Hard Braking to the Left - JeepForum.com
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post #1 of 16 Old 10-19-2015, 10:45 AM Thread Starter
valdezul
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Hard Braking to the Left

Good morning everyone!

Jeep forum has been a great read over the years and has helped me out tremendously! Finally found a problem that has me stumped and has led me to post my very first thread, yay!

I recently decided to dive in and do some work on my jeep and finally be able to put my new to me 2015 Rubicon Wheels and Tires on my 1998 tj. With 180,000+ miles on the jeep, I wanted to overhaul the front suspension. New parts were

Moog replacement tie-rod ends
Draglink
OE replacement front track bar
Spicer upper and lower ball joints
Timken front hubs
Autozone Duralast replacement front rotors and pads

At the same time, I installed some 2006 Wrangler Unlimited front and rear springs and a 1in poly spacer, to replace my worn out SE springs. I used Spidertrax Adapters and mounted my Road Force Tire Balanced wheels and tires, got it aligned at a reputable local shop, and thought I was done! Unfortunately, when ever I brake, it forcibly pulls to the left. It feels like the drivers front is the only one braking. I went through and double checked everything I touched. Made sure everything was torqued per factory manual specs. I went and re-bled the brakes. It still pulled to the left.

Next, I thought maybe I had a stuck caliper or collapsed break hose. With all the new parts I figured it would be a good investment to order two new OE calipers and brake hoses to replace my old ones. Put brand new brake fluid in the entire system. I have great fluid flow from the hard lines, so I don't think they are clogged. Even rotated the tires to see if that was the issue. Did that this weekend and it still pulls hard to the left.

What do you think it is or what should I check next?

Because I touched so many parts at once, I don't know where the problem is coming from. I upgraded my rear axle to a Dana 44 out of a 2004 Rubicon about a year ago. With my stock suspension, old 30in pathfinders, and newish rear axle I never had this problem. Before I tackled my axle swap, I researched on Jeep Forum. From what I understand, most did not need to touch the proportioning valve because it moderates front to rear not left to right. Could this be the culprit? I didn't do anything to my proportioning valve when I did the axle swap and up until two weeks ago I had zero issues.

Any help or suggestions are greatly appreciated, thank you!

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post #2 of 16 Old 10-19-2015, 11:47 AM
Raist11
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Does it pull to the left at any time other than when braking? If not, it's brakes. Something is causing the one side to grab more/or less than the other. There has to be something wrong with a brake line.. a caliper.. but if it's only when you brake then that's what it is.

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post #3 of 16 Old 10-19-2015, 11:51 AM
Raist11
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Going out on a limb here.. perhaps your knuckles where the calipers/pads rest are notched real bad..

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post #4 of 16 Old 10-19-2015, 12:11 PM
irnmadn88
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EDIT:

Re-read post.

Nevermind.

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post #5 of 16 Old 10-19-2015, 12:46 PM
rondak46
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Are you sure they are on the correct sides, right to left? If the bleeder valves are not on the top they cannot be bled properly.


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post #6 of 16 Old 10-19-2015, 01:02 PM
mrblaine
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Barring any issues with flow out of the lines, there are a few things to check.

Bleeding isn't one of them, due to the nature of hydraulic circuits and how they work, it is not possible to get differential pressure from side to side. That means both calipers are delivering exactly the same clamping force if there is nothing wrong with lines, calipers, etc.

Things that will cause a hard pull to one side with regularity are a bad unit bearing, or a worn lower control arm bushing, or loose bolt. If the lower bolt is allowed to move back and forth in the slot, that will be enough misalignment to let that side move back under braking and cause a pull.

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post #7 of 16 Old 10-19-2015, 03:48 PM Thread Starter
valdezul
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Thank you guys for taking the time to read and post about my problem!

Raist11:
Yes, it only pulls to the left under braking. I remember checking the knuckles when when I replaced the brakes and didn't notice any substantial groove where the pads could hang up, but I will check tonight!

rondak46:
Thanks, haha I made sure I put them on the correct sides. That was one post I found, accidentally switching the calipers around and being unable to properly bled the brakes. I must have triple checked when I replaced them!

mrblaine:
That is a great place to look! I didn't even think about the lower control arm bolt and/or bushings being the issue. They are the original bushings and are probably in need of replacing. I sure hope it's not my new hubs. I know any product can be bad straight out of the box, or I could have installed them incorrectly, so I will check for play there too. Thank you!
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post #8 of 16 Old 10-19-2015, 05:46 PM
Raist11
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If it was a bad bearing or control arm causing a pull, would that not be noticeable at all times, not just when braking? Perhaps I'm misreading but I think Mrblaine is implying that if it pulls regularly, not just when braking.

