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Hyundai Elantra Front Brake Pads Replacement Guide
How to change the front disc brake pads on a sixth generation 2017, 2018, 2019 and 2020 Hyundai Elantra sedan.

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2018 Elantra Front Wheel
Slightly Loosen Lug Nuts
Raise Front of Vehicle
This automotive maintenance tutorial was specifically written to assist owners of the 6th generation (2017, 2018, 2019, 2020 and possibly also the upcoming 2021 model year) Hyundai Elantra sedan in changing the front disc brake pads, lubricating the caliper slider pins and replacing the rotors if necessary.

Owners of other Hyundai, Genesis or Kia vehicles such as the Sonata, Accent, Veloster, Ioniq, Kona, Nexo, Venue, Tucson, Santa Fe, Palisade, G70, G80, G90, Soul, Sportage, Niro, Sorento, Telluride, Rio, Forte, Optima, Stinger, Cadenza, K900, Sedona and Seltos may also find these DIY instructions to be helpful.

A few compatible sets of new front brake pads with their part numbers include the following: Power Stop 17-1912, Raybestos EHT1912H, Centric 500.18470, ACDelco 14D1912CH and Wagner QC1912.

The tools and other items needed to complete this procedure include a lug nut wrench, a floor jack, two jack stands, a 14mm socket with a 3/8" drive ratchet, a 17mm wrench, an "F" clamp and a tube of brake caliper grease.

The first few steps are to drive the vehicle on to a level surface, shift the transmission into "Park" and turn off the ignition.

Engage the emergency / parking brake and place wheel chocks on both sides of the rear tires to help prevent the car from moving.

Slightly loosen the five lug nuts on the front wheel by turning them about 1/4 to 1/2 turn in the counterclockwise direction with the tire iron.

Carefully raise the front of the car with the floor jack and securely support it with at least two jack stands.

Please do not solely rely on the floor jack to support the car!


Spin Off Five Lug Nuts
Set Aside Lug Nuts
Rotor, Bracket, Caliper
I prefer to only work on one side of the car at a time to keep three tires on the ground for extra safety.

Spin off the five lug nuts in the counterclockwise direction and set them aside in a safe place.

Carefully remove the front wheel and tire to reveal the caliper, bracket, rotor and suspension.

Front Brake Caliper
Loosen Top Caliper Bolt
Loosen Bottom Bolt
The front brake caliper is held in place to the bracket by two bolts on the back side of the caliper.

The two bolt heads face in towards the center of the engine bay.

Loosen the top caliper bolt by turning it in the clockwise direction (as seen from the outside of the car) with the 14mm socket and a 3/8" drive ratchet.

Then loosen the bottom caliper bolt by turning it in the clockwise direction (when viewed from the outside of the car) with the 14mm socket and a 3/8" drive ratchet.

I added red arrows to the pictures above showing the correct direction to rotate the ratchet to loosen the caliper bolts.

Spin Out Lower Bolt
Spin Out Upper Bolt
2 Caliper Bolts Removed
Spin out the two caliper bolts the rest of the way by hand.

Set the two bolts aside in a safe place.

Lift Caliper Out of Bracket
Rest Caliper On Rotor
Old Brake Pads Exposed
Carefully lift the caliper out of the bracket and off the old brake pads.

Gently rest the caliper on the rotor or suspend it from the suspension spring with a bungee cord or some twine.

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

The old brake pads are equipped with two "V" shaped metal springs which are the drag reduction clips or "friction reduction clips". They help improve fuel economy by spreading the pads away from the rotor when the brakes are not in use.

Remove "V" Spring Clips
Drag Reduction Clips
Two "V" Clips Removed
Pull the two spring clips off the outer edge of the old brake pads.

If your new set of front brake pads does not include new spring clips, set the old ones aside for re-installation later on.

Wear Bar - Top Inner Pad
Push Up Metal Tab
Remove Old Outer Pad
Remove the old inner and outer brake pads from the bracket.

You may need to push up the small metal tabs on the top and bottom of the pad abutment clips with a flat head screwdriver in order to release the old pads from the bracket.

Make a mental note of where the wear indicator bar or "squeal bar" is situated on the old brake pads.

On this 2018 Elantra, the wear indicator bar was located on the top of the inner brake pad.

Pad Abutment Clips
Replace Both Clips
Remove Caliper Slider Pin
If your new set of front brake pads includes a bag of replacement hardware, remove the old pad abutment clips or "anti-rattle" clips from the top and bottom of the bracket.

Clean off the rotor, bracket, lug studs and caliper with brake parts cleaner spray.

Try to avoid breathing in the brake dust or the cleaning spray since they be carcinogenic (cancer causing).

Apply a thin layer of brake parts lubricant grease to the top and bottom of the new pad abutment clips where they will in come in contact with the bracket or the ears of the new brake pads.

Avoid getting any grease on the friction surface of the new pads or the rotor.

In order for the caliper to operate smoothly, the two caliper slider pins or "guide bolts" need to be well lubricated.

Avoid mixing up the top and bottom caliper slider pins since they are slightly different.

Pull the caliper slider pin out of its rubber dust boot attached to the bracket, apply a thin layer of brake caliper grease and then push it back into place.

Repeat the process for the other caliper slider pin.

Lubricate & Replace Pins
Two Rotor Set Screws
Attach "F" Clamp
If your Elantra has been exhibiting shuddering, vibrations or shaking in the front end while braking, the rotors might be warped or worn out and should be replaced.

