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Handbrake readjustment - smell, then no smell. Help?

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    Hi everyone. I have a car problem and need advice!

    Last week was my MOT. I failed because my 'handbrake efficiency (was) below requirements.' I gave them permission to see what was wrong exactly with the handbrake, and they told me it needed readjusting/tightening and a bit of a clean. I gave them the go ahead to do that and I collected my car later that day. My home is only a two minute drive from the test centre, so I noticed nothing wrong as I went back - apart from the adjusted handbrake, of course. I noticed immediately it was a lot tighter.

    Anyway, I drove it today for the first time and I noticed an awful smell as I got out of the car. I'd noticed the car had struggled up a steep hill, but put this down to very rainy conditions. I'd gone into uni to do some work but left after 45 minutes because I was worried about my car. I drove home and there was no smell, and it seemed to drive better, too.

    What do I do now? I can't really identify the smell, I assumed it was a burning smell but honestly I don't know. Do I monitor the problem, or call the mechanic first thing when they reopen tomorrow to see if they didn't tighten the handbrake too much? A friend who knows a bit about this sort of thing suggested I need to allow the brake cable to settle, as it has been stretched and that could have caused the smell for the first big drive. Don't know if you need this info, but it's a Nissan Micra 2001.
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    How many 'click's does your handbrake make when you apply it, if you know what I mean?

    If you can remember was the smell only coming from one side of the car?
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    Touch each road wheel after a drive.
    Does one feel appreciably hotter than the other?
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    (Original post by JC.)
    Touch each road wheel after a drive.
    Does one feel appreciably hotter than the other?
    Hi, sorry about the lateness of this reply, I've been MIA for a while (dissertation = very, very fun).

    I have felt each road wheel after numerous drives now (five minutes trip down the road, 20 minutes drive etc) and they all seem to be the same temperature-wise. I have not smelt anything since the first time I properly drove it after the MOT, perhaps it was a one off?
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    Sounds like it, or the pad did come into contact slightly and you burnt away the material. Either way, if it is OK just shrug your shoulders and think, meh.
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    Was the handbrake the only thing they repaired?

    If you've had any welding done (especially exhaust area) you might get a burning smell as the joins heat up at first. When I had a new catalyst my car smelt like a bonfire once we got it back :rolleyes:
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    (Original post by robk93)
    Was the handbrake the only thing they repaired?

    If you've had any welding done (especially exhaust area) you might get a burning smell as the joins heat up at first. When I had a new catalyst my car smelt like a bonfire once we got it back :rolleyes:
    Apart from the handbrake readjustment and cleaning, the only other thing they fixed was a broken stop light, and I can't imagine it being that!

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