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1989 toyota pickup pull hard right when braking

Old 04-17-2019, 08:20 AM
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1989 toyota pickup pull hard right when braking

My truck started pulling hard to the right when I hit the brakes. It drives straight as an arrow when driving, but then as soon as I tap the brakes it wants to put me in a ditch. Does anyone have any idea on what could be going on? Thanks in advance.
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Old 04-17-2019, 08:48 AM
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Could be the front right brake caliper squeezing to hard on the rotor. I'd check that first.
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Old 04-17-2019, 09:41 AM
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Should I spin the wheel while it's off the ground and hit the brakes to see? Or is there a better way
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Old 04-17-2019, 09:49 AM
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Originally Posted by Grayghst_yota View Post
My truck started pulling hard to the right when I hit the brakes. It drives straight as an arrow when driving, but then as soon as I tap the brakes it wants to put me in a ditch. Does anyone have any idea on what could be going on? Thanks in advance.
Originally Posted by GreasyFingerz View Post
Could be the front right brake caliper squeezing to hard on the rotor. I'd check that first.
Sorry Greasy, but I have to disagree, I have seen this issue many times in the past to varying degrees (from a little pull to "oh my god") and it has NEVER been one caliper squeezing too hard.
It has always been the opposite caliper not squeezing hard enough or a lot of play in the suspension/steering on one side.
Grayghst, check your brakes all the way around to make sure you have plenty of friction material left on the pads and shoes then jack up the front end and make sure you don't have one brake dragging, do the same for the rear just to be sure.
then apply the brake (have a helper do it) while you try to spin the tires by hand. I'll bet that the right side brake applies with just a little brake pedal pressure and the left side may not apply at all. (note: this applies to the rear brakes as well but will not usually cause much of a pull)
This will prove that the left brake caliper is seized or the line to it is plugged off, hard line mashed flat or kinked, hose twisted or internally collapsed etc.

Last edited by akwheeler; 04-17-2019 at 09:50 AM.
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Old 04-17-2019, 10:21 AM
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I agree Akwheeler. Unfortunately I don't have that much experience with braking systems, just trying to help the community the best I can. Good luck with your truck Grayghst.
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Old 04-17-2019, 11:14 AM
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Alright so I spun the tires. The left side seems to have more movement when the brakes are applied than the right. My right side shock is blown also. So you're saying check brake lines.
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Old 04-17-2019, 11:28 AM
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Originally Posted by Grayghst_yota View Post
Alright so I spun the tires. The left side seems to have more movement when the brakes are applied than the right. My right side shock is blown also. So you're saying check brake lines.
Check your pad wear, the left side. it may indicate which pistons are seized in the caliper (most likely issue). if the pad wear is all even crack the bleeder screw open while your helper presses down on the brake, close the screw before the helper lets off on the brake.
if you get a good solid stream of fluid out of it when you first open it that is another indication that the one or more of the caliper pistons or one of the brake pads is not moving like it should.
for the cost of a new brake caliper and the pain involved in rebuilding one on my own I prefer to just buy new or reman calipers. I also prefer to replace brakes in pairs, less likely to get a pull that way.
So, after the test I described above, my best recommendation is to reface or replace both rotors, replace both calipers and front pads.
If you don't get any fluid coming out when you bleed that caliper (or very little) you need to find the blockage in the line, either in the tubing or the hose.
I should mention, if your bleed screw doesn't have the rubber cap on it anymore it may be packed full of dirt and restrict the bleeding and give you a false result on the test above.
You can clean out the bleeders by removing them completely and running a small drill bit down inside and through the port on the side at the bottom (don't drill all the way through anything, just enough to clean out the passage).
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Old 04-17-2019, 11:42 AM
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When I cracked the valve on the left side the pedal didnt go in at all and didnt shoot out. But the right side shot out and the pedal went in
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Old 04-17-2019, 02:53 PM
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Originally Posted by Grayghst_yota View Post
When I cracked the valve on the left side the pedal didnt go in at all and didnt shoot out. But the right side shot out and the pedal went in
Did you pull the bleeder screw all the way out to see if it is plugged?
If you did that means that no pressure is getting to the caliper, you can move up to where the hard line and hose meet at the top of the hose and crack the fitting there when the pedal is pressed to see if you are getting pressure that far.
If you do then break the connection at the bottom end of the hose, if you get pressure there the hose is good (unless it's cracked or bulging).
If you get pressure at the bottom end of the hose crack the fitting at the caliper, if you get pressure there your problem HAS to be the caliper.
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Old 04-17-2019, 09:52 PM
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Originally Posted by akwheeler View Post
...It has always been the opposite caliper not squeezing hard enough or a lot of play in the suspension/steering on one side...
I'm suspecting this on mine, too. But new tires alleviated it so I have not bothered with it, yet. Been too lazy to even bleed my front brakes - LOL!

Grayghst,
Please keep us posted and don't be intimidated; Aside from lug-nut wrench, I only needed a screwdriver and long-nose pliers to do my brake pads.
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Old 04-18-2019, 09:03 PM
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Where is your truck from? I know the deicer they put on the roads here is hell on calipers, I drove for fifteen years without ever having a caliper problem and have replaced five in the last seven years since they started using deicer heavily. Including one a Ford and one on a Dodge so it isn't a Toyota issue.
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