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gerryt
20-01-2005, 01:24 PM
Hi folks, first time on here so bare with me. A few weeks ago i bought a 1995 VW Vento 1.9TD i'm very happy with the car it's in mint condition for the year, has FSH from VAG 85K on the clock, not a spot of rust anywhere and has been garaged by the former owner the past 7yrs ;)

One thing though has now cropped up, the brake pedal is quite soft and spongy and feels quite weak compaired to other cars iv'e owned of a similar age eg; Rover 416i Nreg. In the two weeks iv'e owned it iv'e had to top up the brake fluid twice, the 2nd time the level was below the min mark :(

I do basic stuff like change the oil and filters at the specified intervals but i wouldn't know where to start finding a brake problem. I know it could be air in the system or a cylinder leaking but i woulnt be confident enough to try bleeding them.

So what other things could cause the fluid to drop and a poor spongy brake, would it be expensive to put right at a VAG (worst case scenario) :1zhelp:

stuart
20-01-2005, 01:33 PM
Hi

Thanks for joining the site.

From what you describe, I would also say that there was a leak in the system.

My best advise would be to avoid doing the job if you are not 100% confident in the repair, after all it is the brakes;)

I work for Euro Car Parts in Leeds, and as a company we have a branch in Glasgow who could do you a cylinder at a reasonable rate, and may even advise a volkswagen specialist in the area who could do the job for you. A lot less than dealers.

Hope this helps

Stuart

gibby
20-01-2005, 01:46 PM
Hi, welcome to the site. I fully agree with Stuart, never compromise where brakes are concerned and you shouldn't have to top up the brake fluid on a regular basis and deffo not twice in the space of a few weeks. You could try to find where the leak is by getting someone to push the pedal and look in the engine bay and underneath to see if it is dripping anywhere. :boggled: It wouldn't be cheap to fix at VAG, if you are not bothered about VAG doing it then a small independant garage will do just as good (if not better !) a job.

gerryt
21-01-2005, 01:39 AM
Thanks for the reply guy's, this afternoon i was visiting my nephew in Glasgow and i poped into the VAG dealers on Crow Rd, the girl at the service desk kindly got one of the mechanics to have a look at it for free. He took it for a short drive, asked me a few questions about it, tryed to brakes and he said they seemed fine to him, he said remember that it won't be up to the standard of a new VW car and to take into account that it's 10yrs old.
He also put it up onto the ramps and had a good look underneath and under the bonnet and said he couldn't find any leaks anywhere. He said though to have a look where the top of the brake pedal goes through to the master cylinder or something and check for a leak there. The fact that it lay in the previous owners drive for some months before i bought it not being used could have something to do with it! i dont know. I will keep an eye on the fluid level over the next few days and see if it drops, if so then like you say Stuart i will have to put it into a VW specialist to have a good going over.

stuart
22-01-2005, 10:13 AM
Glad we could be of assistance, and I hope you will visit and use the site in the future.

I have heard of a couple of instances were the brake fluid leaks into the servo, so you have an "internal" leak which may no be visable on the outside.

If you continue to use fluid, there must be a problem somewere, so for your own safety, you need to get it checked out again.

Stuart

gerryt
28-01-2005, 11:37 PM
I had a look at the brake pedal the other day and it's fine no leaks, i then went round every wheel in turn and i found that the n/s rear cylinder was leaking. The shoes looked quite new but they were soaking with fluid and were contaminated.

My local garage quoted 100 to do the job; fit new cylinder & shoes and bleed that wheel, he said that if the rear wheels have a flexi hose at each one then he wouldn't have to bleed the whole system, just that wheel.

I couldn't afford 100 so i checked my Haynes manual and it didn't look that hard a job to do, so this morning i got the parts from a motor factors for 30 they also said that i would only have to bleed that one wheel, so i and gave it a crack.

Got the old shoes off, the wheels did have a bit of flexi hose so i clamped it with mole grips, gave the brake pipe a good wire brushing and a soak with WD40 and removed the old cylinder. Thoughly cleaned the back plate,hub and wheel bearing, assembled the new shoes, put them on and had to slacken the handbrake cable as to get the hub back on.

Brake pipe on nice and tight and the fluid topped up i then released the clamp at the flexi hose, got my brother n law to pump the pedal while i opened and closed the nipple, done this 3 or 4 times still topping up the fluid, seemed to have a better brake so it was wheels back on readjusted the handbrake and a quick drive to test them. They feel much better more of a solid feel and more power, so i think iv'e saved myself 60, the hardest part of the job was fitting the springs on the shoes, the handbrake one was the hardest you had to be Samson to slide the spring back and hook the cable into the little slot.

stuart
29-01-2005, 09:08 PM
Glad you sorted your small problem, always a concern when it's the brakes.

Providing you know what you are doing, have the right tools for the job, have the convidence to do the job, and a good manual you can save a fortune by doing the job yourself.

Glad you posted this on the site, and hope you will visit in the future.

Stuart