How to Adjust the Brake Adjuster


Located on the underside of the vehicle, the brake cabl […]

Located on the underside of the vehicle, the brake cable adjuster can be adjusted to make the brake cable taut. If the cable is not taut, you may need to tighten the cable by turning the adjuster nut in a clockwise direction. To ensure proper tension, the cable must be taut before the shoes engage.

Brake adjusters can be either square-ended, wedge-shaped, or hexagon-shaped. Their ends are sometimes recessed or obscured. Be careful when handling these components. If they are not secured correctly, the adjuster could be damaged. Some are hidden inside the brake drum, so access may require removing the wheel.

The mechanism is operated by rotating the adjuster nut and the push rod. When the brake is activated, the primary shoe 64 drags counterclockwise, which forces the adjuster link 70 to rotate clockwise. When the brake is relaxed, the cable guides outward, advancing the pawl finger 75 onto the star wheel 65. In addition, the return spring forces the adjusting lever downward and causes the star wheel to rotate. When the brake is activated, the toe of the primary shoe pushes against the anchor, thereby tightening the adjusting strut.

Adjusters also help maintain brake balance. They ensure that the shoes are in the proper rest position in relation to the drum. Some adjusters have an automatic feature that advances the adjuster gear by a tooth at a time. The adjuster gear is made up of threads that unscrew when the adjuster is turned. This threaded gear then extends to fill the gap between the shoes and the drum. When the shoes wear down, the adjuster may need to be adjusted again.

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