How to Change the Rear Brakes on Cars

by Contributing Writer

The rear wheel brakes on a Pontiac car like those on other cars, will wear much faster than the brakes in the front. When you change the rear brakes, you need to do both wheels at the same time regardless of the wear that is present. Changing the rear brakes is not hard, but you must do it properly or they won't perform as they should. Inspect the drums for damage or excessive wear when you change the brakes, in case the drums need replacing as well.

Under The Hood:

 How to Change the Rear Brakes on a Pontiac Grand Prix

Remove the old Brake Pads

Park your car on a level surface. If you have a stick shift car make sure the car is in gear. Place blocks in front of the front tires so the car does not move while you are working on it.

Open the hood of your car and locate the master cylinder. If necessary, remove brake fluid until the level in the container is less than half full. A turkey baster is a good tool for this. Put the brake fluid in the plastic container and dispose of it the way you dispose of motor oil.

Raise the rear end of your car with your car jack. Remove the rear tire or wheel assembly.

Remove the parking brake cable from the back of the caliper. Use the pliers to remove the cable clip (restraining clip). This step is done only for Grand Prix RPO Z7Us.

Hand-tighten two lug nuts to the studs to hold the disc rotor in place while you work on the caliper. Remove the bolt and washer holding the cable support bracket to the caliper. The cable support has the parking brake cable and brake hose attached to it. This step is not done for Grand Prix RPO Z7Us.

Use the socket wrench to remove the caliper guide pin bolts. Slide the caliper off of the disc rotor and hang it in the wheel well with a small bungee cord or wire hanger; Don't let the caliper hang from the brake hose.

Remove the brake pads and shims from the caliper. Throw away the shims.

Install the new Brake Pads

Use the spanner tool to rotate the piston clockwise all the way into the caliper. Make sure the notches on the piston are at the 6 and 12 o'clock positions. There is a boot (rubber seal) around the piston bore. Lift the seal's inner edge and press out any trapped air. Insert the brake pad clips into the caliper support.

Apply a thin coat of lubricant to the parts of the inner pad that come in contact with the caliper piston and mounting areas. As you install the brake pads in the caliper support, make sure the wear sensors are downward and at the leading edge of the rotor when the tire rotates. Push the brake pads into the support, holding the metal shoe edge against the spring end of the pad clips. This slightly bends the spring ends and lets the notches engage with the support. This step does not apply for the Grand Prix RPO Z7U.

Swing the caliper back into place over the brake pads and replace the mounting bolt. Reconnect the cable support bracket and tighten the bolt to 32-ft.lb. (43 Nm). Remove the lug nuts holding the rotor in place. For the Grand Prix RPO Z7U, Slide the caliper back into place on the disc rotor. Reconnect the parking brake cable. Insert and tighten the caliper mounting bolts to 44 foot lb. (60 Nm).

Replace the tire wheel assembly. Lower the car to the ground.

Pump the brake pedal a few times to seat the brake pads. Do this before trying to move your car.

Add fluid to the master cylinder container to replace any you removed before you removed the old brake pads.

Season the brake pads by making only gentle stops when you are driving for the first week after you install the new brake pads. Try not to do any hard stopping when you are seasoning the brakes.

Items you will need

  • Blocks

  • Car jack

  • Lug nut wrench

  • Turkey baster

  • Heavy duty plastic container

  • Allen head, star head or 6-point socket wrench

  • Small bungee cord or wire hanger

  • Large C-clamp

  • Spanner wrench type caliper piston installer

  • New brake pads and shims

  • Brake fluid

  • Piston spanner tool (not for Grand Prix RPO Z7U)

  • High temperature lubricant (not for Grand Prix RPO Z7U)

 How to Replace the Rear Brakes on a Sunfire

Park the car on a level surface and place wheel chocks in front of the front wheels.

Jack the car up with an automobile jack on the side that you will be working on.

Place the jack stand under the frame of the car near the jacking point and raise it as high as you can to the frame.

Remove the wheel and the brake drum. If the drum is difficult to take off, hit it several times with a rubber mallet until it breaks free.

Use pliers to remove the round locking springs. Grip the top of the spring with the pliers, push the spring down, and twist it until it comes free.

