How to Replace the Brake Pads on Ford Cars

by Contributing Writer; Updated June 12, 2017

When you step on the brake pedal of your Ford car the friction material on the brake pads grip the brake rotors to help you slow or stop the vehicle. After months of service, this friction material wears down to a point where you begin to hear a squealing sound every time you apply the breaks. That is the built-in alert system on your brake assembly letting you know that it is time Ford car new brake pads. Once you have the replacements, just follow these steps to change the pads on your Ford car model.

Under The Hood:

 How to Replace the Brake Pads on a Ford Fiesta

Park the Fiesta on level ground. Apply the parking brake and pull the hood release lever. Stop the engine and move to the front of the Ford.

Open the hood and remove the master cylinder cap, located near the back of the engine compartment, to the right of the engine.

Remove one-third of the brake fluid in the reservoir with a syringe or poultry baster. Lay the master cylinder cap loosely over the container.

Loosen the front wheel lug nuts with the lug wrench.

Place tire blocks behind the Fiesta's rear tires to prevent it from rolling.

Lift the front end of the Fiesta with the lifting jack and place jack stands beneath the axles for support. Lower the vehicle onto the jack stands.

Remove the lug nuts and take the front wheels off.

Remove the retaining clip at the top of the brake caliper with a pair of pliers. Pay attention to the location of the clip, as you will be returning it after replacing the brake pads.

Remove the two caliper bolts (located on the back side of the caliper) with the 7 mm Allen wrench.

Lift the caliper away from the caliper bracket and rotor and rest it on top of the steering arm above the Fiesta's brake assembly.

Pull the worn brake pads from their slots within the caliper bracket.

Peel the coating from the backs of the new brake pads and stick them onto the caliper bracket. The brake pads have an adhesive on the back to keep them in place within the brake assembly.

Place the C-clamp over the caliper piston and the back of the caliper. Squeeze the piston into the side of the caliper to allow for the bulkier new brake pads. Remove the clamp once the piston is fully opened.

Place the caliper around the brake pads and screw in the caliper bolts by hand. Tighten the bolts with the Allen wrench. Replace the caliper retaining clip.

Repeat the process for the brake pads on the other front wheel.

Return the front wheels to the Fiesta's wheel bolts and screw on the lug nuts.

Lift the front of the Ford and remove the jack stands. Lower the wheels to the ground and tighten the lug nuts with the lug wrench.

Start the engine. Press the brake pedal three times slowly to return brake fluid to the Fiesta's brake caliper pistons. Move to the engine compartment.

Remove the master cylinder cap and place a funnel into the container. Fill the reservoir with DOT-3 brake fluid. Remove the funnel and replace the master cylinder cap.

Close the Ford's hood.

Items you will need

  • Poultry baster

  • Lug wrench

  • Tire blocks

  • Jack

  • Jack stands

  • Pliers

  • 7 mm Allen wrench

  • Brake pads

  • C-clamp

  • Funnel

  • Brake fluid

 How to Replace Brake Pads on a 2003 Ford Ranger

Park your 2003 Ford Ranger on a level surface. Place wheel chocks behind the rear tires. If you have driven your Ford Ranger recently, allow an hour or more in order for the truck to cool off, since the braking system can be very hot to the touch.

Loosen, but do not remove (about 1/2 turn), the lug nuts on both front wheels with the lug wrench. Raise the truck with the floor jack and support it with jack stands so that both front wheels are off the ground. Remove the jack.

Remove the front wheels. Place the lug nuts where they will not get dirt in them.

Work on one side of the truck at a time. This way, you will always have one complete assembly to use as a guide. Use a socket wrench to unbolt the two bolts that secure the caliper. Slide the caliper off the rotor and place it on a frame member or hang it from a piece of wire. Do not allow it to hang by the brake line.

Unbolt the brake-pad pins from the caliper and remove them. Slide the brake pads and spacing shims out of the caliper. If the rotors are grooved or damaged, they will need to be resurfaced at an auto-parts store or replaced. Driving with damaged rotors can be a serious hazard.

