Caliper bracket bolts stuck on bad | Ford Explorer Forums - Serious Explorations

  • Register Today It's free!

Caliper bracket bolts stuck on bad

96eb96

Explorer Addict
Joined
October 20, 2004
Messages
3,524
Reaction score
323
City, State
Albany, NY
Year, Model & Trim Level
96 EB V6 OHV 4WD
I guess the last guy used red locktite on everything...We all know how these bolts can get loose.

Time to change rotors, so the calipers have to come off. First the slider pin bolts sheer right off with little effort..no big deal they are a few bucks in an auto big box. Now the caliper bracket bolt refuses to budge. I have a 2' heavy duty breaker bar, and It is just breaking 15mm sockets with 400ft/lbs + of torque. Everything looks as rusty as it can be. The sockets are average quality, but I've done many tough brake jobs and repairs on other vehicles.

What would you suggest next? I would rather not break the bolts, but if need be I can always get a new bracket. Somehow I dont think they are going to break. Should I get 15mm impact sockets or craftsman or is this hopeless? Would heat help(like a plumbing propane torch)?

Any tips on removing the rotor would be appreciated too. I'm soaking the holes with PB while the bracket awaits removal. I hate using a sledge on bearings, and I don't want to get a puller.
 



Join the Elite Explorers for $20 each year.
Elite Explorer members see no advertisements, no banner ads, no double underlined links,.
Add an avatar, upload photo attachments, and more!
.





Try heating the bolts with a torch, though if the brakes haven't heated it enough, I'm not sure a torch will. Do you have access to air? An impact may be the thing to have here.
 






Try heating the bolts with a torch, though if the brakes haven't heated it enough, I'm not sure a torch will. Do you have access to air? An impact may be the thing to have here.

Thanks, a neighbors impact socket with my breaker bar did the trick. If that didn't I would have borrowed the compressor and impact. He said my socket was probably flexing at the last bit.

Now to remove those crazy rotors...I'm trying pounding and Plenty of PB and its still sticking. I was told they weren't off in over a decade.
 






Maybe this will help someone in the future, it may be very intimidating to someone who runs into this issue on very high mileage rotors that were never removed in the salt belt. Local shops confirmed it is a problem, and they just use large hammers. I don't like to pound too much because it puts stress on the expensive hub bearing.

Ok, so they came off..the second rotor came off much faster when I tried this procedure. This should minimize pounding. I didn't spray the back of the first rotor and it was much more difficult to get off. The old rotors looked like they grew new metal (rust) in the inner area where they meet the flange rim. There was about 1/4" of rust buildup in there. The hub flange edge has serious rust that bonded it to the rotor. On other cars I've notice the flange face usually bonds the rust.

Lots of PB in all the stud holes, and around the hub. Then take the PB thin nozzle and spray BEHIND the rotor so you saturate the flange edge. Make sure it touches the flange outer radius. Turn the rotor a few times and repeat. Leave for 10-15 min, the PB will set in and you dont have to get high on the fumes.

Now you can give it a few good wacks on the back of the rotor, and around the hat area too. If that still doesn't work, you can spray more PB behind the rotor, get a 3/4 block of wood (or shims) and pound the claw of claw hammer between the rotor and the shim. The shim can sit behind the caliper bracket mounting holes, so you have two places to work with. Now you can pound (with a bit less intensity) the back of the rotor and the rust will be under great tensile stress with the claw hammer in there. This a a bit more natural for the hub than a 10# sledge. You can try this in different places and pull up on the framing hammer to increase the strength.

Variations of those techniques should get it off with less pounding.
 






Just another rotor removal tip: Use a large two or three-jaw puller. Place the puller on the rotor and crank it down as tight as you possibly can. Then, give the rotor a whack. It seldom takes more than one or two hits using this method to break it loose.

-Joe
 






I feel you on pulling rusted parts, that's just how to do it, a lot of spraying and patience.

FYI, use a very small amount of anti-seize on the studs, hub center and face(rotor), and the tiny caliper bolts. Use a drop of red loctite on the big bolts.

