Brake Pad and Rotor Replacement - Rear

Step by step instructions on how to replace automotive rear brake pads and rotors. This article pertains to all rear disc brake vehicles.

Difficulty Scale: 4 of 10

Tools and Supplies Needed

  • Socket set
  • Wrench set
  • Screw driver set
  • Replacement pads and rotors
  • Shop towels
  • Brake grease
  • Hammer
  • Hydraulic jack
  • Jack stands
  • Protective gloves and eyewear

Begin with the vehicle on level ground, in park and the engine off and safely lifted in the air to perform a brake service.

Step 1
- After the vehicle is safely lifted into the air, remove the lug nut covers. (Step does not pertain to every vehicle.)

Remove Lug Nut Cover

Step 2 - Once the lug nut cover is removed, a lug wrench or socket can be used can loosen the wheel lugs.

Lug Nut Cover Removed

Step 3 - Next, loosen and remove the wheel lug nuts. (Note: If air impact wrench is not used, loosen the lug nuts one turn while the vehicle is still on the ground.)

Remove Lug Nuts

Step 4 - Then, grasp the tire and lift from wheel studs and axle flange.

Removing Tire

Step 5 - Using a pair of dikes remove the rotor retainer clip which is used in initial assembly and will not be reinstalled.

Remove Rotor Retainer Clip


Written by
Co-Founder and CEO of
35 years in the automotive repair field, ASE Master Technician, Advanced Electrical and Mechanical Theory.


Please use our question form if you have a specific question about your car as we are not able to give you a full answer on this page.

Article first published (Updated 2015-01-03)