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Rubbish brakes

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I've been battling with rubbish brakes for years and i'm out of ideas now, i don't think they'll pass the MOT this year so need some suggestions.

Stopping from 70 down to say 30 is ok, but from 30 down to 0 is hopeless, and absolutely cannot lock up the tires (235 grabber tr).

Over the years the following has been fitted:

Larger 110 front calipers, 110 vented grooved front disks, rebuilt rear calipers, solid rear disks,both Mintex and Delphi Lockheed pads all around, Lama stainless braided hoses all around, copper solid lines, rebuilt master cylinder, new servo, Dot 4 fluid replaced about 2 years ago and bled with ezi-bleed, good vacuum can be felt on the hose and the pedal drops when servo is evacuated.

Any suggestions?

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10 hours ago, Chicken Drumstick said:

Could you describe the actual symptoms? I.e. Soft pedal, excessive travel, etc 

Just very poor stopping ability, I can push as hard as i like on the pedal but it wont slow down any quicker. Pedal is firm but has little effect on stopping.


Parts are a mix of Genuine, Bearmach and Delphi.

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I think you need to take it to a garage to look at. Brakes are probably the most important thing on a vehicle. And it is rather worrying to know someone is driving around in a vehicle that they can't stop.


Defender brakes should work very well and easily pull the speed in. But I doubt it's an easy think to diagnose over the internet.

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Like I said, if no wheels lock, it has to be a part common to all four, and that is just the master cylinder and the servo system.  If the master has needed rebuild, it stands out as a suspect, but the new servo is not above suspicion either.  I'd also check the vacuum pump - it might be producing a pressure drop, but it might not be low enough.

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You can check the vacuum pump by buying a cheap vacuum gauge and checking the reading. 

I doubt it's that though to be honest if the pedal is sinking on start up, and if the pedal feels like it has servo assistance when the engine is running it doesn't sound like servo or pump.  

If the pedal is firm and doesn't creep at all (air or failing master cylinder) I'd be inclined to try another set of brake pads. Delphi or ferodo.  They arent expensive.  

Other than that, there isn't much more it can be. Just make sure all bleed nipped are at the top of each caliper so it can be bled correctly. 


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