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I have a 2003 focus Zx3 and both of my front brakes have been doing the same thing. It started last November they started locking up and getting so hot the car would not move period.When I finally found out it was the calipers that had completely twisted and when heated up they would not release until the wheel actually sat and cooled off for at least 20 minutes.This resulted in burning up my clutch.So after having my clutch replaced, new brakes and calipers it has once again started doing the same thing,only worse this time. I just had new brake shoes put on it since it has been almost a year.It is locking up and making the car stop on its own.Have checked the calipers to make sure they havent twisted again.Cannot drive the car at any time without it doing this.At my wits end cannot afford to burn the clutch up. Need advice pleaase.........HELP
 

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New brake pads in just one year? Have they been dragging all this time???

If they're always dragging, eventually they'll heat up & lock on.

Plenty of possibilities, first you need to jack it up & see if they're dragging all the time & if so look for reasons for that.

Pads sticking in the holders, rattle clip not right so the caliper cocks & drags, caliper slider pins not clean & lubed for free movement, bad calipers, brake lines damaged & not releasing pressure...

IF they will spin free, brake & release normally - then you get into more in depth checks like whether the pedal is returning properly all the time & whether the clearance from pedal rod to booster is adequate. Too tight & it can start applying the brakes when you aren't on the pedal - then they heat up & eventually lock.


Made this it's own thread for more looks (new problem)
 

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This can happen from normal failure or the bearings being torqued on beyond spec, they generate much more heat and fail quickly, but even before they have totally failed, can raise constant rolling temps high enough to boil your fluid, cook calipers, etc.. like you're constanly holding them while burning down the interstate.
 

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Or your cv joints could be totally dry and be seizing up. That would transfer a [email protected] ton of heat to the brakes, bearings, tranny, etc.. Check all 4 rubber boots. They should be dry on the outside with no tears in them.
 

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Compensation port in master cylinder clogged to not let fluid equalize when it heats up.
 

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The rod sticking out of booster if slightly too far can do exactly the same thing as that port covered up. Why the tip is adjustable..........nobody ever looks there though and most don't even know they are supposed to be adjusted with a new booster install.
 
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