How to: Pads and Discs

Hi guys,

Here is how I do it:

Get a good jack and some jack stands, on a small car like this an easy way to jack up the car is to jack it up from the pinch welds, be careful if you're going up quite high because the weight of the vehicle can disfigure the pinch welds against the jack.


About this high is adequate. If you have an untidy neighbor to leave junk by your driveway, this will increase your mechanical ability.


I have an impact gun and as such I use that whip off the wheel bolts, if you don't have an impact gun, a breaker bar makes light of them, if you forget to break them loose before you jack up the car, don't worry. Get a friend to put their foot on the brakes while you break it loose. If you don't have any friends, wedge a piece of wood between the brake pedal and the seat.


21 mm socket is required for the wheel bolts. I used this chrome socket for photo purposes only, don't use normal sockets on an impact gun because they can shatter. My impact sockets don't have sizes printed on them.


Now that the wheel is off, pop the key in so that you can turn the wheels.


Now that you have the steering at full lock, you can gain access to the bolts we need to remove. You can see from the photo that these discs are toast.


You will need a breaker bar here and a 4" extension bar. Before you jump on it repeatedly like a kangaroo possessed, make sure the socket is seated properly, rounding off this bolt will ruin your day. Don't be tempted to try and get by without the extension, breaking that brake line would be an even worse day.


Before you take the caliper mounting bracket bolts all the way out ensure that the caliper is supported by something. I find the best thing is an old wire coat hanger but since those have become as rare as hens teeth in my house I've started using bungees.


If you wanted to just see how worn out your brake pads are, you can usually see without taking off anything other than the wheel. My brake pads are also completely finished. New pair left, old pair right.


We will be required to compress the brake caliper piston back inside the housing in order to have enough clearance for the new pads to fit over the new discs. Before we can do this we are required to remove the cap from the brake fluid reservoir.


Now we need to compress the caliper piston. There are special tools for this which are worth buying if you have a car with rear disc brakes also, or a caliper type that is threaded. For front micra calipers, a g-cramp is cheap and effective. This is also about the time that you may wish the put the new disc on, if required.


You need to wind the piston in straight so that it doesn't become bound. I use the bolt holding the brake line as a guide to center. Don't be frightened you won't break anything as long as you stay on the bolt head.


Now that all the preparation work is done, we can fit the brake pads and discs. Before we do that, we need to grease the guide pins so that they are well lubricated and allow the brake pads to move properly. Simply undo the bolts top and bottom and pull them out of the rubber boot.


Secure the top and bottom slide pin and bolt the top of the caliper back on. Now fit the pads against the disc and slide the caliper down over the top of them. Once you've done this, bolt the bottom guide pin bolt back in.


The next thing to do is to torque the caliper down and put in some loctite.


Torque the wheel down when it's on the ground. Do it finger tight while it's up in the air.


Good job, your brakes are now new and shiny!

You may be tempted to speed off down the road but before you do that, make sure you clean the new disc with brake clean. You should then push the brake pedal full travel several times to allow the caliper to adjust to the new discs and pads. Go easy for a hundred miles or so, new brakes take a while to bite properly on occasion. These brembo pads and discs are just fine straight off the bat.

I torque the caliper bracket down at 60nm and the guide pin bolts at 30nm.

Hope this helps someone, it's not too hard to do!
Not bad. I would have been tempted to clean things up a bit with a wire brush and brake cleaner. Or a wire brush piece in my dremel.
I push my calipers back with a crow bar and they go in easily. Otherwise i use a wind back tool as you advised. Only thing different i do is use the old pads over the caliper and wind back that way..
All in all, nice "how to" for any novice.
Let me know how you find the brembo discs and pads a few thousand miles on.
My last set of brembo pads were awful. The brake lining came away from the backing plate. It's usually called delamination.
I now only use NRS enabled pads. Jurid or Icer usually.
I'm also running with fremax discs as both pads and discs have 2 year warranties.
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I push my calipers back with a crow bar and they go in easily. Otherwise i use a wind back tool as you advised. Only thing different i do is use the old pass over the caliper ans wind back that way..

I have used the crow bar/pry bar method in the past to push the caliper back in but I prefer to push it in from the center of the piston rather than from the edge, although that's not always possible... Believe it or not I did a few things that I forgot to include, I did clean up the face of the hub with a wire wheel to take off the rust, I also put a bit of copper grease on it so it will come off easier if need be in future. I also usually put a couple of wheel nuts back on when refitting the caliper, sure beats wrestling with a brake disc that's all over the place lol