02 Rear end/brake issue | Ford Explorer Forums - Serious Explorations

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02 Rear end/brake issue


January 27, 2007
Reaction score
City, State
massillon ohio
Year, Model & Trim Level
2002 xlt
I have an 02 and recently changed the rear brake pads and rotors. About a month after changing them I am hearing a hellacious grinding coming from the rear and it feels like the brakes are stuck in the back. I didnt adjust the parking brake because before I changed it didnt work so I wasnt worried about messing with it since Im used to it not working.

Im not sure if this would cause the grinding or brakes to stick or should I explore other possibilites.

If this is the issue how would I go about adjusting it to see if this fixes the problem.

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Well first of you have to find out if it is the problem -- so block off the front wheels, put the transmission in Neutral and see if you can spin the rear tires by hand. If you can spin it by hand, then the brakes are probably good -- even though you might hear a bit of grinding noise between the pads and the rotor (thats normal).

My experience here only, for something for you to look at.

I had a loud grinding noise in the rear of my '02 that started on the home stretch of a 1800 mile road trip to Nova Scotia.

When I got home, I jacked the truck up and spun the wheels to see if the brake was dragging, it spun pretty freely so I suspected it was something else. I began to tear into the rear end when I pulled the rotor off and out fell both parking brake pads on both sides. I guess the 200 or so miles of dirt roads in Canada knocked the pads loose since we never use the parking brake.

I replaced the pads and its now quiet as could be.

Just something to check out.


I agree with Tom. I changed my rear pads and rotors after I had metal on metal, and noticed that the parking brake shoes inside the rotor had come off at one end and were flopping about. If one of those came loose completely it could cause a grinding noise.

After driving down the road and the truck hopping all over the place I decided to jack it up and take a look at it. Once in the air I discovered that the wheel had about 3 inches of play in it. Also when the bearing went it ripped the boot on the cv joint. Looks like I got my weekend plans !!!

The emergency/parking brake design on the '02 Explorer is dismal at best. Mine wasn't working and the dealer said the pads were shot and a part was bent. They'd never been used since new for other than parking, never left engaged while driving and yet allowed the vehicle to move 6" either way before engaging when in park. A very poor design.