Do Your Brake Pads Need Replacing?
Order genuine Land Cruiser brake pads and related parts from Discount Parts Monster.com, replace your brake pads at home and save money. It's not for everyone, but many who know the way around their Land Cruiser and have the right tools, have no problem replacing their brake pads regularly and even doing regular maintenance and checkups.
When you are working with genuine parts for your Toyota land cruiser, then it's easy to do this replacement. If not, then some refitting of the caliper might be necessary, and it could get pretty complicated in which case it would be safest to get some professional assistance.
Land Cruiser Brake Pads
There are two sets of brake pads. One set for the front wheels and one set for the back wheels.
You will need to have your car elevated and the tire removed to replace brake pads. If you're just checking them, then you may be able to see them through the spokes of your wheel. Brake pads should be at least 1/4 of an inch thick. The front and back brake pads aren't the same thickness.
Replacing Your Brake Pads
Take the spring clip out of the caliper. The spring clip is a little wire that's roughly the shape of a set of wings. Remember the position of the spring clip because you need to put it back on in the same exact position once you put the caliper back in place.
Using a socket wrench, loosen the slide pins in the caliper enough so that you can detach the caliper from the rotor. You don't remove the caliper completely but to keep it safe and out of the way, use a piece of wire to hang the caliper from a sturdy part of the car. There may be a hook or clip that anchors or holds the cord connected to the caliper in place, and you may need to take the cord off of this clip while replacing the brake pads. This is fine. Just remember to put it back on once you've reattached the caliper.
After removing the caliper, you can now access the brake pads. There's nothing securing them in place so just take them off of the rotor.
Inspect the rotor. If it's rusted or has deep grooves or pits or it's cracked, then you will want to replace that too. To take out the old rotor, remove the lug that's bolting it in place. Whether you are putting a new rotor on or using the same one, grab the brake caliper grease, and put a nice coating of it on the parts of the hub and rotor that come into contact with each other. The brake caliper grease prevents seizing, and the next time you have to remove the rotor again, it will be easy. Make sure you wash your hands each time after using this grease because if it gets on the wrong part of a brake component, then your brakes might not work properly.
Put some grease on the surface of the inner brake pad that will come into contact with the piston, and slide it into place, and then put the outer pad into place.
Before putting the caliper back on, pull out the two slide pins, put some brake caliper grease on each of them, and slide them back into place. Put the caliper in place over the new brake pads. Tighten the slide pins with the socket wrench just enough to hold everything firmly in place. Now use a torque wrench to tighten each of the two pins to the right spec. Refer to your manual or call your parts dealer to find out the correct tightening specifications. Put the spring clip back on.
There Are a Few Ways to Tell If You Should Have Your Brake Pads Checked:
-Squeaking brake pads or a high-pitched squeal
-The brake light or alarm is on
-It takes a long time to brake
More Indications That All May Not Be Well With Your Brakes
If you hear a grinding sound:
Your brake pads are totally worn out and now the underlying metal is grinding against the rotor.
If your car won't drive straight:
If you notice your car keeps veering to one side or it doesn't seem to want to turn the way you're turning the steering wheel, then it may be due to a stuck caliper. If this is not the case, then you should investigate further because it could be another problem that's just as serious.
Vibration when you hit the brakes:
This may be due to a worn out or damaged rotor. Your rotors can become warped if you stress them by braking frequently while towing something heavy or driving down a steep hill.
Pedal goes down further than usual before brakes are engaged:
If you almost have to floor it on the brake pedal, then this could be due to brake pads that are worn dangerously thin. The danger here is that it could take longer than normal to stop your car or bring it to a full stop. Waste no time replacing such brake pads.
If the brake pedal won't budge the first couple of times you put your foot on it:
Extremely cold weather, such as 10 degrees Fahrenheit, can cause this problem, but since it doesn't get colder than 55 degrees in even the coolest months in Hollywood, Florida, you should have your brake booster and vacuum lines or seals checked. Also, this could be due to contaminated brake fluid.
The Joy of Balanced Brakes
If even one brake pad on a front wheel needs to be replaced, then all the front brake pads should be replaced, and the same goes for the brake pads on the back set of wheels. This will ensure you avoid that annoying one-side pull or a brake imbalance when stopping or slowing down.
Avoid accidents due to faulty brakes by paying attention to any signs that could indicate a malfunction with your brakes. Check your brake pads regularly, and clean your brakes with brake cleaner. A good time to clean the brakes is when you're changing your tire because you have to take it off to clean them.