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Pelican Technical Article:

Parking Brake Replacement

Time:

3 hours3 hrs

Tab:

$45

Talent:

*****

Tools:

17mm and 19mm wrench, pliers, long flat head screwdriver,

Applicable Models:

Mercedes-Benz W210 (1996-03)

Parts Required:

New parking brake pad set

Hot Tip:

soak the disc retaining screw in penetrating oil prior to removal

Performance Gain:

Car doesn't roll down hills

Complementary Modification:

Replace rear pads and discs

If your parking brake is not functioning properly, then perhaps it's time to replace your parking brake shoes. The parking brake shoes can only be inspected after the removal of the rear brake calipers and discs. Refer to our article on replacing rear brakes for more info. You'll need to take the tension off the inner parking brake shoes in order to remove the rear brake disc. To access the adjusting screw, you'll need to rotate the disc until one of the holes for the lug bolts is at 10 o'clock. If you shine a light inside, you should be able to see the screw inside the hole. You'll need to turn the adjuster screw counter-clockwise to lessen the tension on the two brake shoes. Once the tension has been relieved, you should be able to pull the brake disc off. The inside of the brake disk is the drum that the parking brake shoes engage.  Now you can visually inspect the shoes for wear. The shoes should have some brake lining along the top, and should not have any heavy grooves cut into them.  Compare your worn parking brake shoes to the ones pictured in this article to determine if you need to replace yours.

You'll now see the whole parking brake assembly. At the top of the assembly, remove the small parking brake adjuster by prying it out from between the upper and lower parking brake shoe. Make sure that the parking brake handle is all the way down for this procedure.  Be careful while you are performing this removal, as the adjuster is spring loaded and it may fly out when you are prying the shoes apart. Once the adjuster screw is out, remove the upper retaining spring. It can be difficult to remove this spring, so I recommended you just pry the ears of the spring out to release it from the shoes. You'll be replacing this spring anyway, so it doesn't matter if it gets damaged. Again, be careful of the spring, as it may fly off unexpectedly. Make sure that you wear safety glasses during this entire procedure.

Next remove the two brake shoe retaining springs. These can be quite tricky to get out. The idea is to press the spring in as far as possible then turn the spring. This will unlatch it from the backing plate. Unfortunately it sounds easier than it is. Just take your time. Once released, you can simply pull the old shoes off the expanding frame at the bottom. Once removed, you'll see how the lower retaining spring holds the brake shoes together at the bottom.

Now take the new brake shoes and locate the slotted end on each one. These slots fit into the "ears" on the expanding frame. You'll want to attach the lower retaining spring first between the two shoes, and then carefully work it over the hub assembly. Fit one of the slotted ends into the expanding frame, then use a screwdriver to pry the other slotted end over the expanding frame and into place. Now at the top of the shoes, fit the upper retaining spring between the two shoes. This can be a little tricky. I recommend using a pair of needle nose pliers to help do this. Once the spring is fitted, spread the shoes apart and install the adjuster screw.

Now comes the hardest part of the job, getting the shoe retaining springs in place. You'll need to hook the spring in just such a way that you can turn the spring as you push it inwards, thus locking the spring to the backing plate. I like to rotate the hub until a lug bolt hole lines up with the outside of the spring and then push the spring inwards with a screwdriver. Once both shoe retaining springs are in, fit the brake disc over the whole assembly and secure it with a new retaining screw. Rotate the disc so you can access the adjuster screw inside with a small screwdriver and rotate the screw clockwise to increase the tension on the shoes. From time to time, pull the screwdriver out and check if you can still turn the disc. You'll want to keep increasing tension until you can't turn it anymore. Now back the adjuster off until you can just turn the disc. All you need to do now is bolt the caliper back on, put the brake pads back in and put the wheel back on

Shown here are the pieces that make up a parking brake kit for your car.
Figure 1

Shown here are the pieces that make up a parking brake kit for your car. Included are two new sets of parking brake shoes, four new brake caliper mounting bolts, four new spreader springs and four new retaining springs.

Begin by removing the brake pads and caliper from the rear wheels (refer to our article on replacing rear brakes for more info).
Figure 2

Begin by removing the brake pads and caliper from the rear wheels (refer to our article on replacing rear brakes for more info). Also remove the 5mm brake disc retaining screw. You'll need to take the tension off the inner brake shoe in order to remove the rear brake disc. To access the adjusting screw, you'll need to rotate the disc until one of the holes for the lug bolts is at 10 o'clock (green arrow). If you shine a light inside, you should be able to see it.

