('06-'08) Rotors, pads AND calipers, or just rotors and pads? - Subaru Forester Owners Forum
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post #1 of 11 (permalink) Old 04-19-2019, 12:38 PM Thread Starter
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Rotors, pads AND calipers, or just rotors and pads?

2006 Forester XT ~140,000 miles

About 3 1/2 years ago I installed new front rotors and pads, bled the hydraulic lines and put in all new fluid.

The front rotors are now warped, nothing unsafe, just annoying, so I'm going to do another brake job, including the rear brakes this time.

I can buy packages without the calipers or ones that include the calipers.

At this mileage, while I'm in there anyway, would anyone recommend I also replace the calipers?

Thanks,

Steven

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post #2 of 11 (permalink) Old 04-19-2019, 01:21 PM
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Personally, I think my '06 original calipers were better than any of the rebuilt units that followed (which lasted only a few years each!).


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previous car: '06 Forester X
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post #3 of 11 (permalink) Old 04-19-2019, 02:44 PM
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Unless your calipers have seized or need a rebuild for whatever reason, there's no need to replace them. Good pads, rotors, and fluid would be fine if it's simply a daily driver.
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post #4 of 11 (permalink) Old 04-19-2019, 05:18 PM
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The Subaru OEM calipers are much better than most of the crap auto parts store reman units. There are a few good quality ones but I would probably stick with the originals. Make sure to clean and lubricate the sliders with Sil-Glyde brake grease.

If the removed pads show signs of caliper sticking (one pad worn and one not, pads worn at an angle, etc) then consider rebuilt units.

Most of the auto part store reman units I have put on over the years generally only last three or four years.
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post #5 of 11 (permalink) Old 04-19-2019, 05:26 PM
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Please don't buy new calipers. They are very seldom needed. This new caliper replacement thing is a scam. We still have the factory calipers on our 98.

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post #6 of 11 (permalink) Old 04-20-2019, 12:46 AM
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I recommend you rebuild them. As the seals age they harden and the piston may not return to the rest position which causes drag, heat, pad wear, and sometimes warped discs.

https://www.freeasestudyguides.com/h...pers-work.html

"A square cut piston seal is used to contain fluid pressure and to return the piston to its released position. The seal distorts and bends as the brakes are applied. When the pressure is released, the seal returns to its original position pulling the piston back into its bore with it. This allows the pads to release a short distance away from the rotor surface. "
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post #7 of 11 (permalink) Old 04-24-2019, 03:08 PM
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Just check the piston seals for leaks and make certain the caliper pins are cleaned and lubricated. Calipers should last a lot longer than 140K miles....
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post #8 of 11 (permalink) Old 04-24-2019, 03:19 PM
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I agree with Nuke 8401 and das60. If your calipers need some attention, see if you can get a caliper rebuild kit.

For a different car I had to replace the rear calipers, and they aren't manufactured anymore. I discovered that the rebuilt ones had all been sandblasted (or equivalent) which slightly enlarged the inside of the cylinder where the caliper mounting pins go. This is a tight tolerance fitting which needs to slide as the pads wear. These rebuilt ones were loose enough that the whole caliper assembly would wobble when put in place.

For that reason, I would stick with your current calipers if at all possible; if not, buy new ones or do a good check of any rebuilt ones and have return privileges.

PS. I ended up getting a sampler of steel shim stock and shimming the pins to eliminate the wobble. Not fun.
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post #9 of 11 (permalink) Old 04-24-2019, 03:29 PM
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I agree with what most everyone else has said. Check the seals and pins on your current calipers before buying new or reman. ones.

You could always do a Brembo or 4 piston caliper upgrade if you want to go that route. If modding isn’t your thing (haven’t looked deeply into your posts) then never mind if it was me I would dream about a Brembo upgrade haha.


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post #10 of 11 (permalink) Old 04-24-2019, 04:25 PM
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Rebuilding a caliper is easy. There is basically nothing to do except clean it after the piston is popped out. Remember to remove and grease the sliding caliper pins/tubes so the pads wear as evenly as possible.

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post #11 of 11 (permalink) Old 04-24-2019, 05:54 PM
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With a correct seal kit, including the proper grease(s) calipers are easy to rebuild. Changing the brake fluid (flushing the system) with new DOT 3 or DOT4 brake fluid every one to two years (Max!) is the key to being able to rebuild calipers nearly indefinitely.

Rebuilt / Remanufactured calipers be they OE exchange units from the respective automobile manufactures, or aftermarket rebuilds, frees one from the guess work and time needed to rebuild them and turns the job into a simple R&R operation for DIYers, independent shops, and Dealers alike.

Other than mechanical damage, the reason to replace your calipers with new/rebuilt/remanufactured ones are that the piston bores and / or pistons are corroded or rusted due to water absorption of the brake fluid. Brake fluid is hygroscopic. When I was young and first learning auto repair in college, it was possible for certain calipers to have their corrosion damaged pistons replaced if the bores would clean up with a light honing. Some calipers could have their bores sleeved, as I recall, to repair the damage if severe. They were usually light alloy castings.
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