Here's a big tip, stop listening to the ignorant manuals that tell you to remove the front tiny caliper bolts, those with boots. Leave them alone, if they have not gotten any contamination in the boots, they will last forever untouched. If they have been contaminated(just like a rear brake cylinder), the whole caliper should be replaced. Those bolts are the slider bolts, if they are not perfect the calipers will not engage smoothly, the pads will wear out faster or unevenly.

If those bolt boots show no signs of contamination, then leave them alone. Only remove the caliper bracket bolts, that is all that is needed to remove the caliper to do the brakes. Regards,
 






I feel you on pulling rusted parts, that's just how to do it, a lot of spraying and patience.

FYI, use a very small amount of anti-seize on the studs, hub center and face(rotor), and the tiny caliper bolts. Use a drop of red loctite on the big bolts.

Here's a big tip, stop listening to the ignorant manuals that tell you to remove the front tiny caliper bolts, those with boots. Leave them alone, if they have not gotten any contamination in the boots, they will last forever untouched. If they have been contaminated(just like a rear brake cylinder), the whole caliper should be replaced. Those bolts are the slider bolts, if they are not perfect the calipers will not engage smoothly, the pads will wear out faster or unevenly.

If those bolt boots show no signs of contamination, then leave them alone. Only remove the caliper bracket bolts, that is all that is needed to remove the caliper to do the brakes. Regards,

Yes, everything I put back now gets coated with anti-sieze. I'm surprised the factory does not do that.

I agree with you about leaving the grease in tact, but I also like to check if the pins slide in the bores. Sometimes the moisture damage is not apparent, even if the rubber looks good. Just check that they move smoothly about the rubber boot. The shop manual for my truck says to retain as much of the original grease as possible, you will see later why.

It is possible to replace the caliper bracket, if you have pin issues but the whole reman caliper may be a bit more and you have a new caliper. NAPA has a comment next to the caliper bracket (for all the Ford cars I worked on) that this is a high failure item. What happens is that the rubber accordian boot somehow gets perforated, and moisture gets in. I've seen pins rusted frozen into the caliper bracket so badly that no amount of torque would remove them(I just got a new bracket from advance).

Another reason they fail is that people use the wrong grease in those boots. The boots are tough but yet sensitive to chemicals. If you put axle grease, lithium grease, oil, etc the boots will be destroyed. Say hello to moisture, corrosion,siezed pins, pulling to one side, and wrecked pads and calipers. The shop manual even goes as far as prohibiting Ford Brake and Dielectric lube with those rubbers(this is for my 96). If you have to lube the pins you are probably better off getting new rubber(which is probably compatible with brake grease), and possibly a new caliper/bracket.
 






I know that Northern climate vehicles have a huge occurrence of corrosion issues, but I bet most of the bolt boot problems come from mis-handling. People are taking those off or apart, not knowing what the purpose is or how to take care of them, and at some point later contamination kills those parts. Ford has been installing that kind of bolt/boot/slider for a long time on rear calipers. The first versions didn't last long whether people touched them or not. But know the boots are much better attached to the calipers and bolts. They will not come apart under normal circumstances, people have to loosen and take them apart.

If people would simply inspect them carefully, verify that the boots are intact, they should leave them alone. More problems have come from "servicing" them than not.

I have one LR caliper which has worn an inner pad too quickly. The truck had 77,450 miles on it and I bought it wrecked. The rear calipers have different sliders, the only bolts there go through a sleeve which has the boot on it. That design is more prone to having issues even if good care is taken.

Fortunately for the front brakes, most Ford calipers can be bought rebuilt very feasibly, for less than one rotor. Regards,
 






A note about red LocTite-clean the threads thoroughly first-wire brush the bolts, chase the internal threads with a tap (if you have one) or thin brush followed with brake clean. LocTite doesn't stick well to LocTite and the bracket mounting bolts are very important ones that require the LocTite treatment!

Bill
 






Back
Top