Cars & Vehicles Auto Parts & Maintenance & Repairs

How to Replace Auto Calipers

    • 1). Remove the hubcap, if applicable. Loosen the lug nuts slightly, using a lug wrench. Raise the vehicle using a jack and then support the wheel onto a jack stand. If desired, repeat the procedure for the opposite wheel to elevate the entire axle. Finish removing the lug nuts and then the wheels.

    • 2). Place a line clamp onto the brake hose tightly. Do not use needle-nosed vise grips for this task because the metal teeth on the grips can cut into the rubber hose. Inspecting the hose for surface cracks or visual damage is recommended. Replace the hose if necessary.

    • 3). Place a small drain pan beneath the wheel to catch the brake fluid that will trickle out slightly once the hose is removed. Remove the banjo bolt connection between the rubber brake hose and the caliper housing. Remove the copper washers from both sides of the banjo bolt and discard.

    • 4). Remove the caliper guide bolts -- if replacing just the half-caliper -- or remove the caliper bracket bolts -- if replacing the loaded-caliper and pad assembly using a ratchet and appropriate sized socket or hex-head tool. Pry the caliper off of the rotor using a screwdriver, being careful not to damage the rotor. Inspect the rotor for signs of visible damage or severe surface rust. Replace the rotor if necessary.

    • 5). Install the new half-caliper or loaded-caliper. Lubricate the caliper bracket and hardware rattle clips, if applicable.

    • 6). Align the guide bolts or caliper bracket bolts into the appropriate holes and tighten according to torque specifications illustrated in the repair manual using a torque wrench and appropriate sized socket.

    • 7). Replace the banjo bolt by replacing new copper washer (equipped with new calipers) on both sides of the bolt to caliper connection. Tighten to torque specifications. Remove the line clamp. Repeat the procedure for the other wheel if replacing both calipers.

    • 8). Place a tube onto the bleeder screw of the caliper (furthest away from the master cylinder first if replacing both). Place the other end of the tube into an empty bottle. Have an assistant pump the foot brake pedal four to five times and then hold pressure onto the brake pedal. Open the bleeder screw to allow air to purge from the hydraulic caliper. Continue to do this until the fluid coming from the caliper is free of air bubbles. Repeat the bleeding on the other side until the brake pedal feels firm to the assistant when applying pressure. Check and adjust the brake fluid level in the master cylinder during the bleeding process to ensure it does not run dry of brake fluid. Always remember to replace the cap before allowing the assistant to pump the foot brake pedal again.

    • 9). Replace the wheels and lug nuts and then tighten the lug nuts to the proper torque specifications for the vehicle.

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