All posts tagged brake pads

Quick Guide to Changing Your Own Brake Pads at Home

Brake pads are one of the most important components of any car. They are responsible for keeping the vehicle safe when stopping and have probably saved you from many near accidents. These pads also wear down over time due to friction and changing them is actually something you can do yourself with a little patience. Here is a quick guide to changing your own brake pads at home.

Remove the Tires

Go around the outside of the tires and loosen all the lug nuts. Use a jack to lift the car up to a comfortable level before removing them. Turn the wheel to angle the tires into an accessible position and remove the lug nuts and the tire. Do this one side at a time for convenience.

Remove the Caliper

The caliper is the large metal piece clamped to the rotor. There are two to four bolts on the backside of it. Remove them with a socket wrench and use a spray lubricant to loosen the bolts if they are stuck. Some foreign cars have a sliding caliper, meaning you will only need to remove two bolts on the front. Hang the caliper carefully to the side.

Replace the Brake Pads

The brake pad is held in place by strong metal clips. Work the pad until you can slide it out to the side. Take a moment to examine the rotor. If you see any problems, cannot remove the pad, or notice warping, then you should take the car to an auto service center for further repairs. If everything is fine, then slide the new brake pad into position.

Reattach the Caliper and Tire

Place the caliper back over the rotor disc just as it was before. Use the socket wrench to reattach the bolts in the same order. Check that everything is tight and in place according to manufacturer specifications. Place the tire back over the rotor and put the lug nuts on. Be certain to do all four tires at this point before moving on.

Check the Brake Fluid and Test the Brakes

Check that your brake fluid levels are fine, and add more if necessary. Get into the car and pump the brakes about two dozen times. Start the car and drive at around 5 miles per hour. Test the brakes repeatedly to ensure that they work. If anything seems wrong, then take the car to a professional for service. Places like Evans Tire & Service Centers even offer coupons and discounts on certain brake services.

Being able to change your own brake pads can help to cut down on the number of trips to a mechanic you make every year. The job takes about an hour, although that time will shorten as you get more proficient. Changing brake pads at home is a very valuable skill to learn so get started today.