I am not a truck person so I apologize if I don't make much sense.
Either way..... I have a 2002 Dakota V6 4x4 (SXT) that I got used
about 6 months ago. One time I overloaded the truck. When I got it
home, a smell of burning brakes(?) was coming from it. Although I
haven't done that again, when I am carrying anything of a decent
weight (400+ lbs) I smell that smell again to a certain extent.
1. What's going on?
2. What did I do?
3. How do I fix it? What do I tell the mechanic to check?
It is an automatic, so no clutch. It's the same type of smell though.
Another thing that I notice is, the heavier the payload, the less
travel I have on the brake pedal. I don't know if that is a safety
feature (reduction of brake time/making the brakes more sensitive).
Hmmm, that's a tough one. No built in safety
feature like that.
The only real differance between empty and loaded
is the height of the suspension. Check and see of a
line is pinched (doubtfull). Also check the emergency
brake cables. See if they are getting stretched when
loaded. That would activate the parking brake.
LOL! Love the tag at the end!
I like the parking brake idea mentioned as it would fit the smell
issue. Now I will show real ignorance here.... Would issues with the
axles/bearings cause a smell when put under stress? I would think
not, but I don't know.
Regarding axles/bearings....anything I should look for?
And since we're at it... Like I said, I am new to trucks as a whole?
Besides getting a Chilton guide for this truck, is there any book that
anyone recommend I get? I don't want to be the next Dodge guru, but I
would really like to know more about my ride.
It is not the bearings that are making the smell but if they are on the way
out, the hub could be shifting due to the weight and changing the alignment
between the drum and the shoes causing them to drag and cook. Granted, this
cousl be a real reach but it is a possibility.
Make sure that they still move freely and that there is no play or shifting
of the hub. I would also look for what Tom suggested because if you have
one, that would be your most likely cause of your problems.
The Factory service manual is your best bet there. Once you learn how to
follow the damn thing, it can be your best friend when it comes to the nuts
and bolts of your vehicle.
If at first you don't succeed, you're not cut out for skydiving
I would not waste time with axles and bearings. It simple sounds like
user uses brakes aggressively and when extra weight is in the truck it
takes more brake friction to stop it and this results in more heat
which can overheat brakes and cause odor. The solution is get a bigger
truck, install bigger brakes, carry less load or brake more
conservatily when carrying extra weight. Do not waste time witch
hunting for other problems (like axles and bearing) that is not likely
your problem anyway because it only does it overloaded. (if bearing
were bad and axles leaking it woul effect braking all the time.
The user....being me...doesn't hit the breaks too hard at all when
carrying a heavy load. The last time this occurred, I was carrying no
more than about 400 1lbs in the bed. I could definitely feel the
travel reduced in the brake pedal, even with that load being what it
However, to your point, I only notice the smell when I have a decent
amount of weight in the back (over a few hundred lbs). When the bed
is empty or there is minimal weight, there's no smell and brake pedal
travel seems normal.
I'll agree with Snoman (to a point) about suspecting the e-brake. Simple
test... with the truck loaded, jack up the rear (just one wheel if you have
an open diff - if you have a limited slip, you'll need to raise both rear
tires), and with the truck in neutral, see if the rear wheels will turn
Or, you can simply disconnect the e-brake cable at the adjuster (along the
driver's side frame rail, about half-way between the cab and the rear axle).
Loosen the adjuster nut until you can disconnect the cable. Tie it up so it
doesn't drag, and test-drive the truck. You can also crawl under the truck
and take a good look at the e-brake cable, then have a few friends jump in
the bed, and see if the cable tightens up or is otherwise fouled.
As for the comments about getting a bigger truck (no doubt with a big-block
gas engine, and super-low gearing in the rear axle), well... ignore that
part. An '02 Dak is more than capable of hauling 400lbs. of cargo.
Another thought... does your truck have a load-sensing proportioning valve?
Follow the flexible brake hose from the rear axle up to the frame rail. If
there's a valve mounted there with an arm, and a rod that runs down to the
axle, that's a proportioning valve. If you do have one, I'd also throw some
suspicion that way (and, in fact, that's the more likely culprit than an
e-brake cable getting hung up). That valve's job is to sense the amount of
weight in the bed, and allow progressively more brake pressure to the rear
brakes as the load increases. It's possible that this valve is holding
residual pressure in the system, and causing your rear brakes to drag.
Of course, if you don't have the valve described above, ignore the comment.
If this dakota has oversized tires, brake capacity is in fact reduced
and would take less weight to overload brakes. Also brakes are not
that genrous on some models because small SUV's do not have the same
federal braking standards as cars. My 89 4x4 burg has always had what
I consider to be marginal brakes since it was new. If you use brake
gentely it is not a problem but if you have to set it down hard from
speed the brakes complain.
So where did you read that he has oversized tires?
Yet another example from over 15 years ago.
Right - like the OP stated he did
And if your aunt had balls.... why don't you stop inventing all kinds of
scenarios, and stick to the facts? This is the second time you've
recommended that someone tradein their vehicle. The first was someone with
a bad rear wheel speed sensor, and now it's a guy with a 1/2-ton truck
trying to haul 400lbs. of cargo.
And you wonder why you're held in such contempt around here??
You are held in contempt by people in every news group you post on! Why?
Because you have a history of posting dangerous information, wrong
information, outdated information and just plan mindnumbing nonsense.
Now WTF is a "burg"???????????????????
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