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im curious, who makes the oem pads for the frontier?
 

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Jen, friction coefficient sucks, pass that im not a engineer. I just have to fix their problems when it looked good on paper, er well in solid works :)
sometimes pads become like oil recommendations, but with pads there are big diferances you can feel. Oem are engineered to be quiet, and brake very well. 2 of the most important things the manufacturer wants.
 

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Good to know I'm not the only one.

I took my truck in to the Nissan dealership to get some work done because I was to lazy. I had the front diff flushed, front end alignment, oil change, and had all 4 rotors resurfaced and new pads. The second I started my truck I noticed a difference in the brakes. They went from a nice solid feedback to real soft and spongy. The truck by no means had lost any stopping power, but like everyone else it did not feel safe. I turned around and went back to the dealership. They did a brake flush, and rechecked the brakes and said everything looked normal. The mechanic offered to go on a ride along to see what I thought. He explained to me that they have seen this happen to other frontiers and xterrras in the same year range. (I have a 2008). Seemed odd but I went with it for the time being. Although it didn't make sense for brakes to feel worse after having new pads installed. He then began to explain that it's just the vacuum releasing sooner. (Once again didn't make sense since nothing should have been adjusted with the booster). I'm going to keep after it until either myself or the dealership can find a good solid answer. But if anyone has any ideas, I'm all ears.


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My Ford F-150 (1997 2WD w/4.2L) had the same problem. After changing the rotors, pads, shoes, brake drums and even the lines up front, it finally went away although not completely. That truck has rear abs only. I have done many brake jobs in my life before on mostly Japanese cars and never experienced anything like this. I think most of the culprit were the rear drums.

I am reading this thread because I want to know what the best pad/rotor combo is brandwise.

My 2005 KC Nismo with manual transmission truck is hard to stop and I am careful approaching a vehicle in front of me. When I purchased the truck, it had no hand-brake function. I replaced the rear brake shoes and pads and one cable. It is better but I still do not feel comfortable. Even pumping does not seem to work. Luckily I use gears in addition to brakes to slow the truck. I have bled all 4 wheels per the instructions as well. So once I replace the rotors and pads (Front) I will report back to see what is the situation.
 

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I can't understand why someone who gets 99,000 on a set of OEM pads would look elsewhere for "something better". Can someone explain? If OEM is that good, seems good enough for me. Not many do more than 200,000 on a vehicle anyway.
 

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sorry I have not been on the forum for personal reasons. I am reporting back that even after replacing all brake lines with SS lines, new rotors and pads front and back, new brake shoes for hand-brake, still mushy pedal. So I adjusted the brake cylinder lever inside the car above the brake padel. (mine is 2005 manual transmission). The padel was raised but after testing it for about 3 miles, the front pads were grabbing the rotors and truck started to bog down. So I backed out about 1/2 turn and the brake padel still mushy with little less travel.

i am going to replace the pads (all foour with oem this weekend) just to see if that helps

Any other suggestions?

do I need to disconnect abs before bleeding the brakes?
 

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well. I tested the following:

Brake booster and valve are fine.
pedel goes to floor while engine is idle. No signs of leak anywhere on any of the wheels (means internal leaking in the master cylinder?)

What is the function of the switch located at the bottom of the brake master cylinder? It costs $197)

No signs of fluid missing

Please help.

Truck does not want to stop now and dangerous to drive.
 

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I had the exact same thing happened to me on my pick up truck after replacing the front pads with ceramic. The problem ended up being the backing material that they put on those fancy pads. It took a while for the Pistons to seat into the back of the pads. After I drove the truck for about two or 3000 miles they got much better.
 

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Do yourself a favor and replace the master cylinder. What's 200 bucks vs the value of your truck sitting there, or your life if you try to drive it. The master cylinder is the most likely cause of your problems at this point.
 

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Sure. Spending money is not the issue at all. The problem is that I have read on many occasions where for the same symptoms poeple did replace the MC and problem persisted so just trying to gather accurate info to be able to fix it for once.

Update. With the help of my father-in-law I re-bled all four brakes and the truck brakes worked better but still spongy. We tested and eliminated the booster so the problem is either the pads (I have medium priced ceramic pads from Autozone) or MC.
So the plan is to replace all four pads with OEM ones and brake shoes first (about $200 from Courtesy Nissan) and if no significant improvemnts, then replace MC.

(BTW the local Nissan dealeer is asking $278 for MC and 89 per set for front and rear brakes (not including parking shoes). No discounts or price matching at all (and I know the guys in there as my buddy works in financing there LOL).