A few compatible replacement front rotors with their part numbers include the following: DuraGo BR901096, Raybestos 980897R and Centric 120.51044.

To replace the front rotors, remove the two bolts on the back side of the bracket by turning them in the counterclockwise direction with a 17mm socket and a 3/8" or 1/2" drive ratchet. Remove the bracket and set it aside in a safe place.

Then remove the two set screws on the outer face of the rotor by turning them in the counterclockwise direction with a Phillips head screwdriver.

Slide the old rotor off the wheel hub and the lug studs. Slide the new rotor over the lug studs until it is flush with the steering knuckle.

Replace the two set screws by tightening them in the clockwise direction with the Phillips head screwdriver until they are snug.

An optional step is to apply a drop of Loctite Red (high strength - requires heat for removal) to the two bracket bolts as extra assurance that they won't vibrate loose.

Replace the bracket and tighten the two 17mm bolts in the clockwise direction. If you have a torque wrench, the service manual specification for the bracket bolts is 57.9 to 72.3 lb-ft of torque.

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

In order for the caliper to fit over the thicker new brake pads, the caliper piston needs to compressed back.

Attach the "F" clamp to the caliper and use the back of an old brake pad to evenly distribute the pressure across the piston.

Right Rear - Engine Bay
Remove Brake Fluid Cap
Compress Caliper Piston
Move to the right rear (driver side) of the engine bay and locate the brake fluid reservoir.

Twist off the black plastic cap in the counterclockwise direction.

Removing the cap will allow the brake fluid to more easily travel back through the lines when you compress the piston.

Slowly turn the "F" clamp handle in the clockwise direction to retract the caliper piston.

While you are compressing the piston, repeatedly check the fluid level in the reservoir to make sure it doesn't overflow.

Continue compressing the piston until it is just about flush with the rubber dust boot that surrounds it.

Try to avoid pinching or otherwise damaging the rubber dust boot.

Replace Reservoir Cap
Install New Outer Pad
Wear Bar - Top Inner Pad
As soon as you are done compressing the caliper piston, replace the brake fluid reservoir cap by twisting it on in the clockwise direction.

Since brake fluid is hygroscopic (readily absorbs moisture from the air), you shouldn't leave the reservoir cap off for any longer than necessary.

Install the new outer and inner brake pads into the bracket.

The wear indicator bar should be situated at the top of the inner brake pad.

Push Pads Against Rotor
Replace "V" Spring Clip
Top Drag Reduction Clip
Push the two pads together until they are flush against the rotor.

If your new brake pads are equipped with the small holes on the outer edges, re-attach the two "V" shaped metal spring clips.

Lower Caliper Over Pads
Spin In Top Caliper Bolt
Spin In Bottom Bolt
Carefully lower the caliper over the new pads and into the bracket.

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

Line up the bolt holes in the caliper with their corresponding bolt holes in the slider pins attached to the bracket.

An optional step is to apply a drop of Loctite Blue (medium strength - removable with hand tools) to the caliper bolts for extra assurance that they won't vibrate loose.

Spin in the two caliper bolts a few turns by hand in the counterclockwise direction to help prevent them from becoming cross threaded.

Tighten Lower Bolt
Tighten Upper Bolt
Rubber Valve Cap
Tighten the two caliper bolts by turning them in the counterclockwise direction (as seen from the outside of the car) with the 14mm socket and a 3/8" drive ratchet until they are snug.

The service manual torque specification for the caliper bolts is 15.9 to 23.1 lb-ft.

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

If your brake pedal has been feeling very soft or spongy, you may need to bleed the brake lines in order to remove any air bubbles or moisture.

Check out my Acura MDX Brake Fluid Bleeding Guide for more information on this procedure.

In general, you will bleed the brake lines from the furthest wheel from the brake fluid reservoir to the closest one.

The brake fluid bleeder valve is located just below the top caliper bolt. It is covered by a rubber cap.

You'll need a 10mm wrench to open and close the bleeder valve.

Brake Fluid Bleeder Valve
Push On Front Wheel
Slightly Tighten Lug Nuts
Carefully push the front wheel and tire back into place over the lug studs.

Spin on the five lug nuts a few turns by hand in the clockwise direction to help prevent them from becoming cross threaded.

Slightly tighten the lug nuts in the clockwise direction with the tire iron in a "criss-cross" or "star" pattern to evenly tighten them.

Lower Car From Stands
Torque Five Lug Nuts
Front Brake Job Done!
Carefully lower the vehicle from the jack stands by using the floor jack.

Continue progressively tightening the five lug nuts in the clockwise direction to about 1/8th of a turn past hand tight.

It would be best to use a torque wrench to tighten the lug nuts to the owner's manual specification of 79 to 94 lb-ft of torque.

(Please check your owner's manual to verify the correct lug nut torque specification for your vehicle.)

Sit in the driver's seat and firmly press the brake pedal several times to restore the brake line pressure.

I would also recommend checking your driveway, parking spot or garage for drops of fresh brake fluid which might indicate a leak from the bleeder valve or the reservoir tank.

Check the fluid level in the reservoir and if necessary, add more DOT 3 or DOT 4 fluid.

Don't forget to write down the brake pad change in your car's service records.

For more, please check out all of my 2017-2020 Hyundai Elantra DIY Repair & Maintenance Guides.

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