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Hi Everyone,
I have a 64 plate Gen 2 Leaf. It has just been serviced & mot'd. I have noticed that when I park up, apply the foot brake and turn the car off, the brakes appear to re-engage when reversing. When I'm ready to leave, If I start to reverse backwards, I can feel the brakes re-engaging. It's a noticeable "clamping on" sensation and the car stops. If I continue to reverse by pressing the accelerator you can hear the breaks squeaking as they try and keep the car stationary. Only when you put the car in D and drive forwards do the brakes appear released.

Has anyone else had this experience with the brakes?
I realize I will have to get it checked out, but thought someone might be able to point me in the right direction so I can tell the garage what's wrong.

Any guidance would be most helpful!
Thank you!
 

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I have noticed this a few times, I think others have too, although im not sure if there is a cure for it?
Could be the parking brake (drums) getting rusty and maybe shoes falling off. Mine are noisy after being left when wet, so need to investigate soon!
 

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Nissan's advice in the handbook is not to engage the parking brake in freezing conditions, but to use chocks instead. Although I had similar problems to yours with my former Leaf 24 if I left the parking brake on overnight, my new Leaf 30 has been fine.
 

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We've been getting this for years. It seems that the parking brakes rust up very quickly (in damp conditions), but as soon as you go forwards, the rust gets rubbed off and everything is normal. It can be embarrassing to make such a huge squeaking noise when exiting a parking space, though it doesn't seem to create an actual problem. I keep meaning not to use the footbrake if I'm on the level, but it's got to be a habit.

The last time I was at a Nissan garage the mechanic advised that the brake cables should be replaced (at a cost of £400); my local friendly (Leaf owning) mechanic siad that this was rubbish and wouldn't cure the problem anyway. He occasionally cleans out the brakes for us, which does improve things but never for very long. So we are resigned to putting up with groans and squeaks when we reverse after parking.
 

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At the MOT they put it down as an advisory (squeaking when reversing), I was not happy about it - they seem advisory happy. Anyway I cleaned the drums and shoes. It lasted a few months before it came back. I don't think its something curable.
 

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After reading a post on a similar topic on here I've gotten into the habit of applying a bit of accelerator forward after applying the parking brake. That seems to stop the god awful squealing when later reversing back out of a space.
 
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Discussion Starter #8

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I had this problem first time i felt it I thought I had run something over, I even got out to look, it started on the nearside and then also the off side started to bind as well.
Previously when reversing on the level did not need to touch throttle now initially the car moves and then dull thump on both sides and the car will stop and I need to apply throttle to continue to reverse (mostly first thing in the morning).
I tried pulling forward didnt cure it, then after reading this thread I thought as others that corrosion is the problem so I lightly applied the footbrake and travelled 2-300 yards down the road, released foot brake, now the problem is gone so it would appear that it is corrosion on the brake drum that causes this issue.
When you think about how its used makes sense the pads just clamp the drum when stationary never when moving so corrosion will not get removed as it does on discs etc.
 

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We get this when its cold and wet.
Partly I think it is lack of use - it happens more to my wife who is a v.gentle driver than to me, but I make a point of braking hard from time to time to clean the disc.

I suspect that the caliper slider pins might be sticking. I'm intending to strip down the rear brakes as soon as I get a day of decent weather. Need to wait for my oh to swap her parking permit on the new car so the old one is available in the day.
 

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Only way to prevent it is to use the drum brakes and get the dust and debris off the shoes. I do this by gentle application every week or two in a private area or such, at low speed for about 100metres. Gets heatninto the shoes and clears material detritus off them and inner drum surface. The same happens to a lot of off roaders as they use drums on the rear too like my rangie and jeep.
Also I never use the park brake either. Sticking the car in park is better for the cables long term too.
 

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We get this when its cold and wet.
Partly I think it is lack of use - it happens more to my wife who is a v.gentle driver than to me, but I make a point of braking hard from time to time to clean the disc.

I suspect that the caliper slider pins might be sticking. I'm intending to strip down the rear brakes as soon as I get a day of decent weather. Need to wait for my oh to swap her parking permit on the new car so the old one is available in the day.
The rear brakes are a combination drum / disc, discs for everyday normal braking and drums for the parking brake.
When you think about how its used makes sense the pads just clamp the drum when stationary never when moving so corrosion will not get removed as it does on discs etc.
I tried pulling forward,didnt cure it, I lightly applied the footbrake and travelled 2-300 yards down the road, released foot brake, now the problem is gone so it would appear that it is corrosion on the brake drum that causes this issue.
 

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Only way to prevent it is to use the drum brakes and get the dust and debris off the shoes. I do this by gentle application every week or two in a private area or such, at low speed for about 100metres. Gets heatninto the shoes and clears material detritus off them and inner drum surface. The same happens to a lot of off roaders as they use drums on the rear too like my rangie and jeep.
Also I never use the park brake either. Sticking the car in park is better for the cables long term too.
Drum brakes locking up at very slow speeds in one turning direction is actually quite a common problem, (not just Leaf) especially if they don't get much use.

And it generally happens with either very cold temperatures (the drum shrinks in diameter relative to the shoes) or somewhat less cold but very damp conditions. (the shoe lining material absorbs the moisture and becomes "grabby")

I had a similar problem with the rear drums on my Ion last winter - mainly in near freezing temperatures when it was raining or snowing. Trying to come to a smooth stop was near on impossible because as I slowed down the rear left drum would completely lock leading to one wheel skidding in the snow.

