How to Replace Disc Brake Pads

How to Replace Disc Brake Pads

How to Replace Disc Brake Pads

The safety of biking depends on no other part as enormously as on brake pads. That's why you should check them regularly and replace them in good time. So the change works quickly and safely.

A real emergency at the disc brake on the mountain bike can usually be prevented in advance of a tour. Because unlike a flat tire or a torn rear derailleur, problems with the brake do not usually occur suddenly during a tour. In the vast majority of cases, brake failure announces itself in a gradual process and can thus be remedied at an early stage. If you regularly check your brake pads for wear, replace them in good time or don't ignore a spongy pressure point for weeks on end, you can have the most common sources of brake system faults rectified either in your own workshop or by a specialist. 

Important information in advance: A disc brake is a safety-relevant component. If you tinker with it yourself, you should know what you are doing and, above all, work thoroughly. If you don't have enough experience, it doesn't hurt to visit a bicycle repair shop and get advice from experts.

The difference in detail

The difference in detail: On the left, there is almost no lining left on the backing plate; on the right, there is an intact, almost new brake lining.

Changing brake pads on the disc brake: the work steps

  1. Removing the impeller: In order to work on the brake properly, you must first remove the impeller.
  2. Remove the pad retainer: Remove the retaining cotter pin and loosen the pad retaining screw. Pick up both, because sometimes these small parts are not included with new brake pads and must be reassembled at the end.
  3. Remove old brake pads: Pull the old brake pads out of the caliper. On most models, this folds upward, but some pads must be removed downward from the caliper. Save the spring for yourself, because sometimes new brake pads don't come with a new spring.
  4. Clean the caliper: Spray the caliper liberally with brake cleaner and clean it with a clean rag - especially the brake pistons inside.
  5. Press back the pistons: Carefully push the brake pistons on both sides back into the caliper using a large, flat-blade screwdriver or a special brake piston spreader.
  6. Install new pads: Insert the pads into the spring with a positive fit and push them into the caliper as a compressed package.
  7. Secure the pads: Secure the pads with the locking screw and split pin or the locking split pin.

Once the brake pads and wheel have been reinstalled, the brake must be re-braked. To do this, brake the brake really hot several times in a controlled environment so that it can develop its full braking power.

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