How To Loosen Bolts On Brake Calipers
When your brake pads are very worn down, it is time to change them! Changing your brakes will bring you some of the best benefits as soon as within 30 days of purchase, and hopefully before that if you do it properly.
A new set of brake pads will make your car more efficient in slowing or stopping your vehicle. Depending on the type of braking system you have, there are different types of bolts that need to be loosened for installation of new brake pads. This article will go into detail about each one!
Removing the wheel cover is another part of changing your brake shoes. Make sure to use safe tools for this process so you don’t hurt yourself.
Use penetrating oil to loosen bolts
If you are having trouble loosening or tightening your brake caliper bolts, try using a few drops of penetrating oil. The grease in the tool kit can help work as a lubricant for the bolt and its surroundings.
If there is no greese available, do not use petroleum products such as engine oils or windshield washer fluid– they may contain additives that could prevent the caliper from closing properly.
Do not use thinner types of oil either– those with thinner viscosity will likely run down the outside of the bolt and be wasted. We recommend automotive gear polish or machine oil that is designed to work with metal surfaces.
Application method: Spread a small amount of oil onto each side of the nut or bolt head. Then rotate the device being tightened or loosed by hand until it glides easily along the surface it is attached to. (Make sure to keep an eye on the device while rotating so nothing gets dropped.) Repeat this process several times to ensure proper release.
Note: Do not apply too much oil at once or the device may run out of control and injure someone. Also make sure to wash your hands after touching the oil to avoid any unnecessary exposure.
Use motor oil to loosen bolts
In most cases, using regular car engine oils will work to help remove tight brake linings. Make sure to never use silicone or synthetic oils as they may not be appropriate for your vehicle!
Some people believe that rubbing dry lubricants like lithium grease or silicon fluid in between the lining and the piston helps prevent friction and sticking. This is not true!
Lithium grease and silicon fluids are actually very hard and take longer to break down which can cause corrosion and damage to the surface of the parts.
Use denatured alcohol to loosen bolts
Denaturant is an ingredient used in many products, including dry cleaning fluids, gasoline, and some types of disinfectants. It acts as a solvent to help separate molecules or atoms away from each other. In this case, it helps dissolve the glue that can lock parts together.
Denatured alcohol is a very effective tool for removing adhesive residue. It is not harmful when exposed to air so you do not have to use high concentrations to work effectively.
Mix one part denatured alcohol with 19 parts water and then apply the solution to the bolt area and spread using a cotton ball or soft cloth. Let sit for several minutes until most of the liquid has been absorbed and then rinse thoroughly.
Remember! Alcohol is a chemical compound so be careful how much you use and for what purpose.
Use WD-40 to loosen bolts
There are many times when you need to remove tight or stubborn bolts. Whether it is because they have become stuck due to corrosion, or you just cannot get them to turn easily, your best option is to use some oil!
Oil has a way of helping to rotate metal objects, and most oils will not burn in those situations. Many people like to use olive oil since it does not smoke and can be mixed with other products at the ends of screws or bolts.
WD-40 is one of the most common oils used for this purpose, as it works very well on almost any type of bolt or screw. It becomes slightly viscous or thick when applied so that you do not run out of the product quickly.
Make sure to apply only a light amount directly onto the bolt or screw so that it does not go down the hole too much.
Use kerosene to loosen bolts
Many vehicle manufacturers use zinc as an inexpensive alternative to stainless steel for their brake caliper components. However, when it comes down to it, zinc will not hold up well to repeated heat exposure. This is why we cannot rely on using heavy duty cleaners that contain zinc on your brakes every time you need them cleaned.
Fortunately, there are many non-corrosive liquids that can be used to clean car parts! One of these is called kerosene. Kerosene is simply oil with very little content of hydrogen or oxygen. Because it does not break down, it is perfect for use in vehicles.
Many people use kerosene to do things like wash cars or fix leaking gasoline tanks. It works great as an all around cleaner because it does not corrode other materials.
Use baking soda to loosen bolts
If you are having trouble getting your brake caliper off, try using baking soda as a solution. Baking soda is an inexpensive ingredient that works in many forms- powder, cream, gel, and solid.
When mixed with water, it creates an effervescent compound or chemical reaction which causes it to expand and foam up. You can apply this mixture to all of the parts of the brake system – pistons, shoes, brackets, etc.
By soaking these areas in the froth for an adequate amount of time, they will dissolve slightly, creating space to work more easily. This article’s main topic even has instructions on how to do just that!
Removing piston pins
This section doesn’t say anything about braking, but it does describe something important so we will include it here. Make sure to check out our article: Tips For Removing Heavy Duty Clutch Pins.
Once you have done everything mentioned above, now test your brakes. Does your car pull to one side when you stop quickly? Do you feel confident putting lots of pressure on the pedal? If not, try dipping into the baking soda solution before trying again.
Use peanut butter to loosen bolts
When you get stuck trying to remove your brake pad, try using some food! Using our recipe as a basis, go into the kitchen and find something hard that will compress like a meatball or hamburger. These are great candidates!
If you have ever had a meatball as a snack or meal, you know how to use ground up peanuts or almonds to make it stick to everything. If you can’t pull out those brakes, try going in with some almond butter! It is similar to peanut butter, but has additional ingredients such as cocoa powder or coconut oil so it doesn’t run all over things.
Mix together enough of each ingredient to form a paste, apply it to one of the bolts, and turn the wheel or vehicle handle to work it into the threads.
Use liquid soap to loosen bolts
It is not always possible to use a tool to help you remove stubborn or hardened brake pistons. If this happens, it is time to try another approach.
Liquid soaps are usually found in most bathrooms. They are typically used for washing your hands but some brands can be mixed together to make strong tools to melt hard materials.
Some people like to mix them with water and then spread the mixture onto their cars or motorcycles as an all-purpose cleaner. This may work if you cannot get into the car to apply more force using a tool!
If you do choose to use liquid soap as our recommendation, make sure to test a small area first to see if it works and does not leave any residue that will prevent braking later.