Push the round caliper piston back into the caliper by using a C-clamp. This will ensure that you will have enough room to slide the caliper back onto the rotor with the new brake pads in place.

Slide the new brake pads and shims into place on the caliper. Lubricate the pin bolts (and pin bolts only) with silicone grease. Be sure that the brake pad pin-holes line up exactly with the pins in order to ensure that the pads are placed correctly on the caliper body. With the torque wrench, tighten the pin bolts to 24 foot-pounds.

Use a socket wrench to bolt the calipers back into place on the caliper bracket. Repeat procedure for the other wheel.

Reinstall the wheels and snug the lug nuts. Carefully lower the truck to the ground and use the torque wrench to tighten the lug nuts to100 foot-pounds. Pump the brakes to reposition the calipers before driving the truck.

Items you will need

  • Socket wrench set

  • Torque wrench

  • Floor jack

  • Jack stands

  • Replacement brake pads

  • Silicone grease

  • Lug wrench

  • Wire (like a coat hanger)

 How to Replace the Brake Pads on a Ford Focus

Removal

Raise the car's front end with the floor jack and support it on axle stands. Remove both front wheels with the tire iron; only work on one brake assembly at a time.

Pry off the retaining clip from the brake caliper using a flat head screwdriver while holding the clip with pliers. Detach the brake hose's bracket from the strut assembly.

Remove the guide pin bolts for the brake caliper and lift the caliper off the bracket. On most newer models, the bolts require an Allen wrench and are covered with caps you must remove.

Remove the brake pads from the caliper mounting bracket or the caliper itself--if the pads are in the caliper, pull the inner pad and its spring clip out of the caliper piston and slide the outer pad out of the caliper with its retaining clip.

Compress the caliper's piston back into its bore slowly using a C-clamp. If necessary to prevent overflow, remove some brake fluid from the master cylinder reservoir in the engine compartment using a syringe or unused turkey baster.

Installation

Insert the replacement brake pads into the brake caliper or the mounting bracket as needed; in the former's case, slide the outer pad and its clip into the caliper and insert the inner pad's spring clip into the piston.

Install the caliper back onto the bracket on the brake disc and then apply and tighten the mounting bolts with the wrench.

Re-connect both wheels and lower the car off the axle stands after changing both sets of pads.

Fill the master cylinder reservoir with fresh brake fluid if needed.

Press the brake pedal multiple times until it feels firm, thus seating the pads.

Items you will need

  • Floor jack

  • Axle stands

  • Tire iron

  • Flat head screwdriver

  • Pliers

  • Wrench

  • C-clamp

  • Syringe or other siphon tool

  • Brake pads

  • DOT 3 brake fluid

 How to Replace the Brake Pads on a Ford F150

Park the Ford F-150 on a flat stretch of ground and apply the parking brake. Pull the hood release lever to open the hood. Go to the engine compartment.

Remove the master cylinder cap and remove half of the brake fluid in the container. You will be depressing the caliper pistons in future steps and doing so will force brake fluid back into the reservoir. Removing some of the fluid prevents an overflow. Use a turkey baster or syringe to remove the fluid.

Loosen the lug nuts on the F-150's wheels with the lug wrench. Moving them 1/4 turn is enough.

Place the floor jack beneath the cross frame under the truck. The cross frame is the section under the truck where the frame meets at an intersection. Lift the front of the truck and place two jack stands beneath it; one under each axle.

Remove the lug nuts and take the front wheels off of the truck.

Reach behind the calipers to locate the caliper slide bolts. Use the 13 mm socket and ratchet to remove the two bolts. Lift the caliper away from the bracket and brake rotor.

Suspend the caliper above the brake assembly with a bungee cord or wire coat hanger.

Slide the two brake pads from the slots on either side of the rotor. Inspect the rotor for any damage or warping. Replace the rotor if significant damage is found.

Apply anti-squeal brake grease to the back shims of the new brake pads. Slide them into the slots of the caliper bracket on either side of the rotor.

