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Brake Caliper Replacement Cost

Know what price you should pay to get your vehicle fixed.

Brake Caliper Replacement
The average cost for a Brake Caliper Replacement is between $218 and $282. Labor costs are estimated between $61 and $100 while parts are priced between $157 and $182. Estimate does not include taxes and fees.

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Brake Caliper Replacement

What is a brake caliper?

Brake calipers are the component used to squeeze the brake pads against the brake rotor. The clamping force they apply on the brake rotor slows or stops the vehicle until the brake pedal is released.

How does the brake caliper work?

The braking calipers use hydraulic pressure supplied by the master cylinder to clamp the brake pads against the rotor. The brake pads fit inside the caliper, so the hydraulic clamping force from the caliper is transferred to the pads, then the brake rotor, and ultimately the tires.

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What are the symptoms related to a bad brake caliper?

Failure occurs in two different ways, with two opposite symptoms. The caliper can become seized, in which case it was not release the brake pads. The seized caliper will cause the vehicle to brake constantly on one side of the vehicle, forcing the vehicle to move toward that side. Also, this pulling will be accompanied by a strong odor from one wheel. Another way calipers fail is by leaking. If the caliper leaks, the brake pedal will be noticeably easier to push, and will sink all the way to the floor when held. After only a few repetitions of pressing the brake pedal, the braking ability of the vehicle may become completely compromised. There may also be brake fluid leaking onto the wheel.

Can I drive with a brake caliper problem?

It is not safe to operate any vehicle with any braking problem. If there is any sign that the brakes are not performing as originally intended, the vehicle should immediately be placed out of service and repaired.

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How often do brake calipers need to be replaced?

Brake caliper failure on some vehicle's is more frequent than others. On most vehicle's, the brake calipers will never need replacement. It is more common to replace brake calipers on vehicle's with 125,000 -175,000 miles.

How are brake caliper issues diagnosed?

Upon a visual inspection, the servicing technician will notice the brake pads are severely worn on one brake caliper, the caliper does not provide sufficient clamping force to stop the vehicle, or fluid leaks from the wheel well. The caliper in question will be removed, and further inspected to verify a reliable diagnosis has been reached.

Brake Caliper Replacement Cost Estimates

The average cost for a Brake Caliper Replacement is between $218 and $282 but can vary from car to car.

How is a brake caliper replaced?

Caliper replacement requires removal of the wheel and tire. Then the caliper is disconnected from the brake line, unbolted, and removed. The brake pads will be installed in the new caliper, and the rotor will be cleaned of any brake fluid, grease, fingerprints, or other contaminants. Once the brake caliper is ready for installation, it is bolted into place, the brake line is reattached, and the entire braking system will be bled of air.

RepairPal Recommendations for brake caliper issues

When a caliper fails, the brake pads on that wheel will be covered in brake fluid, or worn excessively. Although other brake pads may not have been effected, the pads on both sides of the vehicle must be replaced, along with the brake rotors, to maintain even braking from side to side. If the faulty brake caliper is in the front of the vehicle, the rear brakes do not require replacement. Likewise, if the faulty caliper is in the rear, the front brakes do not require replacement.

What to look out for when dealing with brake caliper issues

Brake calipers vary from vehicle to vehicle, and the amount of braking force they can apply to the wheels is dependent on the level of performance demanded by the manufacturer. If the vehicle is very heavy or performance oriented, the brake calipers, pads, and rotors may be much more expensive. Some rotors must be replaced, but others may be machined flat. Some brake rotors are mounted onto the wheel bearings, and those bearings should be repacked with grease or replaced when the rotor is removed.

Can I replace the brake caliper myself?

The braking system can be maintained by a DIYer with plenty of knowledge of hydraulically actuated systems. This is important as testing brake caliper operation, and safe installation of braking components rely on this knowledge.

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