ThisPicture shows the adjuster screw with the brake disc removed.
Figure 3

This picture shows the adjuster screw with the brake disc removed. You'll need to turn the adjuster screw with a screwdriver in the direction of the green arrow in order to lessen the tension on the two brake shoes. Once the tension has been relieved, you can pull the brake disc off. The inside of the disk is the drum that the parking brake shoes engage with.

Once off, you'll see the components that make up the parking brake.
Figure 4

Once off, you'll see the components that make up the parking brake. In this picture, you can see the adjuster screw (yellow arrow), the upper retaining spring (green arrow), parking brake shoes (red arrows) and the purple arrows show the approximate position of the brake shoe retaining springs.

Looking up at the bottom of the parking brake, You'll see the two parking brake shoes held in place by the lower retaining spring (red arrow) and the expanding frame that spreads the pads out when you engage the parking brake (green arrow).
Figure 5

Looking up at the bottom of the parking brake, You'll see the two parking brake shoes held in place by the lower retaining spring (red arrow) and the expanding frame that spreads the pads out when you engage the parking brake (green arrow).

Spread the brake shoes apart at the top and remove the adjuster screw (green arrow) Use extreme caution as the springs hold everything together very tight.
Figure 6

Spread the brake shoes apart at the top and remove the adjuster screw (green arrow) Use extreme caution as the springs hold everything together very tight.

Now remove the upper retaining spring (green arrow) It's easier to just bend the spring as you remove it (you're going to replace it anyway) then trying to unhook it from the shoes.
Figure 7

Now remove the upper retaining spring (green arrow) It's easier to just bend the spring as you remove it (you're going to replace it anyway) then trying to unhook it from the shoes.

Next remove the two brake shoe retaining springs (green arrow).
Figure 8

Next remove the two brake shoe retaining springs (green arrow). This picture shows the spring on the bottom shoe. These can be quite tricky to get out. The idea is to press the in as far as possible then turn the spring. This will unlatch it from the backing plate. Unfortunately it sounds easier than it is. Just take your time.

ThisPicture shows the slot in the backing plate where the retaining spring for the brake shoe attaches.
Figure 9

This picture shows the slot in the backing plate where the retaining spring for the brake shoe attaches. It snakes through the slot on the brake shoe (yellow arrow) then grabs the backing plate (green arrow).

ThisPicture shows the new brake shoes with the new springs properly oriented when you install them on the car.
Figure 10

This picture shows the new brake shoes with the new springs properly oriented when you install them on the car. Refer back to this picture if you get lost. The tabs on each brake shoe at the top fit into the adjusting screw, while the grooves at the bottom fit into the expanding frame. Keep those grooves in mind for the next step.

Here are the ears of the expanding frame (green arrows).
Figure 11

Here are the ears of the expanding frame (green arrows). You'll now want to install only the bottom retaining spring and slip the grooves of the brake shoes into the ears shown here. This is a little tricky to do.

Now, fit the lower grooved end into the ear on the expanding frame (yellow arrow).
Figure 12

Now, fit the lower grooved end into the ear on the expanding frame (yellow arrow). You'll then want to take a screwdriver and pull the other grooved end (green arrow) up and over the upper ear on the expanding frame. It's a bit tricky to do, but it's the only way to get everything in place.

Install the upper retaining spring.
Figure 13

Install the upper retaining spring.

Spread the shoes wide enough to slip the adjuster screw in place as shown here.
Figure 14

Spread the shoes wide enough to slip the adjuster screw in place as shown here.

Now comes the hardest part of the job, getting the shoe retaining springs in place.
Figure 15

Now comes the hardest part of the job, getting the shoe retaining springs in place. You'll need to hook the spring in just such a way so that you can turn the spring as you push it inwards, thus locking the spring to the backing plate. I like to rotate the hub until a hole lines up with the outside of the spring and then push the spring inwards with a screwdriver.

Once both shoe retaining springs are in, fit the brake disc over the whole assembly and secure it with a new retaining screw.
Figure 16

Once both shoe retaining springs are in, fit the brake disc over the whole assembly and secure it with a new retaining screw. Rotate the disc so you can access the adjuster screw inside with a small screwdriver and rotate the screw up to increase the tension on the shoes. From time to time, pull the screwdriver out and check if you can still turn the disc. You'll want to keep increasing tension until you can't turn it anymore. Now back the adjuster off until you can just turn the disc. All you need to do now is bolt the caliper back on, put the brake pads back in and put the wheel back on.

