List of parts needed to convert from Hydraulic Brake System to Vacuum System '88 Eldo
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  • 1 Post By R/T kota
Cadillac Seville / Cadillac Eldorado Forum Discussion, List of parts needed to convert from Hydraulic Brake System to Vacuum System '88 Eldo in Past Cadillac Vehicle Discussion; I have an '88 Eldorado Biarritz with a hydraulic system: http://parts.nalleygmc.com/showAssem...ring=hydraulic I have to practically stand on the brake pedal ...
  1. #1
    alandcal is offline Cadillac Owners Member
    Automobile(s): 88 Eldorado Biarritz
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    List of parts needed to convert from Hydraulic Brake System to Vacuum System '88 Eldo

    I have an '88 Eldorado Biarritz with a hydraulic system: http://parts.nalleygmc.com/showAssem...ring=hydraulic

    I have to practically stand on the brake pedal to get the car to come to a stop. I've been driving like an old lady, because if I have to come to a sudden stop, I'll be totally SOL.

    The motor has gone out and it can't be rebuilt (beyond fried). Have been shopping around for a rebuilt motor and the cheapest I have been able to find is the one in the link above for $741 (part #23), which is more than I can afford, and I would still have to pay for labor. Not to mention, there is no guarantee how long that rebuilt part will last.

    I have a mechanic who is willing to do a brake conversion, but I need to find all the parts needed. Has anyone does this conversion before? If so, can you please advise what is needed. I was told a "regular" brake booster (the one that looks like half of a big dome), a master cylinder, new brake lines, and new pedals by one person.

    I am a single parent on a very limited budget, so I am trying to purchase only what is absolutely needed, as again, I still have to pay for labor.

    I can't afford a new(er) car yet, so please don't go there. It was my dad's car; it only has 85k miles on it, and I just replaced the radiator, so I need to make this work.

    Appreciate any/all help!

    I attached a pic of what I have.

    88 Cadillac Eldo Biarritz Hydraulic Booster.jpg

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    Jesda's Avatar
    Jesda is offline Super Moderator
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    Re: List of parts needed to convert from Hydraulic Brake System to Vacuum System '88

    I have a similar system on my Saab. Your car and my car use the same AC Delco accumulator ball and I suspect most of the rest of the parts are the same too.

    I avoided $600+ parts costs (new old stock) by finding a half decent used brake booster assembly on ebay for $200 shipped (plus a couple hundred more to install). I'd like to see if you have any success with this conversion so I can do the same with my car.

    I found that just replacing the accumulator ball alone made quite an improvement for only $90 (Amazon).
    http://www.thesaabsite.com/FAQ--brak...r-removal.html


    Best of luck!

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    Ranger's Avatar
    Ranger is offline Cadillac Owners Member
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    Re: List of parts needed to convert from Hydraulic Brake System to Vacuum System '88



    Jesus H. First time I've ever seen anything like that. If I understand you correctly, you are going to replace this master cylinder and booster system with a conventional type system? If so, my first question would be why didn't GM use that system in the first place? Does your engine not supply enough vacuum to operate it? I seem to recall the old HT4100 (4.1) was vacuum deficient enough to require an electrical vacuum pump. It was a sorry excuse for a Cadillac engine, but I digress. Something to consider and have your mechanic look into before spending the money.

  5. #4
    R/T kota's Avatar
    R/T kota is offline Cadillac Owners Fanatic
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    Re: List of parts needed to convert from Hydraulic Brake System to Vacuum System '88

    Is that the teves 4 brake set up? My dads 89 (Or around there) caddy had that. Found a doner car in a local wrecker that had a regular master and used it. After installing it and running new brake lines we discovered another problem. The bore size on the calipers and wheel cylinders were larger with the teves. The new master would barely pump enough to fill them. Pedal would go almost to the floor. Once I replaced the calipers and wheel cylinders it was fine.

  6. #5
    alandcal is offline Cadillac Owners Member
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    Re: List of parts needed to convert from Hydraulic Brake System to Vacuum System '88

    Quote Originally Posted by Jesda View Post
    I have a similar system on my Saab. Your car and my car use the same AC Delco accumulator ball and I suspect most of the rest of the parts are the same too.

    I avoided $600+ parts costs (new old stock) by finding a half decent used brake booster assembly on ebay for $200 shipped (plus a couple hundred more to install). I'd like to see if you have any success with this conversion so I can do the same with my car.

    I found that just replacing the accumulator ball alone made quite an improvement for only $90 (Amazon).
    http://www.thesaabsite.com/FAQ--brak...r-removal.html


    Best of luck!
    So if I understand correctly, you only replaced the accumulator ball, but not the brake booster assembly (that you found on eBay)? I will ask my mechanic how he feels about just replacing the accumulator, although on the link you shared, it seems a bit labor intensive. Another mechanic also told me that those things can explode easily?

    ----------

    Quote Originally Posted by Ranger View Post


    Jesus H. First time I've ever seen anything like that. If I understand you correctly, you are going to replace this master cylinder and booster system with a conventional type system? If so, my first question would be why didn't GM use that system in the first place? Does your engine not supply enough vacuum to operate it? I seem to recall the old HT4100 (4.1) was vacuum deficient enough to require an electrical vacuum pump. It was a sorry excuse for a Cadillac engine, but I digress. Something to consider and have your mechanic look into before spending the money.
    It seems Cadillac decided to experiment only with this year/make/model. I went to one of our two local Pic-A-Part - ladies get in free ! There were about 8 Eldorados there, none with the hydraulic system. I ended up looking at every single Cadi there (about 5 double rows) - every single one had the regular brake booster.
    I will ask my mechanic about the electrical vacuum pump. Thanks!

    ----------

    Quote Originally Posted by R/T kota View Post
    Is that the teves 4 brake set up? My dads 89 (Or around there) caddy had that. Found a doner car in a local wrecker that had a regular master and used it. After installing it and running new brake lines we discovered another problem. The bore size on the calipers and wheel cylinders were larger with the teves. The new master would barely pump enough to fill them. Pedal would go almost to the floor. Once I replaced the calipers and wheel cylinders it was fine.
    So you are saying that you replaced: the master cylinder, brake lines, calipers, wheel cylinders. Did you find all the parts at the wrecker? Thanks!

  7. #6
    R/T kota's Avatar
    R/T kota is offline Cadillac Owners Fanatic
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    Re: List of parts needed to convert from Hydraulic Brake System to Vacuum System '88

    Quote Originally Posted by alandcal View Post
    So you are saying that you replaced: the master cylinder, brake lines, calipers, wheel cylinders. Did you find all the parts at the wrecker? Thanks!
    It was over 10 years ago but from what I remember we got everything but the brake lines off that one car in the wreckers.
    alandcal likes this.

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