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 Post subject: DIY Brakes
PostPosted: Sat Aug 13, 2011 12:05 pm 
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Joined: Tue Oct 24, 2006 3:09 pm
Posts: 4998
Location: Palm Springs: Too hot from June to Oct.!
I hope you enjoy this thread and it will be a treasure chest of information to get your basic brake job, wheel bearing, suspension job completed in a safe and efficient manner.

If you want to go fast, prepare to spend a lot of money.
If you want to stop, not a problem.
Brakes are something which continue to remain inexpensive for a simple reason.
Society wants the 'other guys' car to have good brakes for safety.
It makes sense; I want my family to be protected when on the road, and if your brakes are up to par, that will help.

There is an old saying, 'Cleanliness is next to Godliness'.
With this type of work, you should attempt to keep it clean.
If you have to stop and wash up a few times, OK. It will prevent you from dragging the dirt to the next step.
If gloves are your thing, OK. You can even wash up while wearing the vinyl gloves, for example.

The first tip I have regards observation.
Take a look at the 'wheel well' area where the front tire spins.
If it looks like this:
You'd better take a closer look.
In the situation above, the CV (constant velocity) joint boot has ripped and it is spreading grease as the tire spins.

Next tip I have is another area which you can observe for the same reason.
It is the base of the front shock absorber.
If you see this
consider the axle boot again.

Third thing I can point out is tool assembly.
Try and prepare a few odds and ends to help with the brake job prior to doing it.
For example, you'll need some kind of wire to hook your caliper to the front spring and
a small piece of cardboard (possibly).

Next, here's a little hint on how to take the caliper off the rotor.
Loosen the two mounting bolts and then remove the HARDEST one to reach.
Then, it will be a snap to unbolt the second bolt.
If you do it in reverse, the weight of the caliper will bind and you'll be reaching and twisting against the bind.
Not cool.
When you put the caliper back on, start the easiest bolt, and use it to hold the caliper, freeing two hands to deal with the more difficult (usually upper) bolt.
Suppose the caliper is stuck on the rotor (it happens).
Just put a large screwdriver on the edge (not face) of the rotor and pry toward the front of the car
(here, passenger side shown) and it should lift off easily.

Here's a tip on calipers.
If you are not going to remove the brake pads, then use that piece of cardboard and slip it into the space vacated by the rotor as you lift the caliper off.
Here's a picture
showing the cardboard going in.

Here's a tip on removing the knuckle.
When you remove the two large diameter bolts
Hold the head of the bolt and turn the nut to remove it.
Don't hold the nut and loosen the head of the bolt.
You will encounter less resistance/friction and it will be easier.
Start with a 'breaker bar' and then, once you have loosened it a quarter or half turn, you can move to your ratchet.

Happy Motoring!

DIY Broken Bolt Removal: viewtopic.php?f=22&t=41042
DIY Clutch Adjustment: viewtopic.php?f=9&t=48281
DIY Wheel Bearings: viewtopic.php?f=2&t=29003
DIY Shocks: viewtopic.php?f=10&t=45483
DIY Wheel Align: viewtopic.php?f=2&t=42479
Once you get the cars dialed-in (compression, leaks, bearings, alignment, brakes) swap in new rubber and glass, you've got something which should last for years!

 Post subject: Re: DIY Brakes
PostPosted: Wed Jul 11, 2012 8:52 am 

Joined: Wed Jul 04, 2012 7:30 am
Posts: 22
Location: UK
If the car shakes when the braking system are used, this implies that the braking mechanism rotors are distorted. You will also need to remove half of the reservoir fluid, just in case the car falls for some reason.

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