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Hyundai Elantra Front Brake Pads Replacement Guide
How to replace the front brake pads on a 2011, 2012 and 2013 Hyundai Elantra with picture illustrated instructions.

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Paul B. Michaels
Author & Photographer
Auto Mechanic Since 1989

2011 Elantra Front Wheel
Loosen 5 Lug Nuts
Raise Vehicle - Floor Jack
This automotive maintenance "how-to" guide was specifically written to assist owners of the 5th generation 2011, 2012 & 2013, 2014, 2015 & 2016 Hyundai Elantra (also known as the Avante or i35) in replacing the front brake pads.

Owners of other Hyundai or Kia vehicles such as the Accent, Sonata, Azera, Veloster, Tucson, Santa Fe, Veracruz, Genesis, Forte, Optima, Rio, Soul, Sorento, Sportage, and Sedona may also find these DIY instructions to be helpful.

The tools needed to complete this front brake job include a floor jack, jack stands, a tire iron or lug nut wrench, a 14mm socket with ratcheting wrench, and a "C" or "F" clamp.

A few compatible aftermarket sets of front brake pads include the following with their part numbers: Wagner QC1595, Raybestos PGD1543C, TRW TPC1595, Centric 105.15430, Akebono ProAct ACT1543A, KFE KFE1543-104, Bendix D1543 CQ and Bosch BC1543.

Remove Lug Nuts
5 Lug Nuts Removed
Pull Off Wheel Cover
The first few steps are to engage the parking brake, chock the rear wheels and slightly loosen the five lug nuts on each front wheel with a tire iron or lug nut wrench.

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

Spin off the five lug nuts and set them aside in a safe place before pulling of the wheel cover (hub cap) and the wheel itself.

Pull Off Front Wheel
Front Brake & Rotor
Brake Caliper & Bracket
Behind the front wheel, you'll see the front brake rotor, brake caliper and caliper bracket.

Look on the back side of the front brake caliper and locate the two 14mm caliper bolts.

Loosen 14mm Caliper Bolt
Remove Lower Caliper Bolt
Remove Upper Caliper Bolt
Use the 14 mm socket with a ratcheting wrench to loosen the two caliper bolts by turning them clockwise (to the right) as seen from the outside of the vehicle.

If you have trouble loosening the bolts, use a 14mm wrench and hit it with a rubber mallet to get the bolts turning.

Be sure that you are turning them in the clockwise direction (or counter clockwise if you are underneath the car looking at the rear of the caliper).

Pull Off Brake Caliper
Rest Caliper On Suspension
Remove Old Brake Pads
Once both the upper and lower caliper bolts have been removed, you can carefully lift the brake caliper out of the bracket and away from the rotor.

Gently rest the brake caliper on the front suspension arm without placing stress on the rubber brake lines.

Pull the old brake pads out of the caliper bracket and make a mental note of how the wear or "squeal" bar is orientated. On this 2011 Elantra GLS, the wear bar was situated at the bottom of the inner front brake pad.

Wear Bar - Inner Bottom
Pull Out Caliper Pin
Check & Lubricate Pins
To ensure proper braking performance and even pad wear, pull out the caliper slider pins from their rubber boots and inspect their lubrication. If they aren't well lubricated, apply a generous amount of high pressure moly lubricant or a silicone based brake caliper grease.

Then re-insert the caliper slider pins back into the caliper bracket until their rubber boots snap in place over the metal lip on the pins.


Replace Anti-Rattle Clip
Brake Parts Cleaner Spray
Disc Brake Quiet Gel

If your new front brake pads kit came with new metal anti-rattle clips, pull out the old ones from the top and bottom of the caliper bracket and install the new ones in their place.

Thoroughly clean off the brake rotor, caliper bracket, caliper and lug nut studs with brake parts cleaner spray. Do not use compressed air to clean off the brake parts since breathing in brake dust can be harmful to your health.

To help prevent or reduce braking noise, an optional step is to apply some CRC Disc Brake Quiet gel or a similar product to the rear of the brake pads where they come in contact with the caliper. (Do not apply anything to the friction surface of the new pads.)

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.

Brake Fluid Reservoir
Twist Off Reservoir Cap
Compress Caliper Piston
In order for the brake caliper to fit over the thicker new brake pads, the caliper piston will need to be compressed backwards a bit with a "C" or "F" clamp.

First move to the engine bay and remove the brake fluid reservoir cap by turning it counter clockwise.

Removing the reservoir cap will allow the brake fluid to easily travel back through the brake lines when the caliper piston is compressed.

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

Very slowly compress the piston while repeatedly checking the brake fluid level in the reservoir to prevent it from overflowing.

Compress the brake caliper piston until it is just about flush with the rubber dust boot.

Install New Front Pads
Press Pads Flush On Rotor
Replace Brake Caliper
Slide the new front brake pads into the caliper bracket and push them together until they are flush against the brake rotor.

Carefully place the brake caliper over the new brake pads and down into the bracket. If the caliper won't fit over the brake pads, you may need to compress the caliper piston back a bit more.

Insert 14mm Caliper Bolts
Tighten Upper Caliper Bolts
Tighten Lower Caliper Bolt
Line up the bolt holes in the brake caliper with the holes in the caliper slider pins installed in the bracket.

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

Tighten the caliper bolts by turning them clockwise (left) as seen from the outside of the vehicle with the 14mm socket and ratcheting wrench to just past hand tight or about 20-25 ft lbs of torque.

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

Brake Fluid Bleeder Valve
Bleeder Valve Rubber Cap
Replace Front Wheel
If your brake pedal previously felt mushy 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 DOT 3 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 Wheel Hub Cap
Spin On Lug Nuts
Lower Vehicle
Replace the front wheel, snap on the plastic wheel cover, spin on the five lug nuts, and tighten them a bit with the tire iron.

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

Tighten 5 Lug Nuts
Check Brake Fluid Level
Replace Reservoir Cap
Progressively tighten the five lug nuts in a "star" or "criss cross" pattern to just 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.

Sit in the driver's seat of the vehicle and press the brake pedal a few times to restore the brake line pressure.

Then check the brake fluid level in the reservoir and verify that it is at the proper level.

If it is low, pour in some fresh DOT 3 brake fluid.

Once the brake fluid level is correct, replace the brake fluid reservoir cap by twisting it on clockwise.

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

It's also a good idea to regularly examine 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 still properly tightened. 

For more, please check out my other Hyundai Elantra Repair & Maintenance DIY Guides.

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