How to Replace Brake Pads on Honda Cars

by Contributing Writer; Updated June 12, 2017

Driving your Honda car with worn out brake pads is asking for trouble on the road. Nevertheless, changing pads is a job you can do at home with the help of a few common tools and some caution. Whichever set of pads you are servicing, be careful not to damage the brake hose attached to the caliper. Otherwise, you will need to replace it and bleed the brake system. In addition, once you remove the old pads, match them to the new set and be sure you have the correct replacement for your particular model.

Under The Hood:

 How to Replace Brake Pads on a Honda Accord

Park your Accord in a comfortable work area with a flat surface and engage the emergency brake. Pop the hood and find the master cylinder. If you need to, use your owner's manual as a guide.

Loosen the lug nuts one of the front wheels. Because you have to change both sides, it doesn't matter whether you begin with the left or right. After loosening the lugs a bit, situate the jack at the designated spot just behind the wheel, near the front door. Lift the Accord until the tire is off the ground, finish removing the lugs and pull the wheel off.

Examine the brakes, both the rotor and pads. Again, if the rotor is gouged or uneven, you must first replace or resurface it. If the pads are less than 1/4 inch thick, you must replace them. Examine the back of the caliper. You should see two bolts, one on the upper part and one on the bottom. These are the bolts you must remove.

Remove the caliper bolts with your metric socket and ratchet. After you've removed both bolts, you should be able to pull the caliper off of the rotor and slide the old brake pads out. Make sure you look at the pads first, noting how they're installed so that you can properly re-install the new pads.

Place the caliper carefully on top of the rotor and spray the rotor with caliper with brake cleaner. Be careful with the caliper, as you don't want it to fall. If it does, the brake line could be ruined. Also, look in the packaging of your new brake pads. If you did not receive new shims, which are thin metal plates that attach to the pads, you must retrieve the old shims from the old pads.

Hold an old pad between the piston, which is on the inside of the caliper, and your C-clamp. Tighten the C-clamp until it's tight against the old pad and continue tightening the clamp. This pressure will push the piston back into the body of the caliper, allowing you to fit the new, thicker pads onto the caliper and rotor.

Slide your new brake pads into place, checking to make sure that you've attached the shims. Once the pads are installed correctly, you can replace the caliper on the rotor and tighten the top and bottom bolts.

Replace your wheel and tighten the lugs. Go to the other side and replace those pads in the same manner. When you're done, check the brake fluid in the master cylinder. If it looks low, add fluid until it's full. When starting your Accord for the first time after changing the brakes, you want to pump the brake pedal to increase the pressure in the lines.

Items you will need

  • New brake pads

  • Metric sockets and a ratchet

  • Can of break cleaner

  • Medium to large C-clamp

  • Jack

  • Tire iron

  • Jack stands

  • Brake fluid

 How to Replace the Brake Pads on a Honda Civic

Break Replacement DIY

Loosen the wheel lug nuts by turning them 45 degrees counterclockwise.

Jack up the front of the vehicle. To do this, put the floor jack under the vehicle and jack up on the front jack point of the Civic (located near the radiator--it's an extension of the frame).

Put jack stands underneath the front of the frame or the front pinch welds of the Civic and lower the car onto the jack stands.

Remove the lug nuts on the front wheels once the Civic is on jack stands.

Pull the wheels off the wheel hub.

Remove the upper and lower bolts holding the caliper on the caliper mounting bracket.

Pull the caliper up off the rotor. Secure it to the coil springs above the rotor.

Remove the brake pads.

Press the caliper piston back into the caliper assembly. Place the face of one of the brake pads over the piston and force the pad against the piston with a C-clamp. The piston will collapse back into the caliper housing.

Insert the new brake pads into the caliper assembly and reassemble the brake assembly.

Spray the brake rotors and pads and calipers down with brake parts cleaner to remove any remaining brake dust.

Put the wheel back on the wheel hub and tighten the lug nuts.

Lower the Civic to the ground and torque the lug nuts to 100 ft. lbs.

Items you will need

  • Socket wrench with socket set

  • Rubber mallet

  • Zip-ties

  • C-clamp

  • Screwdrivers (Phillips head)

  • New brake pads

  • Tire wrench

  • 3-ton jack with 2 jack stands

  • Shop rag

  • Brake parts cleaner

  • Thread locker

  • Torque wrench

 How to change brake pads on a Honda Pilot

Assuming you already know how to jack up the car and remove the wheels, lets begin.

