Question about 1988 Chevrolet Suburban

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My first brake job

I've R&R'd motors before but never done a brake job. What do I need to know to try my hand at brakes (rotors, pads, bearings/seals, etc)?

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  • Frank Werf May 11, 2010

    Does the larger shoe allways go towards the back? I mean on both sides? On my -88 K2500 the left side has the large shoe on back but the on the right side its the opposite; the large shoe towards front.

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  • 21 Answers

I am assuming you have front disc and rear shoes? The front pads are just about as simple as it gets. Two 3/8 allen bolts to take off, one simple piston to push back in and replace pads. (this is assuming you are not metal to metal and the rotors do not need to be turned. The rear should be shoes and just follow the same procedure in reverse after taking them off. BTW remember the larger brake shoe goes towards the back of the vehicle.

Posted on Nov 04, 2008

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I have a 83 Bronco 351w I am doing the brakes and the passenger side rotor needs to be replaced can someone walk me through this thanks


Personally I would replace both rotors to prevent a future brake imbalance.

* chock rear wheels, raise front of vehicle and place on stands.

* remove wheels, remove brake calliper and bracket assemblies.

* remove bearing hubs from axles, via removal of bearing adjustment nut

*remove hub seals, clean and inspect bearings, repack with HT bearing grease.

* the brake rotor bolts to the rear of the hub, you will have to remove and replace rotor to hubs, make sure all bolts are thread locked with loctite 263 and tensioned to spec.

* pack hub with grease, install seals, fitt hub assembly and adjust wheel bearing preload, install new split pins.

* fitt brake calliper and brackets, fit new brake pads,

* fitt wheels lower vehicle, test brake for function

Hope this helps..

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How long should it take too do front brakes & rotors on a Montero sport 1997


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Mar 04, 2015 | Cars & Trucks

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What could be the problem with my car when there is a grinding noise as I turn my steering wheel to the left while driving


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There is a grinding sound when I press the brakes on my Hyundai 2010. What might be the problem?


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My steering wheel shakes when I brake. I was told that it sounds like I need to have my rotors replaced. How much will it cost, ballpark, to have them replaced? Is it just the fronts and/or the back...


Your car is practically new, I don't know what happened to your brakes, or rotors, but they usually go 100,000 miles before being replaced or turned. A brake shop will charge you a lot to do this, they make good money on brake jobs, a regular shop will get a few bucks less, it is a job, but not impossible. The first thing I would do is check the dim of the rotor, it has a stamp on it for minimum dimension, If it has never been turned, you can get them turned and get a new surface on them. The surface right now should look like it got hot, glazed, that causes the chatter, If there are grooves in the rotor from a rivet or ground down pad, not to worry, they just cut that part out. Some cars, the rotors come right off, some are part of the bearings, they have to be re greased and sealed before going back on, The price of new rotors is not bad, under $100 each, the cost to do a rotor/ brake job, should be $250, to be turned, not replaced, You can do it yourself for about $50 to $75. Pads and turned rotors. Check it out, Hope this helps.

Dec 09, 2010 | 2007 Toyota Camry

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Wondering if a novice can replace rotors and brake pads on a 2007 chevrolet suburban ltz? Do u have to do the wheel bearings also during rotor removal? Any special tools that might need to be purchased?


A novice can replace brake pads, but the rotors may be more difficult if they are not floating.
Check with the parts store to see if they are floating. If they are, you are in luck and can change the rotor once the calipers are off.


