How to change the rear drum brakes on a focus

Written by alibaster smith
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Vibration in the steering wheel during braking is a clear indication that the brakes on a Ford Focus need servicing, but the rear brakes do far less work than the front brakes, so it may not be immediately apparent that they need servicing. For this reason, you should check the rear drum brakes on a Ford Focus every six months. You will probably need to replace them once a year or once every 18 months.

Skill level:

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Things you need

  • Tire wrench
  • Jack
  • Two Jack stands
  • Hammer
  • Brake spring removal tool
  • Brake shoe removal tool
  • Brake parts cleaner

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  1. 1

    Break the rear lug nuts loose on the Focus. Turn them 1/4 turn counterclockwise with a tire wrench.

  2. 2

    Raise the rear of the vehicle onto jack stands. The Focus has a rear jack point behind the boot area that you need to jack up on. Place jack stands underneath the rear pinch welds, and lower the Focus onto the stands.

  3. 3

    Finish loosening the lugs, and slide the rear wheels off.

  4. 4

    Hit the outside of the drum with a large hammer. You'll need to hit it pretty hard, because rust and corrosion usually keep it stuck in place. Since the drum is made of iron, it's pretty durable, so don't worry about damaging it.

  5. 5

    Remove the drum by pulling it off the hub.

  6. 6

    Remove the retaining springs with the brake spring retainer tool (it looks like a hooked pick).

  7. 7

    Hold the retaining pin from behind the wheel and drum assembly, and slide the brake shoe removal tool over the pin. Turn the tool counterclockwise to remove tension on the retainers holding the brake pads to the inner drum.

  8. 8

    Remove the shoes, and install the new brake shoes. Installation is the reverse of removal.

  9. 9

    Spray down the entire brake drum with brake parts cleaner with the outer drum still off. Then, install the drum and put the wheel back on.

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