Q: Front Brakes Locking

asked by on December 10, 2016

I recently replaced my brake light switch on my 2007 Nissan Frontier (automatic/6 cylinder) and within an hour my front brakes had locked up. Initially the brake lights were not coming on, so I removed an replaced the original brake light switch. They lights came back on but now the front brakes are locking down after a few miles of driving. No problems before, could the switch be causing this? Unfortunately I've already had someone working on it and they've replaced the MC and most everything besides the ABS. Feel like we're chasing a ghost at this point and throwing money away. Could the problem be the brake light switch?

Thanks for your help!

My car has 150000 miles.
My car has an automatic transmission.

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Your car is relatively new and so the only thing really that I would expect to replace in the braking system are the brake calipers (other than consumables or maintenance items, of course, such as pads and fluid). To replace anything else requires very, very specific diagnosis of an actual fault and you did not describe any problems that you were having with the braking system other than the lights not working. Brakes "locking" are essentially brakes sticking. That can only happen if the piston in the caliper is not retracting and/or the torque plate sliding pins are seized. If the calipers and torque plates are ORIGINAL, that is 10 years old, throw them away and install rebuilt ones, preferably from a dealer OEM source. (Before installing new, clean calipers, thoroughly flush new brake fluid through existing calipers, THEN remove old calipers). Once you install new calipers with new OEM brake pads and properly turned rotors (or new rotors, preferably OEM rotors), if the problem recurs, that means that hydraulic pressure is being applied to the caliper due to a hose collapsed internally, the proportioning valve is stuck (maybe clogged with debris, if your mechanic pushed fluid backwards from the caliper while putting new pads in, possibly without replacing the caliper) or there is other uncommanded operation of the system. Unless you are getting an ABS malfunction warning light, it is doubtful that ABS is causing the sticking but of course an on site inspection would take consideration of that and all other possibilities. The brake light switch has nothing to do with the brakes presently sticking. If you desire that the problem simply be inspected and resolved by a certified mechanic, you can request a brake inspection and a Mechanic will come to your location and get this promptly concluded for you. If you have other concerns or questions, by all means please re-contact us.

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