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I have a 2010 Acura TSX that I have been experiencing brake failure in cold weather. When I start the car and let it run for a minute and start driving and attempt to brake the car by applying pressure to the brake pedal the car does not stop and keeps rolling. I have then hit the E-brake and stop somewhat like that while at the same time pressing the brake pedal. After I able to roll to a somewhat stop, I hit the brake a few times, and then it finally breaks through and works. I have had this issue occurs twice on me, and both in cold weather (Cleveland Area).

I do not know whats wrong cause I have never experienced anything like this.

I bought the car from Florida in 2012, so its only been up North for only 2 years.
 

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I'd take it to a shop asap.

Does the brake pedal feel soft? maybe check your fluids.

Do the brakes work fine when it's not cold?
 

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I'd take it to a shop asap.

Does the brake pedal feel soft? maybe check your fluids.

Do the brakes work fine when it's not cold?

During startup it feels hard for a while till i apply pressure via my foot on the brake in a repetitive fashion till it brakes through and feels soft. Brakes do work fine when its not cold. However, I have just experienced this for the first time during this winter.
 

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During startup it feels hard for a while till i apply pressure via my foot on the brake in a repetitive fashion till it brakes through and feels soft. Brakes do work fine when its not cold. However, I have just experienced this for the first time during this winter.
Just taking some guesses here:

-Air in the brake lines (bleed brakes to fix)
-Low brake fluid levels (check master cylinder reservoir)
-Master cylinder going bad

Since you said brakes feel hard at start up, my money is on air in the brake lines.
 

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Not sure how the temperature would affect this though. Maybe since it's cold in the winter, the pressure drops enough to cause an issue since air is not as dense as brake fluid. When the weather gets hot again, pressure increases with the temp and you don't notice the issue as much or maybe you've gotten used to it since air can get in gradually.
 

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I had the same problem this morning with my winter beater (vw golf) It happens every winter a few times. Its been pretty mild out lately, Around 21F then it dropped overnight to -22F. The brake pedal felt dead, no feel, no breaks, I have to pump the pedal to build up some pressure. I know its not the same car, could be low break fluid or air in the line.
 

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Call Acura directly or see dealer. They are aware of the problem. My husband was there today with his 2010 TSX because of the same thing. They were able to recreate the failure but could not (would not?) fix it. They even referred to it as a known defect and suggested he call Acura. Initially, the phone representative tried to brush him off. He really had to stress how dangerous the issue is. Finally, after a very long hold time, they assigned him a case manager that is looking into all of this. Needless to say, this is super disappointing. Our family is not getting in that car until there is resolution and I wish he didn't have to either.
 

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we have the same issue. has been happening since september. took to acura dealer, they said everything is fine. called up acura corporate they said they can open up a case but they have to go by what the dealer is saying. actually got into a little fender bender cuz we couldn't brake while going to dealership to drop off car. hopefully noone got hurt. don't know what to do now, and noone in the house wants to drive the car
 

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^^^^^^^^^ call a lawyer/

also ALL with this symptom need to log a complaint with NHTSA.

IMO there is some water or vapor in the vacuum line that is freezing/
 

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Its because its cold out. I work for a plant that makes automotive fluids and when its single digits & negative out the brake fluid on our line thins out, because its stored outside in a silo, throwing off the weight of the bottles and underfiling them. Its like gasoline, when its cold out it thins out and that's why your gas mileage goes down in the winter. I've gone form 26 to 22 just because of the temperature.
 

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I have this same problem with my beater. The Brake booster check valve freezes up in low temperatures. For the most part, if you replace the check valve the problem goes away. Mine only does it when really cold (like -10 degrees or less).

What happens is moisture builds up in there and on super cold days, actually freezes.

Its a common problem on older toyotas and Ive read that some people remove the check valve and spray WD-40 into it as it disperses water...

good luck.
 

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Its because its cold out. I work for a plant that makes automotive fluids and when its single digits & negative out the brake fluid on our line thins out, because its stored outside in a silo, throwing off the weight of the bottles and underfiling them. Its like gasoline, when its cold out it thins out and that's why your gas mileage goes down in the winter. I've gone form 26 to 22 just because of the temperature.
Call me crazy but I've never seen any liquid that thins as it cools. Less heat (energy), less movement of molecules = slower flow and seemingly higher viscosity. Engines DO require more fuel when cold and they do not operate as efficiently.