Lift up the actuator and disconnect the actuator link by removing it from the slot in the actuator. Remove the actuator, the pivot and the spring when it is disconnected.

Spread the brake shoes apart with your hands until they clear the cylinder pistons, and then remove the parking brake strut by removing the spring with spring pliers.

Spread the brake shoes apart with your hands far enough to clear the wheel hub and disconnect the parking brake cable. Take the shoes off of the wheel.

Use pliers to remove the C clip from the parking brake lever, and remove it from the shoe.

Wipe dirt and dust from the backing plate with a damp cloth.

Examine the wheel cylinders to check for excessive leakage. If excessive leakage is present, they will need to be replaced.

Lubricate the parking brake lever with the brake grease provided with the brake shoes.

Reattach the parking brake lever to the shoe with a C clip.

Attach the adjusting screw and spring to the brake shoes using the spring pliers to clip it into place. Make sure the coils do not touch the star wheel on the adjuster.

Lubricate the shoe contact surface on the backing plate with brake grease.

Spread the shoe assembly apart and reconnect the parking brake cable to the lever. Attach the brake shoes to the backing plate and lock into them into place with the locking springs (by pushing them in with pliers and twisting).

Spread the shoes apart slightly with your hands and use spring pliers to reconnect the parking brake strut and the spring.

Install the actuator pivot, lever and return spring, and then lift the actuator lever up and hook it to the lever.

Measure the width of the inside of the drum and then measure the width of the brake shoes. Adjust them as needed by spinning the star screw on the adjuster until they reach the proper width.

Replace the drum over the brake shoes and reinstall the wheel.

Remove the jack stand and lower the car to the ground.

Repeat the process on the other wheel.

Items you will need

  • Brake spring remover

  • Brake spring pliers

  • Brake drum clearance gauge

  • Pliers

  • Brake cleaner

  • Automobile jack

  • Jack stand

  • Wheel chocks

  • Rubber mallet

 How to Change the Rear Brakes on a 1994 Jeep Cherokee

Drum Brake Disassembly

Block the front wheels and release the parking brake. Loosen the rear wheel lug nuts. Raise the rear axle with a jack, then support the vehicle on jack stands. Remove the rear wheels.

Remove the brake drum from the brake assembly. If the drum does not pull off easily, apply penetrating oil when the hub meets the drum. Wait a few minutes and try to remove the drum again. If necessary, the drum may be tapped outward with a hammer around the interior outer edge to break it loose.

Wash brake dust off the brake assembly with brake cleaner fluid and allow it to dry.

Remove the self-adjuster cable and spring from the adjusting lever. Remove the retracting springs from the anchor pin and brake shoes. A spring removal tool can make this job easier, but pliers will work.

Remove the self-adjuster cable and pin plate from the anchor pin, then remove the adjuster cable guide from the secondary shoe.

Remove the shoe hold-down springs from each brake shoe, then remove the brake shoes. A brake shoe spring removal tool can make this job easier, but large pliers can work. Remove the parking brake lever clip from the pivot and separate the secondary shoe from the parking brake lever. Be careful not to lose the clip and spring washer.

Drum Brake Assembly

Secure the new secondary shoe to the parking brake lever with the spring washer and clip. Install the secondary shoe and secure it with the hold-down spring.

Install the primary shoe and secure it with the hold-down spring. Replace the anchor pin plate and adjuster cable on the anchor pin. Position the cable guide on the secondary shoe, then install the retracting springs

Install the adjusting lever spring and cable on the adjusting lever.

Brake Drum Installation

Examine the inner surface of the brake drums. If deep gouges or visibly uneven wear are present, or if the drums are worn too thin, they need to be replaced. Drums that are in excellent condition may be re-installed, but should be de-glazed with fine sandpaper by rubbing in a circular motion along the brake drum surface. When in doubt, have the drums professionally resurfaced.

Install the drums over the brake and hub assembly on each side. If the drum will not go on, adjust the brake shoes by turning the star wheel on the adjuster to retract the brake shoes.

