How to Replace Brake Pads

Last Updated on June 30, 2021

The brake pads in your vehicle are responsible for braking safely. That’s why it is very important to take care of these parts. You need to inspect your vehicle very often. If you find your vehicle’s brake pad is damaged, then you have to replace them.

However, if you are a newbie, then replacing the brake pads may seem a little bit hard for you. To be honest, replacing the brake pads is quite easy and you can do it by yourself.

In this article, I will be talking about the steps you need to follow for replacing your vehicle’s brake pads. So, invest some time to get your job done.

How to Replace Brake Pads: 4 Steps

Things you will require:

  • Jack
  • Jack stands
  • Replacement pads
  • Tire iron
  • Socket wrench

Setting the Vehicle Off the Surface

Well, for accessing the brake pads of your vehicle, you have to take aside your vehicle tires at first. Removing the tire is not a big deal. You should start with loosening the lug nuts on the wheels where you will replace the pads. You have to use a tire iron for loosening the lug nuts. Keep in mind that you have to do it before lifting your vehicle. Otherwise, there is a possibility of spinning your wheels in the air.

After loosening the lug nuts, now you have to jack up your vehicle. You have to check your vehicle’s instruction manual as it will tell you the safe place for using a jack underneath your vehicle. Because there is some vehicle available in the market that has specifically jack point for floor jacks. However, once you are done with finding your vehicle’s safe jack point, now you have to lift your vehicle using the jack.

Then, simply locate your jack stands underneath your vehicle’s frame. Remember that the frame needs to be solid. After placing the jack stands, you have to lower your vehicle slowly until it rests on the jack stands safely. After that, you can remove the jack floor now and finish unscrewing the lug nuts and removing the tire.

Taking Aside the Caliper Assembly and Older Brake Pads

Now, after taking aside the tire, now you are supposed to see the rotor and brake caliper assembly of your vehicle. The role of your vehicle’s caliper assembly is acting like a clamp. It squeezes the brake pads against the rotors. As a result, it slows down your vehicle wheels so that you don’t careen into walls.

Whatever your next task is removing the bolts located in the backside of the caliper assembly. You have to use a socket wrench for that. After removing the bolts, now you have to take off the caliper assembly from the rotor.

You will find the assembly still connected with the brake line. You should never hang the caliper by the brake line. That’s why use wire for hanging the caliper from the wheel or simply place the caliper above your rotor. You have to ensure that the caliper is supported completely and it will not fall before making any move. Because if the caliper drops, then it may snap the brake line. If so happens, you will have to spend a good amount for fixing this issue.

Now you can remove the old brake pads and put a new one. Before placing new brake pads, use some brake grease on the backside of the brake pads. Because it can make an annoying sound when you will press the brake. The brake grease will help in reducing the noise.

Read Also: What to do with old brake rotors

Keep in mind that you should not apply grease on your rotors or brake pad fronts. Because the brake actually depends on the friction between rotors and pads for slowing the vehicle. After applying grease, now you can set the new brake pads in the slot of the previous brake pad.

Replacing the Brake Caliper Assembly

Well, once you are done with placing the brake pads in their slot, now you will have to replace your caliper assembly. You may already realize that the previous assembly is no longer fits on your vehicle’s brake pad tops. This is happening because the piston inside assembly will adjust to their small width as your brake pads wear down. You will have to fix this issue using a brake tool.

At first, put a single part of your previous old brake pads inside of the assembly against the circular shape big piston. After that, set the plastic wide shaped brake tool against another side of the caliper. Then, you have to rotate your brake tool handle for compressing the piston back into the assembly till you find it didn’t retract fully.

Without it, you also may need compressing pins where your assembly bolts screw into. After doing that, now you can set your assembly onto the brake pads. Then, you just need to insert the caliper assembly bolts and then make it tighten using the socket wrench.

Replacing the Tires into their Position and Wrap them up

Before going to place the tire into its position, give everything a quick check whether you have done everything perfectly or not. If you find anything wrong, then fix it immediately. On the other hand, if you find everything is fine, then you can place the tire in its position again.

The procedure is the same. Simply place the tire into its position following the process as you have removed earlier. After that, set the jack underneath your vehicle. Then, remove the jack stand and slowly lower your vehicle back into the surface.

Finally, make the lug nuts tighten using the tire iron. It is always recommended to give everything a quick check before you start driving the vehicle.

Video: How To Replace Brake Pads & Rotors

Frequently Asked Questions

What’s the brake pad replacement cost?

The average cost of brake pad replacement is 150 USD per axle. Depending on the brake pad materials, this cost can rise to  300 USD per axle.

How long does it take to replace the brake pads?

It generally takes thirty minutes to one hour (as per expert mechanics).

Should I replace all 4 brake pads at the same time?

You don’t need to change all brake pads at once. But you must replace both rear or both front brake pads at once. The best advice is to inspect your brakes. If your vehicle’s all-wheel needs new brake pads, then do it.

How to Replace Brake Pads

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