Place a worn brake pad over the two caliper pistons that protrude from the inside of the caliper. Bind the worn pad to the piston with a C-clamp. Turn the clamp's handle to force the pistons into the side of the caliper. Remove the C-clamp once both pistons have been depressed within the caliper.

Place the caliper over the new brake pads and screw in the caliper bolts. Tighten the bolts with the 13 mm socket and ratchet.

Replace the wheels onto the hubs and screw on the lug nuts by hand.

Lift the front of the Ford truck with the jack and remove the jack stands from beneath the axles. Lower the front tires to the ground. Tighten the lug nuts with the lug wrench.

Place the floor jack beneath the frame under the bed of the truck and lift the rear end of the vehicle. Place jack stands under each of the rear axles for support.

Remove the lug nuts and rear wheels.

Repeat steps 6 through 12 to replace the rear wheel brake pads.

Lift the back end of the truck and remove the jack stands. Lower the back tires to the ground and tighten the lug nuts with the lug wrench. Return to the engine compartment.

Lift the master cylinder cap from the reservoir and place a funnel into the container. Pour DOT-3 brake fluid into the container until the reservoir reads "full." Remove the funnel and place the cap firmly onto the master cylinder. Close the Ford's hood.

Items you will need

  • Turkey baster or syringe

  • Lug wrench

  • Floor jack

  • Jack stands

  • 13 mm socket

  • Ratchet

  • Bungee cord

  • Brake grease

  • C-clamp

  • Funnel

  • Brake fluid

 How to Replace Brake Pads on a Ford Contour

Loosen the lug nuts on each of the Contour's wheels corresponding with the brake pads you intend to replace. Use the lug wrench from the Ford's wheel maintenance kit located in the trunk of the vehicle, or a tire iron with built-in 17 mm socket .

Lift the hood of the Contour and remove the master cylinder cap. The master cylinder contains the brake fluid and is located near the firewall of the vehicle's engine compartment. Place the cap over the container opening loosely. The goal is to allow for the air to pass into and out from the container, to make opening the caliper pistons in the future steps easier, while still protecting the fluid reservoir from debris.

Place the lifting jack beneath the axle and lift the Contour until the tires are at least two inches clear of the ground. Place jack stands beneath the frame of the Ford for support and lower the vehicle onto the stands.

Remove the lug nuts and pull the wheels from the wheel bolts.

Remove the caliper side bolts from the back side of the brake caliper with the 13 mm wrench.

Lift the caliper from the rotor and pry the brake pads from the inside with the flat screwdriver.

Place a worn brake pad over the two caliper pistons for the front brakes of the Contour and bind the pad against the pistons with the C-clamp. (Place the C-clamp directly onto the caliper piston and the back of the caliper wall for the rear brakes, which have just one piston.)

Screw the C-clamp arm to force the piston(s) into the side of the caliper. Remove the C-clamp once the piston(s) are completely within the side of the caliper.

Apply a thin layer of brake grease (copper-based is best for handling higher temperatures generated by the brakes) to the inside of the Ford's caliper walls. The grease will protect the caliper and the pistons from rust.

Slide the new brake pads onto the caliper sides.

Return the caliper over the rotor. Screw in the caliper slide bolts and tighten them with the 13 mm wrench.

Repeat steps 4-11 for each subsequent set of brake pads you wish to replace.

Replace the Ford's wheels onto the wheel bolts and screw on the lug nuts.

Lift the Contour with the jack, remove the jack stands, and lower the vehicle to the ground.

Tighten the lug nuts with the tire iron or lug wrench. Return to the engine compartment.

Lift the master cylinder cap and assess the level of brake fluid in the reservoir. Add fluid as necessary. Replace the cap and close the Contour's hood.

Items you will need

  • Lug wrench

  • Jack

  • Jack stands

  • 13 mm wrench

  • Flat screwdriver

  • C-clamp

  • Brake grease

  • Brake pads

  • Brake fluid (if necessary)

 How to Replace the Brake Pads on a Ford Taurus

Jack up the Ford Taurus and support the vehicle with jack stands.

