How to Replace Rear Drum Brakes for a Honda Accordby Chris Moore
The drum brakes on your Honda Accord use brake shoes and work primarily with the parking brake. Please note that changing the brake shoes is far more challenging than changing pads on disc brakes. There are numerous springs and other components you must remove and/or replace in the process. Consult your mechanic before working on the brakes yourself.
Removing the Old Shoes
Raise and support the Accord's rear end and remove both the rear wheels. Jack stands will support the car better. Loosen the lug nuts before you raise the car to make it easier to remove the wheels.
Thread two bolts--size 8 x 1.25 millimeters--into the brake drum's threaded holes to remove the drum from the hub. Thread each bolt two turns at a time.
Insert a small, thin piece of wood, like a paint stick or ruler, in between the wheel cylinder and the rear brake shoe. Clamp a set of locking pliers onto the backing plate at the center of the rear brake shoe.
Disconnect the upper brake spring with locking needle-nose pliers, clamping onto the brake spring where the brake adjuster meets the rear shoe. Remove the lower return spring. Release the retainer spring by grasping it with clamping needle-nose pliers (while supporting the back of the retainer pin with a finger), pressing inward and turning it 90 degrees.
Place a rubber band around the wheel cylinder to hold the pistons in place.
Remove the front brake shoe with the brake adjuster and related components. Pull the parking brake cable out of the rear shoe's bracket with a pair of pliers. Put the shoe within a vise so the jaws won't contact the brake lining and the pivot pin head and lever arm are supported.
Drive the U-clip off the pin with a hammer and chisel and remove the lever arm.
Installing the New Shoes
Clean the lever arm with brake cleaner. Lubricate the pivot point with high-temperature brake grease and transfer it to the new brake shoe. Clean and lubricate the brake adjuster threads and clevis point, the grooves in the wheel cylinder and lower brake shoe resting blocks, and all raised areas on the backing plate that will touch the metal on the brake shoe.
Place the shoe and arm into the vise, add a new washer and U-clip and bend the clip's open end with flat-nosed pliers so it is closed.
Install the brake cable into the rear shoe lever arm and install the shoe onto the backing plate using new retaining pins and springs. Insert the wooden stick back in between the shoe and the cylinder and clamp the locking pliers back onto the backing plate.
Connect the brake adjuster and the upper and lower springs onto the new front shoe. Hook the lower spring onto the rear shoe as you install the front shoe on the backing plate. Secure the front shoe with a new retaining pin and spring.
Remove the rubber band from the wheel cylinder.
Attach the upper brake spring to the rear shoe; clamp onto spring with the same locking pliers in the same location as when you disconnected it.
Remove the locking pliers and wooden stick that are connected to the rear shoe. Install the brake drum, holding it in place with two lug nuts.
Setting the Shoes
Rotate the brake drum. Insert a flat screwdriver into the brake adjuster and turn the star wheel until the drum lightly drags against the shoes.
Re-install the wheels and lower the Accord.
Set the brake adjusters by pumping the brake pedal several times. Once the pressure is acceptable, slowly test drive the car for five minutes, backing up and pulling forward to help seat the brake shoes.
Items you will need
- Jack stands
- Lug wrench
- Two 8 x 1.25 mm bolts
- Flat wooden stick
- Various pliers
- Rubber band
- Brake shoes
- Hammer and chisel
- Brake cleaner
- Brake grease
- Retaining pins and springs
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