How to replace rear brake pads on a BMW
Learn how to change rear brake pads and disc rotors on BMW vehicles.
In this guide, you will find step-by-step instructions, with pictures and video clips to help you change rear brakes on BMWs yourself.
What you notice
- Grinding noise from the rear
- Brake light on
- Brake pad message
- "Brake pads are worn to the minimum depth. Have the pads replaced by the nearest BMW center."
Before you begin
What you will need
Jack up vehicle
Remove retaining clip
The first step is to remove the retaining clip from the brake caliper. Use a flat head screwdriver to pry out the retaining clip.
Remove plastic caps
Use a flat head screwdriver to pry out the black caps. This will allow you to get access to the guide pins.
Loosen caliper guide pins
Unscrew two caliper hose guide pins. They don't need to come out completely, just enough so that they are no longer screwed into the caliper bracket.
Remove brake caliper
Secure the caliper to the strut. Make sure it is not hanging by brake hose.
Remove caliper bracket
Remove two 19mm bolts that mount the caliper bracket to the rear hub. You may need to use a breaker bar to get these two bolts loose.
Remove set screw
Remove the 5mm Allen bolt that holds the rotor to the rear wheel hub. Spray penetrating oil on the bolt if it refuses to come off. Be careful with this bolt because it can easily strip.
Next step is to remove the rotor. On older BMWs, the rotor will be rusted and it will be difficult to come off. Spray penetrating oil on the rotor. Rember to have the car secured so that it does not roll. Next, release the parking brakes. This is very important. If you don't release the parking brakes you will damage the parking brake shoes. Use a rubber mallet to get the rotor off.
Press brake piston
Use a brake caliper spreader to push the brake piston into the caliper. This will create enough space so that you can install the new BMW brake pads.
Use a wire brush to clean any rust on the wheel hub. Next, install the new BMW rotor and the set screw.
Install caliper bracket
Install rear caliper and torque the bracket bolts to 80 ft-lb.
Place brake pads on the caliper
Install the brake pads on the caliper. Apply brake anti sieze lube to the back of the pads.
Install brake caliper
Next, install the caliper with the new brake pads. Torque caliper bolts to 25 lb-ft.
Install brake wear sensor
The new BMW brake wear sensor will slide into the channel on the inner brake pad. Connect the sensor at the black box under the wheel well.
Install the wheel and lower the vehicle. Start the car and pump the brake pedal until it gets hard. Next, check the brake fluid level and add brake fluid if the level is low. Follow this guide on how to check/add BMW brake fluid.
Reset BMW Brake Wear Sensor
Use the buttons on the dashboard to reset the brake warning light on your BMW. This can be completed using the ODO Reset button on the instrument cluster. Complete instructions can be found here. If you are not able to reset the brake light follow this guide for more help. BMW Brake Reset Unsuccessful
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