Tip & How-To about Isuzu Trooper

Cheap and easy way to collapse a caliper

When replacing disc brake pads it is always nescesary to collapse the caliper again as the piston that presses the pads against the rotor is protruding too far for the (thicker) new pads to fit. Using screwdrivers and such can damage the caliper, so there are several tools available for purchase. I just figured I'd make my own.
Refer to the diagram
Use a piece of flat bar(B), more or less 1 by 4 inches and about 3/8 inch thick. Find a bolt and nut(A) that fit to each other, let's say at least half inch thick and about 2 inches long. Drill a hole in the flat bar, big enough for the bolt to fit through, weld the nut over the hole and you're good to go.
When collapsing the caliper(5), assemble the newly made tool(just screw the bolt(3) into the nut) place the flat bar(2) against the piston(1), use an old pad(4) and fit it into the caliper (this is something for the bolt to push against), and uncrew the bolt until the piston has been pressed back into the caliper.


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Tools required to change brake pads on 2003 impala


Removal & Installation
  1. Siphon 2 / 3 of the brake fluid out of the master cylinder.
  2. Mark the relationship of the wheel to the wheel stud for re-installation purposes. Remove the tire and wheel assembly.
  3. Install 2 lug nuts to secure the rotor in place when the caliper is removed.
  4. Install a large C-clamp over the top of the caliper housing and against the back of the outboard shoe. Slowly tighten the C-clamp until the caliper pistons are pushed into the caliper bore enough to slide the caliper assembly off the rotor. Use care not to tighten the C-clamp too far or the outboard shoe retaining spring will be deformed and require replacement.
  5. Remove the caliper mounting bolts and remove the brake caliper from the mounting bracket.
  6. DO NOT disconnect the brake hose from the caliper or allow the brake hose to support the weight of the caliper. Support the caliper on a piece of wire out of the way.
  7. Remove the outer brake pad from the caliper using a suitable prying tool to lift the outboard shoe retaining spring so that it will clear the caliper center lug and pull the brake pad out of the caliper.
  8. Remove the inner brake pad by unsnapping the shoe springs from the piston.

To install:


  1. Clean all parts well. If the brake pads were worn so badly that the brake rotor is damaged, it must be replaced. Light scoring of the rotor surfaces not exceeding 0.060 inch (1.5mm) in depth is not harmful to brake operation and may result from normal use. Brake rotors may be refinished. Do not use a rotor that, after refinishing, will not meet the thickness specification cast in the rotor. Always replace with a new rotor.
  2. If not done at removal, now use a C-clamp and clamp both pistons at the same time with a metal plate or wooden block across the face of both pistons. Take care not to damage the pistons or caliper boots.
    NOTE After bottoming the pistons into the caliper bore, lift the inner edge of each caliper boot next to the piston and press out any trapped air. Make sure each boot convolution is tucked back into place. Boots must lay flat.
  3. Inspect the caliper bushings for wear. Replace as necessary. Carefully inspect the slide bolts for corrosion. If corrosion if found, use new parts including the bushing assemblies when installing the caliper. Do not attempt to polish away corrosion. Lubricate caliper slide bolts with silicone grease.
  4. Install the new inner disc brake pad in the caliper by snapping the shoe retainer springs into the piston making sure both sets of locking tabs are seated in the caliper pistons. The pad must seat flat against the pistons.
  5. Install the outer pad into the caliper by snapping the outboard shoe retaining spring over the caliper center lug and into the housing slot. The pad will slide up onto the caliper and the retaining ring will lock into place on the groove in the caliper.
  6. The outer pad wear sensor should be at the trailing edge of the shoe during forward wheel rotation.
  7. Install the caliper mounting bolts and torque to 80 ft. lbs. (108 Nm).
  8. Remove the 2 nuts temporarily securing the rotor.
  9. Install the tire and wheel assembly and tighten to specification.
  10. Pump the brake pedal several times to seat the pads against the rotor.
  11. Check the brake fluid level and top off as necessary.
  12. Road test the vehicle to ensure the proper brake performance.

Good job (remember rated and comment this).

