Front Brake Pad and Rotor Replacement

Written by: mkiii_kelly

I replaced my front brakes the other night, and decided to make a tutorial so you guys can DIY.

     Take off the wheel.

     Remove the caliper bolts (12mm), and remove the caliper. If the caliper is stuck on you may need to push in the caliper piston. To do this remove the brake fluid reservoir cap and use a large C-clamp over the brake pads and clamp it down. This will move the piston in slowly. Make sure to hang this up so the caliper isn't hanging by the brake line. This can easily damage the brake line.

     Remove brake pads. Keep the shims if there are any. They come into use later.

     Remove Caliper bracket (17mm).

     Remove Brake Rotor. This may give you some trouble if it is rusted on. So, you may need to screw some bolts in the holes provided to brake the rust ridge. Also, some penitrating lubricant can help.

     Sand or grind down the hub to remove any rust. You want a clean mounting surface to put the new rotor on.

     You should already know if you have to replace your rotors or not. So go ahead and put the new rotors on. Make sure to wash them with a degreasing solvent before installation. If you are not replacing the rotors, then resurface the rotors and put them back on. I had to replace my rotors because the old ones had hotspots.

     Install the caliper bracket.

     Install the new brake pads. Normally you would need to put the old shims on the back of the new pads, but some aftermarket pads give instructions not to use them. The pads I got don't require shims.

     You can't install the caliper just yet because the caliper piston is still pushed out. You need to push the piston back into the caliper. It really helps to have channel locks or a C-clamp, otherwise you can use a pry bar and some leverage.

     Also, before installing the caliper, it is adviseable to grease the caliper pins. The caliper slides along these pins. If they get rusty, the caliper will seize and you get one brake pad that wears very fast. To remove them just push them out of their rubber boots. Grease the pins and pack some grease into their holes as well. Then, push them back into their holes.

     Now install the caliper over top of the new pads.

     Make sure all the bolts are tight (2 of each 12mm, 17mm) and put the wheels back on. Torque the lug nuts to 76-80 ft/lbs.

     Okay, that's it. I hope this helps.