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Dodge Avenger Front Brake Pads Replacement Guide
How to change the front disc brake pads on a 2011 to 2014 Dodge Avenger sedan with part numbers and pictures.

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2012 Avenger Front Wheel
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Slightly Loosen 5 Lug Nuts
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Raise Front of Vehicle

This automotive maintenance tutorial was specifically written to assist owners of the updated (2011, 2012, 2013 and 2014) Dodge Avenger sedan in changing the front disc brake pads.

Owners of other Chrysler Group vehicles with similar front brake hardware such as the Dart, Challenger, Durango, Charger, Grand Caravan, 200, 300, RAM C/V Tradesman, Jeep Patriot, Compass and Cherokee may also find these DIY instructions to be helpful.

The tools needed to complete this procedure include a floor jack, two jack stands, a lug nut wrench, a 14mm socket with a 3/8" ratcheting wrench, a "C" clamp, a packet of brake parts lubricant grease and a set of new front brake pads.

A few compatible replacement sets of new front brake pads with their part numbers include the following: Wagner QC866, Bendix D866, ACDelco 17D1285CH, Bendix D866CT, Dura International BP866 MS, , Bosch BP866, Dura International # BP866 C and Monroe CX866.

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Spin Off 5 Lug Nuts
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Lug Nuts Removed
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Pull Off Plastic Wheel Cover
The first few steps are to park the vehicle on a level surface, engage the emergency / parking brake and chock the rear wheels to prevent the car from moving.

Slightly loosen the 5 lug nuts on the front wheel in the counter clockwise direction with the tire iron.

Raise the front of the vehicle with the floor jack and securely support it with the two jack stands.

I prefer to work on one side of the car at a time and keep three wheels on the ground for extra safety.

Spin off the 5 lug nuts and set them aside in a safe place. Pull off the plastic wheel cover or "hub cap".

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Remove Front Wheel
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Caliper, Bracket, Rotor
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Front Brake Caliper
Remove the front wheel to reveal the caliper, bracket, rotor and suspension.

The front brake caliper is held in place to the bracket by two bolts located on the rear face of the caliper.

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Loosen Upper Caliper Bolt
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Loosen 14mm Clockwise
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Pull Caliper Bolt/Pin
Loosen the upper caliper bolt by turning it clockwise (as seen from the outside of the vehicle) with the 14mm socket and ratcheting wrench.

Then loosen the lower 14mm caliper bolt in the clockwise direction.

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Upper Bolt / Slider Pin
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Pull Off Brake Caliper
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Caliper Removed
Spin out the two combination caliper bolts and caliper slider pins. Set them aside in a safe place.

Lift the caliper out of the bracket and either rest it on the suspension or suspend it from the spring with a bungee cord.

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Rest Caliper On Suspension
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Pull Out Old Outer Pad
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Wear Bar - Top Inner Pad
Pull the old inner and outer brake pads out of the caliper bracket.

Make a mental note of where the wear indicator bar or "squeal bar" is located on the old pads. On this 2012 Avenger, the wear bar was located at the top of the old inner brake pad.

I recommend buying the Wagner ThermoQuiet QC866 brake pads. I've always had great experiences with them and I love how they don't require any backing plates, shims or disc brake quiet gel due to the built in insulators.

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Attach "C" Clamp To Piston
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Brake Fluid Reservoir
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Twist Off Counter Clockwise
In order for the caliper to fit over the thicker new brake pads, the caliper piston needs to be compressed backwards.

Attach the "C" clamp to the caliper using the back of an old brake pad to evenly distribute the pressure across the piston.

Then move to the right rear area of the engine bay and twist off the yellow plastic cap on the brake fluid reservoir in the counter clockwise direction.



 

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Compress Caliper Piston
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Replace Brake Fluid Cap
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Install New Outer Brake Pad
Slowly turn the "C" clamp handle to compress the caliper piston while repeatedly checking the level in the brake fluid reservoir to prevent it from overflowing.

Clean up any spilled brake fluid immediately since brake fluid can easily damage painted surfaces.

Continue compressing the piston until it is flush with the rubber dust boot surrounding it. Try to avoid pinching or otherwise damaging the rubber dust boot.

Replace the brake fluid reservoir cap as soon as possible since brake fluid is hygroscopic (absorbs moisture).

