2008 Jeep Wrangler Unlimited Brake Repair
Mark: Hi, it's Mark. I'm here with Bernie Pawlik, Pawlik Automotive in Vancouver. We have doing the Pawlik Automotive podcast again. How you doing this morning, Bernie?
Bernie: Doing very well.
Mark: So, we're going to be talking about a Jeep Wrangler Unlimited that had a problem. What was going on with this vehicle?
Bernie: We'll start right with the vehicle and this is the vehicle right here, 2008 Jeep Wrangler Unlimited, and what was going on with this vehicle? There was a number of issues, actually. It came in for an inspection. We looked at a few. We looked the vehicle over, found a number of front-end issues, worn out brakes and a few things, but the primary purpose for this podcast is to talk about the front brake hose that was in bad shape. So, there is the brake hose. If you can see, this is ... so this is on the front of the vehicle. This is the shock absorber and the brake hose. This is a pretty close up shot. This brake hose runs from the frame of the vehicle up here, out to the brake caliper over in this direction off the screen. You can see this leaky stuff, this kind of gucky, rusty stuff and this split piece of rubber here, that is the brake hose that is about to explode. What's happened here is basically the metal has started to fester and losing its grip on crimping the brake hose. Basically, a lot of it just caused by rust. It's just corrosion that's expanded the rubber, torn it apart, and then eventually caused a leak.
Mark: So is that the main reason for a brake hose to deteriorate like this, rust?
Bernie: Well, this is one reason. We actually don't see that all that often around. We're in Vancouver. The weather is pretty mild here. We don't get a lot of road salt. This vehicle is from Alberta. There's a lot more road salt used in Alberta. The winters are harsher. And so, that basically ... the salt and moisture just ends up creeping in behind this piece of rubber here which is sort of that ... there's an protective shield, kind of creeps in there, sits in there over the years. It's 10 years old. It just eventually starts to corrode the metal, it expands. As I said, it would ... it just loses its grip on that. It's a high pressure crimp on the rubber hose.
Mark: And so, is this like an accident that's waiting to happen?
Bernie: Absolutely. I can't say enough. We often talk get your ... I mean, we often tell people get your vehicle inspected once a year. I mean, not you own a vehicles only two, three, four years old. It's probably not that necessary. But once it gets on in age, really necessary to have a vehicle inspected every year because you never know what's ... what you're going to find next year even though things can be fine now and you may only drive 5,000 kilometres, there's ... things happen over time, things deteriorate, rust and corrosion just starts to get into places and it'll start working its way through stuff. So, what looks good now, even a year later, even if you don't drive a lot can often amount to problems. So this is why you always need to have an inspection because you'll never see this until it breaks and seeing an accident waiting to happen, when a hose like this breaks, usually it's fine until you hit the brake really hard which is a panic stop, usually. And then I'll assume the hose just bursts because the pressures too high. That's that's when you do not want your brakes to fail. This is when it will.
Mark: Again, this isn't something you find all that often?
Bernie: We don't find this all that often around here. I'm certain that if you ... place like Alberta, Eastern Canada, the US, places where there's lots of road salt, you'll find this kind of stuff, this kind of corrosion happens a lot more often. We do find brake hoses wear, they tend to crack and that ... that's kind of the wear we find here, but that usually takes at least 10 or 15 years before that kind of thing happens. Again, that's something we can spot on inspection it and fix. But this is almost more serious because if the failure can happen almost faster then it was just ... it's got a crack in it.
Mark: So there are a few different models of four-door Wranglers. What are the differences?
Bernie: Well, mostly, I mean, there's some more different trim packages but the main difference ... like this is an Unlimited Wrangler, some of them have cloth seats. This was really nice. It had leather seats and really, really nice interior in it. But the main difference in the upgraded model is the Rubicon which is kind of cool. It's got locking differentials, like they electronically lock the differential. So, this is ... that vehicle is a true four-wheel drive. Once you lock it all in, it's ... all four wheels are pulling you whereas most four-wheel drives, you're kind of got, posy in the rear-end, you've kind of got a three-wheel drive, but this is like a true four wheel lock drive. So you can really go ... you can really go places. So it's a pretty cool vehicle, little more complex, a lot more stuff to go wrong and things do with the differentials. But other than that, that's kind of the main difference, Rubicon or the sort of not Rubicon.
Mark: Not Rubicon?
Bernie: Well, it doesn't say not Rubicon, the plain Unlimited, the more base model. They still all go well out in the bush but the ... if you really want the best, get the Rubicon.
Mark: What other issues do you see going wrong with Jeeps?
Bernie: We work on a lot of them. I mean, a lot of front-end, the steering linkages wear out, which we replaced in this vehicle, ball joint, steering linkages. I mean, brakes wear is normal as you'd expect. There's more fluid services required because it is an all-wheel drive utility truck type vehicle. So, there's extra differentials and things that need service. People often drive them in harsher climate. So when you do that, more work need to be done and a few cooling system repairs here and there but other than that, they're pretty good.
Mark: So there you go. If you're looking for service for your Jeep or you have some concerns about having imported a car from Eastern Canada and maybe you need to have the brake hose checked, the guys to see are Pawlik Automotive. You can reach them at 604-327-7112 to book your appointment or check out their website pawlikautomotive.com, hundreds of articles and videos on there, or the YouTube channel which is the same, five-plus years of videos on there, or our new podcast on iTunes. Thanks, Bernie.
Bernie: Thanks, Mark.