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Discussion Starter #1
So for a long time in my 94 escort lx the brake pedal was not quite firm enough. They would lock up if I slammed the pedal at low speeds, but not faster ones. Recently, I completely replaced the front brakes and bled each wheel starting furthest away from the MC, i.e., rear right, rear left, front right, front left. The pedal is still soft. It is basically exactly the same as it was before, functional but not quite powerful enough. I'm starting to wonder if the Master cylinder might be the culprit. Is there a good way to reach a sure diagnosis?

Thanks.
 

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Discussion Starter #3
Well, I just went and did the vacuum hose valve check thing, and that seems to be working. Is there some other way of testing the vacuum? I haven't looked at the rear brakes yet.
 

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Do you have drums in the rear. Sounds like the rears are doing their share, meaning either the shoes are worn and/or out of adjustment. If the rear wheel cylinders have to travel far, then pedal will seem "longer". The shoes, if in good shape, should just barely contact drum when brakes not applied. Make sure the adjuster is freed up and only ratchets the correct way(they can come unadjusted). Like said before, if pedal doesn't sink and the vacuum assist is working, then I would have to suspect the rears. The easiest way to check vacuum is to remove tube from booster behind master cylinder. When removed you should be able to plug with finger and it feel the vacuum, and when hose is off, the pedal will seem very hard and heavy.
 
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