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Brakes Still 'Shuddering' After Replacing ....

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New User

Aug 12, 2016, 8:25 PM

Post #1 of 8 (487 views)
Brakes Still 'Shuddering' After Replacing .... Sign In

2006 Toyota Highlander, AWD, 3.3L V6 with approximately 125k miles

Sorry for the long post, but I am covering all of my bases so that you have the full picture.

I took my vehicle to a reputable dealership in my area to have the Primary and A/C belts replaced.

I live approximately 10 mi. from the dealership, off a major highway.

On the way home I noticed that the left front wheel was 'shakey' when I would accelerate between 60 to 65 mph. When I would brake the front end and steering wheel would shake violently, and I could feel it dragging on the Driver's Side.

I took the vehicle back to the dealer and he discovered that the Driver's Side / Front wheel was seized up, and recommended I replace the caliper.

On the way home I picked up a new caliper, rotor, and brake pads, and replaced them.

The problem seemed to have remedied itself for a few days.

Now, when I get up to 60 to 65 mph I still feel a 'dragging' on the Driver's Side / Front wheel. BUT, it DOES NOT 'Shake'. However, when I slow down I can still feel it dragging.

Do I need to give the brakes and caliper time to mate before I jump the gun, or do I still have a problem?

Thanks, and sorry for the long description. I just wanted to make sure you had all of the info.

Tom Greenleaf
Ultimate Carjunky / Moderator
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Aug 12, 2016, 9:28 PM

Post #2 of 8 (482 views)
Re: Brakes Still 'Shuddering' After Replacing .... Sign In

OK - So "Dealer" diagnosed this and YOU did the work with your parts.

Problems with this right away: With brakes it's highly suggested to do BOTH SIDES OF HOW MUCH YOU DO.
Areas and reasons calipers can lock/drag: Flex hoses can do that. Caliper especially it dunked wet can do that one or both. Lack of lube on pins and where it slides.

When apart you see and compare BOTH sides for differences to help diagnose or I would.

Hubs, bearings and even a CV joint can cause vibrations, noises and up to one wearing. Low disc pad life left if so can extend a piston too far. List goes on.

Include that you tighten wheel nuts/lugs in order with proper torque or risk warping things - odd issues with anything about wheel, brakes and hub possible. Loose you risk up to a wheel wobble and damage to wheel, hub and studs for lug nuts.

When there you just inspect all of this every time if taking it apart or for doing brake work.

There's really no room for fooling around with brakes. If you did just one side that's kinda short changing the job and not recommended ever especially with a AWD vehicle anything to do with wheels and things that turn need to be of equal good condition,


New User

Aug 12, 2016, 10:19 PM

Post #3 of 8 (478 views)
Re: Brakes Still 'Shuddering' After Replacing .... Sign In

Thanks for the reply.

Sorry, but I didn't include the fact that I changed both the Driver and Passenger side pads when I bought the set. I only mentioned that I changed the Drivers side, after reading back, but I did, in fact, change the pads on the Passenger side as well.

Tom Greenleaf
Ultimate Carjunky / Moderator
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Aug 13, 2016, 2:10 AM

Post #4 of 8 (476 views)
Re: Brakes Still 'Shuddering' After Replacing .... Sign In

OK - All pads - they come as a set but just ONE caliper - right?

That one if the caliper only was frozen is free if the hose isn't locking fluid pressure so the other is still old/older. It can drag/or pull towards to cooler of them - maybe vs verse.

So if it pulls a little one way cold and they other way when used/warmed up some neither caliper was any good which is why always doing things in sets is suggested.

You call this "drag" which I'm taking as not releasing fully and may heat up and "pull" I called it. Wheel itself may feel warmer on one side.

What did the old pads look like compared with each other: It sure helps the diagnosis.

If one works harder it can and will warp even a new rotor might feel OK when first heading out then symptoms begin when they get used and warm up and can go away.

Flex hoses : They can lock pressure inside them. When a caliper is suspected you may find a stuck caliper and opening the bleeder would release that caliper and spin by hand. That's why with a complaint like this you would do the whole job, miles and time both if not done already.

People naturally don't like the cost of all new parts per axle but they have been exposed to the same conditions time and miles so if one thing goes wrong it's likely for the other side. If already just one side of something done you've lost track of how long each item has been in service which just wouldn't be done by most shops unless brand new one something wasn't right,


New User

Aug 13, 2016, 7:30 AM

Post #5 of 8 (469 views)
Re: Brakes Still 'Shuddering' After Replacing .... Sign In

Back in August 2015 I changed all of my pads, all the way around. So, the Passenger brakes looked 'Like New', but I changed them anyway. The Driver Side pads were slightly angled on the inside pad, and the outside pad had a slight crack in the top of the pad itself. These were ceramic, and I replaced them with ceramic. I don't know if that helps or not.


