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Discussion Starter #1 (Edited)
I didn't want to keep diverting other threads, so ....

I hope to do my own brake/rotor job on my 2000 Passat GLX 4 Motion. I'll order the rotors & pads today. The goal is to do the fronts this weekend and the rears next weekend. I've watched a bunch of videos and read through a bunch of threads, but I've got a few questions just to make sure I'm prepared. I don't want to get my wheels apart and then run into a problem. So, in addition to the basic procedure for replacing the pads and rotors:

1) Many of the videos/threads say to open the brake fluid reservoir and put a rag around it in case fluid spills when I depress the caliper. Do I need to have some extra brake fluid on hand?

2) for removing the nuts/slider nuts: I've seen various sizes stated: 45 mm torx, 7mm or 8mm allen. 12 mm wrench for the backs. I guess I'll just make sure I've got a good range?

3) Is it important that I get a torque wrench? Some videos give pretty precise torque specs for putting back on the bolts. My friend said, just go real hard with the clamp bolts and kind of hard on the caliper bolts.

4) Caliper Lubricating Compound, Neverseize, Brake Quiet: Is this all the same stuff? I plan to get some Caliper Lubricating Compound. This goes on caliper slide pins. Does this also go on the mating metal surfaces? the backs of the pads? Does the compound do the same job as Neverseize or Brake Quiet?

5) Brake Cleaner: This is for cleaning the new rotors. But I've also seen videos where they spray it all over the caliper to clean it. Is that a good idea?

6) I'll pick up jacks and the rear caliper tool from Harbor Freight. I've only got the crappy little VW jack to get the car up onto the HF jacks. I assume that's good enough for this purpose?

7) Loctite for putting back the clamp bolts. Blue (normal disassembly) or red (heat & tools to disassemble)?

8) Twine or wire for hanging the caliper so it doesn't pull on the tubing.

9) Sandpaper to clean off the various metal surfaces? (I don't have a grinder.) Is this a high grit (400, 600?) or low grit (80, 120) job?

Thanks. I'd appreciate any tips.
 

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I didn't want to keep diverting other threads, so ....


1) Many of the videos/threads say to open the brake fluid reservoir and put a rag around it in case fluid spills when I depress the caliper. Do I need to have some extra brake fluid on hand?
In most cases no, but it's not a bad idea to have a bottle handy if needed. When you push the pistons back and install the new pads there is actually less fluid required than before you started. So, unless you have a leak or bleed fluid from the bleeder valve on the caliper it's doubtful you will need any fluid. That said a full brake fluid flush is required every 2 years.

2) for removing the nuts/slider nuts: I've seen various sizes stated: 45 mm torx, 7mm or 8mm allen. 12 mm wrench for the backs. I guess I'll just make sure I've got a good range?

3) Is it important that I get a torque wrench? Some videos give pretty precise torque specs for putting back on the bolts. My friend said, just go real hard with the clamp bolts and kind of hard on the caliper bolts.
Yes. Proper torque of the bolts is always a good idea. Passat brake calipers have been known to come loose after brake jobs for a few reasons one of which is not torquing the bolts correctly.

4) Caliper Lubricating Compound, Neverseize, Brake Quiet: Is this all the same stuff? I plan to get some Caliper Lubricating Compound. This goes on caliper slide pins. Does this also go on the mating metal surfaces? the backs of the pads? Does the compound do the same job as Neverseize or Brake Quiet?
All three are different and have different uses. And should Only be used for their intended use during a brake job. They are all available in small tubes/ packages at any auto parts store.

5) Brake Cleaner: This is for cleaning the new rotors. But I've also seen videos where they spray it all over the caliper to clean it. Is that a good idea?
Yes, clean is always a good idea. Brake clean is bad stuff so use in a well ventilated area. You do not want any grease or oil on the surface of the rotors where they contact the pads. Once you get grease or oil in the pads they must be replaced

6) I'll pick up jacks and the rear caliper tool from Harbor Freight. I've only got the crappy little VW jack to get the car up onto the HF jacks. I assume that's good enough for this purpose?
Wrong! You need to buy a REAL jack! Not an expensive jack but a real one. That thing will Kill you! Look at Trolly jacks they are small floor jacks and run about $30 or so. The jack that comes with the car is only to be used in emergency situations. It may work to lift one side but when you try to lift the other side of the car the load will be to much and the jack will likely collapse.


7) Loctite for putting back the clamp bolts. Blue (normal disassembly) or red (heat & tools to disassemble)?
Blue Always Blue.

8) Twine or wire for hanging the caliper so it doesn't pull on the tubing.
Makes no difference. I use bungee cord or mechanics wire. But, whatever you have is fine.

9) Sandpaper to clean off the various metal surfaces? (I don't have a grinder.) Is this a high grit (400, 600?) or low grit (80, 120) job?
80-120 is fine. Also pick up a file at HF.

