Astra Brakes

Discussion in 'Astra' started by Trotsky, Oct 11, 2003.

  1. Trotsky

    Trotsky Guest

    The pedal travel has got progressively longer recently. I have bled brakes
    using an easy bleed kit. The feel was much improved until I started the
    engine. With the engine running the pedal can be pressed to the floor. when
    the engine is not running all appears OK.

    Any Thoughts much appreciated.
     
    Trotsky, Oct 11, 2003
    #1
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  2. Trotsky

    Matthew M Guest

    I have that in my Astra and Vauxhall replaced all the discs pads etc. Still
    the brake pedal goes to the floor. You probably know this but the brake
    servo is only active when the engine or ignition is on which is why its easy
    to push the pedal to the floor.

    The brakes actuallly scare the hell out of me on the astra as it feels like
    its not always going to stop the car when breaking from 60 :)

    Matt
     
    Matthew M, Oct 12, 2003
    #2
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  3. Trotsky

    andrew Guest

    Which Astra model is this? I have the current one, an SRi, which has
    massive discs (~12"), and the brakes are very strong. In fact, having
    moved up from a previous model Corsa to this thing I had to relearn how
    to use the brake pedal or, only for the seat belt, I would have been
    head banging the windscreen when I stood hard on the brakes! I can do
    100-0 in about 100 yards :) It does take a bit of a push on the pedal
    but I like that as it feels more progressive (unlike most French cars
    which just bite viciously when you touch the pedal).

    OTOH, my brother owns a previous model Astra (1.7TD estate) and the
    brakes on that thing, even with new discs/pads, scares the hell out of
    me after driving mine! I'm guessing yours is the previous model?

    Andrew
     
    andrew, Oct 12, 2003
    #3
  4. Trotsky

    Matthew M Guest

    Its a mk4 Astra Club '99 which doesnt have ABS.

    Matt
     
    Matthew M, Oct 12, 2003
    #4
  5. Trotsky

    andrew Guest

    Just had a look at the brochure which lists the specification of the
    braking systems in these two models (SRi and Club). There is a big
    difference in the spec!!

    The MK4 SRi has 280mm vented discs on the front and 264mm solid discs on
    the rear, all with ABS and EBD (EBD is a wonderful invention - the car
    brakes in a perfectly straight line no matter what the conditions, or
    how hard you brake).

    The MK4 Club has 256mm vented discs on the front and 230mm drum brakes
    on the rear. I'm guessing this is similar to the MK3 Astra which scares
    the hell out me when braking.

    Due to the extra diameter of the front discs on the SRi, those 280mm
    discs alone will produce about 20% (actually 19.6%) more braking power
    than the 256mm ones. The difference between discs and drums on the back
    will be enormous. I simply cannot understand why any car manufacturer
    in this day and age still puts drum brakes anywhere on a car!! So, the
    overall difference in braking ability will be quite large.

    Then take into account the slightly wider tyres on the SRi (205 v
    185/195 depending on exact Club model) probably using grippier rubber
    which will give more grip and which will allow greater use of those
    better brakes.

    I guess this is a good example of why rally car owners spend thousands
    on getting bigger brakes and wider/grippier tyres on their cars!! My
    brother used to road rally an Escort and the stopping power of that
    thing was incredible. Way, way ahead of my SRi. The non-road legal
    (for normal day to day use) competition tyres probably contributed to
    that quite a bit though. They were seriously sticky :) That's another
    thing.... why are those tyres not legal for day to day use when they are
    clearly superior to anything that is legal!!!

    Andrew
     
    andrew, Oct 12, 2003
    #5
  6. Trotsky

    Alan Guest

    You have something wrong somewhere then.

    Take it a Vauxhall dealer and ask them for a free brake check. Let them
    recommend a course of action and a price. You can then shop around and use
    someone else if they are not competitive.

    Bear in mind that badly adjusted brakes, cheap discs and pads and old brake
    fluid will all add up to poor braking.

    --

    Alan


    New & used Vauxhall cars & vans, servicing, repairs & parts
    www.steeles.co.uk

    Vauxhall CD players & handbooks
    http://www.stores.ebay.co.uk/vauxhallradiosales
     
    Alan, Oct 13, 2003
    #6
  7. Trotsky

    Matthew M Guest

    Hi,

    They did mine about 2 weeks ago didnt make no differance to the braking
    apart from the fact the vibration had gone when I braked. The car is under
    network q for a year.

    Another strange one is my tyres on the back had bits of tread worn on the
    inside edge which Vauxhall refered to as a sawtooth edge. They were the
    original tyres Continental Eco environmental I think. I had all the
    alignment etc checked before I noticed the tyres. Anyways I had to buy some
    more and they stuck Avon ones on there saying the Continental tyres are of a
    soft compound and all the Vauxhalls they have come in do it. I tried to get
    the new tyres paid for under vauxhall warranty saying the brakes were
    binding at the back but I couldnt prove it.

    Matt
     
    Matthew M, Oct 13, 2003
    #7
  8. Trotsky

    R. Murphy Guest

    I'd suggest you take it back then, in that case.

    For the record, I have a 2002 Astra Club Estate - discs front, drum rear, no
    ABS and the brakes really are effective and progressive, as long as I have
    the seat in the right place and NOT stamp on the pedal.

    They are better I think than the cavalier I previously had, which had ABS
    and slightly less progressive braking. Effectivenes on that car would
    deteriorate unless I had the fluid changed every 2 years or so.
     
    R. Murphy, Oct 14, 2003
    #8
  9. Trotsky

    Bill Guest

    Sounds like there maybe a leak - also try adjusting the rear brake. I once
    had a ford and the front wheel bearing was very worn, I had replaced the
    master cylinder (a mistake I made at the time)

    Bill
     
    Bill, Nov 1, 2003
    #9
  10. Trotsky

    Chris Nowak Guest

    Definitely a leak - don't drive car until fixed. Suspect rear slave
    cylinders first if your car is fitted with them. I had to replace both my
    rear disk calipers do to a blown seal at 95k. Seal burst when retracting
    caliper into bore when changing pads - should have released bleed nipple but
    just pushed fluid back into reservoir - bad mistake!
    If you have copious white smoke in exhaust suspect brake master cylinder.
    --
    Regards Chris

    Details offered in this e-mail are those applying to my particular problem
    and may not apply to your circumstances. You should check with your main
    dealer.
     
    Chris Nowak, Nov 3, 2003
    #10
  11. Trotsky

    Tony Morland Guest

    first cure the leak if there is one then have the engine running while you
    bleed the brakes -- best done with two people rather than a bleed
    kit -------- start furthest from master & work to nearest--- although i `m
    not sure if that bit still applies now with dual circuits
     
    Tony Morland, Nov 3, 2003
    #11
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