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Old 08-27-2003, 02:19 PM   #1
wolfman
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Wrench S-Series Rear Disk Pad/Rotor Replacement

The rear disks on Saturn "S" series cars equiped with ABS are very simliar to the fronts, HOWEVER, NONE of the parts are interchangeable. To change the rear pads/rotors you will need:

Metric socket set and wrench (6 point variety recommended)
Pair of needle nose pliers
High temp wheel bearing grease
Floor jack and jackstands

PROCEED AS FOLLOWS:

Jack up the rear of the car and support it with jackstands (see the tire changing instructions in the trunk spare tire cover for the proper lifting/support points and DO NOT get under a car supported only by a jack!)

Remove the wheel(s)

Remove the guide and lock pins attaching the caliper to the torque plate. (NOTE: they are different sizes, DO NOT get them mixed up!)

Pull the caliper off the torque plate and support it by hanging it with a piece of wire, do NOT let it hang by the hose or parking brake cable. (coat hanger works well) DO NOT remove or twist the parking brake cable attached to the back of the caliper!)

Remove the old pads from the torque plate

Remove the two bolts holding the torque plate to the BACK of the hub and remove the torque plate. (These bolts have locktite on them and will initially be very hard to remove)

Pull the old rotor off the hub (NOTE: Rear rotors are SOLID not vented and SMALLER than the fronts)

Slide new rotor onto the hub over the lug studs

Reinstall torque plate and bolts

Install new pads onto the torque plate

Using needle nose pliers spread OPEN to fit the inside of the piston's bore, TURN the piston of the caliper CLOCKWISE until it bottoms in it's bore. Then align it so it looks like a "bow tie" in it's bore.

Clean the guide and lock pins of all grease etc. and then LIGHTLY coat them with high temp wheel bearing grease. Also slather grease on the parking brake return spring and mechanism on the BACK of the caliper.

Reinstall the caliper over the new pads/torque plate and reinstall the guide and lock pins.

NOTES:

DO NOT use a "C" clamp or other "compression" method to bottom the piston of a REAR caliper. You will DESTROY the parking brake mechanism if you do!

Make sure the rubber dust bellows for the guide and lock pins are there and not kinked when reinstalling the pins. (Torque spec 28 Ft pds)

You "should" use locktite when reinstalling the torque plate bolts (the "blue" variety) but this is not 100% necessary. (Torque spec is 63Ft pds.)

Parking brake should NOT need adjustment after pad replacement. When you have completed the job, start the car, step on the brake pedal a few times to seat the pads, and then WITH THE BRAKE PEDAL DEPRESSED, set the parking brake by pulling up on the handle, then release the brake pedal and then the parking brake. This should be all thats needed.

IF and I mean IF, ANY brake fluid has been added to the master cylinder since the last NEW set of pads was installed, there is a SLIGHT chance the master cylinder will over flow when you compress the caliper piston. If this is the case you can either
A: Use a turkey baster or similiar device to remove some fluid (NO more than 1~2 ONCES) prior to starting OR'
B: Loosen the master cylinder cap and just let it overflow. Just reseal the cap and RINSE any spilled brake fluid off with water when you are done.

NOTE: I HIGHLY RECOMMEND YOU PURCHSE A HAYNES OR CHILTON MANUAL FOR YOUR CAR PRIOR TO ATTEMPTING REAR BRAKE WORK! THE ILLUSTRATIONS ALONE ARE WORTH THE PRICE AND IT WILL COME IN HANDY IN THE FUTURE!

...
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Old 10-20-2003, 12:37 AM   #2
ym42
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To Wolfman: I think many of SLs equiped with rear rotors will have ABS, and the book says something about the "scan tool". Can you explain what about it? Thanks.

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Old 10-20-2003, 01:00 AM   #3
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Actually ALL "S" series cars with rear DISK brakes from the factory will have ABS. The "scan tool" is used to bleed the brakes ONLY if a brake line has been disconnected or bleed valve opened, which is not done for pad replacement alone.

...
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Old 10-20-2003, 01:04 AM   #4
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Most, if not, all Gen 1 S-Series came with ABS also have 4 wheel disc. Auto also had traction contorl.
I think saturn started dropping of 4 wheel disc at 96. Although few 95 with ABS have been seen with drum brakes.

