Tech: Stock brake proportioning valves

Specifications of Miata stock proportioning valves

For more information on how and why you might want to alter your Miata's brake proportioning, we recommend picking up a copy of How To Build A High Performance Mazda Miata, available from Flyin' Miata and other book sellers.

If you're interested in changing the brake balance of your Miata, one option is to change the stock proportioning valve for one from another Miata. A number of things can alter the ideal brake proportioning, ranging from brake pad selection, tire choice and even the traction of the surface you're on.

Another option would be to install an aftermarket adjustable proportioning valve such as the one we offer. If this is done, the factory valve should be removed and the adjustable put in its place. Do not put the adjustable valve on the front brake lines to drop their pressure.

The following table will refer to this chart. Up to pressure A, the front and rear pressures are equal. After this point - termed the "knee point" - the rear pressure is a fixed percentage of the front.

 Year A B B'
1990-93 427 995 597
1994-97, no ABS 427 850 597
1994-97, ABS 569 850 683
2002, no ABS 569 853 702
2002, ABS - - -
2006, no ABS 497 852 639
2006+, ABS - - -

Note - it is unclear whether the 1999-00 valves are the same as the 1994-97 ones although it is likely. The master cylinder sizing was changed in 2001. The 2006-15 non-ABS cars use a dual proportioning valve with two rear inputs and outputs that is not interchangeable with the earlier cars. ABS-equipped cars starting in 2001 had electronic brake distribution (EBD), which allows the ABS system to maximize the braking at each end. It's still worthwhile to get the basic balance in range to minimize the work the EBD system has to do.

Here are the various valves overlaid. The X-axis is front pressure, the Y is rear. It's interesting to note that the post-knee slope of the 1994 valves are both the same, but the ABS has a higher knee point and provides nearly 100 psi more pressure to the rear at 800 front psi.