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Discussion Starter #1
Hi again,

Just got the van back from the garage this weekend so I went for a drive to test everything. The good news is that I now have heat (new thermostat) and gaz gauge (new float in tank) plus new upper ball joints and alignment.

The bad thing, as the title says, is that it is pulling to the left when I'm braking. I've never noticed before as it only shows when I'm braking a lot. On smooth braking it doesn't do it or at least I don't notice it.

So, what it does is pull to the left a bit enough that I need to turn the wheel maybe 5 - 10 degrees to the right to correct the path. I've read stuff about a frozen caliper but these are drum brakes. Any idea on what to check ? I'll probably bring it back to the garage monday as the trans back seal they changed is leaking... Had probably around 2 oz of trans fluid in my driveway... That's the good thing about snow. It makes these leaks stand out ;-)

Have a great day and a happy spring to all.
 

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1986 would have disc brakes in the front. If it is pulling to the left under heavy braking, that is because the front left caliper is doing a beter job than the front right. It could be a restriction in the line going to the front right caliper or it could be that the front left is not retracting as far as the right and thus needs less pedal travel.
 

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I did not know an '86 has 4 wheel drums.

The self adjusters usually do not self adjust properly.

The strut rod bushings erode from the inside out. People tend to look at the visible exterior and declare them fine, when the interiors are all ground up and the bushings are toast. During braking one side can compress more than the other and cause pulling.
 

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Discussion Starter #6
You are right that it's discs in front / drums in back.

So, we found out that the cylinder on one side was done. This was changed on both sides just to be sure as were the rotors. They were not dead yet but would have been soon. Both hoses were changed in the back too. The rubber ones.

A test drive showed that it resolved some of the problem but not all. So we looked at the front, changed the two hoses (they were a bit kinked) and found that the two calipers were different. These were also changed and now it's steering quite fine !

Turns out that TXwooley was right. I don't know who had the idea to put different calipers in front but now they're the same. It's a good things that parts are not too expansive on that van... Now we should be all fine to get to the south in a couple of weeks.
 
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