Thinking about purchasing a new car? Use our new Car Loan Calculator to estimate your monthly car payment!

How to Change the Brake Pads on a Dakota

by Dan Ferrell

Dodge recommends replacing the anti-rattle clips as part of the rear brake pads service. Make sure your kit includes these clips if you are replacing the rear pads. In addition, always replace the pads as a whole set. For example, install new pads on both front or rear wheel assemblies and not just one tire. This will ensure proper brake system performance.

Removing the Brake Pads

1

Wipe dust and grease off the master cylinder reservoir and filler caps with a shop rag.

2

Draw at least half of the brake fluid from the master cylinder. You can use a clean turkey baster.

3

Unfasten the wheel lug nuts using a lug wrench on the set of wheels you are servicing.

4

Raise the front or rear of your vehicle using a floor jack. Then safely support it on jack stands.

5

Finish taking off the wheel/tire assemblies.

6

Disengage the caliper spring out of the front side of the caliper with a screwdriver, if you have a 2000-2002 Dakota model.

7

Unfasten the caliper slide pins with a six-point socket and ratchet. Then pull the caliper off the brake rotor.

8

Pry the outer pad retainer spring with a screwdriver and slide the pad off the caliper.

9

Push the caliper piston into its bore using a large C-clamp. Let the clamp screw push against the inner brake pad to seat the piston.

10

Pry off the inner brake pad from the caliper piston using a screwdriver.

11

Tie the caliper to the coil spring with a piece or wire to prevent damage to the brake hose attached to the caliper.

Installing New Brake Pads

1

Spray the brake assembly, caliper and bracket with brake parts cleaner and a piece of clean, lint-free cloth.

2

Install new anti-rattle clips, if you are replacing the rear brake pads.

3

Position the new inner brake pad against the caliper piston and push the pad until the pad back spring is fully seated into the piston.

4

Install the outer brake pad.

5

Coat the sliding surface of the caliper-mounting bracket with high-temperature brake grease.

6

Install the caliper assembly on its mounting bracket and rotor and start the caliper slide pins by hand to avoid stripping the threads. Then tighten the pins using the six-point socket and ratchet.

7

Install the caliper spring to the front side of the caliper using the screwdriver, if you have a 2000-2002 Dakota model.

8

Mount the wheel/tire assembly and tighten the wheel lug nuts using the lug wrench.

9

Service the opposite wheel assembly following steps 6 from the previous section through step 8 in this section.

10

Lower your vehicle and finish tightening the wheel lug nuts on both tires.

11

Seat the new brake pads on the rotors by pumping the brake pedal several times.

12

Add new brake fluid to the master cylinder to bring the level up to the Full mark, if necessary.

13

Be sure the brake pedal is firm and working properly before driving the car.

Warning

  • Avoid breathing brake lining dust when working on the wheel assemblies. Many brake pads still in use today were made with asbestos, which the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) in the U.S. has established to cause cancer.

Items you will need

References

About the Author

Since 2003 Dan Ferrell has contributed general and consumer-oriented news to television and the Web. His work has appeared in Texas, New Mexico and Miami and on various websites. Ferrell is a certified automation and control technician from the Advanced Technology Center in El Paso, Texas.

More Articles

Photo Credits

  • Scott Olson/Getty Images News/Getty Images