Remove the lug nuts with the lug wrench and take the wheels from the wheel bolts.

Remove the caliper locking pins with the 13 mm socket and ratchet. Pull the caliper from the caliper bracket and rotor.

Pull the old brake pads straight away from either side of the rotor and their slot in the caliper bracket.

Place an old brake pad against the caliper piston. Place the C-clamp over the old brake pad and the back of the side of the caliper from which the piston extends.

Turn the C-clamp in a clockwise motion to squeeze the piston into the side of the caliper.

Place the new brake pads into their slots in the caliper bracket on either side of the brake rotor.

Place the caliper onto the caliper bracket, surrounding the new brake pads, and replace the caliper locking pins with the ratchet and socket.

Replace the wheels onto the wheel bolts and screw on the lug nuts.

Remove the jack stands from beneath the Taurus and lower the vehicle to the ground. Tighten the lug nuts with the lug wrench.

Lift the hood of the Ford and remove the master cylinder cap. The master cylinder is located on the driver's side of the vehicle, near the windshield.

Fill the master cylinder with DOT-3 brake fluid.

Items you will need

  • Jack

  • Jack stands

  • Lug wrench

  • 13 mm socket and ratchet

  • Flat screwdriver

  • C-clamp

  • Brake grease

  • Brake pads

  • Brake fluid

 How to Replace Brake Pads on an F250

Chock the rear wheels. Remove the plastic center hub cap by inserting the tapered end of the lug wrench behind the hub cap. Give the lug wrench a twisting motion and remove the hub cap. Loosen, but do not remove, the eight lug nuts with the other end of the lug wrench.

Raise the front of the vehicle with a hydraulic floor jack so that the wheels are off the ground. Place jack stands under the each side of the front axle beam. Lower the floor jack.

Finish removing the lug nuts with the lug wrench and remove the wheels. Access the upper caliper retaining bolts from the inboard side of the brake caliper and remove them with a 15 mm socket and 1/2-inch drive ratchet wrench.

Open the hood and remove the master cylinder cap near the driver's side firewall. Now pull the upper caliper straight up from its mounting. Hang the upper caliper to the coil spring in the wheel well with a piece of wire coat hanger. Be careful not stretch the flexible brake line that will still be attached to the upper caliper.

Pry the brake pads from each side of the disc brake rotor with a flat blade screw driver and discard them. Insert new brake pads onto each side of the rotor until they snap into place. Make sure the brake pad lining material is facing the rotor on each side.

Place a "C" clamp over the piston in the upper caliper and tighten the clamp until the piston has fully retracted. Remove the "C" clamp and slide the upper caliper over the brake pads. Line up the mounting holes and tighten the mounting bolts with a 15 mm socket and ratchet.

Repeat steps 3 through 6 for the other front wheel. Replace the wheels and tighten the lug nuts with a lug wrench. Raise the front of the truck with a floor jack and remove the jack stands. Lower the floor jack until the wheels are on the ground. Tighten the lug nuts in a crisscross pattern. Push the hubcaps back into place until they snap into position.

Check the level of brake fluid in the master cylinder. Make sure it is not overfull. Use a syringe to remove excess fluid if necessary. Replace the master cylinder cap and close the hood.

Items you will need

  • 2 wheel chocks

  • Lug wrench

  • Hydraulic floor jack

  • 2 jack stands

  • 15mm socket

  • 1/2-inch drive ratchet wrench

  • Wire coat hanger

  • Flat blade screwdriver

  • Replacement brake pads

  • "C" clamp

  • Syringe

 How to Change the Brake Pads on a 2006 Ford Expedition

Loosen the lug nuts on all four wheels using the lug wrench. Don’t take them off the studs yet, but make sure they’re loose enough to remove by hand when the time comes.

Place the wheel chocks in front of and behind the left-rear wheel. Lift the front end of the Expedition with the floor jack and lower it onto the jack stands after placing the stands under the front frame.

