Brake bleeding success story - Ford Powerstroke Diesel Forum

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post #1 of 8 Old 08-22-2013, 06:44 AM Thread Starter
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Brake bleeding success story

When I bought my 2003 6.0l CCSB, which my kids dubbed The Hulk, it had a failed rear brake caliper and a soft pedal. My goal for the truck is to tow a fifth wheel, so I put drilled and slotted rotors and heavy duty pads on all four wheels when I replaced the rear caliper.

However, I couldn't get the pedal softness solved, no matter how many time I bled the brakes. I didn't think it was th master cylinder, as I could get the pedal to hold at about half depth with pumping the brakes. I did think that maybe there was a bubble trapped in the master cylinder, so I read up on bleeding the master cylinder in the vehicle.

One suggestion I saw was to make sure the cylinder was level so the bubble would go up into the reservoir. It made more sense to me to make sure the cylinder is nose down to force any air back to the piston, and you can then sweep it up into the reservoir by pushing the pedal slightly forward.

I parked the truck at a severe nose down angle and move the pedal slightly several times. There didn't seem to be any improvement. I was about to give up, but I figured I might as well flush some more fluid through the brake lines while it was nose down and easy to crawl under. Well you would not believe how much air came out of the rear lines, and now I have a firm brake pedal.

I would be interested to know if this works for anyone else. My firm pedal has lasted for more than four hours. Should I call a doctor?

Last edited by Ghost87; 08-22-2013 at 06:46 AM. Reason: Update
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post #2 of 8 Old 08-22-2013, 09:57 AM
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When you replaced your rear caliper, is the bleeder valve on bottom or top of the caliper?
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post #3 of 8 Old 08-22-2013, 10:30 AM Thread Starter
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The caliper is on the proper side, with the nipple at the top. On the rear calipers, the nipple faces backward so nosing the truck down would force any air out the nipple, although I would have to think that any bubble remaining behind the nipple after bleeding on level ground would be quite small.

For those unfamiliar with Powerstroke rear calipers the left and right are identical except the nipple placement. If you install a caliper and find the nipple is at the bottom, then you have a caliper that should have been installed on the other side of the vehicle.

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Last edited by Ghost87; 08-22-2013 at 10:33 AM.
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post #4 of 8 Old 08-30-2013, 04:23 AM
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Originally Posted by Ghost87 View Post
The caliper is on the proper side, with the nipple at the top. On the rear calipers, the nipple faces backward so nosing the truck down would force any air out the nipple, although I would have to think that any bubble remaining behind the nipple after bleeding on level ground would be quite small.

For those unfamiliar with Powerstroke rear calipers the left and right are identical except the nipple placement. If you install a caliper and find the nipple is at the bottom, then you have a caliper that should have been installed on the other side of the vehicle.
Does it matter if the nipple is on the bottom, I recently replaced my rear caliper and the nipple is on the bottom. I didn't pay attention to the original when I took it off. I'm having some issues myself with spongy pedal and on the first push it goes almost to the floor but the second it will be about halfway. I thought it was because the person helping me bleed was pushing the pedal all the way to the floor and damaged either the master cylinder or the anti lock brake module. I have bled them till I'm crazy and still can't get my pressure back.


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post #5 of 8 Old 08-30-2013, 04:37 AM
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Brake Bleeder Saga Here is what I went through.
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post #6 of 8 Old 08-30-2013, 05:42 AM
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Originally Posted by oilfieldtrash15 View Post
Brake Bleeder Saga Here is what I went through.
Thanks, that is exactly what it is. I called napa and they never asked me this before but this time they asked if it was a forward or rear mount, evidently in their system they show that ford us some calipers mounted on the front side of the rotor and some on the back side. They didn't ask that the day I bought the caliper and they gave me a forward mount one which would explain why the bleed valve is on the bottom. I noticed is but figured it must be by design and they had accounted for that. I took my original caliper off and took with me so I didn't pay attention to how it was mounted with the bleed screw position. Thanks man I'm going to pull it off now and head back up there.


06' F250 CC SR SB FX4 AT

Studs,S&B CAI, MRBP 4" exhaust 3.5" down pipe, SCT LIVEWIRE TS, Tuned by Eric (xtreme street and race), Innovative Inductive and Performance FICM Tunes, blue spring upgrade, 2.5" Carli Leveling kit, 18x9 BMF Novakane Death Metal with 35x12.50 Toyo MT's 3:73 gears.
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post #7 of 8 Old 08-30-2013, 09:24 AM
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Originally Posted by oilfieldtrash15 View Post
Brake Bleeder Saga Here is what I went through.
Many thanks to you and this forum. I was beating my head against the wall trying to figure it out and was about to take it to a shop and pay them to figure it out. This is exactly why we need these forums, I checked and it was just as you described yours. Went back to napa and got the right one and that fixed her right up. Just can't tell you what a great feeling that is.


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Studs,S&B CAI, MRBP 4" exhaust 3.5" down pipe, SCT LIVEWIRE TS, Tuned by Eric (xtreme street and race), Innovative Inductive and Performance FICM Tunes, blue spring upgrade, 2.5" Carli Leveling kit, 18x9 BMF Novakane Death Metal with 35x12.50 Toyo MT's 3:73 gears.
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post #8 of 8 Old 09-10-2013, 04:02 AM
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No problem.
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