Brakes with the shakes

Herald Sun - Motoring - - Ask Smithy -

I read the email from Trevor Br­ere­ton about the in­ter­mit­tent shud­der in his 2005 BA XR6 and thought it worth shar­ing my story, as I had the same is­sue. It be­came so bad you would have sworn a tyre had de­lam­i­nated. I took the car to my dealer and they had no sug­ges­tions. As an ex-me­chanic I re­placed the brake ro­tors and pads, balanced tyres, etc. I spot­ted a com­ment where a guy had found his brakes were get­ting hot on a long run when he wasn’t us­ing the brakes at all. Ford had told him to re­place the brake booster, but the clever chap tried back­ing off the rod be­tween the booster and master cylin­der a few turns and it fixed the prob­lem. I did the same and it’s dead easy to do, just undo the two nuts hold­ing the brake master cylin­der on, undo the lock nut on the push rod and wind it in a cou­ple of turns, do the lock nut up and re­fit the master cylin­der. You don’t need to re­move the brake pipes.

Chris Lang­ford, email

A num­ber of peo­ple con­tacted us about this is­sue, all point­ing to the brakes as the root cause. From what we know the brakes don’t fully re­lease af­ter they’ve been ap­plied and this leads to them heat­ing up and the disc dis­tort­ing, caus­ing the vi­bra­tion. Some sug­gested re­plac­ing the brake booster, oth­ers, like you, sug­gested ad­just­ing the rod be­tween the booster and the master cylin­der.


From new, my 2011 3.0-litre auto Nis­san Pa­trol has ex­hib­ited very poor power in sec­ond gear when tow­ing my 2200kg car­a­van up hills. My pre­vi­ous Pa­trol, also a 3.0-litre auto, would pull the van up the same hills with com­par­a­tive ease. I had it dyno tested and it showed a max­i­mum of 80kW at 3700rpm and 270Nm at 2100rpm. My dealer has tested my ve­hi­cle in con­junc­tion with Nis­san and says all is fine, and Nis­san has now in­structed the dealer to not per­form any more work on the car. I have of­fered to take a dealer rep for a drive to show them the prob­lem ac­tu­ally ex­ists, but they say they are un­able to do that. To make mat­ters worse this ve­hi­cle con­sis­tently uses about 21 litres/100km whereas the pre­vi­ous one re­turned about 17 litres/100km on the same trip. What can I do?

Dave Dun­can, email

From what you say it would ap­pear the en­gine out­put is be­low what it should be, and the high fuel con­sump­tion would seem to re­flect that. The out­put should be 118kW at 3200rpm and 380Nm at 2000rpm. Your idea of hav­ing a Nis­san rep ride with you as you demon­strate the prob­lem is a good one.


Late last year my 2001 Holden As­tra was run­ning well, but badly in need of ser­vic­ing and the tim­ing belt needed re­place­ment (122,000km).

Shud­der solver: Is­sue with the Ford BA has a sim­ple so­lu­tion

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