Scan tool, it allows you to turn on the ABS unit so you can flesh out the brake fluid there. It is for bleeding the brakes.

So, basically, you bleed the system once, then you use the scan tool, or drive and make the ABS enage by stopping HARD, then you bleed the system again. It is optional.

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Old 12-27-2003, 12:09 PM   #5
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Guide pins = 14mm
Torque Plate Bolts = 10mm

Be SURE to use a 6pt socket on the torque plate bolts, if you have an older car, they are guaranteed to be rusted on there, and a 12 point socket simply won't do the job. You'll end up with stripped bolt heads. Better to be safe than sorry!

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Old 12-27-2003, 12:39 PM   #6
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PB-Blaster will help too.

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Old 03-13-2004, 12:30 AM   #7
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or a air impact wrench

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Old 05-08-2004, 09:26 AM   #8
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Heads up to all those that need to do this job.

When I heard the grinding and scraping sound coming from the rear wheels, I knew it was time for a brake job back there. A brake job in the back hadn't been done in more than four years according to records from the previous owner.

When I had everything apart, I saw that the inboard pads on each side were worn to the pad backing plate on the lock (lower) pin side of the caliper but up at the guide (upper) pin side they looked brand new! My pads were canted!

It made sense because I could not pull out the lock pins on the caliper by hand. Once the threads were out, I had to use a hammer and small chisel against the inner lip of the bolt head to drive it out of there. The grease had actually caked on the solid shaft of the pin where the caliper should slide. It even looked like it was rusting in some spots. Some 220 grit sandpaper fixed that problem. I know the manuals say not to attempt to repair any corrosion on the bolts, but I didn't want to run out to Saturn and risk them not having the parts. (my car is a daily driver).

So I put everything back together making sure I used the correct caliper grease on the pin bolts. Brake pedal feel is now so much more improved and stopping is noticeably faster.

Once again, I used wolfman's formula: Wearever rotors and Wearever silver level semi-metallic pads. Don't forget that the pads and rotors are different SIZES and front parts and rear parts CANNOT be interchanged.

Maybe now every two years I'll remove the caliper pin bolts, clean them up and regrease them just for the preventive maintenance factor.

...
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Old 05-17-2004, 09:05 AM   #9
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2004 VUE 2.2L
2007 ION-3 Sedan
Idea More tips

  • Release the parking brake before trying to remove the rear calipers. If the parking brake is engaged (i.e. the lever on the center console is pulled upward) then the calipers will not come off.
  • If installing new rotors, put two lug nuts back on the lug bolts to hold the new rotor in place. Just make the two lug nuts snug with your fingers, there is no need to make them super tight with tools.
  • Before putting the wheel back on the car, clean both sides of the rotor with brake cleaner. New rotors will have a film of oil on them. Still, if we are not replacing the rotors (highly recommended by the way), we need to clean the rotors because they might have gotten dirty with oily fingerprints or falling debris while working on the pads. Slowly spin the rotor - or have an assistant spin the rotor - using the lug bolts while spraying each side of the rotor. I used an old metal cake pan to collect the used brake cleaner as it ran off the rotor.
  • Brake cleaner is highly effective at removing dirt, oil, grime, and so on. I'd recommend buying two cans if both axles will be getting new brake pads and/or rotors.
I found the clips on the torque plate that hold the brake pads in place coated with anti-seize compound. That stuff can be sticky and probably is not the best to use with brake pads. So I scrubbed it off using brake cleaner and sandpaper, cleaned it again with only brake cleaner, and then applied a thin coat of caliper grease to the insides of the clips in the same manner we apply a thin coat of oil to the gasket on the oil filter.

Lastly, I chose to use that red glue ("anti chatter") stuff on the sides of the new brake pads that do not touch the rotor.

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Old 10-01-2005, 07:18 PM   #10
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Default Re: S-Series Rear Disk Pad/Rotor Replacement

I just replaced my rear rotors/pads using the directions in this thread. Here are some pictures from my efforts. Sorry but they're not as complete as the ones from the front replacement as I was running out of patience and daylight.


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