Brake warning light question

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Old 12 Nov 2006, 04:59 pm   #1 (permalink)
Allen G.
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Default Brake warning light question

I have a question for the group. We have a 2001 Camry LE 4-cylinder
automatic, and the brake warning light on the instrument panel is
coming on intermittently. I pulled the wheels, and the linings, disks,
drums, and stop lights appear to be fine. There is no evidence of a
fluid leak, and the master cylinder is full of fluid. I removed the
console cover and found no problems with the switch on the parking
brake lever. As a test, I unplugged the wire connected to the master
cylinder,
and the light did not come on. After I reconnected the wire, the light
started coming on again. The
problem is intermittent however. Sometimes it will come on when the
brakes are applied, but then it will go back out a few seconds later.
I don't think the car has ABS, and the brake function appears to be
normal.

I don't want to start replacing expensive components, but I don't want
to loose my brakes unexpectedly. Has anyone seen a problem like this
before, or does anyone have any suggestions? Thanks for your help.

Allen G.

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Old 13 Nov 2006, 02:13 am   #2 (permalink)
jg
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Default Re: Brake warning light question


"Allen G." <gilchris@swbell.net> wrote in message
news:1163372349.112592.47320@k70g2000cwa.googlegro ups.com...
>I have a question for the group. We have a 2001 Camry LE 4-cylinder
> automatic, and the brake warning light on the instrument panel is
> coming on intermittently. I pulled the wheels, and the linings, disks,
> drums, and stop lights appear to be fine. There is no evidence of a
> fluid leak, and the master cylinder is full of fluid. I removed the
> console cover and found no problems with the switch on the parking
> brake lever. As a test, I unplugged the wire connected to the master
> cylinder,
> and the light did not come on. After I reconnected the wire, the light
> started coming on again. The
> problem is intermittent however. Sometimes it will come on when the
> brakes are applied, but then it will go back out a few seconds later.
> I don't think the car has ABS, and the brake function appears to be
> normal.
>
> I don't want to start replacing expensive components, but I don't want
> to loose my brakes unexpectedly. Has anyone seen a problem like this
> before, or does anyone have any suggestions? Thanks for your help.
>

Not certain about this model, but many cars have 2 rubber buckets in the
master cylinder. When the first fails the warning light comes on due to loss
of pressure at the first piston and the second bucket (or piston seal) does
the work. The brakes still work but the master cylinder is on the way out.
It's usually the first brake part to go apart from shoes. But 5 years is a
bit early, I guess my '91 is still on the original.


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Old 13 Nov 2006, 03:32 am   #3 (permalink)
mjc
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Default Re: Brake warning light question

jg wrote:
> "Allen G." <gilchris@swbell.net> wrote in message
> news:1163372349.112592.47320@k70g2000cwa.googlegro ups.com...
>
>>I have a question for the group. We have a 2001 Camry LE 4-cylinder
>>automatic, and the brake warning light on the instrument panel is
>>coming on intermittently. I pulled the wheels, and the linings, disks,
>>drums, and stop lights appear to be fine. There is no evidence of a
>>fluid leak, and the master cylinder is full of fluid. I removed the
>>console cover and found no problems with the switch on the parking
>>brake lever. As a test, I unplugged the wire connected to the master
>>cylinder,
>>and the light did not come on. After I reconnected the wire, the light
>>started coming on again. The
>>problem is intermittent however. Sometimes it will come on when the
>>brakes are applied, but then it will go back out a few seconds later.
>>I don't think the car has ABS, and the brake function appears to be
>>normal.
>>
>>I don't want to start replacing expensive components, but I don't want
>>to loose my brakes unexpectedly. Has anyone seen a problem like this
>>before, or does anyone have any suggestions? Thanks for your help.
>>

>
> Not certain about this model, but many cars have 2 rubber buckets in the
> master cylinder. When the first fails the warning light comes on due to loss
> of pressure at the first piston and the second bucket (or piston seal) does
> the work. The brakes still work but the master cylinder is on the way out.
> It's usually the first brake part to go apart from shoes. But 5 years is a
> bit early, I guess my '91 is still on the original.
>
>


Sounds like a bad brake fluid pressure sensor. I don't know
about the location on this Camry, but generally they screw into
the master cylinder, and that's what the wire connects to. It
may also be integral with the master cylinder...
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Old 13 Nov 2006, 01:53 pm   #4 (permalink)
jg
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Default Re: Brake warning light question


"mjc<DELETETHIS>13 13 @verizon.net>" <"mjc<DELETETHIS> wrote in message
news:OYW5h.2741$T_.2444@trndny06...
.........>
> Sounds like a bad brake fluid pressure sensor. I don't know about the
> location on this Camry, but generally they screw into the master cylinder,
> and that's what the wire connects to. It
> may also be integral with the master cylinder...


Well worth checking that first.


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Old 13 Nov 2006, 09:30 pm   #5 (permalink)
johngdole@hotmail.com
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Default Re: Brake warning light question

There is a float switch built into the reservoir. The electrical
connector is on the side of it where you disconnected it. If the switch
is bad then you just have to get a replacement reservoir (not the
master cylinder).

I've never tried it (or need to), but if you can gain access to the
float then you can check the electrical continuity at the external
connector as you move the float up and down.


