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Old 08-28-2012, 11:08 PM   #1
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ErikS is on a distinguished road
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Location: NW Indiana
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1999 SL1
2002 SL
Default 1999 SL1 noise after rear drum brake overhaul

At 190K, original rear cylinder started leaking, so did a complete overhaul - both sides. New drums, new shoes, new cylinders, New banjo bolts, new cylinder mount bolts, new spring kit.

Thanks to all who post their experiences on this forum, the job itself went smoothly. Did one side at a time, richpin's video at was invaluable (I can't provide full URL as this is my first post, and I need 15 posts to show a full URL....).
SaturnFans post 158301 provided warning, as I am also in the rust belt, but I had no problems at all removing the banjo bolt or the cylinder mounting bolts, and offer these suggestions to others - forget about using sockets - there is no room. Use a 6 point box end wrench - which won't slip off the bolts or round the corners. Liberally dose with PB Blaster, and a few taps of the wrench with a hammer should loosen the bolts without problem. Hint - although the banjo bolt is technically an 11 mm bolt, a 7/16" 6 pt box end wrench (11mm = 6.93/16") will work fine. The 10mm cylinder mounting bolts will need a 6 pt 10mm box end wrench (no SAE equivalent), and the only place I was able to find one was at a Sears Hardware Store.

So no problems in doing the job, got everything together, bled the brakes, and set the adjusters to provide a slight amount of friction on the drums. Done, brakes work great!

About a week later, notice a ticking sound only when brakes are applied - seems to come from the rear end - and the sound is louder the harder the pressure on the brakes (with the rebuild, did nothing to front brakes except bleed them). Sounds like something is catching/ticking with each revolution of the wheel.

Have opened up the rear brakes some 4-5 times looking for something that may be catching when brakes are applied, but can find nothing. Inside surface of drums show even wear, no rough spots, and drums have only miniscule play on the hubs. All springs and adjusters are in the proper place, and the shoes show even wear - mostly at the top and bottom edges. Just to be certain that the edges of the brake shoe surfaces are not catching on some invisible imperfection, I even rounded the square edges of the brake shoe pads with a file. On the last take-apart, I even dialed in the adjusters, and then reset them to a slight amount of friction on the drums, but the 'ticking' sound persists when braking (and only when braking).

Has anyone else experienced something like this?

I'm wondering now if the two pieces that I did not use in the spring rebuild kit - the spring washers - may be missing from the rebuild job, and might be the cause of what I'm hearing? But as there were no such spring washers in my OEM brakes, I didn't use them (or know where to put them). Don't know if it makes a difference, but all parts were bought at Autozone (total cost about $130).

Any ideas/suggestions?
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Old 09-01-2012, 01:29 AM   #2
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ErikS is on a distinguished road
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1999 SL1
2002 SL
Default Re: 1999 SL1 noise after rear drum brake overhaul

To answer my own question for the benefit of others who might find this post - the spring washers go between the rear brake show and the emergency brake lever. Guess when I disassembled the C clips to remove the old shoes from the emergency brake lever, those washers fell out without me noticing them.... and I didn't carefully enough read the Chilton manual - which calls them wave washers.

Also noted that the Autozone Duralast brake shoes were wearing mostly at the ends of the shoes - so replaced them with Raybestos shoes - which seem to more solid and thicker.
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Old 12-21-2014, 05:09 PM   #3
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Idea Re: 1999 SL1 noise after rear drum brake overhaul

Please search for thread: TITLE "Rear brake shoe noise after installation" FORUM "S-Series Tech" (Posted by MojaveMike)

Also: The spring (wave) washers can go over the pivot pin between the "c"-clip and the parking brake actuator lever (as in: just under the "c"-clip) or will also work when put between the lever and the shoe as ErikS describes.

Edit: I also want to express my recommendation of this post by ErikS as it is excellent in usefulness, accuracy, and clarity. I would add that a 12-point box end wrench will usually be effective for the bleeder screw and banjo bolt and are always acceptable to use on cars not subjected to the rust belt. Great job, ErikS!

Last edited by MojaveMike; 12-21-2014 at 05:22 PM. Reason: Spelling
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