Adjust the brakes by inserting a flat-head screwdriver through the hole in the backing plate. Rotate the star wheel until the brakes just begin to drag as the wheel is turned by hand, then back the adjustment off slightly.

Install the wheels. Lower the vehicle to the ground, then tighten lug nuts securely. Road test the vehicle by making several stops in both forward and reverse.

Items you will need

  • Wheel blocks (bricks or wood 2 inch by 4 inch will work)

  • Jack

  • Jack stands

  • Lug wrench

  • Brake cleaner fluid

  • Pliers

  • Flat-head screwdriver

  • Retractor spring removal tool (optional)

  • Brake shoe spring removal tool (optional)

 How to Change the Rear Brakes on a Nissan Altima

Open the hood, and remove the cap from the brake master cylinder, located on the driver's side, near the firewall. Cover the open cylinder with a clean rag. Stuff old rags around and under the cylinder, to catch any brake fluid that overflows.

Loosen the lug nuts on all the rear wheel lugs. Raise the rear of the car, and support it with a jack stand on each side. Remove the lug nuts and both rear wheels.

Place a drip pan or newspapers below the brake assembly. Spray the entire front brake assembly with a liberal amount of brake cleaner, and allow the parts to dry.

Use a socket to remove the upper sliding pin bolt from the caliper. Rotate the caliper downward and out of the torque member. Use a piece of wire to support the caliber, so the brake line is not stretched.

Remove the inner and out pads, pad retainers and shims from the torque member.

Apply a coat of Molokyte grease to the back to the new pads, and attach the shims to the backs of the pads. Place another coat of grease on the back of the shims and on the inside of the retainers. A small tube of Molykyte grease should come with your new pads.

Insert the two inner and two outer pad retainers into the torque member, ensuring they are seated all the way against the back.

Insert the inner and outer pads and shims.

Press the caliper piston back into its cylinder, by attaching a large C-clamp and tightening it. This is necessary because the new pads will be considerably thicker than the old pads.

Rotate the caliper back upward, into the torque member. Replace the upper sliding pin bolt, and use a torque wrench to tighten it to 32 ft-lbs. of torque.

Repeat Step 3 through Step 10 on the opposite side.

Replace the wheels and the lug nuts. Lower the vehicle, and tighten the lug nuts. Check the master cylinder, to ensure it is still full. If fluid leaked when you depressed the piston, add new brake fluid to reach the "Full" mark. Clean any spillage, and replace the cap. Be sure to remove all rags from the engine compartment.

Take the vehicle for a drive on a straight road with minimum traffic. Accelerate to about 30 mph, and rapidly slow the car to the point just before stopping. Repeat this at least two more times. The purpose is to make sure the pads are fully seated and to smooth out any rough spots on the new pads.

Items you will need

  • Lug wrench

  • Jack

  • Two jack stands

  • Brake cleaner

  • Rags

  • Drip pan or newspapers

  • Piece of wire or string

  • Large C-clamp

  • Torque wrench

  • Brake fluid

 How to Replace the Rear Brakes on a Nissan Quest

Removing the Brake Shoes

Park your Nissan on a level surface and release the emergency brake.

Loosen the wheel lugs on both rear wheel assemblies using a lug wrench.

Lift both rear wheels using a floor jack and place two jack stands on the rear frame for support.

Chock the front wheels and finish removing the rear wheel/tire assemblies.

Pull the brake drums off the hubs by hand. If the drums seem stuck, you may need to retract the brake shoes by rotating the adjusting screw. You can access the screw through the hole in the backing plate. Remove the rubber plug on the hole and use a screwdriver to push the locking lever away from the star wheel on the adjusting screw and rotate the star wheel with a brake-adjusting tool. If the drum is still stuck, hammer around the outer edge of the drum with a rubber mallet to break the rust adhesion at the hub and lug studs.

Remove the brake shoe-to-backing plate hold-down springs on each shoe using a hold-down spring tool.

Detach the upper and lower brake shoe connecting springs using a brake spring tool.

Lift the brake shoes off the backing plate and take off the adjusting screw by hand.

Unhook the parking brake cable from the toggle lever attached to one of the brake shoes using a pair of needle nose pliers.