Tom Greenleaf
Ultimate Carjunky / Moderator
Tom Greenleaf profile image

Aug 13, 2016, 12:08 PM

Post #6 of 8 (464 views)
Re: Brakes Still 'Shuddering' After Replacing .... Sign In

Notes and correct me if I misread you on doing this part work at a time:

Crack in a pad - heat or was installed on a rotor that wasn't machined or replace - almost always.
Ceramics: Great for those folks who's brakes show dust (ugly) quickly on nice looking wheels as they don't do that, claim longer life but not in my experience.

Uneven wear noted: When uneven in a year if you just tossed pads in and did nothing else you asked for it. That's NOT a brake job yet some shops even advertise they'll do that - not my biz what a name brand chain place will do.

Question about lubing calipers, hardware and parts where caliper or pins move. ARE YOU DOING THIS AT ALL OR NOT?
Just that if neglected can cause all your problems noted and wasn't the caliper at all. You can't tell quite so easily at a glance. You can't tell if a brake hose is going to last another mile or forever - either can happen. Higher chances if you've let a caliper hang by the hose without support!

Totally understand folks want to save money and some just throw in pad jobs can be done in no time and get away with it, some you won't. Some really sticky to frozen calipers when pistons are pushed back will free up for a long or little time. In retracting them you feel (I do) the pressure required that it's smooth and even - if not they are at risk for going bad.
You've found uneven pad wear within a year so more has to be done. In essence what you did already is now a waste if not both sides at the same time on an axle meaning both fronts or both rears.

You can only fake it and get lucky so much and then pay the piper if you will.

What do YOU want to do? The professional suggestion would be throw all this junk out and do them right. Yup - it cost $$ even if you do it yourself and more if you have it done.

With this much of a complaint if (now ages ago when working) came to me it would be bite the bullet and do it all and get over the ping pong playing with brakes.
At some point it's totally unsafe to just fake it ( a name I use for just tossing pads jobs ) and not stopping properly is not a joke up to causing an accident which of course is unacceptable, dangerous to you and worse, OTHERS.

That's it. Do it right.

One more: You also have to know pads don't have a flaw on metal backing plate on many such that you really do need to file that off just so or that set will never work properly - new stuff and all.

Another one more: Rotors that pull off hubs you must know hub and contact area of both rotor and hub are clean and any rust or anything dirty about it is cleaned up or rotors don't set on hubs properly - usually notice something right away that it's all wrong - horrible wobble and feel right away if so,


New User

Aug 13, 2016, 11:05 PM

Post #7 of 8 (448 views)
Re: Brakes Still 'Shuddering' After Replacing .... Sign In

When you stated "Throw all this junk out and do them right" what did you mean? I'm not going to throw away parts I purchased and installed a week ago. What other parts would I need, other than the obvious caliper and rotor for the passenger side?

Tom Greenleaf
Ultimate Carjunky / Moderator
Tom Greenleaf profile image

Aug 14, 2016, 1:31 AM

Post #8 of 8 (445 views)
Re: Brakes Still 'Shuddering' After Replacing .... Sign In

Sorry to use the word "junk" - I really mean if you want this right and parts now already broken in to a flaw it's NG now. I just can't recommend turning rotors anymore, re-use of pads on a different rotor has risks of harm to pads then back and forth again.

We haven't even discussed bleeding brakes or if you just pushed pistons back with old fluid thru some pretty pricey ABS parts back up to master or bled it out thru bleeder as you should.

You can play once - a first round perhaps from when all was new and will be at some point all new stuff again in the normal life of a vehicle. Now or later.

There's extra concerns with "AWD" and traction controls. The vehicle's that use that really want wheels and everything to do with them all equal. Tires even. Stinks but get a sidewall wrecked when they are all good but 1/2 worn you are possibly going to need all of them new or it's confusing the vehicle. A dragging brake if enough is adding to confusing the controls as well.

I'm sorry someone ever told you to replace a caliper (suggests just one) saying it was frozen which started the problem. He/she may have been correct at a glance seeing pads worn more or feeling a drag on that wheel so blamed that. You really don't know for sure quite that easy - rather that, that wheel has the problem only.

Understand flex hoses please: There's a LOT of pressure required for brakes and wheels move/turn so it goes thru those rubber hoses. They can and do fail inside and act like a "Reed" valve" meaning pressure goes in and can't come back out and drags. Can stick hard or quit that and not do it for a while or leave you stuck right away? Fronts are always dealing with turning AND up and down motion of bumps so more likely to go. If you let a caliper hang by those hoses or worse drop caliper while attached you've really put that hose at risk to fail one way or another. Again you do both not just one.

I suppose if one was clearly cut and vehicle newer one would be fine.

Refresh: At some point in the life of a vehicle you have to have all parts new again and matching with brakes. I think that time has come,


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