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Setting handbrake

I can assure everyone that pushing the release button while trying to set the handbrake is a loser, because my husband used to do that and one day he returned to the car and it wasn’t there. It had rolled into an ornamental tree which saved the car from rolling across the street, down the neighbor’s drive and who knows where from there. We now both pull it up hard, w/two hands if needed.

Assuming this is a manual transmission do you leave the car in gear also?

Unless you have a very steep hill, you should not need both hands to set the brake. Pushing the release button when setting the brake should do nothing, unless you let up on the brake before releasing it.

However, I’ll bet that you and he share the same problem. Do you put your car in (auto - Park) or (manual - lowest gear) They will generally hold your car even if you don’t have the parking brake set.

You might want to have that parking brake checked by your local mechanic. It may need service. Frankly that is my guess as to why it happened.

Manual transmissions should be put in the lowest gear for parking. This gives the engine the maximum mechanical advantage and thus makes it harder for the weight of the car to overcome the compression.

Of course, the parking brake should be set as well.

Manual transmissions should be put in the lowest gear for parking.

Yea, you are right. I have corrected my original post. Thanks.

You should never have to use two hands to set the parking brake unless you suffer from a disability sich as fibromialgia or something.

You should, however, have your parking brake tested and if necessary adjusted every time you have your brakes checked. It sounds like your hubby’s had not been periodically checked and adjusted.

Oddly, I’ve never seen a shop operationally check my parking brake during a safety inspection…but that’s another thread.

Pushing the “release button” while setting your handbrake/e-brake has no effect on the brake’s ability to your hold your car. The release button is simply moving the locking device out of the way of the ratcheting sprocket that clicks in order to tell you how strong your e-brake is going to be. When you push the button, pull up and let go, you’re simply skipping the click sound and going with resistance in order to tell. Incidentally, this is good for purposely fishtailing your car in snow, ice or dirt.

The problem with your brake is that it’s been pulled too tight, too often. The ebrake is connected to your rear wheels by a tension cable. It operates exactly the same as a bike brake. The cable can become worn out and stretched over time, losing its taughtness and therefore becoming ineffective on steep hills. To fix it, you need to tighten the cable underneath the car. This easily done with the proper sized wrench or even plyers. Just find the splice point where the hand lever splits into two cables connecting to your rear wheels. There should be some threading and a nut (just like on a bike).

Tighten it so that its more effective but don’t over tighten it because you can snap the cable. And stop pulling so hard. The ratchets are there for you to count. 6 to 10 is all you should need on an average hill. And test it first before you get out of the car.