How to Replace Brake Pads on a Dodge Stratusby Ryan Bauer
The brake pads on a Dodge Stratus provide adequate braking when new, but as the thickness wears down over time, stopping distance will increase. As part of the wear-indication design, sometimes the pads will create a squealing noise once it is time for them to be replaced. In addition to enhancing safety, replacing these pads as needed is vital to ensuring the longevity of the braking components. If the pads have worn grooves into the rotors, it also may be necessary for the rotors to be replaced or machined.
Lift one corner of the Stratus with the jack, ensuring that the emergency brake is firmly set. Remove the tire by loosening the lug nuts with the lug wrench. Lay the wheel flat under the corner of the car to serve as extra protection if the jack were to fail.
Loosen the bolts located directly behind the caliper and slide it off. Pull both of the brake pads out and set them aside. Replace the pads with new ones, ensuring they are pressed all the way to the back of the slot.
Feel the surface of the rotor to see if it has any grooves running around it. If you feel any indentations, the rotor should be either replaced or machined by a local shop to even out the surface for the new pads. If necessary, the rotor can be removed by simply pulling it off of the studs.
Replace the caliper and tighten the connected bolts. Put the wheel back on and carefully lower the Stratus to the ground. Repeat these steps to change the pads on the other three wheels.
- If the caliper won't fit over the rotor after the new pads are installed, you can make room by compressing the piston with a "C" clamp.
Things You'll Need
- Lug wrench
- Wrench set
Ryan Bauer is a freelance writer located in Ozark, Missouri. He has written numerous articles and books, including "How to Improve Your Credit Score 100 Points in 100 Days." Bauer is an experienced automotive mechanic and computer technician.