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3rd & 4th Generation (19921996 & 19972001) Toyota Camry Discussion for years: 1992-1996 & 1997-2001 Topics of discussion range from fuel economy, safety, modifications, performance all involving America's favorite family car, the Toyota Camry.

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Old 05-18-2005, 05:15 PM   #1 (permalink)
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94 Camry brake warning light

On my 1994 Camry, the brake warning light turned on a few weeks ago. The manual said to check the brake fluid level. The fluid level was at the min mark. I was planning to replace the front brake pads since they were due, so I assumed this was the reason the fluid level was low. Within a few days, I replaced the front brake pads and the fluid is now at the max level.

But the brake warning light is still on. I didn't notice any leaks near the front brake hoses and braking seems to be fine.

Any ideas on what the brake warning light is telling me?

Also, my cruise control has stopped working (cruise indicator turns on, but the set function doesn't work). I'm wondering if the cruise control is disabled since the brake warning light is on.

Thanks for your help.
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Old 05-18-2005, 06:06 PM   #2 (permalink)
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For the brakes, could it be the "Brake Light", or "Emergency Brake" indicator? Have a friend go outside and have them step on the brake, and see if all lights go on. You should have 5 lights go on, 2 on each side, and the one int he window (center Light)

What EXACTLY does the warning light look like?

For your Cruise Control, check the fuse for it. I am not sure ecactly where the cruise one is. I think it is in the fuse box on the drivers side behind the battery. If not, it is behind the change holder bottom left from the steering wheel.
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Old 05-18-2005, 10:29 PM   #3 (permalink)
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I had the same problem. The "BRAKE" light was on on my dash next to my No seat belt light. I checked everything including the level and everything checked out. My fluid level was at MAX but something told me to try to add more. Every time I added more, the fluid level went down and accepted the extra fluid. SO I added more and again it accepted more fluid. It wound up taking almost the whole bottle. I have absolutely no leaks anywhere.

My conclusion, for some reason the resevoir tells you its at max even though it is at low. Try adding more fluid and driving around a few minutes and see if it goes away.

If that dosn't work, it could be that your rear brakes need changing as well or you need to Bleed your brakes.
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Old 05-18-2005, 11:16 PM   #4 (permalink)
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Thanks ASG14 and Gridlyne for your suggestions.

The warning light I'm referring to is the one that spells out "BRAKE", is red, and is among the other group of red warning lights below the speedometer (at least on a 94 camry).

The manual indicates that if this light is red, the parking brake may be set or the brake fluid is low. The parking brake isn't set (though maybe this sensor is not working correctly) and the brake fluid is at the max level. The operation of the brakes appears to be OK.

My brake fluid is right at the max line or slightly above. Gridlyne, when you added fluid, it didn't overflow? If I add anymore fluid right now, it looks like it will just fill up the cylindrical plastic part that the cap sits on and then overflow. When you added fluid, the level just stayed the same?

I did check my brake lights and all are working.

I'll have to check my rear brakes to make sure nothing is leaking and that the shoes are OK. I haven't done that yet.

I'm not sure if there is any relationship between the non-operating cruise control and this brake light. I'll look for the fuse. If that's OK, I'll probably start a separate thread for the cruise problem.
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Old 05-18-2005, 11:22 PM   #5 (permalink)
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I have a friend with a '96 Rolla, his e-brake is down, but light sometimes stays on. I know many other people that has happened to also. May be a bad sensor or possibly sticking to the rotor.

I will take a pic of the cruise control fuse tomorrow (if I can find it, )
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Old 05-19-2005, 12:34 AM   #6 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by eaglemtn

The manual indicates that if this light is red, the parking brake may be set or the brake fluid is low.

My brake fluid is right at the max line or slightly above. Gridlyne, when you added fluid, it didn't overflow? If I add anymore fluid right now, it looks like it will just fill up the cylindrical plastic part that the cap sits on and then overflow. When you added fluid, the level just stayed the same?
.
Yeah Im telling you. The level in my resevoir was at max. And when I added some more, it just went down and the level stayed at max. I kept pouring more and more. And it would go down and stay at max. Eventually it stopped going down and was about to overflow. Try adding some more. a bottle is only a couple of bux. And put int DOT 4 I think.
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Old 05-19-2005, 09:49 AM   #7 (permalink)
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Here's an update on my "brake" warning light.

