINI Cooper Hatchback (2007-11)
R56 MINI Cooper S Hatchback (2007-11)

Parts Required:

Parking brake cables

Hot Tip:

Inspect cable for easy movement

Performance Gain:

Proper parking brake function

Complementary Modification:

Replace brake shoes

MINI R56 models are equipped with a mechanical parking brake. This parking brake is used to hold the vehicle stationary when not in use. The parking brake is operated via a handle in the vehicle cabin, actuating cables that engage the rear brake calipers.

The system is compact and integrated into the rear brake caliper. The rear rotor is used as the clamping area when the brake caliper is actuated via the parking brake lever. Most of the time the parking brake self-adjusts. These adjustments happen at the rear brake caliper. You can adjust your parking brake with the wheels raised off the ground after compressing the rear brake caliper pistons. A quick check of the parking brake is to pull up the parking brake lever and listen to the number of clicks it makes until stopping. If your parking brake lever makes six clicks or more, it needs to be adjusted. Keep in mind, the parking brake is not strong enough to brake the vehicle when driven or when being moved by the engine.

If you have a sticking rear caliper, the issue could be a faulty parking brake cable. This tech article will show you how to replace them. I suggest replacing cables in pairs to avoid trouble when adjusting.

Remember that your car may have been serviced before and had parts replaced with different size fasteners used in the replacement. The sizes of the nuts and bolts we give may be different from what you have so be prepared with different size sockets and wrenches.

Protect your eyes, hands and body from fluids, dust and debris while working on your vehicle. If you're working with the electrical system, disconnect the battery before beginning. Always catch fluids in appropriate containers and properly dispose of any fluid waste. Recycle parts, packaging and fluids when possible. Never work on your vehicle if you feel the task is beyond your ability.

Our vehicle may vary slightly from yours as models do change and evolve, as they grow older. If something seems different, let us know and share your info to help other users. Do you have questions or want to add to the article? Leave a comment below. When leaving a comment, please leave your vehicle information.

The parking brake is operated via a handle (red arrow) in the vehicle cabin, actuating cables that engage the rear brake calipers.
Figure 1

The parking brake is operated via a handle (red arrow) in the vehicle cabin, actuating cables that engage the rear brake calipers.

The system is compact and integrated into the rear brake caliper (green arrow).
Figure 2

The system is compact and integrated into the rear brake caliper (green arrow). The rear rotor is used as the clamping area when the brake caliper is actuated via the parking brake cable (yellow arrow) activated via a lever. The cable is fed through the vehicle body (red arrow).

If you suspect a brake cable or caliper is hanging up, prematurely wearing your rear brake pads, remove the cable and check both.
Figure 3

If you suspect a brake cable or caliper is hanging up, prematurely wearing your rear brake pads, remove the cable and check both. Pull the cable (red arrow) out of the lever (yellow arrow). Check when you pull the lever down, away from the stop, it returns smoothly and does not bind or stick. Then, pull the cable out and push it in. The cable should slide back and forth with no resistance. If it binds or sticks, replace the cable. I suggest replacing them in pairs. To replace, start by removing the cable (red arrow) out of the lever (yellow arrow).

Then, remove the cable-locking clip (red arrow).
Figure 4

Then, remove the cable-locking clip (red arrow). Slide it off the bracket to remove it.

Working at the subframe, remove the 10mm cable-mounting fastener (green arrow).
Figure 5

Working at the subframe, remove the 10mm cable-mounting fastener (green arrow). When installing, be sure to align the cable tab with the hole in the subframe (red arrows).

Remove the exhaust system.
Figure 6

Remove the exhaust system. See our tech article on exhaust system removing. Working at the muffler heat shield, remove the five 10mm fasteners (red arrows).

Next, remove the heat shield (red arrow) from the vehicle.
Figure 7

Next, remove the heat shield (red arrow) from the vehicle.

Working at the center exhaust heat shield, remove the two 10mm fasteners (red arrows).
Figure 8

Working at the center exhaust heat shield, remove the two 10mm fasteners (red arrows). Next, remove the heat shield (green arrow) from the vehicle by sliding it toward the rear of the vehicle.

The left (red arrow) and right (green arrow) cables enter the cabin of the vehicle at the center tunnel.
Figure 9

The left (red arrow) and right (green arrow) cables enter the cabin of the vehicle at the center tunnel. They have to be detached from the interior and removed from under the vehicle.

Remove the center console.
Figure 10

Remove the center console. See our tech article on center console replacing.
With the center console removed, disconnect the coaxial connector next to the parking brake lever (green arrow). If your vehicle does not have the optional armrest, you may not have this connector. Press the release tab (red arrow) and pull the connector apart to disconnect it.

Next, disconnect the electrical connector next to the parking brake lever (green arrow).
Figure 11

Next, disconnect the electrical connector next to the parking brake lever (green arrow). If your vehicle does not have the optional armrest, you may not have this connector. Detach the Christmas tree mount (red arrow). Then pull out the electrical connector.

With the connector detached from the center console bracket, press the button (red arrow) and swing the lever (yellow arrow) open to disconnect it.
Figure 12

With the connector detached from the center console bracket, press the button (red arrow) and swing the lever (yellow arrow) open to disconnect it.

Next, remove the four 10mm center console bracket fasteners (red arrows).
Figure 13

Next, remove the four 10mm center console bracket fasteners (red arrows).

Move to the front of the center console bracket, at the foam block.
Figure 14

Move to the front of the center console bracket, at the foam block. Then, disconnect the coaxial connector (red arrow). Press the release tab (red arrow) and pull the connector apart to disconnect it.

Lift the center console bracket about three inches.
Figure 15

Lift the center console bracket about three inches. Then detach the wiring harness mounted to the left side (red arrow).

Lift the center console bracket up to remove it.
Figure 16

Lift the center console bracket up to remove it. Feed the parking brake lever through the opening with the boot.

Lift the carpet panel at the rear of the center tunnel to expose the parking brake lever cables and bracket (red arrow).
Figure 17

Lift the carpet panel at the rear of the center tunnel to expose the parking brake lever cables and bracket (red arrow).

Remove the cable end from the cable bracket.
Figure 18

Remove the cable end from the cable bracket.

Working at the fuel tank, remove the cable from the cable mounts (red arrows).
Figure 19

Working at the fuel tank, remove the cable from the cable mounts (red arrows).

Next, the cable has to be released from the interior (red arrows).
Figure 20

Next, the cable has to be released from the interior (red arrows). Each cable is held in place by expanding barbs. MINI has a special tool 34 6 330 to release the barbs. I use a small pipe, about 12mm inside diameter.

MINI has a special tool 34 6 330 to release the barbs.
Figure 21

MINI has a special tool 34 6 330 to release the barbs. I use a small pipe (red arrow), about 12mm inside diameter.

Press a small pipe (red arrow), over the cable until flush.
Figure 22

Press a small pipe (red arrow), over the cable until flush. This will release the barbs. With the barbs released, pull the cable out from beneath the vehicle.

Pull the cable out of the caliper bracket (red arrow).
Figure 23

Pull the cable out of the caliper bracket (red arrow).

With the cable barbs released, pull the cable out from beneath the vehicle (red arrow).
Figure 24

With the cable barbs released, pull the cable out from beneath the vehicle (red arrow). Reverse the steps to reinstall it. Be sure to adjust the parking brake cables when reinstalling.







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