Car Doctor: Why do my brakes shudder?

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Indy Lifestyle Online

Q. I want to service my 1999 Ford Mondeo 2.0 Zetec as it is coming up to 60,000 miles.

Q. I want to service my 1999 Ford Mondeo 2.0 Zetec as it is coming up to 60,000 miles. I think I can do the basic bits, but anything complicated I will get a garage to do. I'm concerned about the mileage at which the timing belt should be changed. I asked my Ford dealer and they had no detailed schedule and just quoted for a full service. I was a bit unsure about what I read in my Haynes manual when it came to the service schedule for this particular model.
Graeme King, Essex.

A. Ford helpfully faxed through a Service Checksheet, which runs to two pages for that particular model, which has the Duratec engine and manual gearbox. Changing the timing belt is not mentioned, but as your car is more than five years old, I would recommend that it is done even though Ford says it can be done at 80,000 miles. Belts have finite lives and many manufacturers recommend that they be changed every two to four years irrespective of the mileage covered. If you do not feel confident enough to do this it is a procedure best left to a garage which has probably done it hundreds of times already. Otherwise, replacing the pollen filters, checking fluid levels, changing the oil is very straightforward. The Mondeo was designed to be easy to look after and it is. I've popped the service schedule in the post.

Q. My brakes constantly shudder and they looked fine so I suspected it was the suspension and replaced the bushes and to be safe fitted new discs and even set up the steering again at a garage. However, just a few thousand miles later the problem returned. One thing I have noticed is that there is no shudder when the brakes are hot. What is happening?
Kevin Bell, East Grinstead.

A. You could be suffering from warped brake discs. This often happens for a reason, mostly sticking callipers. So disassemble, clean, or replace the parts if necessary. Alternatively it could be a failing flexible hose. There could be an obstruction or a build up of grime. These parts are very cheap and you might as well replace them and it ought to be the first item you check. If they are clean then go back to the callipers.

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