Changing Car Brakes! a Beginner Guide!




Introduction: Changing Car Brakes! a Beginner Guide!

About: Hi my name is Jaxon. I like to think of myself as an innovator! I love electronic projects, Rockets, Programming and anything that can go boom!

This is the easiest way of changing brakes!

Just recently i went to get a safety inspection for my car and found out that my brake pads had barely passed with minimum numbers. It was advised that i change them out for new ones the only problem was, they wanted to charge me over 250$ (Picture 2) !! I explored my other options and found out i could get front and back brakes at NAPA for just under 50$.

**If you like this instructable or find it helpful please vote for me in the contest it's entered in!!**

Warning: working with cars can be dangerous i cannot be held accountable for your mistakes.

Edit: all pictures have annotations in them for your own benefit, click on them to see the annotations.

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Step 1: Gather Supplies

Everything you'll need is shown above,

You will Need:




impact wrench, (rachet is optional) or star wrech

Thor hammer A.K.A. a large hammer

Brake cleaner

bearing grease

Socket set or just enough sockets to fit your nuts.

Something to hold nuts in

and last but not least the New Brake Pads!

Step 2: Let's Begin

The first step to Replacing brakes is to take the tire off so that you can get to them.

if your tire has a cap that will have to come off, this can be done by wedging a flathead screwdriver it the whole on one side.

next determine what your socket size will be, mine was something like 13/16ths

after torquing the nuts off, if you haven't done so, jack the car up on the axle. Then when you have enough room place the jackstand on or next to the axle so that if the jack slips it will stay up. (while a jackstand isn't 100% necessary i recommend it, as my jack slipped and the car could have seriously injured me!)

Step 3: Nuts and Bolts

There will be 4 Screws that you will need to take out in this step for an explanation look in the above pictures, (i tried taking pictures behind, thats when my jack slipped and the stand saved my life.) In this step i had to use a 1/2in socket, and a 9/16ths. The two that connect to the caliper looks like it has a rubber sort of spring on it, these are the smaller ones.

Step 4: Removing

After you loosen everything and get it off, it disconnects into two pieces (See pictures above). You may want to get a bucket or something that you can prop piece 2 onto. Piece 1 should slide off completely, if it doesnt you may need to lightly tap it with the thor (Heavy) hammer.

Step 5: Adding and Greasing

This is the step where you'll need your new brake pads. When you take the brakes out of the box you'll see two sets; One is for the driver side and one is for the passenger, if it doesn't tell you which is which you can easily tell by matching them up to the brakes already on there. The old brakes should slide up out of the rails, but before you slide in the new pads apply a small amount of grease to the rails to make it easier.

Step 6: Finishing

We just have a few more areas to grease, in picture 1 it shows a piece that you will need to pull straight out and grease the rod, the push it back in until it is secured again, now you're done with that part.But before you put piece 1 back on to the disk, I recommend cleaning the disk with the disk cleaner shown in step one. After you clean the disk, you will need the c-clamp. use the c-clamp to compress the piece shown in picture 5. When you've done that you're finished now just do the steps in reverse, do it to the front and back tires and save your self over 200$$!

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    7 Discussions


    5 years ago on Introduction

    Very nice Instructable!! I'm an automotive technician and saw yours so I figured I would check it out. Few things you might want to mention. First off, be sure to check the surface of the rotor for scoring, pitting, super fine heat/stress cracks, as well as if it has a lip around the edge. If any of those conditions exist it is recommended that the rotors be replaced as well. Second, there are a few different styles of disc brakes, yours being the most common style. And lastly, its always a recommended that you lower the vehicle onto the jack stand to take the pressure off of the jack itself and then use the jack to keep a little pressure on the vehicle as a backup in case the jack stand gets knocked out or slips out plus be sure to use a wheel chalk on both sides of the tire at the other end to keep it from rolling. You did a great job tho on your brakes. Most vehicles these days, if not all, use metric nuts and bolts rather than standard. You did a great job with your instructable!!

    Good job with the pictures, having made a brake change instructable myself, I know how hard those places are to photograph.


    Reply 5 years ago



    Reply 5 years ago on Introduction

    Sorry in the first place, i had thought that if i gave the photo credit it would be alright, but no problem!


    5 years ago

    I like your Instructable. I was happy to see the jack stand being used as serious injury can happen like you stated.
    I usually loosen my lug nuts with the car still on the ground but I leave them on until the car is safely jacked up and a jack stand in position.
    those pins that you greased, I'm not sure to there name either but they are the cause of many premature brake pad wear. When those pins stick/seize up the call per can't release properly and causes your pads to continue to wear on the rotor. on older cars they are a real pain to clean.
    nice job on your instructable


    5 years ago on Introduction


    - Open you brake fluid reservoir first and wrap an absorbent cloth around the reservoir. (You don't want to get brake fluid on your car body, as it removes paint) By using the c-clamp to compress the calipers, you will compress not only the fluid in the brake line but also the captured air and in doing so, you might pop the plastic reservoir. By opening the reservoir, the fluid will get pushed back easily without the used of a c-clamp.

    - Once all above in the instructable is done, close the reservoir and wipe away any leaked brake fluid. Bleed your brakes to remove captured air. Then top up the reservoir with recommended brake fluid.

    If you do not bleed your brakes, at best, you will take longer to brake, at worst, your brakes will fail completely.