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Toyota Sienna Front Brake Pads Replacement Guide
How to change the front disc brake pads on a third generation 2011 to 2016 Toyota Sienna minivan with pictures.

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2012 Sienna Front Wheel
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Slightly Loosen Lug Nuts
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Raise Front of Minivan

This automotive maintenance tutorial was specifically written to assist owners of the third generation (2011, 2012, 2013, 2014 and also the updated 2015 & 2016 model years) Toyota Sienna minivan in changing the front disc brake pads.

Owners of other Toyota vehicles with similar front disc brake hardware such as the Tacoma, Tundra, FJ Cruiser, Hilux, Venza, Highlander, 4Runner, Sequoia, RAV4 and Land Cruiser, may also find these DIY instructions to be helpful.

A few compatible replacement front brake pad sets with their part numbers are as follows: Wagner ThermoQuiet QC1324, Akebono ACT1324, Monroe GX1324, Bosch BP1324, Power Stop 16-1324, ACDelco 17D1324CH, Bendix D1324, Raybestos PGD1324C, Centric 102.13240, Axxis 45-13240D and Toyota 04465-0E010.

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" drive ratcheting wrench, a thin 17mm cone spanner wrench or a pair of pliers, a "C" clamp and a packet of brake parts lubricant grease.

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Spin Off Five Lug Nuts
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5 Lug Nuts Removed
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Caliper, Bracket & Rotor
The first few steps are to park the minivan on a level surface, engage the emergency/parking brake and chock the rear wheels to prevent the vehicle from moving.

Slightly loosen the 5 lug nuts on the front wheel by turning them counter clockwise 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 for extra safety.

Spin off the 5 lug nuts and set them aside in a safe place.

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

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Front Brake Caliper
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Loosen Upper Caliper Bolt
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Hold Pin - 17mm Wrench
The front brake caliper is held to the bracket by two bolts on the rear face of the caliper.

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

If the caliper slider pin rotates as you are you trying to loosen the caliper bolt, hold it in place with a pair of pliers or a thin 17mm cone spanner wrench or a pair of pliers.

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Loosen Lower 14mm Bolt
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Spin Out Lower Bolt
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Remove Upper Caliper Bolt
Loosen the lower caliper bolt by turning it clockwise (as seen from the outside of the vehicle) with the 14mm socket and ratcheting wrench.

Spin out the two caliper bolts and set them aside in a safe place.

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Two 14mm Caliper Bolts
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Pull Off Brake Caliper
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Two Caliper Pistons
Pull the brake caliper out of the bracket and off the old pads.
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Rest Caliper On Suspension
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Two Metal "V" Springs
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Remove Brake Pad Springs
Carefully rest the caliper on the suspension or suspend it from the spring with a bungee cord or a piece of twine.

Pull off the two metal "V" springs on the outer edge of the pads and set them aside in a safe place.

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"V" Springs Removed
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Pull Out Old Brake Pads
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Wear Indicator Bar
Pull out the old brake pads from the caliper bracket and make a mental note of how the wear indicator or "squeal" bars are situated.

The wear indicator bars on this 2012 Sienna were located at the top of both the inner and outer pads.

I recommend buying the Wagner ThermoQuiet QC1324 front brake pads since they have excellent reviews on Amazon. I also like how they don't require any backing plates, shims or disc brake quiet gel due to the built in insulators.

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Wear Bar Top Both Pads
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Replace Pad Abutment Clips
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Pull Out Caliper Slider Pins
If your set of new brake pads included replacement brake hardware such as new pad abutment or "anti-rattle" clips, pull the old clips out of the top and bottom of the bracket before installing the new ones in their place.

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



 

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Lubricate Pins & Replace
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Attach "C" Clamp To Pistons
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Pull Up Access Panel
Carefully pull the two caliper slider pins straight out of their rubber dust boots, apply a thin layer of brake parts grease to each one and re-insert them.

In order for the brake caliper to fit over the thicker new pads, the two caliper pistons need to be compressed backwards in to their rubber dust boots.

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

Move to the engine bay and pull open the brake fluid reservoir access panel located on the driver side cowl.

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Twist Off Brake Fluid Cap
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Attach "C" Clamp To Piston
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Replace Brake Fluid Cap
Twist off the brake fluid cap in the counter clockwise direction and set it aside in a safe place.

Removing the brake fluid cap will allow the brake fluid to more easily travel backwards through the rubber brake lines when you compress the caliper pistons.

Very slowly turn the "C" clamp handle to compress the pistons while repeatedly checking the level in the reservoir to prevent it from over flowing. Clean up any spilled brake fluid immediately since it can easily damage painted surfaces.

You may need to re-position the "C" clamp in order to fully compress both pistons back until they are flush with their rubber dust boots. Try to avoid pinching or otherwise damaging the rubber dust boots surrounding the pistons.

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

If your Sienna previously exhibited shuddering, pulsating, or vibrations while braking, you may need to have the rotors "turned" (resurfaced) or it may be less costly to just replace them with new rotors. If this is the first front brake job on your minivan 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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Replace Access Cover
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Install New Outer Pad
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Push Pads Against Rotor
Flip the brake fluid reservoir access door closed and push down on it to engage the retaining clip.

Install the new outer and inner brake pads with the wear indicator bars situated at the top of each pad.

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Re-Install "V" Springs
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Replace Brake Caliper
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Spin In Upper Caliper Bolt
Re-install the two metal "V" springs in to the holes on the outer edge of the new pads so that the bottom of each "V" is facing each other.

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

Line up the bolt holes in the caliper with the corresponding bolt holes in the caliper slider pins within the bracket.

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Spin In Lower Caliper Bolt
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Tighten Upper Caliper Bolt
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Torque Lower Caliper Bolt
Spin in the two caliper bolts a few turns by hand to prevent them from becoming cross threaded.

Tighten the caliper bolts by turning them counter clockwise (as seen from the outside of the vehicle) with the 14mm socket and ratcheting wrench to just past hand tight or about 25 ft-lbs of torque.

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Hold Pin With 17mm Wrench
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Rubber Valve Cap
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Brake Fluid Bleeder Valve
If the caliper slider pin rotates as you are trying to tighten the caliper bolt, hold it in place with a thin 17mm cone spanner wrench or a pair of pliers.

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

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 Front Wheel
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Spin On 5 Lug Nuts
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Slightly Tighten Lug Nuts
Replace the front wheel and spin on the 5 lug nuts by hand to prevent them from becoming cross threaded.

Slightly tighten the lug nuts in a criss cross or star pattern with the lug nut wrench by turning them clockwise.

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Lower From Jack Stands
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Torque Lug Nuts To 76 Ft-Lbs
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Front Brake Pads Replaced
Lower the vehicle from the jack stands using the floor jack.

Continue progressively tightening the lug nuts in a criss cross or star pattern to about 1/8 to 1/4 turn past hand tight or about 76 to 80 ft-lbs of torque.

It would be best to use a torque wrench or an impact wrench with an 80 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, pour in 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 that 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, please check out my other Toyota Sienna Repair & Maintenance Guides.
 

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