Thanks. I'd appreciate any tips.
You should do just fine as it appears you have done a lot of research.
 

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5 - brake cleaner all over the rotors, calipers and pads before you do any brake work. This gets rid of the dust which you def don't want to breath in. Brake cleaner on new rotor to get rid of the oily substance coating the surface.

6 - by your description you mean jack stands, right? You're buying HF stands and using the VW jack to get the car up onto the stands? You'll be fine. Dont do any work without stands, ever. You should probably get a little trolley jack to start as well -(like stated above) it'll be safer and easier. Then at some point in your diy life get a proper floor jack.
 

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Discussion Starter #5
Can someone explain the difference between Caliper Lubricating Compound, Neverseize, Brake Quiet? From what I'm reading/watching, people seem to choose one and use it for everything?

I guess the caliper lubricating compound goes on the slide pins?

The brake quiet goes behind the pads and on the mating metal surfaces?

The Neversieze?
 

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8) Twine or wire for hanging the caliper so it doesn't pull on the tubing.
Don't use twine if there is a chance it can break and allow the caliper to drop. A dropped caliper might damage the brake hose.

I've only got the crappy little VW jack to get the car up onto the HF jacks. I assume that's good enough for this purpose?
I got a trip to the local hospital's ER because of that thing. When it slipped and whacked the palm of my hand as it shot out from under the car, I was lucky that the tendons, which the ER tech called everyone over to see, didn't get cut.
 

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Discussion Starter #7
Do these torque specs look right?

Type: Dim: Length: Head: Grade:
22 Ft-Lbs
264 In-Lbs
29.83 N-m
Connects: Caliper To Caliper Mounting Bracket
Years: 1996-2001 Vote Record: Vote
Note: B5 - FRONT Guide Pins - Lucas
Type: Dim: Length: Head: Grade:
18 Ft-Lbs
216 In-Lbs
24.4 N-m
Connects: Caliper To Caliper Mounting Bracket
Years: 1996-2001 Vote Record: Vote
Note: B5 - FRONT Guide Pins - Teves/Ate
Type: Dim: Length: Head: Grade:
22 Ft-Lbs
264 In-Lbs
29.83 N-m
Connects: Caliper To Caliper Mounting Bracket
Years: 1996-2001 Vote Record: Vote
Note: B5 - REAR Guide Pins
Type: Bolt Dim: Length: Head: Hexagon Grade:
92 Ft-Lbs
1104 In-Lbs
124.74 N-m
Connects: Caliper Mounting Bracket To Steering Knuckle
Years: 1996-2001 Vote Record: Vote
Note: B5 - FRONT
Type: Bolt Dim: Length: Head: Hexagon Grade:
70 Ft-Lbs
840 In-Lbs
94.91 N-m
Connects: Caliper Mounting Bracket To Rear Knuckle
Years: 1996-2001 Vote Record: Vote
Note: B5 - REAR
 

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Front caliper bracket bolts. 89ft-lbs 120nm
Front caliper Guide Pins. 18ft-lbs 25nm

Rear caliper bracket bolts. 70ft-lbs 95nm
*Rear caliper bolts. 26ft-lbs 35nm (Counter hold on guide pins)
*Always replace. If you must reuse clean and apply Blue locktite.

Wheel lugs 89ft-lbs 120nm both front and rear
 

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Discussion Starter #9
Great, thank you. What does "counter hold on guide pins" mean?

Also, while I'm asking silly questions, Should I put one wheel at a time up on the jack stand? Or jack up both fronts to do the front wheels, then both back?
 

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Great, thank you. What does "counter hold on guide pins" mean?

Also, while I'm asking silly questions, Should I put one wheel at a time up on the jack stand? Or jack up both fronts to do the front wheels, then both back?
On the rear calipers the bolts thread into the guide pins and the guide pins have a flat area for a wrench to fit and hold the guide pin still while you loosen the bolts holding the caliper. If you were not to counter hold the guide pin while trying to loosen the bolts they both would just turn and the bolt would not loosen. if you go back a watch your videos again you will see that the installer uses two wrenches when removing the rear calipers.

Question 2
Makes no difference if you raise one side of the car or both, but I always raise both. However! If you insist on using the widow maker piece of junk jack that came with the car ONLY RAISE ONE SIDE!
But, I implore you to purchase a real jack and not use the VW jack!!!



 

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Discussion Starter #11
Ah, yes, I was aware of the counter-hold nut. Just didn't know what it was called.

I have jack stands from harbor freight. I'm using the VW jack to get the car up onto the jack stands.

Thanks again for all the help.
 

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Discussion Starter #12
For the rears -- some of the videos do not remove the caliper bracket and to not check/grease the slide pins for the rear calipers.
If the calipers are sliding well, can that step be skipped?
 

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You do not need to remove the caliper bracket on the rear brakes to change out the rotors. The rotors will slip past the bracket.