As I'm driving to work pondering what to do next (add some brake fluid, check the cruise control fuse), I was also thinking about the parking brake and wondering how I could check to see if that sensor is working correctly. I had my hand on the brake, gently pulling and releasing it (nervous twitch), and then the "brake" light suddenly goes off. I tried pulling on the brake harder and the light when on and then it went off when I released the brake. It appears that the sensor detecting a set parking brake was stuck and by jiggling the parking brake, the sensor became unstuck. I always use the parking brake when I park so the brake is often set and released, but apparently the steady motion of pulling and then releasing didn't affect the slightly stuck switch (or whatever is detecting that the parking brake is set).

Now wondering if the "brake" warning light also disabled the cruise control, I set the cruise control and, lo and behold, it worked! It looks like the "brake" warning light will disable the cruise control.

I'm not sure if the "brake" warning light was initially turned on by the low brake fluid level (at the min mark - solved by replacing the front pads), but it appears the parking brake sensor prevented the light from turning off (and possibly caused it to turn on in the first place). All's well for now -hopefully it will last.

Thanks Gridlyne and ASG14 for your suggestions. I'll keep those in mind if this situation comes up again.

By the way, in my previous post, I mentioned that the "brake" warning light was among the group of warning lights below the speedometer - I should have said "tachometer".

Last edited by eaglemtn; 05-19-2005 at 09:50 AM.
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Old 05-19-2005, 10:17 AM   #8 (permalink)
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Your welcome. And good thing everythings alright now. And now that your a registered user, keep on coming back. We have a great Off Topic section too!
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Old 05-19-2005, 10:49 AM   #9 (permalink)
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Good job. Glad it all works! Remember, we are here to help so post up any other questions when you get them, and someone will usual help within a few hours.

That is really interesting about the Cruise and brake light. I'm going to test that out today when i go for a drive and post up on that.
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Old 05-20-2005, 09:18 AM   #10 (permalink)
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I decided to try out ASG14's suggestion of testing of the relationship between the cruise control and the brake warning light. I started the cruise control and then slightly pulled on the parking brake until the brake warning light came on. As soon as the warning light came on, the cruise control disabled.

I guess it makes sense that if the parking brake is suddenly activated while driving, the cruise control will shut off (similar to pressing the brake pedal). The side effect is that if the light is on because your brake fluid is low (or if the parking brake sensor is faulty), the cruise control will also not work. This, at least to me, is not an obvious side effect. I'll have to read the owners manual closely to see if this is mentioned.
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Old 05-20-2005, 10:07 AM   #11 (permalink)
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^Its not a side affect, its a safety feature.
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Old 05-20-2005, 11:51 AM   #12 (permalink)
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HAHA, I tried it yesterday and the Cruise stayed on,

I also have a '96 V6 though.
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Old 06-12-2005, 10:33 AM   #13 (permalink)
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I am having the exact same symptoms- BRAKE light is on, cruise will not work. I noticed the brake fluid was below the minimum mark so I filled it to max, went for a drive, came back and restarted the car and the light is still on. Is there some way to reset it or is there something else I need to do? sorry to revive this but I need some help. thanks.
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Old 06-12-2005, 10:44 AM   #14 (permalink)
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I had the same problem with the addition of my cruise control not working, but when i disconnected the negative battery cable, the light turned off and my cruise worked again. I think the computer just needs to be reset. If that's not it, you could always replace the sensor.
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Old 06-12-2005, 11:26 AM   #15 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by dysk8forlife
I am having the exact same symptoms- BRAKE light is on, cruise will not work. I noticed the brake fluid was below the minimum mark so I filled it to max, went for a drive, came back and restarted the car and the light is still on. Is there some way to reset it or is there something else I need to do? sorry to revive this but I need some help. thanks.
Give it some time.... This brake light problem due to low fluid is a very common problem to Camry's. Methinks the level sensor is too sensitive.

However, if your light keeps on coming on, that may be indicative of an actual brake problem. My problem was that the pad got so low, that it was causing some weird caliper problem and I was losing brake fluid.
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