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Parking Brake Won't Stay Down


98 Seville STS

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98 Seville STS. Just purchased from a Chrysler/Jeep dealer. Car is in great condition, except that I noticed the parking brake would not stay set and asked them to fix it before I took delivery. Picked it up tonight, and it was staying set at that time. They said they replaced a solenoid. Once I got home, the parking brake would not stay set again. I push it down and it does not engage, just comes back up with my foot. Transmission is in Park and car is running when this happens. After I turn the car off, the parking brake will stay engaged. As soon as I start it, the parking brake disengages. I am going to keep after the dealer to fix it, but they kept it three days and didn't figure it out yet. Does anyone know what this might be so that I can point them in the right direction. Thanks for your help!

Richard

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Yesterday, each time I drove it, the brake would stay set while the car was on and in Park. However, each time I started the car, the brake would release before I even touched the shifter.

Anyone else ever had this kind of problem? If so, what was the fix?

Thanks,

Richard

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On my old Deville, the paking brake is released by a vacuum operated release valve when shifted in Drive. If it is anything like mine, take a look on top of the parking brake cable there should be somekind of vacuum valve and a connection (switch) that controls the application of vaccuum upon shifting. The fact that the brake releases when engine is running (vacuum present) makes me think this could be a possibilty. Like Adallak said it looks like that switch is faulty.

Good luck,

-KIMO-

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Never had the problem. But the control circuit for the solenoids is pretty simple.

First thing I would check is the two (2) relays in the junction box under the rear seat cushion labeled Park Brake Relay A and Park Brake Relay B. One of those relays could be stuck or frozen in the energized position. There should be several similar relays in the junction box that you can use as a substitute for a quick check.

Jim

Drive your car.

Use your cell phone.

CHOOSE ONE !

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Yes, check first the relays - it is definitely a possibility one of them is stuck as JimD suggetsed. If the relays are OK, I can sand you pictures and procedures of removal/adjuastment of the vacuum release valve on the transaxle lever assembly. Let us know.

The saddest thing in life is wasted talent

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Guys,

I noticed some other functions that weren't working properly when the Parking brake would not stay down. For instance, the doors did not unlock when I put it in Park, and the seat and steering wheel did not move to the exit positions when I opened the door. When the brake stayed down, these things worked also. So I made an assumption that they were all related to the Park Shift Interlock Micro Relay under the back seat. I replaced that relay with the one next to it (Reverse Lamps), and those functions have not falied since then. Also, the brake no longer releases when I start the car, just when I take it out of Park.

Thanks very much for the suggestions to check the relays. I'm just keeping my fingers crossed that it continues working. For anyone with some knowledge about how the Cadillac Micro Relays work, does it make sense that one could work intermittently?

Thanks again,

Richard

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My daughter just bought a '99 SLS and in quickly going through the owners manual I beleive the lock/unlock feature as well as the steering wheel and seat position is programable as to what position it will be in when the doors are unlocked or when the key is turned off. Check your owners manual. I haven't studied it that closely yet.

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Guys,

....

For anyone with some knowledge about how the Cadillac Micro Relays work, does it make sense that one could work intermittently?

Thanks again,

Richard

Relays in general can fail in different ways. Most common failure would be corroded / dirty contacts preventing the controlled circuit (downstream) from seeing proper voltage.

So yes, it can be intermittent as most relay contacts have a very slight wiping action designed to keep the contacts clean. Sometimes, just activating the relay coil 5 or 10 times in a short period will wipe the contacts clean and operation will be normal for some period.

Jim

Drive your car.

Use your cell phone.

CHOOSE ONE !

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Ok, I am looking at the owners manual now. Assuming the '98 & '99 are the same, the doors can be programmed as follows:

1. All doors lock or unlock when shifted in or out of Park.

2. Drivers door only locks or unlocks when shifted in or out of park.

3. Drivers door locks or unlocks with key on or key off.

The seat and steering wheel can also be programmed to move out of the way for entry and exit. That is located in the Memory and Personalization features section.

Hope this is of some help.

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