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Removing a Rear Rotor Stuck on the Parking Brake

Removing a Rear Rotor Stuck on the Parking BrakeRemoving a Rear Rotor Stuck on the Parking Brake

Condition: Drum-in-Hat Rotor is Stuck on the Parking Brake

If you are having trouble removing a drum-in-hat rotor, don’t just take a hammer to it. 

You may have to adjust the parking brake and back it off the rotor to remove the rear rotor.

This problem is common in vehicles where drivers don’t often use the parking brake. When the parking brake isn’t used, rust and corrosion build up inside the drum. 

This causes the drum-in-hat rotor to stick to the parking brake.

Therefore, to remove the rotor, you have to back the parking brake off the drum lining.

Learn More About Vehicle Parking Brakes

Repair Procedure:

To adjust the parking brake, you need to locate the access hole on the rotor. Some rotors have an access hole on the hat of the rotor. 

Others are located at the back of the rotor.

Take the rubber plug off the rotor. Then, use a brake spoon or a flathead screwdriver to turn the adjuster wheel.

Usually, a few clicks of the wheel will do the trick. If you don’t know which direction to turn the wheel, start rotating the adjuster while spinning the rotor. 

If you are turning the adjuster the wrong way, you will feel the drag.


Learn All About Brake Rotors
Are The Rotors in Your Vehicle Warped? Signs and causes of warped rotors

Once you back the parking brake off, you may still need to tap on the rotor with a hammer to get the rotor off.

But now you won’t risk damaging the parking brake assembly. When the rotor is off, you must inspect the parking brake assembly. 

Make sure to inspect the lining of the parking brake shoes along with the hardware.

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