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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Hi folks. I have yet to be able to get a hard pedal after bleeding the brakes. Its really starting to drive me crazy because its making it impossible for me to heel-toe while threshold braking at the track. Here's my procedure. I'd love it if someone could tell me what I'm doing wrong. If it looks good, what might my problem be?

Hook up Motiv pressure bleeder with amber or blue fluid and pressurize to 10 psi.
Crack passenger rear nipple.
Pump pedal slowly twice, 5 seconds down, 10 seconds up.
Wait for fluid to change color completely.
Close nipple.
Repeat for passenger front, then driver rear, then driver front.
Drive on dirt road and repeatedly engage ABS.
Repeat bleeding procedure with different color fluid except this time bleed the front calipers upside down, pump the pedal, allow it to bleed through for a while, then slowly rotate them right side up and continue bleeding.

Thanks folks!
Tom
 

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Wait, why are you pumping the pedal? If you're using a power bleeder, the pressure will push the fluid out of the brake lines. I'm not sure if that's your problem or not, but you shouldn't have to pump the brakes unless you're doing it the old fashion method.
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
Its probably not necessary, but some people have recommended it to help get any bubbles out of the MC.
 

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I have been told to start from the farthest wheel (from the MC) and keep getting closer and closer. So LR, RR, RF, LF
 

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Do you have any pedal at all?
If so, try pumping the brakes up and leaving them pumped up overnight. I cut a 2X4 and wedged it in between the seat and the brake pedal to keep the pedal firmly depressed. It helped me get that last 1/2" of pedal. I used to do it all the time on motorcycles when there was stubborn air bubbles somewhere in the system and it works like a champ.
 

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Shouldn't have to touch the pedal while using a pressure bleeder. If you have air in the master, the correct way of bleeding it is to disconnect it entirely from the brake system and route the lines back into the reservoir, then pump the snot out of it. Though, that should not be necessary either with a pressure bleed system.

Actuating the ABS is also not necessary unless there's actually air in the actuator, which should never happen unless you let the reservoir run dry and a LOT of air got into the system.
 

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If you have air in the lines to the front calipers then as mentioned above you will need to remove the calipers from the hub and flip them over to get the air to go through the cross over tube at the bottom of the caliper.

Search "flipping calipers" for more details.
 

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Discussion Starter · #13 ·
I was flipping the front calipers, but it didn't help. I think at this point the most likely culprit is the rear caliper issue that jmiesse mentioned. They are due for replacement so I will do that today and see if it helps.

Thanks guys...I'll report back.

Tom
 

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I was flipping the front calipers, but it didn't help. I think at this point the most likely culprit is the rear caliper issue
And as pointed out, you are bleeding in the wrong order and that MAY be part of the problem.

Bleed the rears first, THEN the fronts. Which order shouldn't really matter, but if you want to get picky, do the LR, then RR, then LF, and then RF as that is the order of the distance from the master cylinder if you remember than everything passes through the ABS on the right front of the car.

Also, don't pump the pedal at all when using a pressure bleeder. Pushing down the pedal closes off the reservoir, and could allow air back in as you release the pedal - even if the pressure bleeder then pushes air/fluid back out, some air may stay in there.
 

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Discussion Starter · #15 ·
Ok, I will quit pumping the pedal. Pretty sure I've done at least one bleed where I didn't do that and I still had a soft pedal, though. Also, I have done a bleeds in the preferred RR, LR, RF, LF order and had the same results. I've been doing both on one side first because I prefer to take the wheels off and its nice to jack both wheels off the ground with a single jack. Lazy, I know...

Also, I took the rear pads and rotor off one side today...the pads were worn too far and the rotor was scored up a bit. I'm going to have them turned and then replace the pads and bleed again and see what happens.

Thanks for the input.
Tom
 

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the rotor was scored up a bit. I'm going to have them turned
Lotus Elise/Exige Service Manual, Section JJ Braking System, page 11, Paragraph 3: "No skimming or re-surfacing of the brake discs is recommended. If the disc becomes badly scored, or is out of specification in any way, it should be renewed."

EDIT: That is assuming that you have the stock discs.
 

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...

Bleed the rears first, THEN the fronts. Which order shouldn't really matter, but if you want to get picky, do the LR, then RR, then LF, and then RF as that is the order of the distance from the master cylinder if you remember than everything passes through the ABS on the right front of the car.

...
Tim, isn't the ABS unit on the Federal Elise/Exige on the left front of the car, above the left front shock mount?
 

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Tim, isn't the ABS unit on the Federal Elise/Exige on the left front of the car, above the left front shock mount?



DOH! - I was thinking about another car. Yes, the ABS is on the driver's side.

Thanks for catching that. :thwack: <-- Me...
 

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so is it necessary to bleed the clutch when bleeding the brakes?
 
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