Quote:
Originally Posted by mrblaine View Post

Things that will cause a hard pull to one side with regularity are a bad unit bearing, or a worn lower control arm bushing, or loose bolt. If the lower bolt is allowed to move back and forth in the slot, that will be enough misalignment to let that side move back under braking and cause a pull.
Quote:
Originally Posted by valdezul View Post
Thank you guys for taking the time to read and post about my problem!

Raist11:
Yes, it only pulls to the left under braking. I remember checking the knuckles when when I replaced the brakes and didn't notice any substantial groove where the pads could hang up, but I will check tonight!

rondak46:
Thanks, haha I made sure I put them on the correct sides. That was one post I found, accidentally switching the calipers around and being unable to properly bled the brakes. I must have triple checked when I replaced them!

mrblaine:
That is a great place to look! I didn't even think about the lower control arm bolt and/or bushings being the issue. They are the original bushings and are probably in need of replacing. I sure hope it's not my new hubs. I know any product can be bad straight out of the box, or I could have installed them incorrectly, so I will check for play there too. Thank you!

Current: '00 TJ Sport
Past: '98 TJ Sport - lots of aftermarket
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post #9 of 16 Old 10-19-2015, 07:01 PM
mrblaine
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Raist11 View Post
If it was a bad bearing or control arm causing a pull, would that not be noticeable at all times, not just when braking? Perhaps I'm misreading but I think Mrblaine is implying that if it pulls regularly, not just when braking.
Nope, we had a customer have a shop install a Big Brake kit and afterwards he swore something was wrong with it because every time he stepped on the brakes it pulled to the right. The harder he used the brakes, the harder it pulled. I ran him through all the typical diagnosis and the only thing he wanted to hear was that something was wrong with the kit.

I finally had him bring it to me and we checked everything. About 90% of the way through, he tells me that one rotor did wobble a bit when he was putting the tire back on. I asked him why he didn't mention it and he said he looked it up on Google and it told him that it is okay for the rotor to wobble until the rim clamps it in place. I told him that was indeed correct unless you happen to have wheel spacers, which he did have.

Replaced the unit bearings, problem went completely away.

I've seen bad clevite bushings do similar. Especially if you get a bad upper and lower on the same side.

Since the OP has new U/B's, I'd look at control arms and toe in as well.

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post #10 of 16 Old 10-19-2015, 07:27 PM Thread Starter
valdezul
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Raist11:
That is a good question! I'm not sure, but mrblaine did include "under braking and cause a pull". Thanks for the advice to check the knuckles for wear, unfortunately, just gave them an inspection and there is no wear groove for the pads to get stuck on. Bushings probably need to be replaced anyway, so I'll give that a shot!
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post #11 of 16 Old 10-19-2015, 07:39 PM
RandyGPr
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Maybe a dumb question but do you think you got some grease or lube on one of the rotors? Happened to me once and it did the same thing for awhile.
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post #12 of 16 Old 10-19-2015, 07:55 PM
mrblaine
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Quote:
Originally Posted by randysmith View Post
Maybe a dumb question but do you think you got some grease or lube on one of the rotors? Happened to me once and it did the same thing for awhile.
Before we learned better, a BBK installed with Currie Steering and the grease boot nipples pointed the wrong way would under hard braking squirt grease on the rotor. Hard pull to the left for the next stop and then it would clear up and be fine. It took me a bit to figure that one out but that is a good call and easy to check.

Look for grease on the back of the dust shield. The side with the grease won't be the side the pull is on. Typically it does pull to the left due to the draglink having more travel and pumping grease out that side.

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post #13 of 16 Old 10-19-2015, 08:23 PM Thread Starter
valdezul
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randysmith:
Another great area to look at!

mrblaine:
If I where to find contamination, would brake cleaner be enough to remove the grease/grime from the rotor and brake pads or would the pads be toast?
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post #14 of 16 Old 10-19-2015, 08:30 PM
RandyGPr
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mrblaine: That's a good tip. In my case I decided to grease up things while I was in changing the axle shafts and got a little on my hand then on the rotor when i re-installed it. I got sidetracked somehow and forgot to clean it off. Seems like it lasted about 10 or 15 stops then cleared up.

OP: I think brake cleaner on the rotors would be good, but I didn't clean mine. I just drove it and they cleaned up. They work fine now. Still original pads (from 2003!).
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post #15 of 16 Old 10-19-2015, 09:06 PM
mrblaine
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Quote:
Originally Posted by valdezul View Post
randysmith:
Another great area to look at!

mrblaine:
If I where to find contamination, would brake cleaner be enough to remove the grease/grime from the rotor and brake pads or would the pads be toast?
Brake cleaner will work fine. The pads shouldn't be toast but I've not dealt with all of them, so you'll just have to give it a shot and see.

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