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Comments and Suggestions:
tony 2676886274 desperate appr Comments: 2000e320 emergbrake expanding frame is rotted cant find none 11 and 12 jpg 2592x1944 picture, they available ,cant locate
August 27, 2016
  Followup from the Pelican Staff: Give The Pelican Parts parts specialists a call at 1-888-280-7799. They can figure out what part or repair kit you need.
- Nick at Pelican Parts
 
smoothbenz Comments: Need a little help, I took apart my ML320's e-brake and found that one of the parts inside came loose and tore through the springs, retainers and shoes. I cleaned it all up and found the steel part where the cable comes into the hub to be loose. It is held by in place two big "rivets" and they're loose. I wander if this is normal when the cable is not providing tension to that part.
Thanks
May 24, 2016
  Followup from the Pelican Staff: Can you share a photo. Having a hard time picturing it. - Nick at Pelican Parts  
Raptor 450 Comments: Hi all i am new to this site found you on line i have a clk 230 got some new parking brake shoes fittied them but can not get the disc back on the ajuster is fully in but seem to have a a gap ither side were the the cable is fitted to the release arm have tried every thing any advice
January 20, 2016
  Followup from the Pelican Staff: If the cable is loose and adjusters backed off, you either have the wrong rotors or shoes. Confirm the shoes are fully retracted toward the center as well. - Nick at Pelican Parts  
Peter AZ Comments: I have a 1992 300SE. The park brake release handle has broken off just behind the handle. I bought a new handle but I can't work out how to install it. Any suggestions will be appreciated.
January 14, 2016
  Followup from the Pelican Staff: The handle cover, grip? It should slide off, there may be a fastener at the bottom. If the lever is broken, you will have to replace the entire mechanism. - Nick at Pelican Parts  
Spoons Comments: For anyone struggling to get the hubs on after fitting new shoes. Check that the grooves in the shoes are wide enough to easily fit over the expanding frame and that the tangs fit comfortably into the adjusters. Some fettling may be required with non original parts. Great site by the way.
January 6, 2016
  Followup from the Pelican Staff: Thanks for the additional info and feedback. We appreciate it.
- Nick at Pelican Parts
 
Merctech36 Comments: How do I remove the auto adjuster under the seat in my 1996 C280, some one rounded the Allen reset screw on It, I have a replacement,how do I release it from the car, it has 3 cables which are tight, how do I release tension to understand hook the cables from the adjuster and how many min/max clicks should I get from my parking brake
November 7, 2015
  Followup from the Pelican Staff: You will have to drill out the stripped fastener. - Nick at Pelican Parts  
MPeru Comments: I own a Mercedes 300SE,the hand brake got loose when I pull as a perking brake,I assume the cable might have broken. Show the way ti fix it up.
October 7, 2015
  Followup from the Pelican Staff: We don't currently have that tech article. If we get a chance to perform the procedure, we will be sure to document it.

I would grab a repair manual. It will have the procedure, special tools and torque specs.

Give our parts specialists a call at 1-888-280-7799.- Nick at Pelican Parts
 
Joe Comments: Just want to provide some info for anyone having trouble getting the rotor back on after replacing the shoes. My star wheel was completely tightened and everything looked correct but I could not fit the rotor over the shoes. I did not intentionally change anything else, song was stumped for a reason. Even though I did not previously adjust the cables leading to the parking brake lever, one of them cables somehow did tighten to the point where the shoes were engaged even with the lever at the dashboard loose. I had to adjust the cable tightness which on the E320, at least, is under the rear seat next to the battery.
September 2, 2015
  Followup from the Pelican Staff: Thanks for the additional info. We appreciate it.
- Nick at Pelican Parts
 
Joe Comments: Can you please let me know the name/part number of the expanding frame shown in figure 5? Thanks.
August 31, 2015
  Followup from the Pelican Staff:
I’m not the best with part numbers.

Give our parts specialists a call at 1-888-280-7799. They can figure out what part or repair kit you need.
- Nick at Pelican Parts
 
Mike B Comments: I have a 2002 C320 Wagon that I bought used. Park brake cables were disconnected when I bought it. Great negotiation point by the way. So the other day while driving I had a loud vibration from the right rear. I pulled apart the rear brake assembly and the expanding frame/lock was laying loose in the drum. Is this part available or is a trip to the salvage yard in my future
June 7, 2015
  Followup from the Pelican Staff: Check that the backing plate is in good shape and the hold down holes are not damaged. We should be able to get that for you.