Remove the lug nuts and tires from the front of the Expedition. Move the drip pan under the brake assembly in the right front and thoroughly clean it with brake cleaner spray to remove the brake dust.

Unbolt the brake caliper with the socket set, lift it off the rotor and pull the brake pads out of it by hand. Clean the inside of the caliper using the brake cleaner. Lubricate the caliper slide pins with the white lithium grease.

Force the caliper pistons to retract using the caliper piston tool and then insert the brake pads into the caliper. Place the caliper back over the rotor and then bolt it back down in reverse of how you removed it.

Reinstall the front wheels and lug nuts by hand and then repeat steps three through five on the left front.

Lower the front end off the jack stands. Move the wheel chocks to the front and rear of the left-front wheel. Lift the rear end of the Expedition with the floor jack, place the jack stands under the rear axle near the leaf spring shackles and then lower the SUV onto the jack stands.

Remove the rear lug nuts and wheels by hand.

Perform steps three through five on the right rear and then the left rear of the Expedition.

Reinstall the rear wheels and lug nuts. Lower the Expedition off the jack stands and then tighten all four sets of lug nuts to 140 ft-lbs. using the torque wrench.

Items you will need

  • Lug wrench

  • 2 wheel chocks

  • Floor jack

  • 2 jack stands

  • Drip pan

  • Brake cleaner

  • Socket set

  • White lithium grease

  • Torque wrench

 How to Change the Brake Pads on a 97 Ford Thunderbird

Use the clean syringe to remove half of the brake fluid from the master cylinder. Dispose of the fluid and replace the cover to the cylinder.

Place a wheel block against the outside tread of a tire on the opposite axle of the one you're replacing brake pads on.

Use the lug wrench to loosen the wheel nuts on the two tires of the axle you're replacing the brake pads on. Loosen the nuts just enough to back them away from the wheel rim.

Lift one side of the quarter with a jack and place a jack stand under the Thunderbird to support it. If desired, raise the other side and support it with a jack stand or replace one side at a time.

Remove the lug nuts and wheel(s).

Use the ratchet and a socket to remove the two caliper guide bolts on the front caliper(s). For the rear calipers, loosen the tension on the parking brake cable by pulling the cable toward the caliper, then release the end of the cable from the caliper with the pair of pliers and remove the upper caliper guide bolt with the ratchet and socket.

Gently pry the front caliper(s) off of the of the brake pad support plate with the pry bar or screwdriver and then hang it to the front suspension spring with a caliper hanging device. For the rear caliper(s), pry the top of the caliper outward with the pry bar or screwdriver and pivot the caliper downward away from the brake pad support plate. The lower caliper guide will hold the caliper in place so you do not need to hang it from the rear suspension.

Remove the inner and outer brake pads (front or rear) using the pry tool or screwdriver if necessary to unseat the pads from the caliper support plate.

Place one of the removed front brake pads against the front caliper piston and then place the 4-inch C-clamp over the caliper and the driving screw of the clamp against the pad. Tighten the clamp until the caliper piston is seated inside the caliper fully. For rear caliper(s) piston(s) compression, use the caliper piston reset tool. Locate the correct adapter that aligns the nibs of the adapter to the notches of the piston and then turn the piston and tool clockwise until the piston is fully seated into the caliper.

Brush the pad seat on the caliper support plate with the wire brush to clean off the brake dust, rust and other debris. Apply a coat of silicone brake grease to the tabs of the replacement pads that mate to the pad seats and reinstall the replacement pads by reversing the removal procedure. Make sure the nibs on the plates of the rear inner pads align to the notches of the rear caliper. If not, use the tool to turn the piston counterclockwise until they do. Make sure the front brake pad rattle clip (located in the inspection hole of the caliper) is aligned properly to the seated replacement pads.

