Brake Caliper/Automatic transmission flush (or replace?) [Archive] - GrandAmGT.com Forum

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2000 GT
07-22-2013, 10:52 AM
So i got plenty of issues going wrong with my poor car, a 2000 V6 GT model. I am having brake problems and i got a window with the broken plastic guide/holder thing. Anyway i was hearing a really weird noise coming from my brakes and i soon discovered that my pads (that i replaced a year ago) are worn down, especially on the piston side. So kinda fatigued throughout the day i decided to take the caliper off to look at the caliper itself and i ended up stepping on the brake pedal (big big mistake, not doing that one again <-- :applause:) so i ended up having to take the rubber seal off in order to get the piston back on, had to bleed that caliper due to air in the line and now i am asking is it possible to repair this caliper.. meaning fixing the rubber seal back on. It doesn't look broken but i couldn't figure out how to get the seal on with the piston.

Secondly, i think i figured this out, assuming that rotors act like heatsinks to remove heat off the pads, but if there is rust on the rotors would rust cause a grainy look on the rotor where the pads touch? If so i'll need to replace that with some rust proof rotors and i am assuming that because i am not rough with braking that since my rotors are rusted primarily where the cooling fins are i kinda figured thats why i am getting a granite feel (possibly due to the pad fusing to the rotor).

Ok for the window, so as for the plastic piece breaking off on it which helps guide the window up and down i am going to need a quick fix. Was going to try wire but i figure it would be best to ask the forum first to see what different ways there are about fixing it or being able to have the window locked up without needing tape. The duct tape i am using will not stay due to humidity and hot temperatures. I think the window already got scratched because the window fell into the door panel area.

Last but not least, what is the best way to change transmission fluid? The air filter system i believe is blocking the reservoir?

[ChaosweaveR]
07-22-2013, 11:07 AM
Lots of issues going on here...

Calipers: I'd honestly just buy replacements. Repair kits are getting harder to find, but the stock calipers for these cars are getting real cheap. Save up and replace it, depending on the mileage, I'd replace both. Just like pads and rotors, it's wise to replace in pairs.

As for the rotors, rusting is going to happen whether you like it or not due to the metal being exposed to moisture. There's no way to "rust proof" the contact surface of the rotor since the pads would eventually burn it off from normal wear.

These cars are known to break the window regulators, which is what is most likely broken. Sadly, they aren't cheap, but that's the proper way to go.

The Transmission only has the filler neck opening from the top, for a full fluid change you'll need to drop the pan. While you're at it, change it's filter as well. They sell filter kits for the trans with the pan gasket.

Starglow
07-22-2013, 11:50 AM
I agree with just replacing the caliper and be done with it. You can replace one side, but if it has issues then the other side probably has issues as well so replace them as a set and make your life easier. It would also be a good idea to replace the short rubber brake hoses going to the caliper while you're in there since they're not very expensive.

If you're unsure regarding the rotors, then take them to an automotive machine shop for inspection. Sometimes you can just have the machine shop turn the rotors and get more life out of them, but they should advise you regarding the condition of your specific rotors which we can't really do over the internet. Or you can just buy new rotors as well and call it a day.

Regarding the window, you can replace the entire regulator assembly in about 30 minutes. But for a temporary fix to hold the window up, go to the hardware store and get yourself a spring clamp for about a dollar. Put the spring clamp up high on the window track just under the window which will hold it up until more permanent repairs can be made and you won't need to tape the window up. I had these spring clamps holding up the windows on both rear doors for a long time and they worked great.

I'd focus on fixing these other issues first before worrying about the transmission fluid flush. There are plenty of posts on these forums about how to change the transmission fluid but it is key to follow the correct procedure when checking fluid levels because if done incorrectly then you can end up with too much or too little and either condition can cause transmission issues.

BTW....congratulations for being man enough to admit your mistake pressing the brake pedal with the caliper off because not many would admit to doing that. :)

2000 GT
07-22-2013, 02:57 PM
Ok thanks for the replies. It sounds like it's easier to just replace the calipers. Actually i hit jackpot there was an '01 GAGT that had the window regulator. I took the whole regulator although it looks like crap though due to it being in a junkyard for so long i guess but i mainly just needed the plastic pieces so i got the window fixed. I'll have to check out those spring clamps though incase any more of them break. The drivers side me and my dad just melted the pieces back together using a soldering iron and then using an epoxy to reinforce them. But i don't have all that stuff or an actual workshop where i could do that so i was lucky and found replacements. The windows are kind of a pain especially since it looks like part of the window got hit while it fell down. Might grab that window too if it's still available during the weekend.

I could also just grab a caliper from the same car in that junkyard as well but i wanted to make sure mine is not really fixable.

Well unfortunately i haven't taken the car into a shop in awhile and i haven't even checked the transmission fluid, my dad knows a bit more about that anyway but the main problem is getting to the reservoir in the first place, i did or i think i found the drain plug if there is one?