If you look behind the brake rotors, you will see 2 bolts which will need to be removed.

Using a ratchet arm or wrench with a extension for leverage, loosen and remove the bolt. Without the extension, these bolts may be difficult to remove without breaking your back or yelling out some profanities.

Open up your hood, and locate the brake fluid container and keep it opened to allow pressure to release out as you will be pushing the brake pistons that have been pushed out back in during removal and installation.

After removing the 2 bolts, the brake caliper should slip out.

Make sure the caliper does not hang on by the brake line as this may get damaged. Use either a bungee cord or rest the caliper carefully so it is not pulled at the brake line.

Remove the old pads and place the new pads in place. Check out my old pads vs new. Not much left =)

Pads in place. I dabbed on some anti-squeal paste. Not necessary, but I had some laying around so might as well.

You need to push the caliper piston back as the new pads are thicker and the caliper will not fit otherwise. Make sure the brake fluid reservoir cap is open to allow the pressure to release; using a C-clamp or brake piston compression tool as seen here, push the piston back in.

Reinstall everything back in reverse. Make sure you reset the pumping the brakes a few times before driving off.

Items you will need

  • Jack

  • New Brake Pads

  • Wrench plus extension breaker bar.

  • brake piston compression tool or C clamp.

 How to Change the Brake Pads on a 2003 Honda Civic

Turn the Civic off, and engage the emergency brake. Jack the front of the vehicle up with the floor jack, and place the jack stands under the chassis on both sides. Lower the car onto the jack stands. Place wheel blocks around the rear wheels.

Take off the lug nuts that hold the tire in place with the lug wrench. Remove the tire, and put it to the side. Use the 12-mm socket and the ratchet to remove the two bolts on the back of the caliper that hold it place. Pull the caliper off the rotor, and let it rest on top of the rotor. Do not let it hang from the brake line. Spray the rotors with the brake cleaner.

Remove the old brake pads from the caliper bracket that is still on the rotor with a slotted screwdriver. Place the screwdriver between the brake pad and the caliper, and pry it out; it should come out with only a little effort.

Place one of the old brake pads against the piston that is in the caliper. Position the C-clamp so that one side is on the brake pad and the other side is on the back of the caliper. Apply pressure to the piston with the C-clamp, and push it back into the caliper. Push the piston all the way into the caliper. Remove the C-clamp and the old brake pad.

Place the new brake pads in the caliper bracket where the old brake pads used to be. Place the caliper back over the caliper bracket, and secure it into place with the two 12-mm bolts on the back of the caliper. Replace the tire, and tighten the lug nuts.

Move to the other side of the vehicle, and perform the steps to replace the brake pads on that side. Raise the Civic up off of the jack stands and remove them. Lower the vehicle back down to the ground. Remove the wheel blocks.

Items you will need

  • 12-mm socket

  • Ratchet

  • Slotted screwdriver

  • Floor jack

  • Jack stands

  • Wheel blocks

  • Brake cleaner

  • Lug wrench

  • C-clamp

 How to Change the Brake Pads on a 2002 Honda Accord

Park the 2002 Honda Accord on a level surface. Place 4x4 wood blocks behind the rear tires to make sure the car does not accidentally roll backwards while it is being held by the jack stands. If you have driven your Accord recently, wait for the brakes to cool off since they can be very hot to the touch.

Raise the front driver's side of the car by placing a floor jack underneath the frame, near the door. Pump the jack until the tire is at least four inches off the ground. Insert a jack stand underneath the Accord's frame, in front of the floor jack. Double-check to make sure that the arm of the jack stand is centered underneath the frame and that all four legs are resting on the ground. Slowly lower the floor jack and repeat the same process on the passenger side of the Accord. Double-check to make sure that both tires are raised and are off the ground while being supported by the jack stands.

Take off the front tires by using the lug nut wrench to unscrew the lug nuts. Put the tires in a place where they will be out of the way. Store the lug nuts on top of the tires, so that they are not lost or dirtied.

Use a socket wrench to unscrew the two bolts that hold the brake calipers to the rotors. The calipers must be removed in order to access the brake pads. Use a torque wrench if the bolts are too tight to be undone with a regular socket wrench.