Give our parts specialists a call at 1-888-280-7799. They can figure out what part or repair kit you need.
- Nick at Pelican Parts
 
mohit Comments: I own c180 1999 Mercedes. One day I was driving to work and 10 minutes on the highway at 90kmh I heard squeaking noise. I thought I need new sets of brakes, not long after that I heard a grinding noise very bad. I pulled over to have a look what's going on could not find anything. Got it towed.came home pull the rotors of and saw the park brake holding spring snapped inside the mechanism attached to the cable chewed in few pieces. I took the whole thing out. Can I get a repair kit or I have to replace the whole unit.
May 17, 2015
  Followup from the Pelican Staff: There are brake shoes and springs you can replace. However, make sure the hold down holes in the backing plate are in good shape and not rusted out. Give our parts specialists a call at 1-888-280-7799. They can figure out what part or repair kit you need.
- Nick at Pelican Parts
 
Mai Comments: Hi Nick... yes the shoes are seated correctly, the cables do have the normal tension, I will release the spring tensioner in order to extend the cable since I can't find an adjuster other than at break assembly. My beast is a 94 S320.

Thanks.
April 14, 2015
  Followup from the Pelican Staff: Back the cables off. If the shoes are seated and adjusters are backed off, only other thing could be wrong parts. - Nick at Pelican Parts  
Mai Comments: I have the same problem as Daniel and Papasmurf, the adjuster are all the way off but the roter hub will just not go back in its place.
April 13, 2015
  Followup from the Pelican Staff: Check that the cables are are fully released. Then check if the shoes are seated correctly. - Nick at Pelican Parts  
JohnnyBravo Comments: Awesome pics, saved me alot of time. Makes owning a Mercedes not soo bad...
April 4, 2015
  Followup from the Pelican Staff: Thanks for the feedback. Glad we could help.
- Nick at Pelican Parts
 
papasmurf Comments: I have encountered the same problem as Daniel The hubs will not go back on the new disks. Any suggestions Thanks
February 24, 2015
  Followup from the Pelican Staff: Be sure the parking brake adjusters are all the way backed off. - Nick at Pelican Parts  
daniel Comments: i have changed my rear brake shoes on my mercedes sprinter van and my disc hub will not fit back on....
what would be the problem?
January 21, 2015
  Followup from the Pelican Staff: Could be. Are the parking brake shoes hitting the rotor hub? - Nick at Pelican Parts  
Niall Comments: Your diagrams and explanations are of great help whether for diagnostics or actually doing the work, thanks Niall
May 16, 2014
  Followup from the Pelican Staff: Thanks for the feedback. Glad we could help.
- Nick at Pelican Parts
 
coffeetheman3 Comments: does anyone know where I can buy a Banjo Bolt ?
February 18, 2014
  Followup from the Pelican Staff: Give our parts specialists a call at 1-888-280-7799. They can help you find the right part.
- Nick at Pelican Parts
 
coffeetheman3 Comments: Thanks Nick, for the info, will have the garage to check it.
Don
December 21, 2013
  Followup from the Pelican Staff: No problem. Let us know what you find. - Nick at Pelican Parts  
coffeetheman3 Comments: My 1987 300D has to much play when I put it in part. jack the car and moved the drive shaft back and faward and have a loud clunk in the back of transmission, any ideal to help
Don
December 20, 2013
  Followup from the Pelican Staff: Inspect the universal joints and connections at the driveshafts. if they are tight, there may be a mechanical fault inside the transmission. Possible gear or bearing play.- Nick at Pelican Parts  
Ivan Wood Comments: I bought Bosch rotors from you last October but could not get the parking brake to adjust without catching and had to leave the adjuster at minimum. On checking the brakes yesterday I found that it looks like the machined width of the drum where the shoes sits is not wide enough and consequently when you tighten up the wheel nuts it squeezes the shoe against the step in the machining causing the brakes to bind on the sides. I believe it is a problem with the machining tolerances at manufacture.
July 19, 2013
  Followup from the Pelican Staff: This sounds like incorrect parts.
Please contact 888-280-7799 with your VIN# to verify parts and for other options at this late date.
-whunter-
 
Tom Comments: I like your articles. Though obvious you might just put a one liner in that "the inside hb of the disc is the drum of the parking brake," as you do not show it in the pics.
May 23, 2013
  Followup from the Pelican Staff: Thank you for your comments. We have rewritten the article to include your suggestion and look forward to any other feeback you might have.
Thanks again
- Steve at Pelican Parts
 

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