Detach the toggle lever from the brake shoe by removing the retainer ring using a screwdriver and the needle nose pliers. Then remove the shoes from the brake assembly.

Installing the New Brake Shoes

Spray the backing plate and hub assembly with brake parts cleaner and wipe the assembly with a lint-free cloth.

Attach the toggle lever to the new brake shoe with the retainer ring using the needle nose pliers.

Hook the parking brake cable to the toggle lever on the brake shoe.

Wash your hands with water and soap and apply a dab of brake grease to the brake shoe-to-backing plate contact points.

Place the shoe with the toggle lever in position on the backing plate and install the corresponding shoe hold-down spring using the hold-down spring tool.

Place the other shoe and adjusting screw in position and install the shoe hold-down spring using the hold-down spring tool.

Attach the upper and lower brake shoe connecting springs using the brake spring tool.

Spray the inside of the brake drum with brake parts cleaner and wipe the drum clean with a lint-free cloth.

Install the brake drum and rotate the wheel assembly by hand. You should hear the new brake shoes slightly dragging against the drum. If not, rotate the star wheel on the adjusting screw to adjust the shoes.

Replace the brake shoes on the brake assembly of the opposite wheel starting with Step 7 of the previous section through Step 9 of this section.

Install the wheel/tire assemblies and screw the lug nuts in place using the lug wrench.

Lower the vehicle and finish tightening the lug nuts.

Test-drive your vehicle to make sure the brakes work properly.

Items you will need

  • Lug wrench

  • Floor jack

  • Jack stands (2)

  • Chocks (2)

  • Screwdriver

  • Brake-adjusting tool (optional)

  • Rubber mallet (optional)

  • Hold-down spring tool

  • Brake spring tool

  • Needle nose pliers

  • Brake parts cleaner

  • Lint-free cloth

  • Brake grease

 How to Change Rear Brakes on a Honda Accord

Park your car in a safe place and level surface.

Loose the wheel lugs on both rear tires. Raise the rear of the vehicle using a floor jack and safely support it on jack stands.

Remove the back tires, release the parking brake and remove the rear brake drums from the wheel assemblies. At this point, work on just one set of brakes and use the other set as a reference point to guide you, if necessary, as you get ready to install the new brake shoes on the opposite brake assembly.

Remove the upper spring holding both brake shoes together. You can use a brake spring tool or a regular screwdriver.

Push the button-like retainer springs in and release the tension pins. Drop the upper section of the brake shoes assembly down. Disconnect the lower return spring.

Lift the brake-shoe assembly slightly off their mounting back plate. Disengage the parking brake cable from the lever. Remove the brake shoe and then remove the parking brake lever form the brake shoe by removing the small U-clip.

Clean the brake mounting assembly plate and brake components with brake parts cleaner and a clean shop rag.

Connect the parking brake lever to the new brake shoe using a new U-clip and close the clip using a pair of pliers. Install the parking brake cable to the rear brake shoe. Make sure to identify the rear and front brake shoe by comparing the new units with the opposite brake assembly.

Coat the sliding surfaces on the back plate with Molykote 44MA or similar grease.

Assemble the self-adjuster lever spring on the front brake, and then assemble both brake shoes with their upper and lower springs and adjuster bolt. Install the assembly on the back plate, secure it with the tension spring pin and hook the upper return spring to the rear shoe.

Change the brake shoes on the opposite wheel and then install both brake drums and tires.

Lower the vehicle and depress the brake pedal several times to allow the self-adjusting spring bolt on the rear brake assemblies to adjust the rear brakes.

Items you will need

  • Floor jack and 2 jack stands Brake installation tool set Mechanical pliers Brake parts cleaner Clean shop rags Molykote 44MA or similar grease

 How to Change the Rear Brakes on a Hyundai Elantra

To Remove

Park your Hyundai Elantra in a safe place with enough room for you to work around the rear of the vehicle. Loosen the wheel lugs on the rear tires. Raise the rear of the car with a floor jack and safely support it on jack stands. Remove the tires.

Pry the grease cup off the wheel hub, using a standard screwdriver. Remove the cotter pin and nut ring--if equipped--using a pair of nose pliers. Remove the nut from the axle stub using an axle socket and ratchet. Remove the wheel bearing and brake drum.

