Rear Disc Brake Pads

mister_hAugust 29, 2006

2004 Toyota Camry

I'm having a real difficult time installing a new set of pads in the rear... I got the 1st piece in but just can't insert the 2nd piece because there is not enough room inside the caliper. The caliper piston appears to be extended out slightly and I can't push it back in. Do I need to crack open the bleed nut to make it easier to push in the caliper piston or any suggestion?

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    Bookmark   August 29, 2006 at 4:43PM
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on second thought you might want to recheck your caliper
piston. It may be threaded and screw out every time the
break adjuster works. You have to screw the piston back in
to get your clearance.

    Bookmark   August 29, 2006 at 5:42PM
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What tools are you using ?
What is your experience level ?
IMO, cracking open the bleeder is not necessary - but WTH, try it anyway - the bleeder should be cracked open every so often anyway and the brake fluid should be changed as per the maintenance scheldule...

    Bookmark   August 29, 2006 at 7:35PM
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Apply a C-clamp to push the piston back before installing new pads. Insure there is enough room in the master cylinder to accept the fluid else it may become overfilled. As the old pads wore down, brake fluid may have been added.

    Bookmark   August 29, 2006 at 10:44PM
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OK, gents... I completely took off the caliper assy from the car because the piston would not retract even if I opened up the bleeder nut. I thought this would be a 30-minute job but it already took 2 evenings of my time. I'm just looking at the caliper sitting on my desk now while typing this.
My experience level? Maybe a typical Saturday menchanic. I've done a few motor R&R on motorcycles and small boats, replaced pistons on lawn mowers, water pump/alternator on cars, etc.
I don't have a larger enough C-clamp, so I used a carpenters adjustable wooden clamp. But still no go. The caliper piston is stuck hard in the extended position. Any idea what's going on or what to do?
Thanks in advance.

    Bookmark   August 30, 2006 at 11:11AM
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Hey, Kalining. You are right! It is a screw in type. I tried to screw in earlier but it would not screw in easily and I did not want to put too much torque not knowing how much force I had to apply and worried that I might mess up some internal parts. So, I brought the whole caliper to work this morning because there is a guy who used to be a an auto mechanic for 15+ years. When I showed to him, from 6' away, he said "it's a screw in type". Then using a set of nose plier he screwed in the piston in less than 5 seconds! OK, learning something new every single day...

    Bookmark   August 30, 2006 at 12:04PM
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Do not bleed the brakes. Take a C clamp and compress the piston. It will stay compressed until you apply brake pressure. This is common to most cars.

    Bookmark   August 31, 2006 at 10:07PM
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Since he removed the caliper, he has to bleed the brakes now. Besides, he is due to flush the brake fluid anyway.

    Bookmark   September 1, 2006 at 4:12AM
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Using a C-Clamp did not work on screw in type caliper piston - twisting clockwise with a set of 6" nose plier did the job. Once it was scrwed in, it would not gradually pop out either. I used a Mighty-Vac to bleed lots of air out - and some old fluid as well. Anyway, 3 out of 4 guys at work (they are all handy folks work on their own cars) said they've never seen a screw-in type piston. The dead give-away clue is the 5 notches on the piston. Otherwise, it would be just flat. Well, this is my 2nd time replacing the dics pads... my first time was about 20 years ago on my brother's '82 Sentra.

    Bookmark   September 1, 2006 at 10:47AM
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My Integra has the screw in type pistons on the rear and the push in on the front. I had to get a piston tool for the rear which is just a four sided box with different types of lugs that fit into the recesses in the piston. You attach this to a 3/8" drive wrench and spin the piston. When the calipers are fairly new, you can spin them with a wrench, once they get older (and nearing need for replacement) you may need the tool (its only a few bucks anyway).

    Bookmark   September 1, 2006 at 12:47PM
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