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Pelican Technical Article:

Front Brake Rotors Replacement

Steve Vernon

Time:

2 hours2 hrs

Tab:

$25 to $120

Talent:

**

Tools:

11mm, 18mm socket, 7mm Allen, flathead screwdriver

Applicable Models:

VW Golf GTI 1.8T (2004-06)
VW Golf GTI VR6 (2004-05)
VW GTI (2006-09)

Parts Required:

New rotors

Hot Tip:

Pre-soak rusted bolts in penetrant oil

Performance Gain:

Car stops better

Complementary Modification:

Flush and bleed brake system

Before you begin working on the brakes, check your brake fluid reservoir.
Figure 1

Before you begin working on the brakes, check your brake fluid reservoir. You might need to compress the caliper piston, which will cause brake fluid to travel back up into the reservoir. You need to make sure there is room for it. Carefully clean around the reservoir before you open it, as you do not want any dirt or debris getting into it. Be prepared to use a turkey baster (red arrow) or fluid pump to extract some of the brake fluid if necessary. Make sure whatever you use is clean; you do not want any contaminants getting into the fluid.

Disconnect the wear sensor from the harness (red arrow).
Figure 2

Disconnect the wear sensor from the harness (red arrow).

Place a large flat head screwdriver between the caliper and retaining clip (red arrow).
Figure 3

Place a large flat head screwdriver between the caliper and retaining clip (red arrow). Pry the clip from the caliper and set it aside. Use caution when removing the clip as it is under pressure.

There are two 7mm Allen bolts holing the caliper to the mounting bracket.
Figure 4

There are two 7mm Allen bolts holing the caliper to the mounting bracket. They should be covered with plastic caps but our project car did not have them. If your have them remove the covers. Then remove the 7mm Allen guide bolts (red arrows).

If you are reusing your guide bolts check them for wear and tear (red arrow).
Figure 5

If you are reusing your guide bolts check them for wear and tear (red arrow). It is a good idea to clean them up with a scotch brite pad and put a little white lithium grease on the smooth guide part of the bolt (red arrow).

Pull the caliper back off the rotor (red arrow).
Figure 6

Pull the caliper back off the rotor (red arrow). Sometimes the brake pad will stay in the mounting bracket on the exterior pad (yellow arrow) and sometimes it comes off with the caliper. If the caliper is really stuck you can push it in on the piston side, compressing the piston and giving you more room to wiggle it off.

Hang the caliper out of the way with a bungee cord or rope (red arrow).
Figure 7

Hang the caliper out of the way with a bungee cord or rope (red arrow). Never let the caliper hang by the brake line

Remove the two'mm bolts holding the caliper mounting bracket to the wheel bearing housing.
Figure 8

Remove the two'mm bolts holding the caliper mounting bracket to the wheel bearing housing.

Remove the bracket (red arrow).
Figure 9

Remove the bracket (red arrow).

Remove the single Philips head screw holding the rotor or disk to the hub (red arrow).
Figure 10

Remove the single Philips head screw holding the rotor or disk to the hub (red arrow). The screw does not serve any purpose other than locating the disk in the proper place. The rotor is actually held on by the wheel studs.

With the Philips screw removed you can remove the rotor from the hub (red arrow).
Figure 11

With the Philips screw removed you can remove the rotor from the hub (red arrow). It may be stuck on and in need of help getting loose. You can use a rubber hammer and hit the hat of the rotor to help free it up.

Make sure to clean the mounting surface between the rotor and hub with a wire brush (red arrow) to make a clean and level mounting surface.
Figure 12

Make sure to clean the mounting surface between the rotor and hub with a wire brush (red arrow) to make a clean and level mounting surface. Installation is the reverse of removal.

The new disk or rotor will be thicker than the old one and will necessitate pushing the brake piston back into the caliper to make room for the thicker disk.
Figure 13

The new disk or rotor will be thicker than the old one and will necessitate pushing the brake piston back into the caliper to make room for the thicker disk. As inPicture 1 make sure there is room for the brake fluid to move back into the reservoir. Next, use a large C-clamp (yellow arrow) and one of the brake pads (red arrow) and compress the piston (green arrow) back into the caliper. Installation is the reverse of removal. Make sure to pump the brakes a few times before driving.


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