Remove the upper return spring from the brake assembly; then depress the small spring cups. Hold the brake shoes against the backing plate. Rotate them 90 degrees using slip joint pliers to release the center pins.

Disengage the brake shoes from the wheel cylinder on top. Be careful not to damage the rubber dust covers. Remove the lower return spring. Disengage the parking brake cable from the operating lever attached to the shoe facing the rear of the vehicle. Disengage the adjuster spring attached to the adjuster lever on the shoe facing the front of the vehicle. Remove the brake shoes and the center adjuster bolt from the vehicle.

To Install

Wipe clean the backing plate with a shop rag and brake parts cleaner. Apply a light coat of wheel bearing grease to the raised pads on the backing plate. Attach the operating lever to the new brake shoe with the larger lining on it. Connect the parking cable to the operating lever.

Install the adjuster level and spring to the other brake shoe and center both shoes with the adjuster bolt on the backing plate. Install the spring cups and pins to hold the shoes on the backing plate. Install the lower and upper return springs. If necessary, remove the other brake drum to guide yourself visually during this installation.

Install the new brake shoes on the opposite wheel, following Step 3 through Step 6. Install the rear brake drums. Apply wheel bearing grease to the wheel bearing and install. Tighten the axle nut and reinstall the grease cup.

Remove the rubber plug from the back of the backing plates and adjust the new shoes, using a star wheel tool. Insert the tool though the hole and turn the star wheel on the adjuster bolt. Turn the wheel manually at the same time until the shoes drag slightly against the drums. Install the rubber plug and tires.

Lower the vehicle and depress the brake pedal several times to make sure the new brakes are correctly adjusted.

Items you will need

  • Lug wrench

  • Floor jack and 2 jack stands

  • Standard screwdriver

  • Nose pliers

  • Axle socket

  • Ratchet

  • Slip joint pliers

  • Shop rag

  • Brake parts cleaner

  • Wheel bearing grease

  • Star wheel tool

 How to Replace the Rear Brakes on a Hyundai Accent

Park the vehicle on a firm, level surface and block the front wheels to prevent accidental vehicle movement. Do not engage the parking brake. Loosen the lug nuts on both rear wheels with a lug nut wrench. Raise the rear of the vehicle with a jack and set it securely on jack stands. Remove both rear wheels.

Remove the drum retaining screw and then remove the brake drum. It is a good idea to remove the drums from both rear wheels, so that the assembled brake can be used as a visual reference for the brake being serviced. If the drum is difficult to remove, firmly tap the outer face of the drum with a mallet to loosen it. Do not strike the rim of the drum.

Remove the upper return spring by grasping one end of the spring with pliers and unhooking it from the brake shoe. Repeat for the other end of the spring. Remove the adjuster lever spring in the same way.

Detach the parking brake cable from the operating lever. Remove the lower return spring by unhooking the ends and remove the adjuster wheel assembly from between the brake shoes.

Rotate the hold down pin and the cup washer on each brake shoe with pliers. Line up the notches in the cup washer with the small tabs on the hold down pin and remove the washer and hold-down spring. Push the hold down pin out through the backing plate and remove the brake shoe.

Measure the brake shoe lining thickness with a finely graduated ruler and if less than 0.04 of an inch, replace the shoes.

Measure the brake drum inside diameter in several directions with a brake drum micrometer. The diameter should be equal in all directions, indicating that the drum is round. The drum should be replaced if the diameter is greater than 8.04 inches on 2006 and later model years, 7.87 inches on 2000 to 2005 model years or 7.09 inches on 1999 and earlier model years. Also replace the drum if the interior surface has any deep grooves, glazed spots or cracks. Minor drum damage can be corrected by having the drum machined at a brake shop or auto-parts supply store.

Clean all parts with brake cleaning fluid. Remove stubborn dirt and deposits by working with rags or a small wire brush. Catch any cleaning fluid drips in a drip pan and dispose of in accordance with local regulations. Take apart the adjuster wheel assembly by pulling out the push rod end and unscrewing the star wheel halves. Clean thoroughly with brake cleaning fluid. Lubricate the adjuster wheel threads and the push rod female end with brake grease before reassembling the parts. Apply brake grease to the contact points where the brake shoes touch the backing plate and the piston face. Also apply brake grease to the pivot points at the hold-down pins, the operating lever and the adjuster lever.