Allen G. wrote:
> I have a question for the group. We have a 2001 Camry LE 4-cylinder
> automatic, and the brake warning light on the instrument panel is
> coming on intermittently. I pulled the wheels, and the linings, disks,
> drums, and stop lights appear to be fine. There is no evidence of a
> fluid leak, and the master cylinder is full of fluid. I removed the
> console cover and found no problems with the switch on the parking
> brake lever. As a test, I unplugged the wire connected to the master
> cylinder,
> and the light did not come on. After I reconnected the wire, the light
> started coming on again. The
> problem is intermittent however. Sometimes it will come on when the
> brakes are applied, but then it will go back out a few seconds later.
> I don't think the car has ABS, and the brake function appears to be
> normal.
>
> I don't want to start replacing expensive components, but I don't want
> to loose my brakes unexpectedly. Has anyone seen a problem like this
> before, or does anyone have any suggestions? Thanks for your help.
>
> Allen G.


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Old 14 Nov 2006, 01:23 pm   #6 (permalink)
Padre
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Default Re: Brake warning light question

Try topping off the brake fluid reservoir even if it seems to be full.
On my 99 Camry 6 cyl, this did the job for me when I had the same
symptoms.

On 12 Nov 2006 14:59:09 -0800, "Allen G." <gilchris@swbell.net> wrote:

>I have a question for the group. We have a 2001 Camry LE 4-cylinder
>automatic, and the brake warning light on the instrument panel is
>coming on intermittently. I pulled the wheels, and the linings, disks,
>drums, and stop lights appear to be fine. There is no evidence of a
>fluid leak, and the master cylinder is full of fluid. I removed the
>console cover and found no problems with the switch on the parking
>brake lever. As a test, I unplugged the wire connected to the master
>cylinder,
>and the light did not come on. After I reconnected the wire, the light
>started coming on again. The
>problem is intermittent however. Sometimes it will come on when the
>brakes are applied, but then it will go back out a few seconds later.
>I don't think the car has ABS, and the brake function appears to be
>normal.
>
>I don't want to start replacing expensive components, but I don't want
>to loose my brakes unexpectedly. Has anyone seen a problem like this
>before, or does anyone have any suggestions? Thanks for your help.
>
>Allen G.


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Old 29 Nov 2006, 01:00 am   #7 (permalink)
Father Guido
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Default Re: Brake warning light question

On Tue, 14 Nov 2006 19:23:30 GMT, Padre <EReuscher@yahoo.com> wrote:

>Try topping off the brake fluid reservoir even if it seems to be full.
>On my 99 Camry 6 cyl, this did the job for me when I had the same
>symptoms.


This could be an indication that your brake pads are wearing out and
more fluid is needed to keep them touching the rotors, thereby
reducing the amount of fluid in the reservoir enough to trigger the
warning light.



>
>On 12 Nov 2006 14:59:09 -0800, "Allen G." <gilchris@swbell.net> wrote:
>
>>I have a question for the group. We have a 2001 Camry LE 4-cylinder
>>automatic, and the brake warning light on the instrument panel is
>>coming on intermittently. I pulled the wheels, and the linings, disks,
>>drums, and stop lights appear to be fine. There is no evidence of a
>>fluid leak, and the master cylinder is full of fluid. I removed the
>>console cover and found no problems with the switch on the parking
>>brake lever. As a test, I unplugged the wire connected to the master
>>cylinder,
>>and the light did not come on. After I reconnected the wire, the light
>>started coming on again. The
>>problem is intermittent however. Sometimes it will come on when the
>>brakes are applied, but then it will go back out a few seconds later.
>>I don't think the car has ABS, and the brake function appears to be
>>normal.
>>
>>I don't want to start replacing expensive components, but I don't want
>>to loose my brakes unexpectedly. Has anyone seen a problem like this
>>before, or does anyone have any suggestions? Thanks for your help.
>>
>>Allen G.


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Old 04 Dec 2006, 10:47 pm   #8 (permalink)
Father Guido
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Default Re: Brake warning light question

>On Tue, 14 Nov 2006 19:23:30 GMT, Padre <EReuscher@yahoo.com> wrote:
>
>>Try topping off the brake fluid reservoir even if it seems to be full.
>>On my 99 Camry 6 cyl, this did the job for me when I had the same
>>symptoms.


Yep, this also worked for me. I brought the level up from the low line
to the high line (very little fluid), but the brake light never came
on once today. I'm crossing my fingers it stays off.

Thanks!!!
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Old 05 Dec 2006, 04:37 am   #9 (permalink)
mjc
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Default Re: Brake warning light question

Father Guido wrote:
>>On Tue, 14 Nov 2006 19:23:30 GMT, Padre <EReuscher@yahoo.com> wrote:
>>
>>
>>>Try topping off the brake fluid reservoir even if it seems to be full.
>>>On my 99 Camry 6 cyl, this did the job for me when I had the same
>>>symptoms.

>
>
> Yep, this also worked for me. I brought the level up from the low line
> to the high line (very little fluid), but the brake light never came
> on once today. I'm crossing my fingers it stays off.
>
> Thanks!!!



If it was right at the low line, then the float sensor was
doing its job. If it was above it, it could maybe use a small
adjustment.
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