Place the front caliper(s) over the pads and caliper support plate(s), or pivot the rear caliper upward over the pads and caliper support plate. Align the respective guide pins into the caliper by hand threading them in first. Use the ratchet and socket to snug the bolt(s) and then torque the front bolts to 38-foot pounds with a torque ratchet and socket. Tighten the rear bolt to 25-foot pounds with the torque ratchet and socket. Reattach the brake cable to the rear caliper by reversing the removal procedure.

Replace the wheels and lug nuts. Tighten the lug nuts so they hold the wheel and rim assembly firmly to the hubs. Use the lug wrench or the ratchet and a socket to perform this procedure, but tighten the nuts by employing a star pattern to avoid anchoring the rim unevenly to the hub.

Lower the Thunderbird to the ground and then use the torque ratchet and a socket (employing the star pattern procedure) to retighten the lug nuts to 100-foot pounds.

Top off the master cylinder with DOT 3 brake fluid and then replace the cover. Pump the brake pedal several times to position the caliper pistons and seat the replacement brake pads.

Remove the wheel block and then test drive the Thunderbird for braking performance.

Items you will need

  • Clean syringe

  • Wheel block

  • Lug wrench

  • Jack

  • Jack stand(s)

  • Ratchet and socket set

  • Small pry bar or straightedge screwdriver

  • Pliers (rear brake pads)

  • Caliper hanging device (front brake pads)

  • 4-inch C-clamp (front brake pads)

  • Rear caliper piston reset tool with adapters

  • Wire brush

  • Silicone brake grease

  • Replacement brake pad set

  • Torque wrench/ratchet with a standard socket set

  • DOT 3 brake fluid

 How to Change the Brake Pads on a 1994 Ford Ranger

Slide the wheel chocks behind the rear wheels to prevent the Ranger from rolling backwards. Set the parking brake and put on your safety glasses.

Loosen the lug nuts on both front wheels with the lug wrench. Don’t remove them yet, but rather loosen them to the point where you can remove them by hand later.

Position the floor jack under the front of the Ranger and lift the pickup with the jack. Place the jack stands under the front frame on both sides and set the truck down on the stands, using the floor jack.

Remove the lug nuts from both front wheels, then take the wheels off by hand. Put the drain pan under the right-front brake and clean the caliper and rotor surfaces with the brake cleaner to remove the brake dust buildup.

Unbolt the caliper with the socket set. Pull the caliper off the rotor, by hand, then pull the brake pads out of the caliper.

Clean the inside of the caliper by spraying it thoroughly with brake cleaner. Lubricate the caliper slides with white lithium grease. Retract the caliper pistons with the caliper piston tool.

Insert the new brake pads, slip the caliper back over the rotor and then bolt it back down.

Move to the left-front and perform steps 5 through 7 on that side.

Reinstall both front wheels and all the front lug nuts, by hand. Lift the Ranger off the jack stands with the floor jack, move the stands out of the way and lower the Ranger to the ground.

Tighten the front lug nuts to 100 ft-lbs with the torque wrench and then move the wheel chocks out from behind the rear wheels.

Items you will need

  • Wheel chocks

  • Safety glasses

  • Lug wrench

  • Floor jack

  • 2 Jack stands

  • Drain pan

  • Brake cleaner

  • Socket set

  • White lithium grease

  • Caliper piston tool

  • Torque wrench

 How to Change Brake Pads on Ford Ranger

Remove the hubcap (if applicable) and crack the front-wheel nuts loose with the lug nut wrench before lifting the Ranger.

Lift one side at a time with the jack and support the Ranger onto a jack stand.

Place the extra-large C-clamp over the caliper so the top of the C is against the inside of the caliper housing and the screw-drive of the clamp is against the outboard pad. Tighten the C-clamp to squeeze the caliper pistons into the bores. Most Rangers have dual piston calipers; you'll only be able to position the C-clamp against one of them. Compressing one piston fully will squeeze the pads enough to compress the other piston.

Locate the two caliper retaining bolts on the inside end of the caliper. Remove both of the bolts using the ratchet and a socket.

Remove the caliper. It will be loose since the pistons are compressed. Bend the metal coat hanger to create a makeshift hanger and support the caliper to the shock bracket.

