Changing brake pads on my Nissan Altima 05
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Old 05-05-2013, 05:58 PM   #1
tetra73
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Changing brake pads on my Nissan Altima 05


One thing I am confused or no ways to find out is that if all front and rear pads the same size or are the same? I am seeing some models indicating the pads are for the rear. Other models didn't say anything.


Thanks.
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Old 05-05-2013, 06:31 PM   #2
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generally the rear pads are smaller because the rear brakes do less work.
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Old 05-05-2013, 06:44 PM   #3
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Aquatic Delight View Post
generally the rear pads are smaller because the rear brakes do less work.

Thanks. I am experienced in bicycle maintenance but not cars. It looks like the model numbers indicate if the pads are for the front or rear.... I thought they are the same size...
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Old 05-05-2013, 06:48 PM   #4
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Pull them off and check. On my '09, the rears are about half the size of the front.
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Old 05-05-2013, 07:03 PM   #5
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On 99 percent of vehicles the front pads are larger than the rear. If you can take apart a bicycle then you can change your front pads. Be sure to lubricate the caliper slide pins. They are what the caliper bolt threads into and they have a rubber boot on them where the slide into the caliper bracket. Just pull them out with the boot and use some hi temp caliper grease on them and put them back together. You will also need a large c-clamp or other tool to push the caliper piston back in to make room for the new pads. IMPORTANT- when you are done pump the brake pedal a few times with the engine off to push the caliper piston back out. If you don't you won't be able to stop with the first brake application.
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Old 05-05-2013, 07:15 PM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Shangrila View Post
On 99 percent of vehicles the front pads are larger than the rear. If you can take apart a bicycle then you can change your front pads. Be sure to lubricate the caliper slide pins. They are what the caliper bolt threads into and they have a rubber boot on them where the slide into the caliper bracket. Just pull them out with the boot and use some hi temp caliper grease on them and put them back together. You will also need a large c-clamp or other tool to push the caliper piston back in to make room for the new pads. IMPORTANT- when you are done pump the brake pedal a few times with the engine off to push the caliper piston back out. If you don't you won't be able to stop with the first brake application.

Thanks....
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Old 05-09-2013, 08:47 PM   #7
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Regarding the C-clamp - double check how to compress the rear pistons on your car. Some are the same as the fronts (simply push in) but some use a threaded piston that has to be spun as it's compressed. This usually requires a simple but specialized tool.
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Old 05-09-2013, 09:13 PM   #8
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I had to rent a tool kit for my brakes on my Jetta. Not really rent but I was charged until the tool kit was returned.
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Old 05-09-2013, 09:16 PM   #9
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Quote:
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I had to rent a tool kit for my brakes on my Jetta. Not really rent but I was charged until the tool kit was returned.
The jetta is actually what I was thinking of when I mentioned that tool! I know some Mazda vehicles do something similar too.
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Old 05-09-2013, 09:31 PM   #10
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VWs require a tool that turns the brake cylinders in the brake calipers while pushing them in, not too many others need this and you can just use a C-clamp to force the cylinders in. As far what brake pads to use just go to an auto parts store and they will tell you what you need. Rotors are cheap enough these days that you might as well change them while you are at it.
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Old 05-09-2013, 11:12 PM   #11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by lipadj46 View Post
VWs require a tool that turns the brake cylinders in the brake calipers while pushing them in, not too many others need this and you can just use a C-clamp to force the cylinders in. As far what brake pads to use just go to an auto parts store and they will tell you what you need. Rotors are cheap enough these days that you might as well change them while you are at it.

I believe my Nissan Altima needs that tool to retract the piston on the rear caliper. Something like this
TEKTON 5807 5-in-1 3/8-Inch Drive Disc Brake Piston Retractor : Amazon.com : Automotive TEKTON 5807 5-in-1 3/8-Inch Drive Disc Brake Piston Retractor : Amazon.com : Automotive

I try to see if I can get it locally.

Just finished the front pads today. It was pretty easy. For the rear, I have to wait until next week since the rear pads are coming in next week.
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Old 05-10-2013, 01:25 AM   #12
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Quote:
Originally Posted by tetra73 View Post
I believe my Nissan Altima needs that tool to retract the piston on the rear caliper. Something like this

I try to see if I can get it locally.
Most national autopart stores carry these in the tool aisle so you shouldn't have any difficulty. Small red and white blister pack.

I am pretty familiar with the VW setups. I certainly remember stripping the calipers the first time, but it gave me a good reason to upgrade to MK4 rear calipers.

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Old 05-10-2013, 02:24 AM   #13
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I have to do brakes on my S2000 here this weekend. Fun stuff! Lucky for me I have a buddy with a shop and a lift so that makes life easier.
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Old 05-10-2013, 09:35 PM   #14
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they are not the same size
the rear brakes also have the parking brake and you will want to adjust that if you are replacing the pads

make sure u sand the rotors smooth or have them taken to a machine shop with a quality lathe. poorly machined rotors will accelerate pad wear

this has nothing to do with me working for nissan, rather just experience.
use the factory pads!!! they are there for a reason, also MAKE SURE you SAVE THE METALLIC SHIM. it reduces noise and vibration. it is not cheap to replace. it will likely be stuck to the back of the brake pads and is a silver, copper color.
if its gone. go to a local nissan store and buy their value advantage pads, they are cheap, nissan approved, and come with replacement shims


otherwise if u have to buy aftermarket. buy hawk ferrocarbon pads

the rear caliper will need said tool.. it has to be turned in. take the resevoir cap off. it makes it easier
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Old 05-10-2013, 09:37 PM   #15
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Aquatic Delight View Post
generally the rear pads are smaller because the rear brakes do less work.
20% to be exact
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