How to Change the Back Brakes on a ZX636

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A screeching sound emanating from the rear wheel while braking is common symptom of a worn-out set of brake pads. Luckily, changing the rear brake pads on a Kawasaki ZX636 sport bike is a fairly easy task that can be accomplished with only a few hand tools, thanks to the relatively simple design of the motorcycle's rear-brake system. Expect the job to take at least a half-hour. However, set aside extra time if this is your first attempt at maintaining your motorcycle.

Things You'll Need

  • 14 mm wrench
  • Shop towel
  • 8 mm Allen socket
  • Socket wrench
  • Needle-nose plies
  • Flat screwdriver
  • Replacement brake pads
  • Loosen the rear brake caliper's hose, using a 14 mm wrench to slightly loosen the hose's banjo bolt, then tighten the bolt loosely against the caliper. This will provide the brake hose with additional flexibility to prevent damaging the hose. Use a shop towel to immediately wipe away any brake fluid that may have leaked out from the hose and banjo bolt.

  • Attach a bungee cord to the right passenger foot peg. Remove the pair of mounting bolts that secure the rear caliper to the swing arm and pull the caliper off the rear brake rotor. Support the rear caliper with the bungee cord to prevent damaging the brake hose.

  • Use a pair of needle-nose pliers to pull out the hairpin clip from the brake-pad pin on the center of the rear caliper. Push the brake-pad pin out of the rear caliper and pull out the brake pads and their retention clip.

  • Press the caliper's inner pistons into the caliper housing using a flat screwdriver. Insert the retention clip into the caliper. Slide the piston-side brake pad in first, aligning the pad's tabs with the retention clip's slots, then insert the remaining brake pad.

  • Push the brake-pad pin into the rear caliper and through the holes on the brake pads' tabs. Secure the brake-pad pin by inserting the hairpin clip into the hole on the opposite end of the pin.

  • Slide the rear caliper over the rear brake rotor. Secure the caliper to the swing arm bracket, inserting and tightening the pair of mounting bolts with an 8 mm Allen socket. Loosen the brake-hose banjo bolt with a 14 mm wrench and re-position the brake hose as necessary to prevent the hose from binding. Tighten the banjo bolt completely.

  • Prime the rear brake, pumping the rear brake pedal repeatedly to rebuild hydraulic pressure within the brake circuit. Stop when the brake pedal requires a firm push to engage the brake.

Tips & Warnings

  • Brake fluid is a solvent and will damage painted surfaces. Cover any painted surfaces with a towel before beginning the project and wipe away any spills immediately.
  • Double check that both brake pads are secured by the brake-pad pin before installing the caliper onto the motorcycle. A loose brake pad can create a loss of control that could result in injury or death.

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References

  • "The Professional Motorcycle Repair Program"; Professional Career Development Institute; 1995
  • "2004 Kawasaki ZX636B2 Service Manual"; Kawasaki Heavy Industies; 2004
  • "2005 Kawasaki ZX636C1 Service Manual"; Kawasaki Heavy Industies; 2005
  • Photo Credit motorcycle image by Byron Moore from Fotolia.com
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