Remove the old pads from the caliper bracket covering the rotor. Pry them out with a screwdriver if necessary.

Use the acid brush to spread the anti-seize graphite compound onto the upper and lower caliper bracket slots that the pads sit into on both sides. If some of the compound gets on the rotor, wipe it off with a rag.

Install the shims onto the backing plate of the pads (if not already done so). Shim kits come with aftermarket pads and when not already affixed to the backing plate, may require peeling off the inside plastic wrap and sticking the shim to the pad.

Install the pads into the caliper bracket. Wipe off any anti-seize compound that may slide onto the rotor from the pad ears sliding across the slots.

Place the caliper over the new pads and rotor. Wipe the caliper retaining bolts clean with a rag and apply a new coat of the anti-seize over the smooth section of the retaining bolt. Do not place any compound on the threads of the retaining bolt. Insert the bolts into the caliper and tighten with the ratchet and a socket. Do not over tighten.

Replace the wheel and wheel nuts, tighten the wheel nuts flush to the hub and then lower the Ranger. Re-tighten the wheel nuts. Repeat the steps for the opposite side.

Pump the foot brake pedal when finished. Compressed caliper pistons will not extend immediately under hydraulic pressure. Forgetting to seat the pistons forward against the pads will create a hazardous situation. The Ranger will not have a braking response until the pistons extend against the pads. Pump the pedal until you feel pressure against the brake pedal and it no longer drops to the floor.

Items you will need

  • Jack

  • Jack stand

  • Lug nut wrench

  • 1/2-inch-drive ratchet

  • 1/2-inch-drive socket set

  • Extra-large C-clamp

  • Anti-seize graphite compound

  • Acid brush

  • Screwdriver

  • Rag

  • Metal coat hanger

  • Replacement pads with shims

 How to Change the Brake Pads on a 2002 Explorer

Park the Explorer on a flat stretch of road or driveway. Put the transmission in "park" and apply the parking brake.

Place tire blocks behind the rear wheels and loosen all of the lug nuts with the 21 mm socket and breaker bar.

Place the lifting jack beneath the "cross-frame" section of the Explorer's undercarriage. The cross-frame is the intersection of the framing under the vehicle. Lift the Ford and place jack stands beneath the front axles for support.

Remove the lug nuts and take the front wheels off.

Turn the right front wheel to the left to access the caliper slide bolts. Remove the bolts with the 13 mm wrench and take the caliper from the right front rotor. Set the caliper on top of the steering arm to avoid hanging it by the brake line.

Turn the left front wheel to the right and remove the caliper bolts with the wrench. Place the caliper on top of the steering arm.

Inspect the brake rotors for wear and other damage. The surfaces of the rotor should be smooth and consistent. Replace any rotors that are found to be badly scored or warped.

Slide the worn brake pads from the inside of the brake caliper. Place one of the pads against the caliper pistons inside the caliper. Clamp the pad and the back of the caliper with a C-clamp. Screw the C-clamp arm to force the pistons inside the caliper. Remove the C-clamp once the pistons are completely depressed inside the caliper.

Slide new brake pads onto the sides of the caliper.

Replace the caliper over the brake rotor and screw in the caliper bolts by hand. Tighten the bolts with the 13 mm wrench.

Turn the front wheel to the neutral position and replace the wheel onto the wheel bolts. Screw on the lug nuts by hand.

Lift the Explorer with the jack to remove the jack stands. Lower the vehicle and tighten the lugs with the 21 mm socket and breaker bar.

Place the tire blocks in front of the front tires. Lift the back of the Explorer and remove the lug nuts and rear wheels.

Repeat the process for replacing the rear brake pads with the exception of depressing the rear brake caliper pistons. There is just one piston for each rear caliper so there is no need to use a worn brake pad. Use the C-clamp alone to force the pistons into the caliper's side.

Replace the wheels and lug nuts. Lift the back end of the Explorer to remove the jack stands and lower the rear tires to the ground. Tighten the lug nuts with the 21 mm socket and breaker bar.