Reassemble the brake by following steps in the reverse order. Refer to the wheel on the opposite side as a guide. Pump the brakes a few times to set the self-adjusting mechanism. Repeat the procedure on the opposite wheel. Replace the wheels, then lower the vehicle. Test the brakes before driving the automobile.

Items you will need

  • Lug nut wrench

  • Jack

  • Jack stands

  • Wrenches

  • Mallet

  • Screwdrivers

  • Pliers

  • Brake grease

  • Brake cleaner spray

  • Catch pan

  • Rags

  • Wire brush

  • Brake drum micrometer

 How to Replace the Rear Brakes on a GMC Yukon

Raise the Yukon

Park the Yukon on a level, flat, solid surface.

Use the tire iron to loose the lug nuts on both rear wheels.

Place the floor jack under the rear differential and lift the Yukon until the back tires are off the ground and the jack stands will fit under the frame just in front of the rear wheel wells.

Lower the vehicle onto the jack stands.

Remove the lug nuts and the rear tires.

Dissassembling the Brakes

Loosen or remove the caliper pins using the socket set. The caliper pins are located on the back of the brake assembly and are the set of bolts farthest away from the axle.

Remove the brake assembly bolts. The brake assembly bolts are the set of bolts closer to the axle.

Pry off the brakes using the screwdriver. Depending on the level of corrosion, the brakes may just fall off when the bolts are removed.

Separate the caliper and the brake pad holder.

Place the C-clamp over the piston and the back of the caliper housing and compress the piston into the housing until just a little bit is sticking out.

Reassembly

Clean the corrosion off the brake tracks on the brake pad holder using the steel wool.

Wipe a small amount of lubricant across the brake tracks. Use the paper towel to smear the lubricant out into a thin film.

Place the brake pads in the tracks with the pads facing inwards.

Put the brake pad holder over the rotor with one pad against each side of the rotor. Insert the bolts to hold it in place.

Remove the C-clamp and place the caliper over the brake pads. Insert the caliper pins to hold the caliper in place.

Tighten the caliper pins and the bolts.

Put the tire back in place and tighten the lug nuts.

Repeat the steps for replacing the pads on the other side of the Yukon, then lower it to the ground.

Retighten all of the lug nuts on the rear tires.

Items you will need

  • Tire iron

  • Floor jack

  • Jack stands

  • Wrench and socket set

  • Long shafted flat-headed screwdriver

  • C-clamp

  • Steel wool

  • Graphite lubricant

  • Paper towel

  • 2 sets of new brake pads

 How to Change the Rear Brakes on an Oldsmobile Aurora

Place wheel chocks behind the front wheels of the Aurora, and release the parking brake. Raise the rear wheels with a floor jack, and place jack stands just in front of the wheel well. You will notice an area of the pinch weld about 6 inches in front of the wheel opening that is reinforced for jacking and jack stand placement. Remove the wheels with a lug wrench, and store them away from the work area.

Remove the caliper hold-down bolts, and pry up on the caliper to remove it. This can take a little effort to slide the caliper past the locating pin on the back of the brake pads. Compress the caliper piston by rotating and pushing the piston back into the housing with the caliper piston tool.

Remove the caliper bracket, and slip the rotor off the hub assembly. Take the rotors to an auto parts store or repair shop, and have them machined to remove warp. This will prevent brake noise and vibration.

Clean and lube the slide pins and pad contact surfaces with silicone brake lube. This prevents accelerated pad wear due to sticking caliper slides.

Install the rotors, the caliper bracket and the new pads. A small locating pin on the back of the inside pad engages a notch in the face of the caliper piston. Rotate the piston with the piston tool to line these up. Slide the caliper into place, and securely tighten the retaining bolts.

Reinstall the wheels, and pump the brake pedal. Lower the Aurora onto the ground and test-drive to verify the brakes work properly. Set the parking brake, and make sure it holds while the vehicle is in drive.

