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Old 06-26-2013, 06:55 PM   #1
Scooby Specialist
Member#: 283134
Join Date: May 2011
Location: AZ
2015 STi LE
EFR7163 500whp/550wtq

Default DIY: Parking brake assembly rebuild

So I have a 2007 FXT that had a bad wheel bearing. This MY doesn't have a removable hub, its all attached to the knuckle, and so if you want to replace the bearing (subaru dealer quoted me $550 total to replace it), you need to remove the entire knuckle, brakes, everything to then press in a new bearing.

Seeing how I had a spare knuckle from an 05 WRX (same part), I decided to just swap it in. This required removing the entire parking brake assembly, since the spare knuckle I had did not have one anyway. You would have to remove all the parking brake parts anyway to hook the cable up again. At first I thought it was a very daunting task, but it turned out to be a fairly easy job.

The spare knuckle was also already attached to the trailing arm. Thank goodness because the bolt attaching the trailing arm to the knuckle was NOT coming off.

Here are the steps and tools used for this project. Took me roughly 3 hours start to finish.

-socket wrench
-breaker bar & 32mm socket (to remove axle nut)
-12mm, 15mm, 18mm, 19mm sockets
-needle nose pliers and/or small vice grips (locking)
-brake grease
-large crescent wrench
-large allen wrench (not sure on size, I think 3/8"?)

1. First remove the wheel and expose the wheel assembly. Loosen the axle nut. I used a breaker bar because this thing is on TIGHT. I then went ahead and removed the brake caliper (kept it on the bracket) with the allen wrench. There are two bolts, fairly easy to remove. Make sure the caliper is tied to something so there is no strain on the brake line. I just rested it on the rear lateral link and it was fine.

2. Remove the long bolt attaching the lateral links to the knuckle. I have read that this is incredible difficult to remove! Use some pb blaster and let it sit. Thankfully mine was easy to remove (19mm socket + crescent wrench on other side). Because I had just replaced the lateral links, this was easy to get off again. Was easy the first time, but that might have been from the previous owner having done all the hard work. If you need to cut the bolt and replace it, these bolts are about $19 from the dealership.

3. Detach the strut from the knuckle. There are two bolts. The top is a camber (or caster?) bolt with a washer, and I believe is a 15mm socket. The bottom is a 19mm. I left the bottom one in to keep it suspended from the strut for the time being.

4. Remove the trailing arm from the car frame. Because the trailing arm bolt attached to the knuckle was so hard to remove, and the spare knuckle I had already had the trailing arm attached, I just left them intact. The trailing arm is connected to the frame by (3) 19mm bolts.

5. Remove the ABS brake sensor. This is connected to the back of the knuckle with (1) 12mm bolt. There are also 2 other points along the trailing arm that attach both the parking brake line, and ABS sensor line. Undo both of those if you are removing the trailing arm like I did.

6. The knuckle should then be free to remove from the strut, and remove it from the axle. It slid right out.

The above is the majority of the work IMO, as the disassembly/assembly of the parking brake was fairly straight forward and simple.

Parking Brake Assembly

First I took some pics (not many) to make sure I could reference it again in case I needed to. I also had a printout of the diagram, but I have a pretty good photographic memory and I had it all apart, swapped, and reassembled within 20-30 minutes or so.

Photo 1-2 -- Remove the spring retainer (14), spring (15), and hold-down pin (16) from both sides. I pressed the retainer down with two fingers, and used some needle nose pliers to turn the pin so the retainer would slide off.

Photo 3-4 -- Once those were off it becomes a bit more loose, and I was able to remove the adjusting spring (12) and adjuster (13) from the bottom of the two shoes.

Photo 5 -- The strut (7) and strut spring (8) basically fell out at this point.

Photo 6-7 -- The two top springs (10, 11) were them removed, and the shoe guide plate (9) was also removed. This is as far as I needed to go on removing parts.

I left the lever (4) and clip attached to the secondary shoe. I then unhooked the parking brake cable and started rebuilding on the spare knuckle I had. If you're reusing the knuckle (if you're pressing in a bearing) then it would be the same.

The rest of the assembly was in reverse order. I fed the parking brake cable through the knuckle and reattached it to the lever. I then put the secondary brake in place, and reattached the spring to the top. I slid the strut and spring back in to place, and then attached the primary shoe and spring back to its original position. I then reattached the adjuster and bottom spring back in to position. The last thing was reattach the hold-down pins and springs and retainers. This was the hardest part because you don't have a lot of leeway. I used a vice-grip (locking) to lock it on to the retainer, so then I could push it down on the spring, held the pin in place, and then twister the retainer into its locked position.

I reassembled the rest of the wheel assembly and I was done. No more wheel bearing hum and squirly rear end. I'll probably take it and get the rear end aligned just to make sure its all perfect.

I might have missed something, but I thought it was a fairly simple process overall. I didn't think it would be, but I jumped right in and it wasn't too bad.

A good hammer would also be helpful to hammer in the long lateral link bolt again
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