1994 Chevrolet Cavalier Bleed the ABS Brake System

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The Chevrolet Cavalier was a compact car produced from 1982 to 2005. The 1994 Cavalier came with a front-wheel, anti-lock brake system (ABS) produced by Delco Moraine, called the Delco ABS-VI. Over time, air can get trapped inside the brake lines. This will cause the brakes to feel soft and work inadequately. The remedy for this is bleeding the brakes, which pushes the air out and replaces it with brake fluid.

Tools Used[edit]

Tech 1 scan tool
Jack stands
Lug wrench
Brake fluid
Box-end wrench
Drip pan
Clear plastic hose

Bleed the ABS Brake System[edit]

  • Park the 1994 Chevy Cavalier on a flat level surface and set the parking brake.
  • Attach the Tech 1 scan tool to the Delco ABS-VI modulator. Select "F4 ABS Test" from the mode menu. Select "F0 Manual Control." Set the pistons to the home position.
  • Disconnect the negative battery cable.
  • Loosen the lug nuts on the front wheels with a lug wrench. Position the jack under the front of the vehicle and lift it until jack stands can be placed under both axles. Finish removing the lug nuts. Remove the wheels and place them out of the way.
  • Open the brake fluid reservoir and add brake fluid until it is filled to the highest mark. Periodically through the bleeding procedure, recheck the fluid level and top it off. Do not allow the reservoir to become empty.
  • Pull off the cap from the passenger side bleeder screw, found behind the caliper body. Slide a drip pan under the bleeder screw. Place a box-end wrench over the screw, then attach a clear plastic hose to the nipple on the end of the screw. Place the end of the hose so it is pointed at the drip pan.
  • Position a second person inside the vehicle. Have them pump the brakes three or four times, then hold the brake pedal down as far as possible.
  • Turn the wrench one-quarter of a turn to open the screw. Let it stay open for two seconds, then quickly tighten the screw. Have the person in the Cavalier release the brake pedal.
  • Check the brake fluid inside the hose for air bubbles. If air bubbles are present, repeat the procedure until they are not.
  • Repeat steps 6 through 9 with the driver side brakes.
  • Replace the wheels and tighten the lug nuts with a lug wrench until the wheel begins to turn. Remove the jack stands and lower the Cavalier. Finish tightening the lug nuts.
  • Check the brake fluid reservoir one final time and fill it with brake fluid.

Tips & Warnings[edit]

  • The rear brakes can be bled in a manner similar to the front brakes, without worrying about the pistons in the ABS modulator.
  • Be very careful climbing in and out of a vehicle while it is on jack stands to prevent the vehicle from sliding off.
  • Dispose of the old brake fluid at an automotive shop or recycling center that is capable of dealing with petroleum products. Do not dispose of it in the trash or pour it onto the ground.