The wife has a 1998 Ford Windstar, and the parking brake will not stay engaged. If I pull the lever up, it will prevent the van from moving, but the lever will not stay in the “up” position. There seems to be no tension in the button that would normally release the brake. Is there a quick fix to this?
You might try some sort of spray cleaner/lube on it. Maybe someone spilled a soft-drink on it and it has the latch gummed up.
My bet is there is rust on brake parts at the wheel and it is preventing full release. Have it checked sooner than later by a local professional. The cost should be bearable. If the brakes are close to replacement time, maybe this would be a good time for a brake job.
I agree with tardis. Some lubricant, sprayed in the right place, might free up the mechanism.
Look closely at the button itself to see if something has jammed it.