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Q: Brakes don’t work in reverse, how does this happen?

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I've never had a problem with my 2012 Chevrolet Cruze until very recently, at about 15,000 miles. The brakes work just fine whenever I am driving down the road but when I am reversing, especially down an incline, the brakes struggle to stop the car. I have to really push down on the pedal to get them to do even that much! What would cause the brakes to not work in such a specific way? They are fine otherwise.

The brake issue appears to be a common concern with this vehicle. I did some research and quickly found that there is a recall for the power assisted brakes in your car. The brakes on the Chevrolet Cruze are vacuum assisted and they utilize an electric vacuum pump, along with the vacuum created by the engine, to assist in engaging the brakes. Most vehicles that are turbocharged, or supercharged, will utilize an electric vacuum pump to generate the proper vacuum needed to assist in braking. The reason you are experiencing this problem in reverse, and mostly on the incline, is because you are using both the gas and the brake pedal at the same time to maneuver your vehicle. This causes a low vacuum, which in turn makes it harder to depress the gas pedal. The recall corrects this issue by adding a vacuum switch to prevent the vacuum pressure from escaping the brake booster, and allows you to apply the brakes without having a hard pedal. Be sure to visit your local certified dealer to request they take care of this recall issue.

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