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I wonder how many of us Escort owners have looked under our cars to inspect the brake lines running to the rear axle - for rust? You have to either raise the car a little at the back, or have a miror and a good light, since the lines run beside the fuel tank on the drivers side, and up against the body, where they are hard to see if you arent looking straight up.
Each time a new member asks about things to look for when buying a 1st or 2nd generation Escort, I try to remember to advise them to look at the brakes lines -every inch of them- either before they buy it, or before they take it on the road.
This applies to most any car over 15 years old that lived in a rainy or cold climate; but it seems a little more of a problem on Escorts (the only Fords I have recent experience with).
Last autumn I replaced the brake lines on my 92 Escort; a brake line had begun leaking (while the car sat unused) and the master cylinder had emptied.
I had done brake line replacement years ago on some of my other old cars so I know its not the end of the world; at least not for someone with the time & inclination to do the work themselve. The parts are cheap but the bending/fitting doesnt go fast.
I wonder if there is something better for brake line replacement than Bundy Tubing? I believe they use different tubing in Mexico and the U.K.
From craigslist I just bought my 3rd Escort, a 91 4 dr sedan (Arizona car) with <100k miles, and no visible rust on the undercarriage; but Im going to eyeball every inch of the brake lines anyway, and dismantle the calipers and wheel cylinders for inspection. Its going to get all new brakes hoses, simply because the original ones are almost 20 years old.
After that I will look into why its auto tranny doesnt hold ATF.
 
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