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Rear brake install problem- one side fine, other side not

Old 03-09-2019, 02:26 PM
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Rear brake install problem- one side fine, other side not

Anyone experience this odd installation problem? Three related issues in this thread.

First:
My rear left inside pad was worn out even though the outside looked like it had only been used a few miles. The lower caliper pin was frozen. I used Carquest/Wearever Platinum from Advance Auto, and I put on new hardware. The left side, which had the worn down inner pad, reinstalled fine. When I went around to the right rear, the pads were pretty healthy, but I thought I'd change just to have matching pair. However, when I went to reinstall it, if the top bolt (for caliper to bracket) was aligned, the lower bolt could not be aligned. If I aligned the lower bolt, no way to get the upper bolt in. Finally, after 2 hrs, I reinstalled the old pads and old hardware (back plate on the caliper; left the bracket slides alone). I thought that was really odd. Exact parts on both sides, yet, one side, just would not align. Any thoughts? I do hope to get back in there if I have a good chance of figuring it out. Is there any negative consequence of having two slightly different brake thicknesses?

Second:
What's the point of the rubber sheath in the bottom caliper pin? It seems to prevent it from sliding as freely.

Third:
The caliper retraction method is really unnecessary. Other cars I've done had no issues with the regular calipers where you can just press it in. The Maxima design is almost impossible to do. Folks, if you're thinking of doing this, make sure you are confident you can figure it out. Otherwise, you're not going to get your caliper on. What i did was use a c-clamp along with a retraction tool and a 3/8" socket extension. My tool was the Lisle "cube". With the c-clamp, I clamped it with reasonable pressure, then took the extension and stuck it in the side and twisted it. I'd do that a few times, but it was difficult to get the last 1/4" which would really have made reinstall of caliper much easier. Simply using a ratchet and the tool did not work. Not sure how anyone does it with needlenose pliers, as the FSM even implies is possible. I really don't want to do rear brakes again becuase of that caliper retraction issue. I'll have to rig up some way to use C-clamp to attach to the caliper so that as I twist it will also apply pressure and turn the caliper.
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Old 03-09-2019, 02:39 PM
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Originally Posted by pastaben View Post
Anyone experience this odd installation problem? Three related issues in this thread.

First:
My rear left inside pad was worn out even though the outside looked like it had only been used a few miles. The lower caliper pin was frozen. I used Carquest/Wearever Platinum from Advance Auto, and I put on new hardware. The left side, which had the worn down inner pad, reinstalled fine. When I went around to the right rear, the pads were pretty healthy, but I thought I'd change just to have matching pair. However, when I went to reinstall it, if the top bolt (for caliper to bracket) was aligned, the lower bolt could not be aligned. If I aligned the lower bolt, no way to get the upper bolt in. Finally, after 2 hrs, I reinstalled the old pads and old hardware (back plate on the caliper; left the bracket slides alone). I thought that was really odd. Exact parts on both sides, yet, one side, just would not align. Any thoughts? I do hope to get back in there if I have a good chance of figuring it out. Is there any negative consequence of having two slightly different brake thicknesses?

Second:
What's the point of the rubber sheath in the bottom caliper pin? It seems to prevent it from sliding as freely.

Third:
The caliper retraction method is really unnecessary. Other cars I've done had no issues with the regular calipers where you can just press it in. The Maxima design is almost impossible to do. Folks, if you're thinking of doing this, make sure you are confident you can figure it out. Otherwise, you're not going to get your caliper on. What i did was use a c-clamp along with a retraction tool and a 3/8" socket extension. My tool was the Lisle "cube". With the c-clamp, I clamped it with reasonable pressure, then took the extension and stuck it in the side and twisted it. I'd do that a few times, but it was difficult to get the last 1/4" which would really have made reinstall of caliper much easier. Simply using a ratchet and the tool did not work. Not sure how anyone does it with needlenose pliers, as the FSM even implies is possible. I really don't want to do rear brakes again becuase of that caliper retraction issue. I'll have to rig up some way to use C-clamp to attach to the caliper so that as I twist it will also apply pressure and turn the caliper.
The calipers are bad if you can't twist it in. On a good one you can do it with just pliers, so using the tool would be easy. The pistons and/or ebrake part freezes up. Just replace both (used to be cheap on ebay). You'll think everything is fine just from regreasing the pins, but then not long later the pads are grinding or no brakes at all back there.

Check the threads. I've seen where ******** have crossthreaded and it's near impossible to get them started.
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Old 03-09-2019, 05:57 PM
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I realized why the right rear didn't fit perfectly. I must not have aligned the slots on the caliper piston perfectly, and that is probably what is keeping both bolt holes from aligning perfectly. Anyway, I guess I'll have to change the calipers because they are both pretty bad, and then I can make sure the pistons line up perfectly with the pads.
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Old 03-09-2019, 07:58 PM
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[QUOTE=Child_uv_KoRn;9197147]The calipers are bad if you can't twist it in. On a good one you can do it with just pliers, so using the tool would be easy. The pistons and/or ebrake part freezes up. Just replace both (used to be cheap on ebay). You'll think everything is fine just from regreasing the pins, but then not long later the pads are grinding or no brakes at all back there.

Thanks. the tip Makes sense. Would not have figured that out.never owned a car with this type of piston.

Last edited by pastaben; 03-10-2019 at 09:34 PM.
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Old 03-10-2019, 06:43 AM
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The rubber sleeve on the pins acts as a damper and eliminate small rattles. I took that off my front on at one time to help th pin glide better back before I knew about 3M silicone grease.

I had a rattle that took me FOREVER to find. It was from the missing rubber sleeve. Now I leave it on and with the 3M never an issue.
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Old 03-10-2019, 09:33 PM
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Thanks. That's very helpful.
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