As for rotors not being rust proof, i thought i heard somewhere that there are some that are rust proof (or maybe rust resistant?) i don't put a whole lot of miles on my car (it's like at 77,000) but maybe i could try seeing if they could just be turned. Also i am talking about rust on the cooling fins, not on the contact surface which looks like pad residue caked on it. I have to pull off the tire and the rotor to take a photo of it. The surfaces on it are bad which i am positive that's the problem. Also i need to replace the clips.

Haha, well it's a stupid mistake and i just facepalmed right when i saw fluid coming out of the caliper lol.

Starglow
07-22-2013, 03:23 PM
Well unfortunately i haven't taken the car into a shop in awhile and i haven't even checked the transmission fluid, my dad knows a bit more about that anyway but the main problem is getting to the reservoir in the first place, i did or i think i found the drain plug if there is one?


There is no reservoir on the transmission. The plug you see on top is just a fill port. There is a screw on the front left top of the trans axle that is used to check the fluid level but you have to access it from underneath the car and there is a specific procedure to properly check the fluid level. Search the archives and you'll find everything you need to know.

I've had to replace all four of the window regulators on mine so get used to it. lol
The front two I bought new units and the back two came from a salvage yard.

Rust on the rotor cooling fins is normal. If you have damage on the contact surfaces then that is another matter to be addressed with either turning the rotors or replacing them.

2000 GT
07-22-2013, 03:39 PM
Ok, thanks on the transmission fluids.

Yeah the 2 front ones are like that so i'm not surprised the rear 2 will start to have issues later down the road (especially since i roll them down regularly to cool the interior before cranking the AC).

Ok well i'll have the rotors checked out too, thanks! :)

AaronGTR
07-22-2013, 04:02 PM
Your brake pads should have lasted more than a year. The pistons were probably sticking which would cause the pads to wear faster. It can also warp the rotors and makes weird patterns on them. I'd replace both front calipers and get the rotors checked at a brake shop. They can usually machine them down a little (called "turning" the rotor) and make them flat and smooth again.

For the transmission, I don't recommend flushing. Especially with the age of your car, and depending on how many miles are on it... if the trans fluid has never been changed, flushing it can actually cause damage to your trans. Just drain it, change the filter, and refill with fresh fluid. There is no drain plug on the trans though. You have to take the bolts out of the pan on bottom and pull the pan to drain the fluid and replace the filter. Pretty sure there is a "how-to" tutorial on that if you do a search on here.

T50
07-22-2013, 08:30 PM
The rotors will be rusty on the edges, its common no real effect to braking as long as the braking surface(where the pads touch) is still shiny and smooth, if it's feels bumpy going from the inside of rotor to the outside (straight across the braking area) then I'd considering either replacement or resurfacing

I got my rotors for roughly $20 Each (cheap ones) they rusted in a day, but what steel product doesn't when it gets wet.. But as long as you got full pad contact you should be fine.

o4goldgase
07-22-2013, 09:55 PM
I have brand new remaned front calipers and rotors im trying to get rid of pm me if you want

2000 GT
07-22-2013, 11:19 PM
The rotors will be rusty on the edges, its common no real effect to braking as long as the braking surface(where the pads touch) is still shiny and smooth, if it's feels bumpy going from the inside of rotor to the outside (straight across the braking area) then I'd considering either replacement or resurfacing

I got my rotors for roughly $20 Each (cheap ones) they rusted in a day, but what steel product doesn't when it gets wet.. But as long as you got full pad contact you should be fine.


Your brake pads should have lasted more than a year. The pistons were probably sticking which would cause the pads to wear faster. It can also warp the rotors and makes weird patterns on them. I'd replace both front calipers and get the rotors checked at a brake shop. They can usually machine them down a little (called "turning" the rotor) and make them flat and smooth again.

For the transmission, I don't recommend flushing. Especially with the age of your car, and depending on how many miles are on it... if the trans fluid has never been changed, flushing it can actually cause damage to your trans. Just drain it, change the filter, and refill with fresh fluid. There is no drain plug on the trans though. You have to take the bolts out of the pan on bottom and pull the pan to drain the fluid and replace the filter. Pretty sure there is a "how-to" tutorial on that if you do a search on here.

Ok thanks guys, considering the age along with having to leave my car out in the open all the time during the winter (especially when it snows) and summer i've decided i am going to save up and replace the front calipers, rotors and pads. I also already have some extra rear rotors so i could replace the current rear ones along with new pads as well.

Thanks again for all your help everyone :)

2000 GT
07-24-2013, 12:46 AM
Ok, update for the transmission fluid change. I know i gotta have it level in order to have an accurate reading. A few questions, should i use a level and place it under the transmission pan? I couldn't locate on how much fluid is the right level on here (it might be in the Haynes manual) but it doesn't hurt to ask. For starters though, how many pints or quarts do i need to replace it?