Items you will need

  • Wheel chocks

  • Floor jack

  • Jack stands

  • Lug wrench

  • Socket set

  • Wrench set

  • Caliper piston tool

  • Silicone brake grease

  • New pads

 How to Change the Rear Brakes on a Chrysler Sebring

Remove the Rear Brake Pads

Park your car on a level surface. Set the parking brake. Place blocks in front of the front tires so the car does not move while you are working on it.

Open the hood of your car. Locate the master cylinder and remove about two thirds of the brake fluid. A turkey baster is a good tool for this.

Raise the rear end of your car with your car jack. Remove the rear tire or wheel assembly.

Remove the caliper guide and lock pins. Slide the caliper off of the disc brake and suspend it near the disc brake with a small bungee cord or coat hanger. Suspend the caliper housing so that you do not damage the brake hose.

Take the brake pads, spring clip and shims out of the caliper.

Hand tighten the wheel lug nuts to the wheel studs to keep the rotor from moving while you work on the caliper.

Install Rear Brake Pads

Place a large C-clamp over the body of the brake caliper. Place the clamp ends against the rear of the caliper body and the outboard pad or a wood block placed against the caliper piston. Tighten the clamp until the piston is completely compressed into the caliper bore. Remove the clamp and the old pad or wood block.

Replace the caliper on the rotor. If you pivoted the caliper instead of removing it, pivot the caliper down to its original position.

Use high temperature silicone lubricant to lubricate the caliper guide and lock pins. Replace them in the caliper. Tighten the guide and locking pins to 32 foot pounds (43 Nm).

Replace the wheel assembly (tire). Lower the car to the ground. Press the brake pedal two thirds of its travel distance and release. Wait 15 seconds and depress the pedal the same distance. This seats the brake pads. Do this several times before trying to move your car.

Check the brake fluid level in the master cylinder container. Add fluid to the container as needed. Reconnect the negative battery cable.

Items you will need

  • Car jack

  • Wrench

  • Wire or small bungee cord

 How to Replace the Rear Brakes on a 2000 Mustang

Open the hood. Locate the brake master cylinder on the driver's side of the engine compartment in front of the firewall. Wipe dirt and foreign matter from the top of the master cylinder with the shop rag. Remove the master cylinder's filler cap by hand. Suction about half of the brake fluid from the master cylinder.

Break the torque on the rear wheels' lug nuts with the lug-nut wrench. Turn the lug nuts about 1/2 turn counterclockwise.

Raise the rear of the car off the ground. Support the car on jack stands. Remove the lug nuts. Remove the rear wheels.

Remove the rear disc brake caliper bolts with a wrench. Twist the caliper slightly to press the internal piston into the caliper housing, then lift the caliper off the rotor. Observe how the pads are seated inside the caliper housing, and note the orientation of the slippers (the tabs on each end of the pads) and of the spring.

Remove the pads from the cradle of the caliper. Insert the round end of the rear caliper piston adjuster into the piston and then turn it clockwise to press the piston into the caliper. Remove the rear caliper piston adjuster, then hang the caliper inside the wheel well with the bungee cord.

Remove the slippers from the brake pads, Install the slippers on the new pads in the same orientation. Install the pads into the caliper.

Position the caliper on the brake rotor and install the rear disc brake caliper bolts. Torque the caliper bolts to 25 foot-lbs. with the torque wrench.

Install the rear wheels. Raise the rear of the car off the jack stands. Remove the jack stands and lower the car to the ground. Torque the lug nuts to 95 foot-lbs.

Add high-performance DOT 3 motor vehicle brake fluid to the master cylinder. Fill to the "Full" mark. Reinstall the master cylinder's filler cap.

Pump the brake pedal gently several times to seat the caliper pistons properly against the new pads. Recheck the brake fluid level in the master cylinder and top it off as needed.

Items you will need

  • Shop rag

  • Suction device

  • Lug-nut wrench

  • Jack

  • Jack stands

  • Wrench set

  • Bungee cord

  • Rear caliper piston adjuster (Ford part number T87P-2588-A)

  • Foot-lb. torque wrench

  • High performance DOT 3 motor vehicle brake fluid

 How to Replace the Rear Brakes on a Saturn Ion

Loosen the lugs on your right left rear tire.