What do you guys think?
 

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sorry I have not been on the forum for personal reasons. I am reporting back that even after replacing all brake lines with SS lines, new rotors and pads front and back, new brake shoes for hand-brake, still mushy pedal. So I adjusted the brake cylinder lever inside the car above the brake padel. (mine is 2005 manual transmission). The padel was raised but after testing it for about 3 miles, the front pads were grabbing the rotors and truck started to bog down. So I backed out about 1/2 turn and the brake padel still mushy with little less travel.

i am going to replace the pads (all foour with oem this weekend) just to see if that helps

Any other suggestions?

do I need to disconnect abs before bleeding the brakes?[/QUOTE]

Did you ever get this question answered? I've never bled the brakes on a frontier, so I'm unaware, but some vehicles require specific steps to bleed or you will never get the air out properly.
 

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No I did not here but elsewhere on the forum and on the net it states that you have to disconnect the plug to abs.

Sorry for the late response. I will bled them again this afternoon.
 

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No I did not here but elsewhere on the forum and on the net it states that you have to disconnect the plug to abs.

Sorry for the late response. I will bled them again this afternoon.
With that said, have you tried bleeding the brakes with one of those mity-vac things? I've seen it once or twice ( usually after a master cylinder replacement) where standard manual bleeding did not get all the air out. once the mity-vac was put on it and some vacuum applied, it pulled the bubble out.
 

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I don;t have a Mityvac but I do have a Harbor Freight Brand vacuum pump along with one man bleeding kit. I finally found the FSM and looked into the bleeding brake section. Here is what it says:


2005 Frontier
Bleeding Brake System
While bleeding, monitor the master cylinder brake fluid level.
1. Turn ignition switch OFF and disconnect ABS actuator and electric unit (control unit) connector or battery
negative cable.
2. Connect a vinyl tube to the rear right bleed valve.
3. Fully depress brake pedal 4 to 5 times.
4. With brake pedal depressed, loosen bleed valve to let the air out, and then tighten it immediately.
5. Repeat steps 3 and 4 until no more air comes out.
6. Tighten bleed valve to the specified torque.
7. Perform steps 2 to 6 at each wheel, with master cylinder reservoir tank filled at least half way, bleed air
from the front left, rear left, and front right bleed valve, in that order.

What I was not doing is disconnecting the ABS actuator and electric unit or battery negative cable.

Today I search the net for ABS bleeding problems not for just Nissans but other vehicles as well. If the air gets into the ABS system, it is VERY difficult to get it out and our trucks are especially finicky about it. Most of the threads I have read on this forum with spongy brake problems is 1; we did not disconnect the ABS system and 2:We did replace either the MC or brake lines or 3: let the fluid go below the line. I will report back after I finished bleeding the proper way.
 

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OK Bled the brakes just as the FSM indicated (posted above). Upon test driving I saw about 10 percent improved brakes still spongy though. So next step would be to buy the OEM pads to see what those will do. I will try with front only and if I see improvements, then I will buy the rear ones as well.

I will report back in about a week.
 

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Similar feel in my brakes

I have a similar feel in my brakes, and the abs and slip lights are on.

Did you find your problem?
 

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Hello. Yes and no. I changed the front brake pads to oem and brake was improved a little so my problem is either air in the abs system or the master cylinder. I am moving from ks to Oklahoma so I have not taken it to dealer to bleed the air out of abs system.
 

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@msk59 did you ever get a resolution to this brake issue?
 

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You guys know you are supposed to crack the bleeder to let the trash out as you press the piston back into its bore, right? Pushing nasty corroded crappy fluid up into the abs pump motor and the master cyl is just not good. If your caliper slides are not corroded solid you just set a pan under the caliper, crack the bleeder and pull the caliper so the piston retracts. Try it. You will see big chunks of black nasty crap in dark fluid. Then change pads like normal, clean and properly lube sliders, reassemble, refill master cyl, replace cap, pump brakes slowly and firmly till you contact pads to rotor, then refill master to the fill line. Then dont touch the fluid it is set so that when it looks low your brakes are almost worn out, the sensor is there to tell you it is low.

When people complain of a soft mushy pedal but the brakes are known air free (properly pressure bled) almost always you will find sticky slides, or a combination of sticky slides and rotor surface runout that pushes the pad/piston back, then that uses up pedal travel so the driver feels that the pedal is soft with poor stopping power.
 
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