Last but not least as usual there are a few too many differences on what's the best transmission fluid to use. I hear full synthetic is bad to use as slipping could occur but that's if they did the procedure correctly in the first place (not too much and not too little). I want to use an ideal fluid/brand that will keep the transmission working rather then hurt it. Since i don't remember the last time it was ever changed and it has been awhile since i have taken the car to a shop period since i have been trying to do the maintenance myself. I am generally in a stop and go traffic, with various temps from cold to hot so if that helps what brand/fluid i should be using. Obviously i know it requires a certain type (Dexron III?) and i will have an experienced mechanic help me out with it along with the manual so it's done properly but for now i just need to know what i am going to need to buy.

AaronGTR
07-24-2013, 08:36 AM
It says in the owners manual how much fluid it will take, and I'm sure the info is on here somewhere. There's one amount for a complete overhaul, and another for just a drain and fill. They are different because the torque converter and other components in the trans hold some fluid that doesn't get changed out unless you tear the whole trans apart or do a flush. I think it's like 6 quarts and 9 quarts respectively, not sure.

I would use a factory type fluid. Synthetic is not always necessary or good for these trans, and the factory fluid is very good. It calls for Dexron 3. They have a new fluid called Dexron 6 that is better though. It's a little more expensive, but it compatible with all older fluids and trannies, so you could use it if you want.

As for getting the right level, the car doesn't have to perfectly exactly level. Just get it close and that is good enough. The level in the trans isn't going to change much from tilting a couple degrees one way or the other. It needs to be up on jack stands so you can get under the car, and the engine needs to be running and the transmission at full operating temp. This can take quite a while as it takes longer to warm the trans than it does engine coolant. I always fill it up with the approximate amount it needs then drive it around for about 30 minutes first, bring it back and jack it up to check the level. Once it's in the air, there is a small plug on the passenger side of the trans case (kind of by where the axle comes out) that you have to remove. When fluid starts to dribble out of that hole the trans is filled to the correct level. :thumbs:

2000 GT
07-24-2013, 09:22 AM
Ok, so following the Haynes manual will get the correct level and that's good considering i don't know how good my tires/rims are (one is bent in the rear) incase i need to have a shop do it with a pit, so that shouldn't offset that too much long as any tires isn't flat, correct? (or is that even with a tire being flat for whatever reason, but i'm just using a flat tire as an example here). I'm even nervous/anxious having someone else do this too lol. Considering it's about 75F outside it shouldn't take too long for the transmission to warm up but that'll change once i add the new fluid anyway i assume? But driving it around for say 30 minutes then recheck it should be a good rule of thumb, should i do this a few times (although if i have to jack up the car that might get a bit annoying to do ), I'll go with Dexron 6 i don't care if it's more expensive if it's going to extend my transmissions life longer :). Thanks! I'll take a look at the Haynes/owner manual and see what i need.

Starglow
07-24-2013, 09:28 AM
The car should be as level as possible but there's no need to break out the carpenters level...it doesn't have to be that perfect. I bought about 7 quarts of fluid IIRC, but basically you put back in whatever amount you take out. Just buy a few extra quarts and return any unopened bottles after the job is done. Again, it is key to follow the correct procedure for checking fluid level.

Regarding fluid choice, Castrol Dexron VI is by far the best choice and is completely compatable with Dexron III. I also added some Lucas Oil Transmission Fix to mine which will help with smoother shifting.

AaronGTR
07-24-2013, 09:40 AM
No need to check the fluid more than once. If it's not leaking, and you follow the procedure correctly the first time, it's not going to change. And yes, going with a dexron 6 fluid might prolong the transmission life and improve shifting, since it is an improved fluid. It certainly won't hurt anything.

Starglow
07-24-2013, 11:12 AM
All I have to do is park the front end of my car at the very edge of the driveway and there's a nice sloped drop-off to the street that allows me great access to the front underside without having to jack it up. So that is where I do oil changes and check the trans fluid with the car sitting level. I live on a cul-de-sac so there's no risk of being ran over while laying under the car unless the mailman takes me out. :angel

2000 GT
07-24-2013, 11:09 PM
Question, is there just a Castrol Dexron VI or is it strictly synthetic? I wasn't paying attention when buying it and ended up with the synthetic one like this: http://www.autozone.com/autozone/accessories/Castrol-DEXRON-VI-Transmax-automatic-transmission-fluid/_/N-25aa?itemIdentifier=930140_0_0_

Also the guy that was going to help me, wasn't listening to me when i told him that the car 'has to be level' but considering i was asking about the synthetic type i'm glad we decided not to go through with it. He of course at first thought since i don't know whether the transmission fluid had ever been changed that i screwed up by not changing it at all. Either way i don't want him doing it now since he doesn't realize that it's required to be level in order to change it out. He also offered to change my calipers with changing the fluid as well but i'm not sure i want him doing that now. I might do this at my dad's place if he's ever around this weekend.

Edit: I forgot to add this in but considering my calipers already needing to be replaced was putting antiseize (on the one that i screwed up) bad for the calipers? I would assume that putting anti seize would actually help prevent them from locking up considering they are most likely dragging in the first place.