How to Replace the Front Brakes on a Dodge Dakota

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The Dakota has filled the bill as Dodge's mid-sized pickup truck for more than 20 years. The Dakota has always met or exceeded the standards set by the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration for stopping distance. Maintaining the stopping power of the front disc brakes requires you to change the brake pads at the first sign of wear. Your local mechanic can do the job, but you can change the pads and save labor costs.

Things You'll Need

  • 19 millimeter socket
  • Ratchet
  • Breaker bar (1/2 inch)
  • Tire blocks
  • C-clamp
  • Flat screwdriver
  • 10 millimeter socket
  • Lifting jack
  • Jack stands
  • Tire iron
  • Loosen the lug nuts on the front wheels with a tire iron, 19 millimeter socket and breaker bar.

  • Place the jack beneath the frame of the truck and lift the Dakota.

  • Place jack stands beneath the frame to support the vehicle during the brake pad replacement.

  • Remove the lug nuts and pull the wheels from the vehicle.

  • To work on the front right wheel, turn the steering wheel to the left–and vice versa.

  • Remove the two caliper bolts on the left side of the caliper with a 10 millimeter socket and ratchet.

  • Pull the caliper from the rotor.

  • Pry the metal clips on the brake pads away from the caliper with a flat screwdriver. Pull the pads from the caliper.

  • Squeeze the caliper piston–the cylinder that extends from one side of the caliper–with a C-clamp.

  • Place the new pads onto the caliper and press them into place; the metal clips will snap onto the caliper sides.

  • Place the caliper onto the rotor and replace the bolts.

  • Turn the steering wheel so it's facing forward. Return the front wheel to the lug nut bolts and screw on the lug nuts.

  • Change the pads on the opposite brake. Turn the steering wheel to the right to access the caliper bolts once the wheel is off.

  • Remove the jack stands and lower the Dodge to the ground. Tighten the lug nuts with a tire iron or 19 millimeter socket, ratchet and breaker bar.

Tips & Warnings

  • Do not attempt to change the brake pads using the lifting jack solely to support the Dakota's weight. Use jack stands.

References

  • Photo Credit Creatas/Creatas/Getty Images
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