Jack up the rear end of your Ion from the rear middle of your frame, and place jack stands in place. Place wheel blocks in front of the front wheels.

Finish loosening the lugs on your left rear tire and remove the tire. Set the lug nuts and the rear passenger tire on the side.

Slide off the rear brake drum, and set it aside.

Remove the brake adjuster springs with a pair of pliers.

Remove the inner shoe by twisting it inwards to remove it from the hook that holds it in place.

Take off the outer shoe by pushing downwards on the hold-down pin and twisting it off like you did on the inner shoe.

Spray brake cleaner fluid onto the break assembly, and wipe it dry. Also, spray the brake drum down well, and wipe it clean and dry with an old shop rag.

Insert the new outer and inner brake shoes by twisting them into place.

Replace brake adjuster springs using the pliers.

Slip the brake drum back into place, and replace the rear wheel and lug nuts.

Repeat the process to change the brakes on the right rear wheel.

Items you will need

  • Lug wrench

  • Jack

  • Jack stands

  • Wheel blocks

  • Pliers

  • Brake cleaning fluid

  • Shop rags

  • Replacement rear brakes

 How to Replace the Rear Brakes on a 1998 Lexus GS300

Loosen the lug nuts. Lift the wheel off the ground with a jack and remove the wheel. The jack point is several inches in front of the wheel and is marked by a notch on either side.

Remove the two bolts that hold the caliper in place. The bolts are on the back side of the caliper assembly. Lift the caliper off the disc and suspend it with a piece of wire. Do not let the caliper hang from the brake line.

Remove the two anti-squeal springs, four shims and the two pads. The shims and pads are rectangular and held in place by the spring and a guide pin. Pry with a flat-head screwdriver if necessary.

Spread disc brake grease on both sides of the inner shims. Attach the shims to the replacement pads.

Install the pads and retain them with the anti-squeal spring.

Press the piston into the cylinder using something convenient such as a hammer handle.

Remove the caliper from the suspending wire and slide it into place. Install the bolts, tightening to 77 ft- lbs. of torque. Replace the wheel and lower the car.

Items you will need

  • Jack

  • Socket wrench

  • Socket set, metric

  • Flat-head screwdriver

  • Disc brake grease

  • Torque wrench

 How to Replace the Rear Brakes on a Scion XB Assembly Drawing

Place wheel blocks in front of and behind one front wheel. Loosen the rear lug nuts by turning them counterclockwise with the lug wrench. Place the jack under the frame in front of one rear wheel and raise the jack until the wheel clears the ground. Set the jack stand in front if the jack and lower the car onto the stand. Repeat on the opposite side. Remove the lug nuts and wheels.

Rotate the slider pins per caliper counterclockwise with a socket and ratchet to remove them. Pull the caliper off the mount and over the rotor. Remove the inner and out pads from the pad/caliper mount, making note of the anti-rattle shims and sleeves/clips. Place the inner pad against the caliper piston and use the C-Clamp to compress the piston into the caliper. Repeat this step on both sides.

Apply an ample quantity of the Stop Squeak to the backs of the brake pads and one the piston side of the anti-rattle shims. Attach the anti-rattle sleeves/clips to the brake pads and install them in the mount.

Insert the slider pins through the calipers and thread them onto the mounts by turning them clockwise by hand until finger tight. Torque these pins to 29 foot-pounds. Repeat on both sides.

Hang the rear wheels on the lug studs and thread the lug nuts onto the studs by turning them clockwise by hand until finger tight. Raise one side of the vehicle off the jack stand and remove the stand. Lower the vehicle until the wheel contacts the ground. Torque the lug nuts in a star pattern to 85 foot-pounds. Repeat on the opposite side. Remove the wheel blocks.

Items you will need

  • Jack

  • Jack stands

  • Lug wrench

  • Wheel blocks

  • Socket set

  • Ratchet

  • Can of suitable lithium-based grease

  • C-Clamp

  • New brake pads

  • Stop Squeak adhesive