StopTech brakes just installed; having problems

JayW1

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I purchased a StopTech four wheel brake kit from John B. back in early January but have not had a chance to install it until two days ago. I installed it Thursday and Friday night and was excited to take it out this morning (Saturday) to bed the pads and see how it performed. Everything went great until I got home and looked at my wheels which were covered with brake fluid (and of course dust from the severe bedding procedure). I removed the front calipers to determine the source of the leak and it looks like they are leaking from the center joint line where the two halves of the caliper are squeezed together. All the piston seals were intact, the cross over tube fittings, the bleeder screws, and the banjo fitting from the break line to the caliper. I don’t know enough about the calipers to even know if there are some internal seals or o-rings between the two halves or if they even have fluid running through them.

I can’t call Stoptech until Monday but I am really disappointed to say the least after all the money and time I have invested in this kit. Not only that, but I didn’t get the brake fluid off the rear wheels quick enough and it ruined some areas of my clear coat on the inside of the rim.

Just wondering if anyone else has experienced anything similar with StopTech calipers (ST-40’s) or other calipers in general. Is there something I am overlooking or misinterpreting? It is difficult to determine the exact location of the leak as there was fluid along both joint lines on the inside (rotor side) of the caliper. All of the calipers leaked but the left rear leaked the least. After cleaning the front wheels and taking it out again, I started feeling a small amount of fluid on the bottom of the front calipers again but wasn’t braking as hard as during the bedding procedure. If anyone can give any insight into this I would appreciate it. I am going to have a hard time waiting until Monday but when I get an answer I will post an update.

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Here are a couple pics of one of the wheels showing the fluid on the inside of the rim.
 

GTS Bruce

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I have almost no idea. However I would suspect a line/connection problem rather than a caliper problem. New aeroquip lines? Teflon tape on the connections? I feel your pain. Have been thiking about going stoptech myself since that is what the srt acr's and racers are using. GTS Bruce
 

Tom F&L GoR

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The fluid passes from one side to the other via the cross over tube, not internally. Since all four leak, I would suggest putting the car up on jacks, removing all wheels, and pressing ******* the brake pedal, then running around to look for leaks. Repeat until seen.

One place to start is whether each banjo fitting has a copper gasket on both sides of the banjo.
 

JayW1

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I have almost no idea. However I would suspect a line/connection problem rather than a caliper problem. New aeroquip lines? Teflon tape on the connections? I feel your pain. Have been thiking about going stoptech myself since that is what the srt acr's and racers are using. GTS Bruce

I used the stainless steel brake lines provided by Stoptech and installed them per the instructions (no teflon tape). The braking performance is much better despite the leaks and I can't wait to really push them to the limit when it gets sorted out.

The fluid passes from one side to the other via the cross over tube, not internally. Since all four leak, I would suggest putting the car up on jacks, removing all wheels, and pressing ******* the brake pedal, then running around to look for leaks. Repeat until seen.

One place to start is whether each banjo fitting has a copper gasket on both sides of the banjo.

Copper gaskets are in place on both sides on all calipers. I had my wife press ******* the brake pedal while checking for leaks but everything is leak free while on jack stands. The only time it seems to occur is under heavy braking when things heat up. Of note is that the leak had diminished significantly on all four wheels the second time out but to be honest I was afraid to really push it. I appreciate the help and will do a static test with me pushing on the brake pedal.
 

MTGTS

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The only place the stoptechs can leak from in the middle of the calipers is the seals. Fluid only crosses on the bottom crossover tube. Check and see if the bleeder stems are leaking and running down.
 

Tom F&L GoR

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I have seen brake rebuild shops use a lot of rubber grease or brake fluid as lubricants when they install the seals and the dust boots. When it's captured under the dust boot (especially the rubber grease) it has looked like a leak (i.e. the dust boot starts to bulge and customers think the brake seal is leaking.) If the "leak" is suddenly gone, this could explain it. However, then the leak should look like it started from the dust boots.

How is the brake fluid level in the reservoir?

>I had my wife press ******* the brake pedal while checking for leaks but everything is leak free while on jack stands.<

No offense to her or your diagnostic efforts, but was the engine running? If not, there was no power boost and the pedal pressure would have been correspondingly less.
 

