1996 Pontiac Grand Am Remove the Rear Brake Drums

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To access the rear brake shoes or wheel cylinder for the drum brakes on the 1996 Pontiac Grand Am requires the removal of the drum first. This task is easier said than done considering the age of the Grand Am and how long the drums have been on the vehicle. Rust and road debris contaminate the slight space between the center of the drum hole and the hub it sits on.

[edit] Tools Used

Tools
Tire wedge
Lug wrench
Jack
Jack stands
Grease pencil
Penetrating lubricant
Dead-blow rubber mallet
Drum-puller
Ratchet and socket set

[edit] Remove the Rear Brake Drums

  • Park the Grand Am on a level surface suitable for lifting and supporting the vehicle. Do not apply the parking brake or the rear brakes will prohibit you from removing the drums.
  • Place a tire wedge in front of one of the front tires.
  • Loosen the rear lug nuts 1/4 turn with the lug wrench.
  • Lift one rear quarter of the Grand Am with a jack and then support it safely onto a jack stand. Repeat this step for the other side to raise the rear axle of the vehicle.
  • Spin the rear tires by hand to make sure the parking brake mechanism is not locking them up. If so, recheck to make sure the parking brake is not engaged.
  • Fully remove the lug nuts and then the tires.
  • Draw a mark on one of the studs and then on the drum that corresponds with the stud with a grease pencil. This step only needs to be done if you're not replacing the drums. This will allow you to install the drum back onto the hub in the same location it was removed from.
  • Try to pull the drums off by hand. If they're stuck onto the hub, spray a copious amount of penetrating lubricant on the mating surface of the drum's center hole and wheel hub. Allow the lubricant to soak in for a few minutes.
  • Strike the front of the drum near the edge with a dead-blow rubber mallet sharply to shock the rust and corrosion free. If necessary, spin the drum 1/4 turn and strike it again in a different location around the front facing of the drum.
  • Apply a drum-puller if necessary to remove the drum. The three-legged puller will grab the rear lip of the drum and as you tighten the center with a ratchet and socket, it will pull the drum off of the hub.
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