Question about 2006 Chevrolet Malibu

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How do i change front brake pads on 2006 malibu maxx?

Do i need a special tool to release the calipers?

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  • mcam2010
    mcam2010 Feb 03, 2013

    my brake pad keeps going bad on one side they said its cause of the caliper is that true



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You shouldn't need any thing more then a jack, jack stand, 4-way (to remove the wheel) a few wrenches, socket set, large flat head screw driver, a wire brush, metal coat hanger, a small container for bolts and a c-clamp.
You will also want to have some caliper lube, brake parts cleaner, lock-tight(if replacing rotors) & brake fluid; be sure to check the type of brake fluid your car takes. It will be on top of the brake fluid reservoirs cap. It should be DOT3 but could be DOT4. Although most DOT4 brake fluids are designed for DOT3 or DOT4. I always buy DOT4. One last thing you may want is some heavy-duty latex mechanic's gloves they keep your hands clean and protected. Plus you won't be picking grease out of the underside of your finger nails days later.
Buy high quality parts. Remember this is your brakes and your saving money by doing it yourself. You like stopping don't you? So fork out the extra on a better set of pads. I prefer and try to use nothing but Wagner ThermoQuiet Ceramic Disc Brake Pad. I have never had any complaints. They don't over heat fast like all cheap pads out their. They are very quiet. They don't make your wheels turn black. You get 3 times the life. They usually cost around $50.00. So they are well worth the extra money. Advance and Bumper to Bumper sell them.
First do one side at a time DON'T RUSH. Place the car on a hard level surface. A small trick is before jacking turn the wheel toward the side you are about to work on. Place the jack under the car and find a safe place on the car to use as a lift point. Jack until the jack is just lifting the car then break the wheel lug nuts loose. DON'T take them off yet just turn them counter clock wise about 3/4 of a turn.
Now jack the car until the tire is a few inches off the ground. Place the jack stand under the car in a safe location. Now lower the car until the car just touches the jack stand. Make sure your tire is still off the ground. Now remove the lug nuts & wheel. Place the wheel off to the side and the lug nuts in your container.
<u>Top off you brake fluid before counting.</u>
Now if you have a big enough c-clamp place it on the caliper like in the image. If its not big enough just continue.
how do i change front brake pads on 2006 malibu ma - fa46ccf.gif
<u>This step is important this will prevent damage to you abs system!</u>
Break the bleeder screw loose (be careful if needed tap the caliper with hammer while trying to loosen the screw) Once fluid dribbles from the screw it's loose enough don't remove the screw.
If you don't want a mess click here to learn how to make a brake fluid catch can. You could just use a drain pan but you will most likely make a small mess.
If your c-clamp didn't fit skip this step:
If your c-clamp fit you should now tighten it until the caliper puck is completely back into the caliper. This is done by hand once the c-clamp quits turning you should be good. Don't use a wrench for leverage. If it doesn't turn by hand your caliper maybe stuck. This would require replacement. Now that the piston in all the way back tighten the bleeder screw.
If your c-clamp fit skip this step:
Take your large flat head screw driver and place it into the hole shown in the image. (make sure the bleeder is open)Get the tip of the screw driver on the rotor then pry back. This should create some space between the pads and the rotor. This will help get the caliper off.
Check your brake fluid DON'T LET IT GO EMPTY. If you had the big c-clamp the bleeder should be closed now. If you had the small one the bleeder should still be open. So keep an eye on the fluid level.
Now you can remove the caliber mounting bolts (shown in the image above). To do this you may need to use a two wrenches or a wrench and a socket. The caliper bolts, bolt in to the slides. When loosening the bolts it's possible for the slides to turn with the bolt. To prevent this just use a wrench on the hex part of the slide. Also loosen one bolt a couple turns then remove the other bolt. Then go back to the first one and remove it. Don't try to remove one bolt with out the other being loose. Be sure to place the bolts in the container.
Take your coat hanger, using the hook part hang it from the spring, then pull down on the bottom to stretch the hanger. Remove the caliper and hang it from the coat hanger. Make sure not to put much pressure on the brake lines (i.e. pulling on, hanging on or dropping the caliper) the brake line isn't that strong and will break.
Now pull out the pads and remove the slides. Remember witch slide came from the top and witch from the bottom. They should be different. One will have a rubber ring on the end. Then place them in you container. Use the wire brush to clean the contact points were the pads were. Use a rag and brake parts cleaner to clean the slides.
If you had the big c-clamp skip the step:
Take one of the old brake pads, place it on the caliper puck then install the c-clamp as shown in image. Tighten down c-clamp using your hand only until it stops. Don't use a wrench for leverage. If it doesn't turn by hand your caliper maybe stuck. This would require replacement. Once the puck is pushed all the way in, tighten the bleeder screw in. Now you can put the c-clamp ohow do i change front brake pads on 2006 malibu ma - 07b7281.jpgide and trash the old pads.
If you plan to replace the rotors. Witch is a good idea sense rotors now a days are to thin to turn 99 out of 100 times. Also I believe GM said not to turn their rotors. Just replace them. They have become cheap. Think of it as insurance you don't want to re-due this job in a few months, because of a shake when you hit the brakes, Right?. Remove the two bolts on the caliper mounting bracket. Be sure to loosen one of the bolts a little (about three turns) then remove the other, then go back to the first to remove it. You may need a large strong arm to do this. Put you bolts in your container. Once the bracket is removed take off the rotor. Open the box with the new rotor then remove the rotor from the plastic. The new rotor is coated in oil for shipping to prevent rust. So you need to get all of it off. Spray the rotor down with brake parts cleaner. Then use a rag to wipe it down. You may need to do this a could of times. Now install the new rotor then the caliper mounting bracket. I always use some lock-tight on the caliper mounting bracket bolts. I have seen them come loose. So use a little blue lock-tight and torque these two bolts down.
Take the new pads and install them. Apply some caliper lube to the slides. Install the slides back in the mounting bracket. Reinstall the caliper. When tightening the caliper bolts be ready with a wrench to keep the slides from turning.
Install your wheel and tighten the lug nuts. Lower the car and move over to the other side. Follow the same steps on that side.
Once the brakes are on both sides, the wheels are tightened and the car is down. Recheck the brake fluid. Then pump up the brakes. Then recheck the brake fluid. If you fail to perform this last step of pumping up the brakes you will have NO BRAKES! Also be sure to recheck the fluid before and after. If not you could get air in the line. That will cause weak brakes.


* caliper to bracket bolts - 26Ft.-lbs
* caliper bracket to knuckle - 85Ft.-lbs

This is information only; Brakes should be replaced or repaired at a certified shop. Brakes installed by unqualified persons should be inspected by a qualified mechanic before driving the vehicle.

Posted on Apr 30, 2010

  • ZiggynSC09
    ZiggynSC09 Apr 30, 2010

    I am half asleep so if any of that doesn't make sense sorry!


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You have to TURN the caliper piston like a screw, not squeeze. That is how it goes down in my Malibu... Hope that helps, it took me hours to discover this.


Posted on Apr 22, 2012

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Most GM products use a couple allen headed bolts to hold the caliper on. You can buy the kind that fit on a rachet wrench at any good auto parts store. To push the piston back into the caliper I use a large "C" clamp of good quality.

Posted on Apr 30, 2010

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