F8L SNK

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I had similar results without even changing the calipers on my SRT. I did the SS brake lines, rotors and EBC pads. I thought it was brake fluid, but it turned out to be the bedding material on the EBC pads. Have you cleaned it all thouroughly and retried?

Something to check at least!
 

JayW1

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I feel for ya'.

Ted

Thanks

The only place the stoptechs can leak from in the middle of the calipers is the seals. Fluid only crosses on the bottom crossover tube. Check and see if the bleeder stems are leaking and running down.

This seems to be the source of my problem Matt. After cleaning everything up a second time and tightening all the fittings, I took it out again and after some braking felt around all the possible leak points. All were dry except three of the inboard bleeder screws. I assume what was happening is as you said, the fluid was running down the caliper then getting slung onto the back of the caliper and my wheels by the aero rotors. How was the car show? I would have been there with the central Florida club if my brakes would have been working.

I have seen brake rebuild shops use a lot of rubber grease or brake fluid as lubricants when they install the seals and the dust boots. When it's captured under the dust boot (especially the rubber grease) it has looked like a leak (i.e. the dust boot starts to bulge and customers think the brake seal is leaking.) If the "leak" is suddenly gone, this could explain it. However, then the leak should look like it started from the dust boots.

How is the brake fluid level in the reservoir?

>I had my wife press ******* the brake pedal while checking for leaks but everything is leak free while on jack stands.<

No offense to her or your diagnostic efforts, but was the engine running? If not, there was no power boost and the pedal pressure would have been correspondingly less.

I didn't have the motor running Tom and this did cross my mind. As above I think it is the bleeder screws that are leaking. I torqued them down as much as possible and am worried about stripping the threads but some still seem to be leaking.

My question now is how much torque can you put on the bleeder screws? Are there any type of thread sealers that might help and not cause problems?

I really appreciate everyones help and feel better that I just about have this under control. We are fortunate to have this forum at our disposal.
 

Chuck 98 RT/10

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You didn't answer Tom about the reservoir level.

Clean everything off real good, tighten everything down real good and take it for a drive again. Stoptech makes a pretty solid product.
 

Viper Specialty

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FYI- I dont think you have a problem.

If you look at the pattern of the oil/grease, you can see that it is falling in the same pattern as the vanes inside your rotors: IE: it came from INSIDE the rotor, not the caliper.

It is likely machining/anti-rust lubricant left inside the vanes from when the rotors were made. I have seen it before, on my own car actually. Drive the car for about 100 miles as is, then pull all the wheels off and clean them out with a sponge and a nice degreasing soap- dont forget to wipe down the calipers. once it is spun out of the vanes, the issue wont return (hence 100 miles first)

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JayW1

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I had similar results without even changing the calipers on my SRT. I did the SS brake lines, rotors and EBC pads. I thought it was brake fluid, but it turned out to be the bedding material on the EBC pads. Have you cleaned it all thouroughly and retried?

Something to check at least!

Thanks. I have cleaned everything and retried twice. It has impoved significantly after the first run so this may have been part of the problem but I am still getting a very small amount of fluid around the inboard bleeder screws.

You didn't answer Tom about the reservoir level.

Clean everything off real good, tighten everything down real good and take it for a drive again. Stoptech makes a pretty solid product.

The reservoir level is fine Chuck. I haven't noticed a significant drop in fluid level but only started monitoring it after the first test run.

I just don't know why some of the bleeder screws keep "seeping".
Can they be overtightened without stripping the threads?

I will see if StopTech can give me any further recommendations in the morning. This has at least been a good learning experience for me but I wish I could have made the VCA meeting yesterday.
 

JayW1

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FYI- I dont think you have a problem.

If you look at the pattern of the oil/grease, you can see that it is falling in the same pattern as the vanes inside your rotors: IE: it came from INSIDE the rotor, not the caliper.

