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2000 toyota corolla feels like it has no brakes

2000 toyota corolla feels like it has no brakes
I had the brake master cylinder replaced a few months ago - so that’s not it
The mechanic also replaced the shoes - so that’s not it
After I told him it still feels like the is low etc. he adjusted them or something - so that’s not it
It still feels the same
What should I do?

What should you do?
Well, if you want to avoid hitting cars, people, or animals, I think that you have no choice but to go to a different shop where they will–hopefully–have both an interest in diagnosing this problem and the expertise to actually repair it. Your current mechanic lacks at least one of those traits.

My best guess is that there is air trapped in the brake hydraulic system, but there are certainly other possibilities including a defective master cylinder.

This is NOT something which you can delay, and I strongly urge you to have the car towed to a different repair shop before you drive it again.

Exactly what happens when you press the pedal? Does it sink to the floor? Is it firm, but takes too long to stop the car?

Does it pulsate? Does it pull to one side?
Does it get firm when you pump it?

Are there any operating problems?

And lastly, try a quick test of the brake booster. With the engine off, pump the pedal until it gets hard. Then, while pressing the pedal, turn the engine on. If the pedal softens and sinks a bit, that’d be the booster working. If turning the engine on has no effect, your brake booster needs to be looked at.

Post back.

Does The Car Have Any Rust?
Has It Ever Been Driven On Salted Roads In Winter?

At any rate it wouldn’t be unusual for a 16 model-years old car to develop leaks in rusting brake lines or deterioration of rubber brake hoses.

Loss of any brake fluid will result in stopping trouble.


Yes, drive it immediately (very slowly) to a different shop. Or, better, get it towed.

One possibility is soft flex hoses.
Those rubber hoses that go from the hard lines on the body to the calipers.
If they get soft and expand with brake fluid pressure they’ll make the brake pedal soft.
They’re old enough to possibly be the problem, especially if the brake fluid has never been flushed.
Going forward change the brake fluid every 3 years and many brake system parts will last a lot longer.

I’m hoping the mechanic bench bled that master cylinder before installing it . . .

Don’t completely eliminate the new MC and new shoes as the culprits. You could have been a bit unlucky and got a defective replacement part – which is not an uncommon thing reported there. Except for the ABS component, brakes have changed little in the past 40 years, so diagnosing them is something most shops can do well. Think about how they work. You press on the pedal an inch. The shoes or pads move 0.05 inch. That’s about all there is to it. The individual components can be tested separately, and if necessary, the four wheels can be tested separately. Not something that can be done via the internet, but any knowledgeable shop tech can do it.