How To: Change your vehicle's brake pads

Change your vehicle's brake pads

In this automotive repair video, you'll learn how to change your own brakes. Throughout this process, you'll also figure out how to remove your tire, calipers and brake pads, and how to clean the brake pad area. See how to take off the rotor and reinsert everything correctly. It's an easy process, and you don't need to be a professional mechanic to install new brake pads.

Before you begin, always make sure you're vehicle is safely suspended on jack stands. Remove the tire from the vehicle. Remove the bolts for the spindles. Remove the two bolts that mount the caliper to the hub assembly.

After removing the old brake pads, you will need to push the piston back into the caliper using a c-clamp or pliers.

It is very important to clean up where the brake pads sit. Make sure there is no rust or anything that binds them from moving back and forth during application of the brakes. In this video, a 90-degree disk sander is used. At home you can use a file. Be sure not to remove any unnecessary metal. Apply an anti-corrosion compound.

Next is the sliders. Always take them out and re-lube them to make sure they move nice and smoothly within the caliper housing. Failure to do so will cause uneven braking and premature, uneven pad wear.

Put the rotor back onto the hub assembly. You may find it easier to put a nut on to hold it in place while you're doing your other work.

Remount the caliper bracket. Put the new brake pads into place. Fit the caliper back onto the rotor. Make sure your brake pads are properly placed. Tighten these bolts by hand first. Afterward, make sure to tighten them down to proper specification.

When tightening the wheel, go in a star pattern. This will ensure that equal pressure is placed on the rotor.

Always test drive your vehicle. Remember to give yourself added braking distance. New brake pads tend to glide for the first fifty to a hundred kilometers before they are broken in.

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