Thoroughly clean off the brake rotor, caliper bracket, brake caliper assembly and the lug nut studs with brake parts cleaner spray. Do not use compressed air or blow with your mouth to clean off the brake parts since breathing in brake dust can be harmful to your health. Brake dust can be carcinogenic (cancer causing) if inhaled.

If your Avenger previously exhibited shuddering, pulsating, or vibrations in the front end during braking, you may need to have your rotors "turned" (resurfaced) or just replace them with new rotors. If this is the car's first front brake job and the rotors appear to be in good condition, you should be able to just change the pads with great results.

To remove the existing rotors and install new ones, remove the two bolts on the rear of the caliper bracket that attach it to the steering knuckle. Then loosen the old rotor with a rubber mallet, pull it off, and slide the new one in its place.

Apply a thin layer of brake caliper grease to any area where there is metal to metal contact such as the outer lip of the caliper piston. Do not apply brake parts lubricant to the friction surface of the new pads or to the face of the rotor.

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Wear Bar - Top Inner Pad
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Push Pads Against Rotor
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Replace Brake Caliper
If your new set of front brake pads included replacement hardware, pull the old pad abutment or "anti-rattle" clips out of top and bottom of the caliper bracket before installing the new ones in their place.

Install the new outer and inner brake pads in to the caliper bracket with the wear bar situated at the top of the inner pad.

Push the two pads together until they are flush against the rotor.

Lower the brake caliper down over the new pads and in to the bracket. If the caliper won't fit over the new pads, you may need to compress the caliper piston back a bit further.

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Re-Insert Bolts / Pins
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Spin In Upper Caliper Bolt
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Tighten Counter Clockwise
Line up the bolt holes in the caliper with their corresponding holes in the bracket.

In order for the caliper to operate smoothly, the caliper slider pins need to be well lubricated.

Apply a thin layer of brake parts lubricant grease to the smooth parts of each combination caliper bolt and slider pin.

Re-insert the two caliper bolts/pins in to the bolt holes.

Spin the bolts in a few turns by hand in the counter clockwise direction (as seen from the outside of the vehicle) to prevent them from becoming cross threaded.

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Tighten Upper 14mm Bolt
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Rubber Valve Cap
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Brake Fluid Bleeder Valve
Tighten the two caliper bolts by turning them in the counter clockwise direction (as seen from the outside of the car) with the 14mm socket and ratcheting wrench to just past hand tight or about 32 ft-lbs of torque.

Double check that the two caliper bolts are tight before moving on to the next steps.

If your brake pedal previously felt soft or spongy, the brake fluid may be contaminated with water or the brake lines may contain some air bubbles.

It would be best to bleed the brake lines at this time in order to flush out the old fluid and replace it with fresh DOT3 brake fluid. For more on this topic, check out my Brake Line Fluid Bleeding With An Assistant DIY Guide or alternatively the Brake Line Fluid Bleeding With A Power Bleeder Guide.

The brake fluid bleeder valve is located underneath a rubber cap on the back side of the caliper.

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Replace Front Wheel
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Push On Hub Cap
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Spin On 5 Lug Nuts
Replace the front wheel and push on the plastic wheel cover with the cut out section for the tire valve in the correct position.

Spin on the 5 lug nuts in the clockwise direction by hand to prevent them from becoming cross threaded.

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Slightly Tighten Clockwise
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Lower Car From Stands
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Torque To 100 ft-lbs
Slightly tighten the lug nuts in a "criss cross" or "star" pattern with the lug nut wrench.

Lower the vehicle from the two jack stands using the floor jack.

Continue progressively tightening the 5 lug nuts in a "criss cross" or "star" pattern to about 1/4 turn past hand tight or about 100 ft-lbs of torque. It would be best to use a torque wrench or an impact wrench with a torque stick to properly tighten the lug nuts.

Sit in the driver's seat of the vehicle and firmly press the brake pedal a few times to restore the brake line pressure. Check the brake fluid in the reservoir and verify that it is at the proper level. If it is low, pour in some fresh DOT 3 fluid.

To break in your new brake pads, drive normally for the first few hundred miles while trying to avoid any hard or "panic" stops which may glaze over the new pads and cause them to be noisy and/or not perform as well.

It's also a good idea to regularly check your driveway for drops of brake fluid which may indicate a leak, check the brake fluid level in the reservoir, and verify that the lug nuts are still tight after your next trip.

For more, check out my other Dodge Avenger Repair & Maintenance Guides.
 

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