It is likely machining/anti-rust lubricant left inside the vanes from when the rotors were made. I have seen it before, on my own car actually. Drive the car for about 100 miles as is, then pull all the wheels off and clean them out with a sponge and a nice degreasing soap- dont forget to wipe down the calipers. once it is spun out of the vanes, the issue wont return (hence 100 miles first)

1249d1208715173-stoptech-brakes-just-installed-having-problems-8-small.jpg

That certainly looks familiar Dan and I am beginning to think that most of the deposits may have come from that but as stated above I am still getting a very small amount of brake fluid seeping from the bleeder screws. I haven't ruled out the possibility of some residual fluid around the bleeder screws just running down though. I will keep everyone posted but again thanks. I am feeling much better than at this time yesterday.
 

Viper Specialty

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That certainly looks familiar Dan and I am beginning to think that most of the deposits may have come from that but as stated above I am still getting a very small amount of brake fluid seeping from the bleeder screws. I haven't ruled out the possibility of some residual fluid around the bleeder screws just running down though. I will keep everyone posted but again thanks. I am feeling much better than at this time yesterday.

I think the issues are unrelated. The small seepage from the screws is not causing what you see indide your rims, it is just coincidence. Pull out the bleeders, check and clean them, reinstall at 100 inch pounds.
 

JayW1

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I think the issues are unrelated. The small seepage from the screws is not causing what you see indide your rims, it is just coincidence. Pull out the bleeders, check and clean them, reinstall at 100 inch pounds.

Thanks for the torque number and advice Dan. Just took her out again and I am down to one leaking bleeder after some really heavy use on the back roads.

You can try a little teflon paste on the bleeders.

That might be my next step after following Dan's advice, thanks.
 

vipergts1960

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I have Stop Techs on my 05 SRT-4 that I track and they are awesome, so once you feel good about them not leaking you will really be glad to put them on. I have thought about putting them on my 02 GTS, but I don't know if I will track it anymore. Good Luck!!
 

Tom F&L GoR

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Speedbleeders come with a ***** goo on them to help make an airtight seal even when you loosen them slightly during the one-man bleeding process. You could get those and the paste would be a good seal.
 

JayW1

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I have Stop Techs on my 05 SRT-4 that I track and they are awesome, so once you feel good about them not leaking you will really be glad to put them on. I have thought about putting them on my 02 GTS, but I don't know if I will track it anymore. Good Luck!!

The difference is already quite noticeable. There are some twisty back roads around my house and this afternoon I drove it pretty hard. I found myself taking off way too much speed before entering the corners where as before I wasn't really sure if I would be able to make the turns at times. The old brakes started to fade as well and I haven't noticed any fade with these.

Speedbleeders come with a ***** goo on them to help make an airtight seal even when you loosen them slightly during the one-man bleeding process. You could get those and the paste would be a good seal.

Thanks Tom. I would like to check and see if they would just tell me what kind of "paste" they use.
 

Viper Specialty

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FYI: sealer on the threads of a bleeder will do nothing. The only reason it is used it to prevent seapage down the side of the caliper when bleeding the system. The actual sealing surface of a bleeder is the cone shaped seat on the back side of it. This is the surface you want to inspect and compare. If you have a damaged one, oddball or a machining mistake, that would explain it.
 

dave6666

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FYI: sealer on the threads of a bleeder will do nothing. The only reason it is used it to prevent seapage down the side of the caliper when bleeding the system. The actual sealing surface of a bleeder is the cone shaped seat on the back side of it. This is the surface you want to inspect and compare. If you have a damaged one, oddball or a machining mistake, that would explain it.

Well said. If you look at this pic from Speedbleeder's web site of the cutaway bleeder on the right, you can see the cone shaped bottom. That is the sealing surface, with a corresponding surface at the bottom of the hole where the bleeder screws in to.

The small hole to the side, just above the cone shaped seal, is where the fluid goes through. Like was noted in the quote above, the threads just provide a means for forcing the mechanical seal of the cone shape, but can also leak fluid if the primary cone seal is bad.

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JayW1

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FYI: sealer on the threads of a bleeder will do nothing. The only reason it is used it to prevent seapage down the side of the caliper when bleeding the system. The actual sealing surface of a bleeder is the cone shaped seat on the back side of it. This is the surface you want to inspect and compare. If you have a damaged one, oddball or a machining mistake, that would explain it.

The education continues. I really appreciate all your help with this.