Sep 10, 2010 | 2003 Chevrolet Impala

3 Answers

need help changing brake pads and routers on 2003


Remove brake fluid from the master cylinder brake fluid reservoir until the reservoir is approximately 1/2 full. Discard the removed fluid.
  1. Raise and safely support the front of the vehicle. Remove the front wheels.
    1. Remove or disconnect the following:
    2. Front brake caliper guide pin bolts
    • Brake caliper by slowly sliding it up and off the adapter and brake rotor. Support the caliper out of the way with a strong piece of wire. Do not let the caliper hang by the brake hose or damage to the brake hose will result.
    1. If necessary, compress the caliper piston into the bore using a C-clamp. Insert a suitable piece of wood between the C-clamp and caliper piston to protect the piston.
    2. Outboard disc brake pad from the caliper by prying the brake pad retaining clip over the raised area on the caliper. Slide the brake pad down and off the caliper.
    • Inboard disc brake pad from the caliper by pulling the brake pad away from the caliper piston until the retaining clip on the pad is free from the caliper piston cavity
  • To install:
    1. Be sure the caliper piston has been completely retracted into the piston bore of the caliper assembly. This is required when installing the brake caliper equipped with new brake pads.
    2. If equipped, remove the protective paper from the noise suppression gaskets on the new disc brake pads.
    3. Install or connect the following:
      • New inboard disc brake pad into the caliper piston by pressing the pad firmly into the cavity of the caliper piston. Be sure the new inboard brake pad is seated squarely against the face of the brake caliper piston.
      • Outboard disc brake pad by sliding it onto the caliper assembly
      • Brake caliper assembly over the brake rotor and onto the steering knuckle adapter
      • Caliper guide pin bolts and torque to: 35 ft. lbs. (47 Nm) on 2002–04 models or 26 ft. lbs. (35 Nm) on 2005 models
      • Front. Apply the brake pedal several times until a firm pedal is obtained.
    4. Check the fluid level in the master cylinder and add fluid as necessary. Road-test the vehicle.

    For the rotors:

    1. Remove brake fluid from the master cylinder brake fluid reservoir until the reservoir is approximately 1/2 full. Discard the removed fluid.
    2. Raise and safely support the front of the vehicle. Remove the front wheels.
    1. Remove or disconnect the following:
    2. Front brake caliper guide pin bolts
    • Brake caliper by slowly sliding it up and off the adapter and brake rotor. Support the caliper out of the way with a strong piece of wire. Do not let the caliper hang by the brake hose or damage to the brake hose will result.
    1. If necessary, compress the caliper piston into the bore using a C-clamp. Insert a suitable piece of wood between the C-clamp and caliper piston to protect the piston.
    2. Outboard disc brake pad from the caliper by prying the brake pad retaining clip over the raised area on the caliper. Slide the brake pad down and off the caliper.
    • Inboard disc brake pad from the caliper by pulling the brake pad away from the caliper piston until the retaining clip on the pad is free from the caliper piston cavity
  • To install:
    1. Be sure the caliper piston has been completely retracted into the piston bore of the caliper assembly. This is required when installing the brake caliper equipped with new brake pads.
    2. If equipped, remove the protective paper from the noise suppression gaskets on the new disc brake pads.
    3. Install or connect the following:
      • New inboard disc brake pad into the caliper piston by pressing the pad firmly into the cavity of the caliper piston. Be sure the new inboard brake pad is seated squarely against the face of the brake caliper piston.
      • Outboard disc brake pad by sliding it onto the caliper assembly
      • Brake caliper assembly over the brake rotor and onto the steering knuckle adapter
      • Caliper guide pin bolts and torque to: 35 ft. lbs. (47 Nm) on 2002–04 models or 26 ft. lbs. (35 Nm) on 2005 models
      • Front. Apply the brake pedal several times until a firm pedal is obtained.
    4. Check the fluid level in the master cylinder and add fluid as necessary. Road-test the vehicle.

    May 28, 2010 | 2003 Chrysler Town & Country

    1 Answer

    how do i change front brake pad on this car merecy sable 1989 -99


    Remove the wheel, remove the 2 bolts holding on the caliper to the caliper carrier. You will need a large C-Clamp or a cailper piston tool. Place an old brake pad against the piston in the caliper and use the C-Clamp to push the brake pad against the piston to collapses the piston into the caliper. Also open the master cylinder cap and place a towel around the area to catch any brake fluid that would come out of the master cylinder as you collapes the piston, this is normal, but doesn't always happen, depending on the level of fluid in the master cylinder. Install the new pads and reinstall the caliper and wheel. Make sure you pump the brake pedal a few times before you take off, to get the pads against the rotor.

    Mar 16, 2010 | 1999 Mercury Sable

    2 Answers

    brakes on 2003 nissan altima are wearing on one side only. has been repaired repeatedly. After a few thousand miles only one side works other side consquently wears out out fast &then there is a grinding noise stopping


    Sounds like the caliper on the side that isn't wearing is not working properly. You need to test it to make sure that it is pushing out properly when the brakes are pressed. I can't imagine that it is working correctly. It sounds like the piston isn't moving out and you need to look at replacing that caliper so that your brakes wear evenly and also to make sure you have your full stopping power. Good luck and thanks for using FixYa!

    Jul 08, 2009 | 2003 Nissan Altima

    1 Answer

    daewoo front brakes


    The single-piston floating-caliper disc brake is self-centering and self-adjusting. The caliper is able to slide from side to side so it will move to the center each time the brakes are applied. Also, since there is no spring to pull the pads away from the disc, the pads always stay in light contact with the rotor (the rubber piston seal and any wobble in the rotor may actually pull the pads a small distance away from the rotor). This is important because the pistons in the brakes are much larger in diameter than the ones in the master cylinder. If the brake pistons retracted into their cylinders, it might take several applications of the brake pedal to pump enough fluid into the brake cylinder to engage the brake pads

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    Aug 25, 2008 | 1999 Daewoo Lanos

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