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Parking Brake Cable Adjusting and Replacing
 
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Pelican Technical Article:

Parking Brake Cable Adjusting and Replacing

Steve Vernon

Time:

1 hour1 hr

Tab:

$35

Talent:

**

Tools:

10mm wrench

Applicable Models:

VW Golf (2004-06)
VW GTI (2006-09)

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 GTI MkV 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. Actually the system is self adjusting and only needs to be set after replacing cables, calipers or rotors. These cables usually last a very long time but are subject to fail from road debris or 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 disks.
Figure 1

Cable Adjustment: Cable adjustment is only necessary when replacing the brake cable, calipers or disks. 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 thesePictures 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 too. 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 - Each 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 - Each 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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Comments and Suggestions:
Dan Dare Comments: In older cars, the end of the cable is likely to be jammed into the end of the aluminum conduit. One approach is to squirt a lubricant down the conduit possibly a couple of days before doing the work. If this doesn't free it, I find the best approach is to access the conduit from inside the car by lifting the back seat and pulling back the carpet and underlay which needs to be cut open. The conduit can be pulled upwards to remove it if you try to remove it from under the car you risk misshaping the conduit and it will not fit neatly into the bracket just behind the lever. The plastic end of the old cable can then be drilled out. It is better to feed the conduit back into place from under the car as this avoids disturbing the rubber grommet.
February 10, 2017
  Followup from the Pelican Staff: Excellent feedback! We appreciate your contribution. - Casey at Pelican Parts  

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Page last updated: Mon 8/21/2017 02:42:47 AM