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Ford Mustang Rear Brake Pads Replacement Guide
How to change the rear disc brake pads on a revised fifth generation 2010 to 2014 Ford Mustang with pictures.

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2012 Mustang Rear Wheel
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Slightly Loosen 5 Lug Nuts
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Raise Rear of Vehicle

This automotive maintenance tutorial was specifically written to assist owners of the face lifted 5th generation (2010, 2011, 2012, 2013 & 2014) Ford Mustang in changing the rear disc brake pads.

Owners of the earlier 5th generation Mustang from 2005 to 2009 and possibly the 4th generation 1994 to 2004 models with similar rear brake hardware may also find these DIY instructions to be helpful.

The items needed to complete this procedure include a lug nut wrench, a floor jack, two jack stands, a 13mm socket with a 3/8" ratcheting wrench, a Lisle 28600 disc brake piston tool or a pair of needle nose pliers, a packet of brake parts lubricant grease and a set of new brake pads.

A few compatible aftermarket rear brake pads with their part numbers include the following: Akebono ACT1082, Bosch BC1082, Wagner QC1464, Raybestos PGD1465C, Power Stop 16-1082 Z16, Dura International BP1082 MS, ACDelco 17D1465CH, Wagner ZD1465, and Hawk Performance HB485F.656.


Please verify the correct replacement parts for your Mustang by checking the Amazon Part Finder website. The correct part numbers may vary depending on the model year, trim level and whether it has the performance braking package.
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Spin Off Lug Nuts
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Lug Nuts Removed
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Rotor, Caliper, Bracket
The first two steps are to park the vehicle on a level surface and chock the front wheels to prevent it from moving.

Then slightly loosen the 5 lug nuts on the rear wheel by turning them counter clockwise with the tire iron.

Raise the rear of the car with the floor jack and securely support it with two jack stands.

Spin off the lug nuts and set them aside in a safe place. I prefer to work on one side of the vehicle at a time for extra safety.

Pull off the rear wheel to reveal the brake rotor, caliper, bracket and suspension.

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2 Bolts - Rear of Caliper
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Loosen Upper Caliper Bolt
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Loosen Lower 13mm Bolt
Loosen the two bolts on the rear of the caliper by turning them clockwise (as seen from the outside of the vehicle) with the 13mm socket and ratcheting wrench.
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Remove Upper Bolt
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Spin Out Lower 13mm Bolt
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Two 13mm Caliper Bolts
Spin out the two caliper bolts and set them aside in a safe place.
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Pull Off Brake Caliper
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Screw In Type Piston
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Rest Caliper On Suspension
Pull the brake caliper out of the bracket and securely rest it on the suspension or suspend it from the spring with a bungee cord.

Try to avoid stressing, kinking or bending the rubber brake fluid line.

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Remove Old Outer Pad
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Wear Bar - Top Inner Pad
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Replace Anti-Rattle Clips
Remove the old brake pads from the bracket and make a mental note of where the wear indicator or "squeal" bar is situated.

On this 2012 Mustang GT, the wear bar was located at the top of the inner brake pad.

I usually buy the Hawk Performance HB485F.656 ceramic brake pads since they have excellent reviews on Amazon.

If your new set of pads came with new brake hardware, pull the old pad abutment or "anti-rattle" clips out of the top and bottom of the bracket before installing the new ones in their place.

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Pull Out Caliper Slider Pins
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Lubricate Pins & Replace
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Lisle Caliper Piston Tool
In order for the brake caliper to operate smoothly, the two caliper slider pins need to be well lubricated.

Pull the upper and lower pins out of their rubber dust boots, apply a thin layer of high temperature brake caliper grease to each one, and then re-insert them.



 

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Extension & Wrench
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Remove Brake Fluid Cap
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Slowly Turn Back Piston
The screw-in type caliper piston needs to be retracted in order for the caliper to fit over the thicker new brake pads.

Move to the engine bay and twist off the brake fluid cap in the counter clockwise direction. Removing the cap will allow the brake fluid to more easily move backwards through the lines when you turn back the piston.

Test fit each side of the disc brake piston tool to find the side that has the best grip on the piston. It should be the side with two wide set small pegs or "nubs".

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Retract Screw In Piston
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Replace Brake Fluid Cap
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Install New Outer Pad
Slowly screw in the caliper piston back by turning it clockwise until it is flush with the rubber dust boot.

Repeatedly check the level in the brake fluid reservoir while turning back the piston to make sure it does not over flow. Clean up any spilled brake fluid immediately since it can easily damage painted surfaces.

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

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

Spread a thin layer of brake parts lubricant grease on any surface where there is metal to metal contact such as the outer face of the caliper piston or where the pads meet the bracket. Do not apply grease to the friction surface of the new pads.

If your Mustang previously exhibited shuddering, pulsating, or vibrations while braking, you may need to have the rotors "turned" (resurfaced) or it may be easier and cheaper to just replace them with new rotors. If this is the first rear brake job on your car and the rotors appear to be in excellent condition, you should be able to just replace 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. Be sure to properly tighten the two bracket bolts with a torque wrench.

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Wear Bar - Top Inner Pad
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Push Pads Against Rotor
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Replace Rear Caliper
Install the new brake pads in to the bracket with the wear bar located at the top of the inner pad.

Push the two pads flush against the rotor.

Carefully lower the caliper down over the new pads and in to the bracket.

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Spin In Upper Caliper Bolt
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Replace Lower Caliper Bolt
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Tighten Upper 13mm Bolt
Line up the bolt holes in the caliper with the corresponding holes in the slider pins within the bracket.

Insert the two caliper bolts and spin them in a few turns by hand to prevent them from becoming cross threaded.

Tighten the two caliper bolts by turning them counter clockwise with the 13mm socket and ratcheting wrench to just past hand tight or about 24 ft-lbs of torque.

Double check that both the upper and lower caliper bolts are tight before moving on to the next steps.

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Tighten Lower Caliper Bolt
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Rubber Valve Cap
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Brake Fluid Bleeder Valve

If your brake pedal has been feeling soft or "spongy", the brake fluid may be contaminated with water or the brake lines may contain 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 just below the upper caliper bolt.

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Replace Rear Wheel
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Spin On 5 Lug Nuts
Replace the rear wheel and spin on the 5 lug nuts by hand to prevent them from becoming cross threaded.
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Slightly Tighten Lug Nuts
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Lower Rear of Vehicle
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Torque To 100 Ft-Lbs
Slightly tighten the lug nuts with the tire iron in a criss cross or star pattern.

Lower the vehicle from the jack stands using the floor jack until the rear tire holds enough weight to keep it from spinning.

Continue progressively tightening the lug nuts in a star pattern to about 1/8 to 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 100 ft lbs torque stick to properly tighten the lug nuts.

Sit in the driver's seat and firmly pump the brake pedal a few times to restore the brake line pressure.

Check the brake fluid reservoir and verify that the level is correct. If it is low, add some new DOT 3 fluid.

Take the car for a short and cautious test drive with the windows down so you can hear any strange noises when you press the brake pedal, which may indicate a problem.

To break in your new pads, just 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 also verify that the lug nuts are still tight.

For more, check out my other Ford Mustang Repair & Maintenance Guides.
 

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