- Lately, I noticed that there’s kind of brake squeal whenever I stop short. Is this a sign that I now need a new Jeep brake disc and pad kit?
That squealing sound is usually produced due to vibration, and that can be an indication of worn brake linings. It is also your brake system’s way of telling you that your brake discs need to be machined or the front brake pads are loose or have lost their anti-rattle clips. Depending on the extent of the damage, you may need a new brake disc and pad kit or replacement anti-rattle clips, or you can have your brake discs machined.
- I will be replacing by Jeep’s brake pads this coming weekend. Any pre-installation or preparation tips that could help make my DIY replacement project easier and safer?
Here are a few safety tips: Check if you have everything ready before starting off with the task. Before you remove the wheel, make sure that your Jeep has been jacked up and securely resting on jack stands. It’s a good idea to break the lugs before raising the vehicle and jacking it up as it’s safer for you to loosen them while the wheels are still resting on solid ground. When removing the lug nuts, it’s a god idea to start from the bottom, working your way up. The top lug nut will be able to keep the wheel in place, making it easier for you to remove the other nuts.
- Why is it necessary to break in the newly installed brake pads and discs at low speed before using the vehicle for high-speed driving?
Doing so will allow your pads and disc to build up some grip, which is necessary in achieving great braking power. Carefully read the instructions that come with your Jeep brake disc and pad kit as some types of pads and rotors require specific break-in process.
- When visually inspecting the discs, how will I know if they are still in good working condition?
The brake discs should look shiny and fairly uniform from the inside portion to the outer edge. If you notice slight or small lines on the discs, don't worry too much as those are normal disc wear. But if the discs have rough spots or noticeable grooves, then maybe it’s time to have them machined. Before machining, check the thickness of the discs to be sure that they haven’t thinned beyond the manufacturer specs. If the grooves are too deep and machining will just make the discs too thin, then it might be high time for you to get a new Jeep brake disc and pad kit.
- I’m about to purchase a replacement brake disc when my friend told me that I should replace it in pairs. Why is that so?
Yes, the brake discs should always be replaced in pairs as they are also installed at the same time. Whenever you apply your brakes, both discs are put to work. So even if the other one still looks fine, it won’t be long until it will necessitate replacement, too. To save on time, money, and effort, and so as not to compromise your Jeep’s driveability and safety, it is important that you replace both discs at once.
- I now have my Jeep brake disc and pad kit, and I think I’m ready for the DIY installation. Can you give me some installation tips?
When replacing the pads, it is advised that you also replace or resurface the rotor. Clean the rotor surface by washing it with warm water and non-detergent liquid cleanser. Do not touch the brake pad’s friction material so as not to contaminate it. When necessary, the sliding surfaces and the back of the pad must be lubricated with brake lubricant. Brake hardware must be inspected, too, and those that are already worn should be replaced along with the disc and the pad. Do not make the mistake of hammering the pads to set them in place. Instead, open the bleeder and them compress the piston.
- How can I properly bed-in my newly installed brake pads and discs?
Drive at low speed and, from 60mph, slowly apply the brakes several times until they reach the ideal operating temperature. By doing so, you can prevent thermal shocking of the pads and rotors. Perform about 10 near-stops from 60mph to 20mph. Brake hard by firmly pressing the brakes, but be careful not to engage ABS or lock your wheels. Do not make the mistake of coming to a complete stop at every slowdown as you will just cause the pad material to be imprinted onto the hot rotors, leading to vibration. After making 7 or 8 near stops, the brakes will start to fade. Then after the last near-stop, you can now accelerate to speed and cruise for a while, making sure you won’t use the brakes often to allow them to cool down before coming to a stop.