Ford Mustang (1993-2004) Service Manual: Component Tests

Inspection and Verification

WARNING: Use of any other than the approved DOT 3 brake fluid will cause permanent damage to brake components and will render the brakes inoperative.

WARNING: Brake fluid contains polyglycol ethers and polyglycols. Avoid contact with eyes. Wash hands thoroughly after handling. If brake fluid contacts eyes, flush eyes with running water for 15 minutes. Get medical attention if irritation persists. If taken internally, drink water and induce vomiting. Get medical attention immediately.

CAUTION: Do not spill brake fluid onto painted surfaces. If spilled, wipe up immediately.

NOTE: Always check the fluid level in the brake master cylinder reservoir (2K478) before performing the test procedures. If the fluid level is not at the correct level, add High Performance DOT 3 Brake Fluid C6AZ-19542-AB or equivalent DOT 3 fluid meeting Ford specification ESA-M6C25-A.

NOTE: Prior to performing any diagnosis, make sure the brake warning indicator is functional. The first indication that something may be wrong in the brake system is a change in the feeling through the brake pedal (2455). The brake warning indicator in the instrument cluster and the brake fluid level in the brake master cylinder reservoir are also indicators of system concerns.

If a wheel is locked and the vehicle must be moved, open a bleeder screw at the locked wheel (1007) to let out enough fluid to relieve the pressure. Close the bleeder screw. This bleeding operation may release the brakes but will not correct the cause of trouble. If this does not relieve the locked wheel condition, repair the locked components before proceeding.

Inspect all hoses and connections. All unused vacuum connectors should be capped. Make sure hoses and their connections are correctly secured and in good condition with no holes, soft or collapsed areas.

Non-Pressure Leaks

The only part of the brake system that could have a brake fluid loss that does not appear when the system is under pressure is the brake master cylinder reservoir area. Brake fluid loss can be caused by a missing or poorly-fitted brake master cylinder filler cap (2162), a punctured or otherwise damaged brake master cylinder reservoir, a missing or damaged brake master cylinder filler cap gasket, or by missing, damaged or poorly-fitted sealing grommets between the brake master cylinder (2140) and the brake master cylinder reservoir.

The brake master cylinder reservoir grommets are not separately serviceable and must be installed new as part of a new brake master cylinder reservoir.

Install a new flexible brake hose if it shows signs of softening, cracking or other damage.

When installing a new brake hose, position the hose to avoid contact with other vehicle components.

Road Test

Perform a road test to compare actual vehicle braking performance with the performance standards expected by the driver. The ability of the test driver to make valid comparisons and detect performance deficiencies will depend on experience.

The driver should have a thorough knowledge of brake system operation and accepted general performance guidelines in order to make good comparisons and detect performance problems.

Select a road that is reasonably smooth and level. Gravel or bumpy roads are not suitable because the surface does not allow the tires to grip the road equally. Avoid crowned roads.

A key factor in evaluating brake concerns is the deceleration rate. This varies from vehicle to vehicle and with changes in operating conditions. It is evident how well the brakes are working after just a few applications.

Avoid locking the brakes. Locked brakes are not an indication of braking efficiency.

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