While you have access why wouldn't you want to lubricate the guide pins? It's been years since its been done and will be several more before you do work on them again. Unless you skip this and your pads wear unevenly.

And buy a real jack!!


Sent from AutoGuide.com Free App
 

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Discussion Starter #14 (Edited)
Well, a few hopefully minor hiccups, but I got the fronts done yesterday.

As usual, the hardest part about putting something "new" on, was getting something "old" off. My anti-theft lug nuts wouldn't budge. I took the car over to the service station. When I got there, I noticed a strong burning odor -- I thought it was burning rubber. Apparently, it was from the brakes -- the guy said the brakes were running very hot. The guy removed my four anti-theft nuts and told me that I might have a caliper problem.

I had smelled the burning before, but not as strong and only rarely. Of course, now I smelled it each time I took the car out. I started with the right front, which is where the smell came from. Everything came off all right, but the caliper didn't really slide out, and I couldn't slide it back in. Also, I noticed defined lips on the edges of the rotors, and the pads had worn only at the leading and trailing edge:

This is the best shots I got of the caliper:




Old Pads:


Old Rotor:



I used the Harbor Freight tool to try to depress the caliper, and the caliper wasn't going in. I moved over to do the left front -- and everything worked fine. The caliper depressed in past the rubber collar.

Back to the right -- I noticed that the pad -- PBR Axxis -- came with a clip/shim. The old pad did not have one. So I removed the shim, and this gave me enough space to get the caliper back on. I assume that it kosher?

So, I got everything back together. Pumped the brakes and took it for a drive. The brakes are worked so much better. They grip smoothly, whereas before I felt like I was just pressing flat metal to metal, and I was getting a lot of shimmying. There was no grinding noise, no squealing.

However, when I got back from my quick ride, I noticed some smoke coming out of the left wheel, and a slight burning smell from both wheels. I did some quick googling, and apparently this is normal when putting on new pads?

What, if anything, should I do to check whether my calipers are moving correctly? If the car is in park, and I pump the brakes, should I be able to see the pad sliding a bit on the bracket?

Thanks again for the help. I'm looking forward to doing the rears next weekend. (the car won't be driven during the week.)
 

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you need to re[lace the calipers - they are sticking. not hard to do.

could be the guide pins or some combo of issues, but all are fixed with new calipers. should consider rotors also - unless there is no pulsating when you brake and they are not warn real weird...

those calipers look very rusty
 

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One note about using brake cleaner. Disc brakes generate a lot of dust that you really don't want to inhale. Place some newspapers under the disc and spray all of the brake parts with cleaner to remove the dust. You'll probably get a lot of dust and rust knocked loose when trying to remove the rear discs because they can sometimes seize and the disc can be a bitch to get off the rear spindle sometimes. You may have to beat it firmly with a hammer to break it loose. Just don't go nuts with using too much force. The inside of the disc can rust and adhere to the rear wheel spindle and may need a lot of persuasion to get it off.
 

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I used the Harbor Freight tool to try to depress the caliper, and the caliper wasn't going in. I moved over to do the left front -- and everything worked fine. The caliper depressed in past the rubber collar.
Hmm. Did you do anything different when you switched to the other caliper? You probably did everything right, but that leaves the unfortunate reality that if sirwired is right then another caliper will be required. Hopefully not too expensive.

Back to the right -- I noticed that the pad -- PBR Axxis -- came with a clip/shim. The old pad did not have one. So I removed the shim, and this gave me enough space to get the caliper back on. I assume that it kosher?
When I did my front brake pads, the pad with the clip would snap into place. Are you sure you're pushing on it hard enough?

However, when I got back from my quick ride, I noticed some smoke coming out of the left wheel, and a slight burning smell from both wheels. I did some quick googling, and apparently this is normal when putting on new pads?
Uhhh. I don't have a similar experience to that, but my first instinct is if it's burning and smoking, something probably isn't right.

What, if anything, should I do to check whether my calipers are moving correctly? If the car is in park, and I pump the brakes, should I be able to see the pad sliding a bit on the bracket?
I think so. As far as I know, the brake system is hydraulic/mechanical in nature, so when you depress the brake pedal you should be able to see the brake pads give the rotor a big ol' best friend hug. If you have a friend you can be a cruel task master and make them watch your calipers while you push on the pedal.

I hope everything works out. There are a lot of pretty smart contributors on this forum; I'm sure they'll be able to set you on the right path.
 

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What, if anything, should I do to check whether my calipers are moving correctly? If the car is in park, and I pump the brakes, should I be able to see the pad sliding a bit on the bracket?
Really the only way to check is to hold your hand near each wheel after a highway drive with not a lot of braking. If it feels hotter near one wheel vs. the other on a particular axle, the caliper is stuck.

We don't have caliper return springs on our cars, so just letting out the pedal doesn't cause the calipers to retract visibly. (They rely on the fact that everybody has at least a little rotor runout, and the wheel rotating will push pack the piston a little.
 
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