Items you will need

  • Tire blocks

  • 21 mm socket

  • Breaker bar

  • Jack

  • Jack stands

  • 13 mm wrench

  • C-clamp

  • Brake pads

 How to Change the Brake Pads on a Ford Escort

Remove the Old Brake Pads

Empty half the fluid from the brake master cylinder using a hand siphon pump.

Loosen the wheel lugs on the front wheels using a lug wrench.

Raise the front of the vehicle using a floor jack and install two jack stands to support the car.

Remove the front tires from the wheel assemblies.

Pay careful attention to how the two spring wires are mounted on top of the brake caliper and holding the two brake pads in place. Then disengage the wires from the caliper by hand.

Push the brake caliper cylinder into its bore using a C-clamp. Place the C-clamp between the back of the caliper and the front brake pad. Also, place a socket between the C-clamp screw and the front pad so you can reach the pad. Then screw in the C-clamp to push in the cylinder.

Remove the two brake-pad locating pins by hand from each side of the caliper top. The pins come with a hole towards one of the ends. Make sure to note which way this holes point so that you mount the pins the same way.

Remove the brake pads and shims from the brake caliper by hand.

Install the New Brake Pads

Apply a light coat of brake pad grease to the back of the new brake pads and lay the shims on the back of the pads.

Install the brake pads and shims in the brake caliper.

Insert the two brake pad locating pins on the brake caliper.

Mount the two spring wires on the brake caliper.

Replace the brake pad set on the other front tire following steps 5 from the previous section through step 4 of this section.

Mount the tires on the wheel assemblies and screw in the wheel lugs.

Lower the vehicle and finish tightening the wheel lugs using the lug wrench.

Pump the brake pedal several times to position the new brake pads properly over the brake rotor.

Refill the brake master cylinder with new brake fluid with the level between the Low and Full marks.

Items you will need

  • Hand siphon pump

  • Lug wrench

  • Floor jack and 2 jack stands

  • C-clamp

  • Socket

  • Brake pads grease

  • New brake fluid

 How to Change the Brake Pads on a Ford F-150

Removing The Brake Pads

Loosen the lug nuts on the driver side front wheel. Do not remove the lug nuts until the wheel is off the ground.

Jack up the front end of the vehicle. Ensure the parking brake is set and the back wheel is secured by blocking the back wheel.

Unbolt the lug nuts and take the wheel off the studs. Place the wheel to the side and out of the way.

Locate the caliper, and undo the bolts in the back of the caliper. There will be two bolts on the back of the caliper, which you will remove with a socket wrench.

Slide the caliper up and off the rotor. The rotor may be hard to pull off, so you can use a hammer to tap it upward to loosen it.

Take off the two brake pads. They will come out with your fingers.

Place the smaller brake pad toward the back of the pad. Ensure the padding is faced out and the metal is touching the exposed cylinder.

Push the piston back to make it flush with the rest of the caliper. Use a c-clamp by placing one end on the pad and the other to the back of the caliper. Tighten the clamp until the piston is flush to the cylinder.

Installing the Brake Pads

Place the new pads in the caliper. Place the bigger one to the back and the smaller one to the front with the padding facing each other. They will click in place.

Position the caliper back over the rotor and secure it in place with the caliper bolts. Do not tighten until both caliper bolts are started.

Tighten the caliper bolts. The caliper will be snug against the rotor.

Place the wheel back on the studs. Start each of the lugs, but do not tighten them until all the lugs are started on the studs.

Tighten the studs as much as you can with the tire tool while the wheel is off the ground.

Lower the vehicle off the jack. Tighten the lugs to ensure the wheel is tight on the axle.

Repeat these steps to the passenger side of the truck. When you are finished, pump the brake pedal to allow the brake fluid to circulate.

Items you will need

  • Tire tool

  • Jack

  • Wheel block

  • Socket wrench

  • Socket set

  • New brake pads

  • C-clamp