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Often the front wheel hub bearing assembly for driven and nondriven wheels is actually two tapered bearings facing each other.
f40-20.gif Exploded view of a typical front wheel bearing assembly for a FWD vehicle. Courtesy of DaimlerChrysler Corporation Each of the bearings rides in its own race. Some front wheel bearings are sealed units and are lubricated for life. They are replaced and serviced as an assembly. Others are serviceable and require periodic lubrication and adjustment.
Except when making slight adjustments to the bearings, the bearing assembly must be removed for all service work.
  • This is done with the vehicle on lifts and the wheel assembly removed.
  • In the center of the hub there is a dust (grease) cap.
  • Using slip-joint pliers or a special dust cap removal tool, wiggle the cap out of its recess in the hub.
f40-21.jpg A special tool for removing a dust cap. If one is not available use slip-joint pliers.
  • Now remove the cotter pin and nut lock from the end of the spindle.
  • Loosen the spindle nut while supporting the brake assembly and hub.
  • On many vehicles you will need to remove the brake caliper to remove the brake disc and hub.
  • Once the hub is free to come off the spindle, remove the spindle nut and the washer behind the nut.
  • Move the hub slightly forward, then push it back. This should free the outer bearing so you can remove it.
  • Now remove the hub assembly. A grease seal located on the back of the hub normally keeps the inner bearing from falling out when the hub is removed.
  • To remove the bearing assembly, the grease must be removed first. In most cases, all you need to do to remove the seal is pry and pop it out of the hub.
  • The inner bearing should then fall out.
  • Keep the outer bearing and inner bearing separated if you plan on reusing them.
  • Wipe the bearings and races or use brake parts cleaner to clean them.
  • While doing this, pay close attention to the condition and movement of the bearings. The bearings need to rotate smoothly.
  • Also visually inspect the bearings and races after they have been cleaned. any noticeable damage means they should be replaced.
  • Also inspect the spindle. If it is damaged or excessively worn, the steering knuckle assembly should be replaced.
  • Whenever a bearing is replaced, its race must also be replaced.
  • Races are pressed in and out of the hub. Typically the old race can be driven out with a large drift and a hammer. Once the race has been removed, wipe all grease from the inside of the hub.
  • The new race should be installed with the proper driver.
  • During assembly, the bearings and hub assembly must be thoroughly and carefully lubricated.
  • Care must be taken not to get grease on the brake disc or on any part that will directly contact the disc.
  • Always use the recommended grease on this assembly. The grease must be able to withstand much heat and friction. If the wrong grease is used, it may not offer the correct protection or it may liquefy from the heat and leak out of the seals.
  • The bearings should be packed with grease. It is important that the grease is forced into and around all of the rollers in the bearing. Merely coating the outside of the bearing with grease will not do the job.
  • A bearing packer does the best job at packing in the grease. If one is not available, force grease into the bearing with your hand. Install the greased inner bearing into the hub.
  • Install a new grease seal into the hub.
  • To avoid damaging the seal, use the correct size driver to press the seal into the hub.
  • Lubricate the spindle, then slip the hub over the spindle. Install the outer bearing, washer, and lock nut.
  • The lock nut should be adjusted to the exact specifications given in the service manual.
  • Often it is tightened until the hub cannot rotate, then it is loosened about one-half turn before it is set to the specified freeplay. The initial tightening seats the bearings into their races.
  • Once the lock nut is tightened, install the nut lock and use a new cotter pin to retain the lock.
  • The adjustment of the bearings can be checked with a dial indicator.
f40-22.gif Wheel bearing adjustments can be checked with a dial indicator. Reprinted with permission.
  • Mount the base of the indicator as close as possible to the center of the hub.
  • Locate the tip of the indicator's plunger on the tip of the spindle.
  • Set the indicator to zero.
  • Firmly grasp the brake disc and move it in and out.
  • The total movement shown on the indicator is the amount of freeplay at the bearing.
  • Compare your reading to the specifications and make adjustments as necessary.
WARNING Throughout this entire process, your hands will have grease on them. Be very careful not to touch the brake assembly with your greasy hands. Clean them before handling the brake parts or use a clean rag to hold the brake assembly.
  • The front bearing arrangement often found on FWD and 4WD vehicles is often nonserviceable.
  • These bearings are pressed in and out of the hub to be replaced. To do this, the axle or half shaft is removed, as is the steering knuckle and hub assembly.
  • The bearings may be sealed and require no additional lubrication or they may need to be packed with grease when they are reassembled. In most cases, the bearings are not adjusted.
  • A heavily torqued axle nut is used to hold the assembly in place on the axle.
  • This nut is typically replaced after it has been removed and is staked in place after it is tightened.

