YJ Brake Problems
Recently purchased a 1991 YJ (4.0L & manual tranny). It's bone stock except for the 30 inch MTRs I put on there from my old Jeep (long story).
Anyway, I was driving to my brother's house today and something happened. I will tell it like it happened:
I was driving about 60MPH when I started smelling something nasty. It smelled like burning electrical components, but I couldn't tell if it was my vehicle or something else. I kept driving and kept smelling it, but I didn't notice any smoke or anything so I figured I'd be okay till I got to my brother's house.
Down a hill the speed limit changes to 35. I gently press the brake pedal and my Jeep veers to the right SEVERELY. Now I'm freaked out because I almost went over a bank and down into some trees.
I pull off at the gas station and notice that my Jeep isn't performing correctly. Basically, I have to give it a LOT of gas to keep it moving. I'm starting to have an inkling of what's going on. I pull over and there's smoke coming from the left front brakes, and it stinks bad. I think the left front was stuck braking. Called my brother, then drove it to his house. Definitely the brake was sticking, it was smoking a lot worse and was really hot when I pulled up (it's about 2.5 miles from the gas station and I didn't go over 30MPH).
Anyway, we jacked it up, pulled off the tire and other than the melted pad glue, everything looks fine. The pads are very thick, the rotors look okay but they should have been turned last time the pads were replaced (by the previous owner). The wheel SPUN FREELY and testing the brakes with the car off seemed to be fine. We pulled the caliper free from the rotor and everything looks okay.
The fluid is full and there appear to be no leaks in the brake system at all. The brake warning dummy light was not on.
While driving, the brake pedal was NOT depressed even after I let go. It would come up like normal, but something was getting really hot and slowing me down, it really felt like brakes.
Recently, I have gone wheeling in some mud and puddles, but nothing really extreme. Basically they were max about 8-10 inches deep and just muddy water.
Can you think of what this could be? I thought the caliper would be seized up and we could just replace it, but it seems like it's okay.
Any help would be greatly appreciated!