How to Adjust the Emergency Brake on a 2001 Jeep Grand Cherokee

Updated July 19, 2017

The 2001 Jeep Grand Cherokee was equipped with four-wheel disc brakes with an anti-lock braking system (ABS). Unlike many brake systems in 2001, the Grand Cherokee did not use a rear brake caliper with and integral actuator for the parking brake function. Instead, it used a separate small set of parking brake shoes that were fitted to the inside hat area of the rear brake rotor. As a result, the friction area in the rear rotors for the parking brake is not machinable; if the friction surface is damaged by metal-to-metal contact when the parking brake shoes are worn out, the rotor must be replaced.

Lift the rear wheel safely. Place a wheel chock behind one of the front wheels and in front of the other front wheel. Raise the rear wheels off the ground, using a floor jack positioned under the rear differential. Place jack stands under the rear axles and lower the Jeep onto them.

Release the parking brake. Slide under the Cherokee and remove the adjustment plugs from the lower-back side of the brake backing plate.

Insert the brake-adjusting tool or a screwdriver into the adjustment opening in the backing plate. Rotate the adjuster, located just inside of the backing plate, in an upward direction. Continue to rotate the adjuster until the parking brake shoes slightly drag on the rotor when the wheel is rotated. Reinstall the plug into the adjuster opening.

Raise the Jeep off the jack stands, using the floor jack, and remove the stands. Lower the vehicle to the ground. Start the engine. Apply the parking brake and shift the transmission into drive. The parking brake should prevent vehicle movement under very slight acceleration.

Things You'll Need

  • Wheel chocks
  • Floor jack
  • Jack stands
  • Brake-adjusting tool or screwdriver
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About the Author

Lee Sallings is a freelance writer from Fort Worth, Texas. Specializing in website content and design for the automobile enthusiast, he also has many years of experience in the auto repair industry. He has written Web content for eHow, and designed the website. He began his writing career developing and teaching automotive technical training programs.