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Chevrolet Traverse Rear Brake Pads Replacement Guide
How to replace the rear disc brake pads on a 2009-2012 GM Chevy Traverse SUV with picture illustrated instructions.

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Traverse Rear Wheel
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Loosen With Tire Iron
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Raise Rear of Vehicle

This automotive "how-to" guide was specifically written to assist owners of the 2009, 2010, 2011, 2012, 2013, 2014, 2015 & 2016 GM Chevrolet Traverse crossover SUV in replacing the rear brake pads.

Owners of other General Motors vehicles from GMC, Saturn, Buick, and Cadillac such as the Acadia, Terrain, Sierra, Yukon, Savana, Outlook, Verano, Regal, Lacrosse, Encore, Enclave, Spark, Sonic, Cruze, Malibu, Impala, Camaro, Equinox, Tahoe, Suburban, Colorado, Avalanche, Silverado, ATS, XTS, CTS, SRX, and Escalade may also find these DIY instructions to be helpful.

The tools needed to complete this rear brake job include a floor jack, jack stands, a lug nut wrench, a 14mm socket with ratcheting wrench, a 17mm spanner wrench and a "C" clamp.

A few compatible aftermarket sets of rear brake pads include the following with their part numbers: Wagner QC883, Raybestos SGD883C, Centric Parts 102.08830, Power Stop 16-883, Silencer Friction # OR883, Bendix D1507, and Akebono ASP883.

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Spin Off Lug Nuts
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6 Lug Nuts Removed
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Rear Rotor, Caliper, Bracket
The first two steps are to make sure the transmission is in "Park" and chock the front wheels to prevent the vehicle from moving.

Slightly loosen the 6 lug nuts on the rear wheel with the tire iron.

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

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

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Rear Brake Caliper
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Loosen Upper 14mm Bolt
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Remove Upper Bolt
Locate the two bolts on the back side of the brake caliper.

Loosen the upper and lower caliper bolts with the 14mm socket and ratcheting wrench by turning them clockwise (as seen from the outside of the vehicle).

If the caliper slider pin spins as you try to remove the bolt, attach a thin 17mm cone spanner wrench to keep it from moving.

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Loosen Lower Caliper Bolt
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Remove Lower Bolt
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Two 14mm Caliper Bolts
Remove the two caliper bolts and set them aside in a safe place.
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Remove Rear Caliper
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Remove Old Outer Pad
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Remove Inner Brake Pad

Pull the rear brake caliper out of the bracket and carefully rest it on the suspension or tie it up with some twine.

Pull the old brake pads out of the bracket while making a mental note of how the wear indicator or "squeal" bar is orientated.

I recommend buying the Wagner ThermoQuiet QC883 brake pads since they have great reviews on Amazon. I also like how they have built in insulators so they don't require backing plates, shims or disc brake quiet gel.

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

If your vehicle exhibits shuddering, pulsating, or vibrations during braking, you may need to have your rotors "turned" (resurfaced) or just replace them with brand new rotors. If this is the car's first front brake job 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, just 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.

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Wear Bar - Top Inner Pad
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Replace Pad Abutment Clips
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Check Caliper Slider Pins

On this 2012 Traverse, the wear bar is located at the top of the inner brake pad.

If your new set of rear brake pads came with new metal "anti-rattle" pad abutment clips, pull the the old ones out of the top and bottom of the caliper bracket and push in the new ones.

In order for the rear brake caliper to work properly the two caliper slider pins need to be well lubricated.

Pull the upper and lower caliper pins out of their rubber dust boots and generously apply some high pressure / high temperature disc brake caliper grease.

Push the caliper slider pins back into their rubber dust boots until they snap in to place.



 

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Lubricate & Replace Pins
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Remove Brake Fluid Cap
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Compress Caliper Piston
The brake caliper piston will need to be compressed back so that it will fit over the thicker new brake pads.

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

Twist off the brake fluid reservoir cap in the engine bay and check the level.

Slowly compress the caliper piston until it is flush with its rubber dust boot while repeatedly checking the level in the reservoir to prevent it from overflowing. Immediately clean up any spilled brake fluid since it can damage painted surfaces.

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Replace Brake Fluid Cap
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Install New Outer Pad
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Install New Inner Pad
Twist on the brake fluid reservoir cap as soon as possible since the fluid is "hygroscopic" (absorbs moisture).

Install the new brake pads into the caliper bracket with the wear indicator bar situated at the top of the inner pad.

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Push Pads On Rotor
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Replace Rear Caliper
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Thread In Upper Bolt
Push the two new brake pads together until they are flush against the rotor.

Lower the caliper over the new brake pads and in to the bracket.

If the caliper won't fit over the new pads, you may need to compress the piston back a bit further with the "C" clamp.

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Re-Insert Lower Bolt
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Tighten Upper 14mm Bolt
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Tighten Lower Caliper Bolt
Line up the two bolt holes in the caliper with the corresponding holes in the caliper slider pins within the bracket.

Thread in the caliper bolts by hand a few turns to prevent them from becoming cross threaded.

Tighten the caliper bolts by turning them counter clockwise (as seen from outside the vehicle) until they are just past hand tight or about 20-25 ft lbs of torque.

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

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Rubber Valve Cover
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Brake Fluid Bleeder Valve
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Replace Rear Wheel
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.

Replace the rear wheel and spin on the 6 lug nuts by hand to prevent them from becoming cross threaded.

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Spin On 6 Lug Nuts
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Slightly Tighten Nuts
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Lower Car - Torque Nuts

Slightly tighten the lug nuts with the tire iron and lower the vehicle from the jack stands with the floor jack until the rear tire holds some weight to keep it from spinning.

Progressively tighten the six lug nuts in a "criss cross" or "star" pattern to about 1/4 to 1/2 turn past hand tight.

It would be best to use a torque wrench or an air gun with a torque stick to tighten the lug nuts to about 75-100 ft lbs of torque.

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

To break in your new front brake pads, just drive normally for the first several hundred miles while avoiding any hard or "panic" stops which may glaze over the new brake pads and cause them to be noisy and possibly 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 check that the lug nuts are tight.

For more, check out my other Chevrolet Traverse Repair & Maintenance Guides.
 

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