Rear brake not springing back

tandrews8664 Posts: 97
edited September 2011 in Workshop
I am in a quandary

After washing my bike today, and removing the wheels, giving the rims and the brake pads a wash, the spring in the rear brake no longer seems to have any spring.

When i apply the brakes the brakes just stay closed and rub, i can manually release the brakes with ease.

Is this a cable tension problem, or is there a way of adjusting the spring? If it helps, the quick release mechanism on the brake seems loose, as i couldn't open it before, but now i can.

Any help would make my weekend so much more enjoyable :(


  • Bobbinogs
    Bobbinogs Posts: 4,841
    Squirt some oil in the cable outer since it sounds like it needs it. Turning the bike upside down, a good squirt, leaving overnight to let the oil work through and then pulsing the brake lever helps, IME.
  • Release the cable first - if it still doesn't spring back you can rule out the cable.

    it's a hard life if you don't weaken.
  • Thanks for the responses, have tried it without the cable and it's definately the caliper.

    Also tried the front brake which springs back quickly with an audible ping when the cble is undone, so it must be the spring

    Is this just a case of taking the brake apart and fiddling with the spring a bit?
  • k-dog
    k-dog Posts: 1,652
    You shouldn't have to take it apart - just give it a good squirt with lube.

    It helps to take the wheel out and then squeeze it together so you can get more into the innards - it's probably just gunk in there stopping it from moving.

    It will gradually start to free up without too much effort.
    I'm left handed, if that matters.
  • desweller
    desweller Posts: 5,175
    Take the pads and wheel off so you don't get oil all over them and squirt a generous amount of WD40 into the pivots, then squeeze and reopen the caliper several times to dislodge the grungit. Then mop it up and run some heavier oil in there; the WD40 will not hang around for very long so you need something a bit more viscous for the long term.
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  • I agree with des, lube is the best way.

    I find the easiest way to lube the caliper is to turn bike upside down, put a carrier bag under caliper to protect the tyre and apply TF2(like WD40 but has teflon coat which stays around a bit longer) which i then leave for hour or so before giving a wipe to clean excess off. Keeps caliper working for about a month. (And we all wash our bikes at least that often eh!)


    Raleigh Pursuit (bulky bike bulky rider)
    shimano shoes
    rest is muddy fox or karrimor
    really bright 1 watt cree headlight..
  • Problem Solved.

    Thanks, WD40 worked a treat, and have applied some normal lube to it as well.

    I'm starting to realise that the simplest fixes are the ones to try first!!!