Well said...
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That is a great picture. I was wondering how the bleeder ***** worked. It would seem that once closed, there would still be some brake fluid between the threads and cone seat. I just wonder if it is possible that when the calipers heat up, that residual fluid may be seeping out of the threads and once that is all out I wouldn't see any seepage any longer. It is odd that the seepage has stopped on most of the bleeders without me even touching them but after rebleeding or opening the bleeders a small amount of fluid works its way out. I will run it hard a few more times without messing with the bleeders and won't be surprised if my seepage stops. If not I will pull it and look at the cone. Thanks.
 

GTSnake

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For what it's worth I had a similar leak in a fuel line with the same type of flare connection. No matter how hard I tightened it it just never sealed. Finally I took it apart and placed the cone against a straight edge and discovered it had a concave curve in it. The Aeroquip guy told me to look for a witness mark on the cone. If it seals properly you should be able to see a ring around the cone where it rubs against the connector to seal. If there is no mark then it's not sealing.
 

JayW1

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For what it's worth I had a similar leak in a fuel line with the same type of flare connection. No matter how hard I tightened it it just never sealed. Finally I took it apart and placed the cone against a straight edge and discovered it had a concave curve in it. The Aeroquip guy told me to look for a witness mark on the cone. If it seals properly you should be able to see a ring around the cone where it rubs against the connector to seal. If there is no mark then it's not sealing.

Thanks for the tip but I hope I don't have to use it.

I just talked to a technician at StopTech and he said that the "problem" was most likely residual brake fluid in the bleeder screws that works its way out after getting hot. He did not feel that it was coming from the rotors. He said they may update the manual to instruct installers to remove and clean as much of this fluid as possible out of the end of the bleeders before use. So it is beginning to look like I never really had a "problem" at all, just a bunch or residual fluid. I have worked on my share of brakes over the years but have never seen this on any of my other vehicles and that is why I was alarmed. I just wish the current manual would have warned me of this. Other than that the installation was really easy and the manual did a good job of explaining things. The hardest part of installing the kit was putting the brake pads in. After struggling with the first caliper doing it as the manual instructed, I just put the pads in the caliper BEFORE sliding it over the rotor and this worked much better. The only other thing I noticed was that you do not need as much clearance as the manual states when cutting off the old rear caliper mounting "ears". The hub is in the way to make a straight cut from top to bottom but you can angle the cut so the saw clears the hub and still have plenty of clearence for the new bracket, rotor, and caliper. Hopefully this will help some of you that are planning on installing one of these kits.

There is one more bleeder that I have noticed a tiny amount of fluid from but as stated earlier, I am pretty confident that will resolve once all the residual fluid gets out.

Again, thanks for everyones help. I will post some pics of the completed project. I can't wait to get her out on the track:)
 

Fast Too

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FYI- I dont think you have a problem.

If you look at the pattern of the oil/grease, you can see that it is falling in the same pattern as the vanes inside your rotors: IE: it came from INSIDE the rotor, not the caliper.

It is likely machining/anti-rust lubricant left inside the vanes from when the rotors were made. I have seen it before, on my own car actually. Drive the car for about 100 miles as is, then pull all the wheels off and clean them out with a sponge and a nice degreasing soap- dont forget to wipe down the calipers. once it is spun out of the vanes, the issue wont return (hence 100 miles first)

1249d1208715173-stoptech-brakes-just-installed-having-problems-8-small.jpg

+1 here. I had that same pattern on mine from the vanes. You can (and are suppose to) clean the preservative off the faces, but you cannot get it out of the vanes. When you bed the pads and rotors in your brakes should have gotten very hot, and that preservative in the vanes has broken down and been slung out.
 

JayW1

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+1 here. I had that same pattern on mine from the vanes. You can (and are suppose to) clean the preservative off the faces, but you cannot get it out of the vanes. When you bed the pads and rotors in your brakes should have gotten very hot, and that preservative in the vanes has broken down and been slung out.

That had to be what happened at first, just as Dan said. Some of the material on my rims and calipers was thicker and more viscous than brake fluid and there was a lot of it on there. It is strange to me that the technician at Stoptech didn't think the rotors had anything to do with it. With all the rotors that they make, you would think it would be a common occurence and that they would know why it was happening. Maybe they are using a slightly different coating or applying it thicker. Regardless, the manual should be updated.
 
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