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All The Brake Repair Tools & Supplies

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Common Brake Repair Tools

This is a list of common brake repair tools that every home mechanic should have. Not only are these tools good for working on brakes, but they can be used for any automotive maintenance or repair project. There’s other tools you might need for your particular repair – these are just the ones you’ll use the most.

Socket Set – standard/metric. It’s a good idea to have a set of each as many cars use both types. Sockets are used to remove caliper bolts, mounting bracket bolts and brake hose retaining brackets.

All The Brake Repair Tools & Supplies

Wrench Set – standard/metric. These are “open” on one end and “closed” on the other. You should have a set of both standard and metric types.

All The Brake Repair Tools & Supplies

Screwdriver – A flat blade screwdriver pries out brake clips, pushes brake pads into place and turns adjuster wheels.

All The Brake Repair Tools & Supplies

Needle Nose Pliers – Good for removing and installing brake pad clips and drum springs.

All The Brake Repair Tools & Supplies

Impact Driver – this tool is useful for removing the small screws that hold on the brake rotor or drum (not all vehicles have them). Used with a hammer, the impact driver puts force on the screw and turns it at the same time.

All The Brake Repair Tools & Supplies

Torque Wrench – is used for properly tightening a bolt or nut to a specific value. It’s only useful if you know what the recommended torque value is for each particular bolt. Check your vehicle’s service or repair manual for this information.

All The Brake Repair Tools & Supplies

Flare Wrench Set – These are brake repair tools for working with brake line fittings on hoses and hard lines. They allow the wrench fit around the hard brake line for maximum grip. Don’t use regular open ended wrenches for loosening or tightening brake fittings – they just don’t have enough grip.

All The Brake Repair Tools & Supplies

Coat hanger/wire – is very useful for supporting the caliper when it’s removed. The brake hose is not designed to support the weight of the caliper, so the caliper should be supported by this wire. Of course, string or rope can also be used.

All The Brake Repair Tools & Supplies

Specialty Brake Repair Tools

These tools aren’t necessary to have for brake repair, but they can make the job easier. Some are inexpensive and worth owning since they don’t cost that much. Others are too expensive for the home mechanic.

Brake Bleed Kits – There are many different manual and power types of these brake repair tools. Brake bleeding is necessary when air is trapped in the brake lines or the brake fluid is being flushed. Anytime a caliper, brake hose, wheel cylinder is replaced, the brakes will need to be bled. Pictured is a power bleeder that uses compressed air to force fluid through the brake lines.

All The Brake Repair Tools & Supplies

Disc Brake Pad Spreader – is used to push the piston back into the caliper before installing new brake pads. A big c-clamp works equally as well.

All The Brake Repair Tools & Supplies

C-clamp – this isn’t a specialty tool, but it will work in place of a disc brake pad spreader if you have a c-clamp that is large enough.

All The Brake Repair Tools & Supplies

Disc Brake Piston Tool – rotates the piston back into the cylinder on rear calipers with an integrated parking brake.

All The Brake Repair Tools & Supplies

Brake Spring Pliers – removes and installs brake springs which hold the brake shoes together in a brake drum. A screwdriver and needle nose pliers can also be used.

All The Brake Repair Tools & Supplies

Brake Rotor Micrometer – is a precision measurement tool used to determine the thickness of the brake rotor. Each rotor has a specific minimum thickness that is determined by the manufacturer. If the rotor is worn below this point, it’s no longer serviceable and must be replaced. This tool can be expensive, and is not typically used by the DIY’er.

All The Brake Repair Tools & Supplies

Brake Drum Micrometer – this is another precision tool and it measures the inside diameter of the brake drum. If the surface is worn beyond manufacturer’s specifications, the brake drum must be replaced. This is another one of the brake repair tools that is too expensive.

All The Brake Repair Tools & Supplies

Brake Drum Gauge – is similar to the brake drum micrometer. Same function and also too expensive.

All The Brake Repair Tools & Supplies

Brake Caliper Bit Set – is a set of various bits for vehicles that used hex or torx bits for the caliper bolts. These are typically used on some domestic cars and trucks. Most bits fit a 3/8” socket wrench.

All The Brake Repair Tools & Supplies

Brake Repair Supplies

These supplies are necessary when working on your brakes. Have these close by whenever your performing any automotive repair job.

Gloves – no matter what kind you use, it’s a good idea to wear them to avoid contact with brake dust and road grime. We recommend using disposable latex (good) or nitrile (better) gloves – they’re cheap, and if they tear or get too greasy, then rip ‘em off and put on a new set. They make clean up a whole lot easier!

All The Brake Repair Tools & Supplies

Paper Towels – are good for wiping away grease and general cleanup. Use brake cleaner and paper towels to remove the anti-rust coating from new brake rotors and drums. The blue paper towels are thicker and stronger.

All The Brake Repair Tools & Supplies

Brake Cleaner – is a must for any brake work. As an aerosol spray form, it’s formulated to quickly and effectively dissolve & flush away brake fluid, grease, oil, and other contaminants. It also removes the anti-rust coating on new brake rotors and drums. Leaves no residue.

All The Brake Repair Tools & Supplies

Anti-Seize Lubricant – should be used when reinstalling any screw or bolt to prevent galling, corrosion, seizing and to assure easier disassembly on the next repair. It doesn’t take very much to provide protection. Not to be used on wheel studs.

All The Brake Repair Tools & Supplies

Brake Grease/lube – is for use between metal to metal contact points to prevent squealing. Choose a grease that is synthetic, high temperature, and safe with rubber. Can be used on: backing plates, brake pad contact points, calipers, disc brake pads, drum brake systems, sliding pins & boots, grommets, parking brake areas of lubrication, pivot points and drum brake self adjusters.

All The Brake Repair Tools & Supplies