Grab the brake caliper with both hands and slide it off the rotor. Be careful when sliding it off, since the brake-fluid line will still be attached to the caliper. Use a socket wrench to unscrew the brake pad pins from the caliper, which holds the pads and shims into place. Slide the brake pads and shims out from the Accord's caliper body. Clean the surface of the braking area with a silicone-based grease.

Inspect the rotors of your 2002 Accord. If the rotors are cracked or damaged, you will need to resurface them by taking them to an auto-parts store. If you have heard metal on metal grinding from worn out brake pads contacting the rotors, the rotors should definitely be resurfaced. Resurfacing or replacing the rotors can be expensive; however, it is much more expensive, as well as dangerous, to continue driving your vehicle with bad rotors.

Use a C-clamp to push the caliper piston, which appears as a hollow cylindrical part on the caliper, back into the caliper body. Try sliding the new brake pads and shims into place, so that you have enough room between the piston and the brake pad bracket. Pushing the piston back into the caliper body will cause fluid and air to back up in into the brake-fluid reservoir. Later, you will need to rectify this prior to driving by bleeding the brakes, which is accomplished by pumping the brake pedal multiple times after the entire job is finished.

Slide the new brake pads and shims for your 2002 Accord onto the caliper and tighten the brake-pad pins with a socket wrench. Bolt the calipers back to the caliper bracket, making sure that the calipers line up with the bracket holes exactly. Reinstall the tires back and tighten the lug nuts. Double-check that every lug nut is tightened. Slowly lower the Accord from the jack stands by using the reverse of the same process that you used to raise the car. Remember to pump your brakes a couple of times to get the brake fluid circulating again through the braking system; this is evidenced by increased resistance on the brake pedal, when engaged.

Items you will need

  • Socket wrench with adapters

  • 4x4 wood blocks

  • Torque wrench

  • Floor jack

  • Jack stands

  • Replacement brake pads

  • Silicone grease cleaner

  • Lug nut wrench

 How to Change Brake Pads in a Honda Odyssey

Remove the Pads

Remove half of the brake fluid from the master cylinder. You can use a hand siphon pump or a clean turkey baster and a suitable container.

Loosen the front or rear wheel lug nuts with a lug wrench, depending on the set of pads you are replacing.

Use a floor jack to raise the wheels. Support the Honda on jack stands and finish removing the wheels.

If you are servicing the front pads, detach the brake hose bracket from the steering knuckle using a ratchet and socket.

Hold the lower caliper-mounting pin with an open wrench as you unscrew the bolt with a socket and ratchet or another wrench. On rear pads, remove both caliper mounting bolts using a wrench and ratchet and socket.

If you are working on the front wheel assembly, swing the caliper upward. On rear pads, remove the caliper from the mounting bracket and use a piece of wire to secure it to the coil spring or some other suitable component to avoid stressing and damaging the brake hose.

Take off the shims, brake pads and pad retainers from the caliper bracket.

Use a large C-clamp and the old inner brake pad to push the caliper piston into its board. Then, remove the inner brake pad.

Install the Pads

Wipe off the pad lining dust, dirt and grease from the caliper, caliper bracket and wheel assembly using brake parts cleaner and a clean, lint-free piece of cloth. Do not blow off or breathe the brake dust. See the "Warning" box within this article for more information.

Coat the mating surfaces of the pad retainers and caliper bracket with M-77 assembly paste. Then, place the retainers on the bracket.

Coat the shim, new pad and caliper piston mating surfaces with M-77 assembly paste. Then place the shim and pads on the caliper bracket.

Position the brake caliper in place on the mounting bracket and start the mounting pin or pins by hand. Hold the pins with a wrench, if necessary, as you tighten them using another wrench, or ratchet and socket.

If you are servicing the front pads, attach the brake hose bracket to the steering knuckle using a ratchet and socket.

Install the wheel/tire assemblies and fasten the wheel lug nuts using the lug wrench.

Lower the vehicle and finish tightening the lug nuts.

Depress the brake pedal several times. Check the fluid level in the master cylinder and add new brake fluid, if necessary.

Items you will need

  • Hand siphon pump or clean turkey baster

  • Lug wrench

  • Floor jack

  • 2 jack stands

  • Ratchet and socket

  • Wrench

  • Piece of wire, if necessary

  • Brake parts cleaner

  • Clean, lint-free piece of cloth

  • M-77 assembly paste

  • Large C-clamp

  • New brake fluid