Worst still, twice at the traffic lights I came to a stop and then was completely unable to start moving forwards as the drum had completely locked. My only recourse was to go into reverse and move backwards slightly to free it up - much to the chagrin and alarm of the person directly behind me! :eek:

Many drum brakes use a combination of one leading (self energising) shoe and one trailing shoe. It's always the leading shoe that causes the locking up to occur. It occurs when either the shoe material has become overly grabby or swollen due to moisture absorption, or the radius of the shoe is greater than the drum causing the shoe to contact at the ends rather than the middle.

Normally the radius of the shoe should be slightly less than the inside radius of the drum causing the shoe to contact mostly in the middle and not at all at the ends. Of course cold weather can shrink the drum enough for this to no longer apply and you then get grabbing.

Basically the shoes/drums need a bit of servicing... you can remove a little bit of shoe material gradually towards the end of the shoe linings to effectively reduce it's radius and ensure it doesn't quite contact at the ends, and also give them a clean up in general removing any debris and lining dust.

But even then it can still be a problem if the drum brakes don't get much use. I find I still have to manually apply the rear drums on my Ion from time to time to keep them in good working order because normal gentle braking with regen (which I try to do to drive economically) doesn't work the rear brakes hard enough to maintain them properly.

I have the advantage of a manual handbrake that operates on the rear drums - so while driving its easy to once in a while accelerate and give the hand brake a good tug for a few seconds, which gives the rear drums a quick clean and makes them behave.

I don't think you can do that on a Leaf though as if it has an electrically operated handbrake.

Friction brakes as originally used in ICE vehicles were never designed with regen in mind - if you're a gentle miles/kWh watching driver regen means that the friction brakes don't get enough use to keep them in proper working order unless you go out of your way to really use them from time to time!
 

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Drum brakes locking up at very slow speeds in one turning direction is actually quite a common problem, (not just Leaf) especially if they don't get much use.

And it generally happens with either very cold temperatures (the drum shrinks in diameter relative to the shoes) or somewhat less cold but very damp conditions. (the shoe lining material absorbs the moisture and becomes "grabby")

I had a similar problem with the rear drums on my Ion last winter - mainly in near freezing temperatures when it was raining or snowing. Trying to come to a smooth stop was near on impossible because as I slowed down the rear left drum would completely lock leading to one wheel skidding in the snow.

Worst still, twice at the traffic lights I came to a stop and then was completely unable to start moving forwards as the drum had completely locked. My only recourse was to go into reverse and move backwards slightly to free it up - much to the chagrin and alarm of the person directly behind me! :eek:

Many drum brakes use a combination of one leading (self energising) shoe and one trailing shoe. It's always the leading shoe that causes the locking up to occur. It occurs when either the shoe material has become overly grabby or swollen due to moisture absorption, or the radius of the shoe is greater than the drum causing the shoe to contact at the ends rather than the middle.

Normally the radius of the shoe should be slightly less than the inside radius of the drum causing the shoe to contact mostly in the middle and not at all at the ends. Of course cold weather can shrink the drum enough for this to no longer apply and you then get grabbing.

Basically the shoes/drums need a bit of servicing... you can remove a little bit of shoe material gradually towards the end of the shoe linings to effectively reduce it's radius and ensure it doesn't quite contact at the ends, and also give them a clean up in general removing any debris and lining dust.

But even then it can still be a problem if the drum brakes don't get much use. I find I still have to manually apply the rear drums on my Ion from time to time to keep them in good working order because normal gentle braking with regen (which I try to do to drive economically) doesn't work the rear brakes hard enough to maintain them properly.

I have the advantage of a manual handbrake that operates on the rear drums - so while driving its easy to once in a while accelerate and give the hand brake a good tug for a few seconds, which gives the rear drums a quick clean and makes them behave.

I don't think you can do that on a Leaf though as if it has an electrically operated handbrake.

Friction brakes as originally used in ICE vehicles were never designed with regen in mind - if you're a gentle miles/kWh watching driver regen means that the friction brakes don't get enough use to keep them in proper working order unless you go out of your way to really use them from time to time!
The rear brakes are a combination drum / disc,
discs for everyday normal braking and drums for the parking brake only.
When you think about how its used makes sense the pads just clamp the drum when stationary never when moving so corrosion will not get removed as it does on discs etc.
I tried pulling forward,didnt cure it, I lightly applied the footbrake and travelled 2-300 yards down the road, released foot brake, now the problem is gone so it would appear that it is corrosion on the brake drum that causes this issue.
As for the electric hand brake yeah I can see that as an issue.
 

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If it uses the drum brake only as the hand brake then that seems like a bad design to me. It will never keep the shoes and drum in good condition if it's not being actively used to brake the car when moving.

With regeneration it's difficult enough keeping friction brakes in good order even when they are used to slow the car, let alone if they're only being used for static braking...:confused:
 

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It's possible to apply the electric handbrake while moving in an emergency.
From the manual...

" If the electric parking brake must be applied while driving in an emergency, pull up and hold the electric parking brake switch. When you release the parking brake switch, the parking brake will be released."

It might be bit "entertaining" so if you end up through a hedge, don't blame me :p
 
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