Brake fluid is hydroscopic meaning it absorbs moisture. If moisture levels reach a high enough level, the fluid is 1. Worn and in need of replacement and 2. Can freeze enough to restrict movement in critical areas like the brake lines which have less than 3/16" diameter.

Also, good suggestions above. Water vapor or any moisture is an enemy in the power assist side of the brake system. Either the vacuum port in the intake manifold, the brake booster vacuum hose or the check valve. If engine vacuum cannot get to the booster, there will be no power assist.

Do the brakes feel like this when you apply them to shift from park? If you have a manual trans, do you test the brakes first? Basically, do the brakes do this from the get go or do they suddenly seem to not work after the car has been moving
 

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Call me crazy but I've never seen any liquid that thins as it cools. Less heat (energy), less movement of molecules = slower flow and seemingly higher viscosity. Engines DO require more fuel when cold and they do not operate as efficiently.

Brake fluid is hydroscopic meaning it absorbs moisture. If moisture levels reach a high enough level, the fluid is 1. Worn and in need of replacement and 2. Can freeze enough to restrict movement in critical areas like the brake lines which have less than 3/16" diameter.

Also, good suggestions above. Water vapor or any moisture is an enemy in the power assist side of the brake system. Either the vacuum port in the intake manifold, the brake booster vacuum hose or the check valve. If engine vacuum cannot get to the booster, there will be no power assist.

Do the brakes feel like this when you apply them to shift from park? If you have a manual trans, do you test the brakes first? Basically, do the brakes do this from the get go or do they suddenly seem to not work after the car has been moving
Thank you for the correction, the blue mountains got the best of me when I wrote that, couldn't think of the proper wording so I put "thins out", good work
 

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Try This pump up the brakes with the car off , hold the brake pedal and start the car, does the pedal go down when you start ? If it does not the brake booster needs replacing
 

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This just happened to my wife tonight in her 2010 TSX. It had been in the single digits for several hours. When she first started the car, there was no travel in the brake pedal and the brakes didn't work. After the car had been running for a couple minutes, the brakes worked again.

We've had other cold weather problems with this car, like when the ABS and traction control systems malfunctioned. This car is relatively new, it's incredibly unsettling and frustrating to have these problems.

Has anyone been able to get Acura to acknowledge this issue?
 

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Just called the dealer to make an appointment. Over the phone, he said it was normal behavior. This seems ridiculous. I'm bringing it in anyway. Any suggestions?
 

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Cherno, thanks for describing your situation fairly well. It does sound like a vacuum issue to me since in very cold weather, it would take quite a while to warm the engine bay, along with the brake components: Brake booster, brake master cylinder and abs pump unit.

I can't fathom why the dealership would describe this failure normal behavior of one of the most important systems in a car...

Keep us posted with what they "find" or tell you.
 

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The easiest way to fix this issue is to let the car warm up, pump the pedal a few times then press and hold down the pedal till it sinks down. Then just put it in 1st/D and drive.
 

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Cherno, thanks for describing your situation fairly well. It does sound like a vacuum issue to me since in very cold weather, it would take quite a while to warm the engine bay, along with the brake components: Brake booster, brake master cylinder and abs pump unit.

I can't fathom why the dealership would describe this failure normal behavior of one of the most important systems in a car...

Keep us posted with what they "find" or tell you.
OP listen to everything hes written here as well as on the last page. Hes 100% spot on.

This sounds more like a vacuum related issue to me as well. It could be a diaphragm issue but since the brakes stay hard and then go soft it sounds more like a bad check valve or water in the lines as stated before me.

This is not a normal symptom, if its very cold out your brakes may stick slightly once MAYBE twice but braking power should never be reduced that much. Dont let any shop or dealer blow this off as it is a large safety issue.

GL!
 
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I am have an Acura TSX 2012 and when temperature is below 30F, my brakes fail...I called my dealer and they said to stop driving the car immediately and bring it in in a Tow Truck that this is not a joke and they've heard about this. I normally warm up the car but due to an emergency I had to leave and my brakes failed and car rolled for 5 feet.
 
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