when i got ready for work yesterday, i disengaged the parking brake on the allroad (outside temp was something like 20 with a lower wind chill). the car felt sluggish. but, i attributed that to cold transmission fluid, cold cv joint grease, etc... then i realized that the parking brake felt like it was engaged. so, i tried re-engaging it, and there was no connection until about half way through the pull of the lever. releasing the lever, only releases about half way through the pull.
against my best judgement, i drove to work in the hopes that something was "frozen" and the heat from the brakes would unbind it. alas, the problem still exists. although, it is less pronounced than before. any ideas about which end to look at for a fix? rear brakes or in the lever mechanism itself? also, the "brake" light is not lit, even though i can tell the brakes are semi-engaged.
Your parking brake cable is frozen. Go find a heated garage!
I've never looked at the ar e-brake cable but you must have gotten some water inside the rubber boots they use for turning corners. you could try breaking the ice free or a hair dryer on them. If it was the pad itself, it should've gotten enough heat to thaw when you drove it so it must be somewhere on the cable.
__________________ 00 S4, Euro spider hose mod!!
04 allroad, needs rs6 intercoolers, k04s and a cargo box...
I highly doubt it's the brake fluid freezing on you.
If you had water in the brake fluid to the point that it would freeze, you'd experience brake failure long time ago.
The culprit (as noted already by others) was a frozen hand brake cable. I've seen that happen many, many times during winter, particularly if you have just driven over deep snow or rain and the temps dipped suddenly.
The trick is not to use the hand brake in those situations...been-there-done-that many times!
Snaped a cable years ago trying to dislodge the car.