How to Replace Brake Pads and Rotors

Hi, my name is Jaci Carter. I am attending Lake Area Technical Institute for Automotive Technology. I have been working on vehicles in class and outside of class as well. Today I am going to show you how to replace your rear brake pads and rotors. It is said that technicians like when customers know more about their vehicle because it helps them understand what is wrong with the vehicle.

Step 1: Know the Vehicle

The first thing that should be done is to know if the right brake pads and rotors are being installed for the specified vehicle. The vehicle being worked on is a 2007 Ford Fusion with a 3.0 L engine. You can find out the type of vehicle by looking at the owner's manual.

Step 2: Gather Tools

Second thing to be done is to grab the tools required for the job. Make sure you have the right size of socket to remove the lug nuts from the tire and other bolts that will come along in the process.

Step 3: Check Fluid in Brake Master Reservoir

Next thing that should be done is to check the brake master cylinder. The cylinder must be at least ½ full when replacing brake pads and/or rotors. The reason for that is there must be enough pressure to hold the brake caliper piston, otherwise it will just fall out and that would not be good.

Step 4: Lift the Vehicle

Make sure that the parking brake is not set. The car can be lifted into the air. It doesn’t need to be real high, just enough to get the tire off of the vehicle. Place the lifters on the frame of the vehicle for better support to lift the vehicle. Then lift the vehicle so it is just off the ground. Once the lug nuts have been completely removed, the tire can be removed.

Step 5: Take Out the Parts

The fourth thing is to disconnect the brake hose from the brake caliper. Compress back the piston inside the caliper. Make sure that the brake caliper does not hang by the hose, it could damage the cable. Remove the 2 brake caliper anchor plate bolts, position the caliper out of the way. Hang the caliper with a wire hanger. Take the brake pads out of the caliper along with the shims and retraction clips. There a two brake disc screw that need to be removed and the brake disc as well. Now everything is removed that needed to be.

Step 6: Install the New Parts

Next thing would to install the new rotor. Replace the brake disc and put the screws for the brake disc back in place. Put in the new brake pads with their shims and retraction clips into the caliper. Let down the brake caliper and put back into place. Connect the hose back to the caliper.

Step 7: Test the Vehicle

Then go ahead and put the tire back on. Hand tighten the lug nuts onto the tire. Put the parking brake on or have someone there to help hold the tire in place to torque down the lug nuts. Make sure to torque the lug nuts to the correct amount. Let down the vehicle and remove the lifters out of the way. Take the vehicle for a test drive to make sure the brakes work. Before driving the vehicle, press down on the brake pedal a few times to let pressure back into the system.

Step 8: Video

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