Drum removal

So I’m in the process of doing a rear brake job on a 2002 Pontiac Sunfire. Drum brakes. And (shocker - especially for a northern car that never had the job done before) the drum won’t come off. I’ve spent two days with a propane blowtorch, PB Blaster, and a 3lb hammer. No dice. It won’t even budge.

So now I’m thinking about taking an angle grinder to the drum and just replacing both (probably necessary, as I’m sure it’s in terrible shape). Has anyone ever tried this? I’m really at my last option here…


I’m not at all familiar with how the Sunfire brakes are set up, but sinec the car’s FWD I’ll assume you may end up pulling the hubs as well to replace the studs. I assume you plan to hit the points where the studs go through the drum???

Expect the unexpected and sincere best of luck. Let us know how you make out. I wish I had a suggestion, but I don’t. All I can offer is moral support.

Look to see if there are any threaded holes in the brake drum. If there are, you thread the proper sized bolt into the brake drum to force it off.


Tester is “the man”. I totally forgot about those holes. I assume you’ve removed any holding bolts if they exist?

Have you adjusted the brakes in to clear the ridge on the drum?

Also, remember to release the parking brake.

Just remove the dust cap and outer wheel bearing and the hub and drum will slip off the axle. Then, if necessary, you can separate the hub from the drum…