How to Replace Disc Brake Pads

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When replacing disc brake pads, make sure to have a solid jack underneath the car to safely hold its weight. Use a brake caliper and push the pistons back when replacing disc brake pads with help from a certified master mechanic in this free video on car maintenance.

Part of the Video Series: Car Maintenance
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Video Transcript

Good afternoon. My name is Tom Brintzenhofe, certified master mechanic, out of Redding, PA. Today, I'm going to show you how to change your front disc brake pads. The easiest thing I can tell you, before you get into anything, is just make sure you have a good solid jack underneath it, preferably one, two, three ton capacity. It sits a lot safer, and you hold the weight of the car, but other than that, I've already taken the wheel off, to make it a little bit easier, and simplify this a little bit, but once you get your wheel off, you have your brake caliper here. Usually, there's two bolts that hold it on, your top one, and your bottom one. I'll show you a little trick here. On this 95 Grand Prix, it has a little clip on the inside, here, what you need to do, is to pry that back a little bit. The second step is, you want to take this bottom bolt out. I'll show you in a second here, why we only take the bottom one out. Take that bottom one out here, then just take your caliper, and flip it straight up like this. It makes your life a little bit easier, you don't have to take the whole thing apart. If you find out you really don't feel like holding it, you can just slide it. That pin stays in there, all you have to do is flip it upside down here, and this is that clip I was telling you about earlier. You have to try it out a little bit, to get this thing off. Sometimes these are a little tricky. Don't be afraid if you bend it out a little too far, because you won't be reusing them again. Get that top one, and the outside one off. Grab your little, your brake caliper, your brake pad tool. You can pick these up for about eight dollars, at your local parts store. What you do, you want to stick that in there ,kind of push these pistons back, so you can get your new brake shoes on. This shouldn't go back in too hard. You should be able to push these in, with just using one hand. If it give you any more force than that, you've probably got a problem either with your caliper, or your brake hose, but don't try rushing it, just turn it real nice and slow. It's ok if one piston starts pushing back before the other one. This one here particularly, is a two piston caliper, most of them are just one single one, but if you have one that has two, don't be amazed, if you've got one of them that goes back before the other one. The other one will catch up with it, so just take your time pushing them back in. You take your tool out, once you get it all the way back, your inside pad just pops right out. You can take your new brake pads, and unfortunately, these are nothing wrong with them, so we'll put these back in here. Just slide it right back in there, simple as so, take your outside pad, it goes down over your metal. You'll hear it click right back in. Take your caliper, make sure you don't twist this hose up here, just slide that pin back in. That's why I said, only take that bottom one out, so you can use that first one as a guide. It rolls down in here, stick your caliper pin back in, get that bolt going, tighten it up. That's all there is to changing your front disc brake pads.

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