Parking brake make up

How To Release A Stuck Parking Brake

Manufacturers of today’s consumer vehicles employ at least four different ways to release a parking brake:

  • traditional lever-actuator between the seats
  • pedal-actuator adjacent to the standard floor pedals
  • electric button-controlled actuator,
  • electric-driven parking brake associated with the ignition-based on/off system

An emergency parking brake system usually involves a mechanical linkage. This link manually drives caliper pistons (more about calipers here) against the brake pads and ultimately against the rotor face (in the case of a disc system) or the pads against the inside of a drum brake system.

Most of the time, ebrake lockups are a result of rust or lag associated with cable springs, bolts/nuts, or cables.

In order to free the emergency brake, the process usually requires:

  • Hand tools
  • Jack
  • Jack stand
  • Wheel chocks
  • Solvent and/or lubricants

The recovery steps are:

  1. Chock all tires unrelated to the recovery process  
  2. Jack the car up
  3. Install jack stands
  4. Remove the wheel/tire combo
  5. Identify the parking brake cable
  6. Investigate any binding of the cable
  7. Remove, replace, and/or clean components thoroughly
  8. Return necessary components to their proper locations
  9. Replace the wheel/combo
  10. Tighten all lugnuts
  11. Jack the car off the jack stands
  12. Lower the car to the ground
  13. Test the system for proper operation

Have more questions about fixing a stuck ebrake? Contact the team to learn about our concierge service.

How To Release A Stuck Parking Brake
Article Name
How To Release A Stuck Parking Brake
Believe it or not, dealing with a stuck emergency brake can represent more than one set of steps.
Publisher Name
Buy Brakes
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