The parking brake is a secondary braking system, and is designed to be a backup to the primary brakes in your vehicle. It is essential when it comes to safely parking your car, or in the case of total brake failure while driving your vehicle. In some vehicles, the parking brake is a pedal where others have a handle between the two front seats. The parking brake release cable disengages the parking brake, so it is important this part is in good working order.
Parking brake won’t move
After you put the parking brake in place, if it does not disengage, chances are the parking brake release cable has been broken. The opposite is true as well, the parking brake will not engage, which can be dangerous if you need it while you are driving. The vehicle needs to be seen by a mechanic from YourMechanic as soon as possible for a parking brake release cable replacement.
Drag in vehicles
While you are driving your car, if you notice it feels sluggish or is dragging, there may be a problem with the parking brake. This could be the parking brake drum, the parking brake release cable, or both depending on the severity of the issue. Only a professional mechanic should diagnose this problem because it is a safety issue.
Reasons the parking brake release cable fails
Over time, the parking brake release cable becomes corroded or is filled with rust. Furthermore, the cable can become frozen during cold temperatures and fails when it is disengaged. If it is cold enough to freeze outside, wait until your vehicle warms up until you disengaged the parking brake as this will save your parking brake release cable from completely breaking.
Do not drive if parking brake is engaged
If the parking brake release cable is broken, do not drive the vehicle. This can cause extensive damage to not only the emergency brake, but the entire braking system. If you have a parking brake that is engaged, and are unsure of what to do, contact the mechanics at YourMechanic for further advice.
As soon as you notice the parking brake will not move or your vehicle has a drag while you are driving, your parking brake release cable may need to be replaced. YourMechanic makes getting repairs to your parking brake release cable easy by coming to your home or office to diagnose or fix issues. You can book a service online 24/7. YourMechanic’s qualified technicians are also available for any questions that may arise.
This article originally appeared on YourMechanic.com as Symptoms of a Bad or Failing Parking Brake Release Cable and was authored by Spencer Clayton.