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1 Answer

How do you replace the front rotors on an 1999 Chevy express van 1500?


REMEMBER TO REPLACE THE PADS AS WELL, NO USED PADS ON NEW ROTORS.

Raise the vehicle and support on jack stands. Remove the wheels. Place the drip pan under the caliper. Loosen the 10 mm bleeder screw on the top of the caliper.
  • Step 2 Spread the brake pads apart with the common screwdriver. Place the screwdriver in the slot in the center of the caliper where the pads can be seen. With the nose of the screwdriver, pry between the rotor and the pad and pull the caliper outward toward you. The piston is being depressed into its housing as the caliper is pulled out. When the caliper comes to its limit outward, push the caliper back away from you and insert the screwdriver into the inside pad between the pad and the rotor. Once again pull the screwdriver toward you until the caliper piston is compressed into its bore.
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  • Step 4 Remove the caliper support if it interferes with the removal of the rotor. Some vehicles don't require the removal of the support. Remove the rotor by pulling it off. If it is stuck, hit it with a hammer a few times between the studs.
  • Step 5 Install the caliper support and caliper in the reverse order they were taken off. Install the wheels and let the vehicle down. Check the brake fluid and fill as necessary to the proper level.
  • Step 6 Start the vehicle and pump the brakes very slowly until you have a high pedal. Remember that by expanding the calipers they have to re-adjust. You will not have any braking when you first start the car. Do not try to move the car until you have pumped the brake pedal sufficiently to feel a firm pedal.
    Rear-Wheel-Drive Vehicles
  • Step 1 Raise the vehicle and support on jack stands. Remove the wheels. Place the drip pan under the caliper. Loosen the 10 mm bleeder screw on the top of the caliper.
  • Step 2 Spread the brake pads apart with the common screwdriver. Place the screwdriver in the slot in the center of the caliper where the pads can be seen. With the nose of the screwdriver, pry between the rotor and the pad and pull the caliper outward toward you. The piston is being depressed into its housing as the caliper is pulled out. When the caliper comes to its limit outward, push the caliper back away from you and insert the screwdriver into the inside pad between the pad and the rotor. Once again, pull the screwdriver toward you until the caliper piston is compressed into its bore.
  • Step 3 Tighten the 10 mm bleeder screw. Remove the caliper and support it where it is not hanging on the brake hose. Letting the caliper hang on the brake hose will damage the hose and cause brake failure.
  • Step 4 Remove the bearing cap in the center of the rotor. Remove the cotter pin. Remove the large nut that retains the bearings and rotor. Wobble the rotor with your hands and the front bearing will come out.
  • Step 5 Reinstall the spindle nut with just a few threads. Grabbing the rotor with both hands, pull the rotor off with slight down pressure and with a quick ****. The spindle nut will grab the rear bearing and seal as you pull the rotor off and come out at the same time.
  • Step 6 Install the bearings into the new rotor. Grease the bearings first and install the rear large bearing then install the grease seal with the hammer. Install the rotor on the spindle and insert the front small bearing followed by the large washer and the retaining nut.
  • Step 7 Tighten the retaining nut just until there is no longer any freeplay then tighten an additional 90 degrees. Do not over tighten the retaining nut as it will not allow the bearings to expand and they will wear out rapidly. Install the cotter pin.
  • Step 8 Install the caliper support and caliper in the reverse order they were taken off. Install the wheels and let the vehicle down. Check the brake fluid and fill as necessary to the proper level.
  • Step 9 Start the vehicle and pump the brakes very slowly until you have a high pedal. Remember that by expanding the calipers they have to re-adjust. You will not have any braking when you first start the car. Do not try to move the car until you have pumped the brake pedal sufficiently to feel a firm pedal
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