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Old 12-24-2006, 04:54 PM   #1
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Default Changing front brake pads

I've never done a set of front pads before. How difficult is it and what tools would I need??

I need to do this today as the brakes started to grind last night and I haven't driven it since

The FSM isn't much help in this metter
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Old 12-24-2006, 04:59 PM   #2
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SOO easy. I have done it 3 times since I've had my car.

All you do is remove the calipers, compress the caliper piston, remove the pads, replace the pads and reinstall the caliper. But while you're at it, check the rotor, if its warped or has any gouges in it, replace it as well, it just sits right on the hub. even EASIER to replace once you have the caliper off.

The caliper on mine is TORX, i did the brakes on a 2000 Century and it was just metric bolts...so someone will have to chime in.

OH as far as tools, torx and ratchet to remove caliper (mine was T50 to give you an idea), a piston compressing tool, and that SHOULD be about it, but if you are gonna do the rotor, mine was like sTUCK on...you might need some PB blaster and a mallet to get er off.

Good luck.
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Old 12-24-2006, 05:00 PM   #3
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Default Re: Changing front brake pads

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Originally Posted by dbeast420
I've never done a set of front pads before. How difficult is it and what tools would I need??

I need to do this today as the brakes started to grind last night and I haven't driven it since

The FSM isn't much help in this metter
pretty easy

you will need at T45 or a T47 (i cant remember) to get the caliper off

after the caliper is off its a cake walk
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Old 12-24-2006, 05:11 PM   #4
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Not a difficult job.

Jack
Jackstands
Lug wrench (3/4") to remove road wheel
Brake fluid for bleeding
Couple of feet of 1/4" vinyl tubing and a pan to catch brake fluid from caliper
10mm wrench for caliper bleeder
Big (3/8"?) hex key or torx for caliper bolts
Big flat blade screwdriver
Helper to bleed brakes when done
Silicone grease for the caliper pins

Buy a Chilton'* 28200 and follow the procedure.

And, before you push the caliper pistons back into their bore, open the caliper bleeder so the old brake fluid doesn't get forced back up into the master cylinder. Contaminated fluid will damage your master cylinder. When the piston is all the way in, close the bleeder screw. You can use a special tool, a big C-clamp, or just lever the big screwdriver between the rotor and the center of the inboard pad with the tip of the screwdriver on the pad you will discard, and use the pad to push the piston in.

Don't want to bleed the brakes so you figure you'll skip opening the caliper bleeder? Just shove the piston home? That'* how most guys do it. Then you can bleed the brakes three months later when the master cylinder fails and you have to change it out. If your brake fluid is really clean, or if it has been recently flushed, you can skip this procedure. But, if like most of us, it has been a year or more, it is a much better idea to open the caliper bleed screw as you push the piston home.
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Old 12-24-2006, 05:13 PM   #5
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Default Re: Changing front brake pads

Quote:
Originally Posted by dbeast420
I've never done a set of front pads before. How difficult is it and what tools would I need??

I need to do this today as the brakes started to grind last night and I haven't driven it since

The FSM isn't much help in this metter
The caliper bolts on my 98 are a 3/8 inch allen wrench. It'* the same as on my 93--both are leSabres; I just checked a pair of spare caliper slide bolts I haven't put on yet to replace the corroded ones from a year ago.
Don't forget to lube the caliper bolts where they slide on rubber inserts inside the calipers with a silicon grease.
Don't forget to use a coat hanger to hold up the caliper instead of letting it hang by its hose.
Don't forget to buy a good quality rotor if you decide to replace rotors. I used Raybestos best rotors on 98 and haven't regretted it; they were about twice the rotor the original GMs were.
The long life brake pads with lilfetime guarantee gave a hard pedal in my 93 both times and it got harder the more they worse down. I used OEM quality and then ceramic on my 98. Big difference: OEM brake pads, new rotors and reman calipers at 45K miles-it was like a new car.
I use a small wood block in the caliper piston and open the bleeder to push the caliper in to avoid pushing old fluid back through the ABS unit; some say that can cause problems in the ABS opoeration.
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Old 12-24-2006, 07:45 PM   #6
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I am the least mechanically inclined person on the planet and I've done mine SSE fronts three times. So easy you'll never go to the local repair shop again. Now the rear drums?!? I taught myself over the course of an evening. Cursing...all the cursing. But on the good side, I never touched the drums until somewhere around 115k. My back pass side is still untouched from the factory. Glad my new GXP has rear rotors, not drums. The posts above have the right info. The only thing you'll need is the 45.

And yeah, don't try to skip the brake bleeding procedure. That was a lesson hard learned on my old GP Spec. Ed. Oh, this is easy. Oh, I don't have to bleed this. Oh, I can just wham, bam get it done quick. WRONG. Killed the master cyl. That was a b. to change.
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Old 12-24-2006, 09:08 PM   #7
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Done !!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
With an emergency call to Boosty since I didn't want to touch my keyboard
Since it was my first time the drivers side was a real PITA

Pics tomorrow of the pads that were pulled off,I think there is something wrong with the drivers side caliper
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Old 12-24-2006, 09:14 PM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by dbeast420
Done !!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
With an emergency call to Boosty since I didn't want to touch my keyboard
Since it was my first time the drivers side was a real PITA

Pics tomorrow of the pads that were pulled off,I think there is something wrong with the drivers side caliper
were the pads wearing uneven? and did you replace the rotors?

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Old 12-24-2006, 10:32 PM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jr's3800
Quote:
Originally Posted by dbeast420
Done !!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
With an emergency call to Boosty since I didn't want to touch my keyboard
Since it was my first time the drivers side was a real PITA

Pics tomorrow of the pads that were pulled off,I think there is something wrong with the drivers side caliper
were the pads wearing uneven? and did you replace the rotors?
Yep,really bad on the drivers side. Didn't have the $$$ for rotors at the moment but they didn't show any signs of "abuse"
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Old 12-25-2006, 10:46 AM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by dbeast420
were the pads wearing uneven? and did you replace the rotors
Yep,really bad on the drivers side. Didn't have the $$$ for rotors at the moment but they didn't show any signs of "abuse"
If you had one pad wear much faster than the opposing pad on the driver'* side, take the caliper back off and look at the rubber slide bushings inside the caliper where the metal bolts go in. I had trouble with that being gooped up. The rubber can be taken out but I punched a screwdriver through the rubber trying to get it out. I ended up replacing them. They are available separately. I use silicon grease in a can I had bought to lube them.

It seemed as if the rubber had swollen from the RuGlyde silicon/rubber lube for brakes I had used earlier. You should be able to slide the caliper back and forth by hand with some effort...
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