How to Replace Your Rear Brake Pads

Automotive Blog

If your car has been making funny noises when applying the brake pedal, or it has been a while since you changed the brake pads, it might be time to get this done. If you have some basic auto repair knowledge, you might want to try it on your own. You just need some car parts and basic tools to get it done. Here are some easy-to-follow instructions for replacing the rear brake pads.

Gather What You Need

Before you start with this repair project, make sure you have everything you need. You may have the majority of these supplies in your garage, especially if you do auto repairs often, but some of the parts you might not have on hand. In order to replace your rear brake pads, you will need:

  • New brake pads
  • All-purpose grease
  • Penetrating oil
  • Parts cleaner
  • Socket wrench
  • Jack and jack stands
  • Multiple sockets
  • Wrench
  • Bungee cord
  • Brake piston tool

Remove the Brake Caliper

Once you have gathered all the supplies and parts you need for replacing the rear brake pads, you can proceed with removing the brake caliper. Use your socket wrench to loosen the bolts on the brake caliper, but don't remove them completely. Pull out the brake caliper just enough so that it is out of the way of the brake pads, but you don't have to disconnect the brake lines. This can cause brake bleeding and lead to even more problems. You also don't want anything pulling on the brake lines.

Using a bungee cord to allow it to hang nearby, but out of the way, is a good idea. Once you have the bungee cord in place, remove the bolts entirely and set them aside. Hang the brake caliper on the bungee cord until you're finished with replacing the brake pads. This allows you to remove the bracket and brake pads by unscrewing the bolts.

Clean the Brakes

Before you change the brake pads, you should take some time cleaning up the brake components. Use a good parts cleaner and a rag to get them as clean as you can. Remove oil, grease, and debris that has built-up on them. This build-up can lead to poor braking performance, and cause the new brake pads to wear out more quickly. Since you're already working with the brakes, it makes sense that you would take a minute to clean them up.

Installing the Brake Pads

Once everything is clean, you can continue with replacing the brake pads. Grab your brake pistol tool and screw in the piston as much as you can. You may need to loosen the bleeder screws with your wrench in order to turn the piston and get it back in all the way. The first few turns will be tight, but then it will be a little easier. Once the piston is lined up, you can re-tighten the bleeder screw. Bolt the caliper bracket in place, making sure the smaller end is on top, and the larger end is on bottom. Slide the brake pads in place on the bracket. Then, slide the caliper over the brake pads. Put the bolts back in and tighten them.


9 March 2015

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