My rear brake does not work (disc brake) MTB for anything. It does not skid or even stop for that (brand new) What should I do?

I went to my local bike shop in India and he told me that disc brakes (rear) don't work well because the wire goes all the way to the back of the bike and gets twisted in the process.

I am 13 so I don't know much about disc brakes. How can I make it lock easily? How do I check whether mechanical/hydraulic?

  • 1
    If it's cable-actuated, you'll be able to see the a braided steel cable that moves when you squeeze the lever, see this picture: parktool.com/assets/img/repairhelp/Figure_11-6.jpg May 10, 2016 at 19:43
  • 2
    if it has a metal cable running from the lever to the caliper (brake portion) then it is mechanical. It's going to be very hard to answer your question without more detailed information. It could be a lot of things. But it sounds like you need a new bike shop. Could be pad clearance, slack in the brake cable, etc
    – Nate W
    May 10, 2016 at 19:45
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    Given that the bike shop said that it was a problem with the wire getting twisted I'm going to assume that they are mechanical brakes. I also think that there is a problem with the bike shop. There is no inherent problem having mechanical disk brakes on the rear wheel.
    – Kibbee
    May 10, 2016 at 20:07
  • 3
    I agree with @Kibbee. The bike shop that you went to is incompetent. Both mechanical and hydraulic disc brakes work quite well. Either find a different bike shop or get yourself a repair manual. Actually, just get yourself a repair manual anyway. It'll save you a lot of money in the long run.
    – jimchristie
    May 10, 2016 at 20:26
  • 3
    Low quality disc brakes often perform worse than mid quality rim brakes (which are cheaper than the disc bakes in the first place).
    – Batman
    May 10, 2016 at 20:35

2 Answers 2


You mention the brake is brand new.

Have you "bedded" the pads in? Bedding involves riding down a hill and feathering the brake lightly.

The other possibility is pad / disc contamination. In particular oil. Discs can be cleaned with appropriate solvent. Pads can be cleaned by baking (faced down) on grease proof paper or gently heating over a flame to burn off the residue.

  • yeah I think that it si mechanical .it doesnt work at all and the lever does not come in even a inch from its original place . how shouild I fix it.
    – muhammed
    May 11, 2016 at 8:48
  • and no I havent bedded the pads
    – muhammed
    May 11, 2016 at 8:49

If the cables are cheap ones, then the bends in the housing can cause friction and loss of efficiency.

Perhaps that is what your LBS person meant.

Check that the cables are routed correctly. If they are Ok, then find better quality cables (see that same Sheldon Brown page) and install them.

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