Just Lovely

God damn, I hate working on cars. Well, at least when things go wrong. I got the new brake pads on my car yesterday, but it took me three hours. I had a very hard time getting the pistons to go back into the calipers far enough for them to fit over the new, thicker pads. I eventually had to go to Checker and buy a tool that fits inside the caliper and pushes the piston back in–I had tried using a c-clamp, but it wouldn’t fit the caliper well enough. I got the right-side caliper to slide back over the rotor without any problems, but I had to force the left-side caliper into place. I thought once I started the car and pumped the brakes a few times, enough brake fluid would be forced out of the caliper that it would loosen its grip.
I was wrong. I took it for a drive up the street to make sure everything was working ok, and the brakes started smoking badly. The damn left-side caliper just wouldn’t loosen its grip on the rotor, so it was like driving with the parking brake on. I just had to pull over and leave my car on the side of the road, because I’m sure if I’d driven any further it would have caught fire. It was getting dark and cold out, so I left the car there overnight and came back this morning. I just ended up putting the old brake pads back on, which weren’t worn as badly as I had assumed before replacing them. It took me less than 10 minutes to remove the wheels, replace the brakes on both sides, and put the wheels back on. Right as I was finishing up, it started snowing, and there was lightning and thunder–something I’ve never seen during a snow storm.
The car still stops well enough with the old brake pads on. I’m not sure what that grinding noise was that I was hearing before, but it’s not doing it now. But when I get some time and money, I’ll have to take the car into a professional and see what’s wrong with that caliper.

2 thoughts on “Just Lovely

  1. The grinding was probably your rotors. If it happens again, you’ll want to take it to a professional and have him change the pads. If your rotors are ground down too much the brake job will suddenly become much, much more expensive.

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