Servicing a car yourself can be really easy and also rewarding. You’ll not only learn how your car works but you’ll also develop an affinity for the car which simply won’t be there if you drive it to the garage every time your oil needs to be changed.
One of the service parts which will need to be checked on a regular basis are the brake pads. These will wear over time and will need to be replaced when they are a minimum level. This is also a good time to check the brake discs for lipping when the brake pad assembly is removed. Lipping occurs when the discs have worn down over time and refers to the metal lip which sits on both the inner and outer edges of the disc where the pad fails to make contact. If your discs are lipped they may have to be replaced. It’s easy to change the brake pads yourself if you are DIY-savvy, you just need a little confidence in your own ability. This guide will explain how to change the pads on a Ford Fiesta.
Ford Fiesta brake pad replacement
1. Remove the brake fluid reservoir cap
2. Crack-off the wheel nuts on the wheel you are going to tackle first.
3. Jack up the car and sit it on axle stands
4. Remove the wheel nuts and then the wheel
5. Remove the caliper retaining clip
6. Remove the caliper bolts using the right sized socket and then remove the caliper
7. Remove the pads from the caliper or discs
8. Using a G clamp, fit this in line with the caliper piston and tighten to push the piston back into its housing (the new pads will be much thicker than the old pads)
9. Fit the new pads onto the caliper or the disc
10. Refit the caliper and replace the bolts. Make sure they are tightened to the manufacturer’s specifications
11. Fit the metal retaining clip
12. Fit the wheel back in place
13. Jack the car to remove the axle stand and lower the vehicle to the ground
14. Tighten the wheel bolts
15. Fit the cap back on the brake fluid reservoir and check the level is ok
16. Pump the brake pedal to drive the calipers onto the new pads
17. Test the brakes for operation
When new brake pads are fitted it’s important to use them gently for the first 200 miles or so. It’s in this time period that the brakes are ‘bedding in’ and finding their correct alignment with the brake discs.
These instructions are only intended as a guide, we recommend you follow manufacturer’s instructions or instructions in a model specific handbook.
George Riley is a vehicle mechanic. He wrote this article on changing Fiesta brake pads on behalf of www.eurocarparts.com.