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Regular Service / Maintenance This section contains discussion about regular service and maintenance (upkeep) of your Jeep Commander

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  #1  
Old 01-03-2010, 06:07 PM
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How to change front rotors and pads

I am not a professionally and will not be held responsible for any problems caused by these instructions. I created this write up showing the idea on how to do a brake job on either the XK or Wk.

Warning: Semi-metallic brake pads contain asbestos so make sure to take the correct precautions to avoid inhaling brake dust.

Most of these pictures were taken when the garage door was closed (since it was in the low 20's outside) so the picture quality is fair.

Tools need for the job.
3/8" socket set
1/2" socket set
Breaker bar
Torque wrench
Brake pad spreader or c-clamp
Brake parts cleaner
bungee cords
Of course jack and jack stands

Also make sure you have plenty of shop towels and gloves since this can be a messy job. Make a note to yourself when I mean a lot.





If you have frozen rotors like I did you will need a rubber mallet, any size hammer of your choice, and plenty of penetrating oil.

I only needed to have both front rotors resurfaced and while the rotors are off it was best to change the pads to Wagner ceramics even though the old pads had plenty of meat left.



To start off, first loosen the lug nuts with a breaker bar before you jack up the vehicle.



For me, I did not have a tall enough jack to jack up on the frame so I had to jack up on the crossmember.



Once the wheel is off you can begin to take off the caliper.

This is the best time to get your bungee cords ready since you do not want the caliper to dangle by the brake line.

There are 2 bolts that hold the caliper onto the caliper bracket.

The top bolt shown here (already loosened).



The lower bolt shown here.



Once the caliper is off, start to secure the caliper using the bungee cord. I just attached the bungee cord to the upper control arm.



Now if you are just replacing the pads you can skip this step since you don't have to remove the rotors when changing the pads.

Start to take off the 2 bolts that hold the caliper bracket.

These bolts will be really tight since they are supporting a lot of force when the vehicle is braking.

So, you might want to get the breaker bar and even a piece of PVC pipe for more leverage.

Once the bracket is removed. You can now start to remove the o-ring.

I used a small screwdriver and pliers.



Here comes the fun part, if your rotor will not slide off the hub, you will have to use your favorite penetrating oil. I let the oil soak over night and started banging only around the lug bolts since I will be reusing the rotors.

Using a big screwdriver to pry it off the hub finally did the trick.

Once the old rotor is off you can see all the rust that held it on.

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Last edited by bob123; 02-01-2010 at 06:19 PM.
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  #2  
Old 01-03-2010, 06:29 PM
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I heard you should not swap rotors meaning taking the driver side rotor and moving it over to the passenger side so I just labeled the rotors before handing them over to Sears.

I took my rotors to Sears to have them resurfaced which they did an excellent job and for a fair price too ($11 each).

They even took off all the rust around the lug holes of the rotor which surprised me.

You can see all dents from the hammer strikes.






Now finally its time to put the resurfaced rotors back on the correct side.

Make sure you install the O-ring back on the hub.

Before you install the caliper bracket, now is the best time to clean the contact points where the pad will touch the bracket. I just used shop towels and sprayed a little brake cleaner.



Take the caliper bracket and install it using the two bigger bolts.

I torqued the bolts to 125 ft. lbs. stated in the service manual posted by Romeo.

Once the bracket is firmly secured, use the grease and spread it onto the copper which is now clean.



We can finally install the new brake pads onto the caliper bracket. Spread plenty of grease on the back side of the brake pad and not onto the braking compound.



Install the pads onto the caliper bracket.

In most cases you will have to compress the two piston which are in each caliper using the brake spreader and an old pad.



Just tighten the knob until both pistons are back into the caliper as far as possible.

I made sure the cap on the brake fluid reservoir was off to allow air to escape since the brake fluid is being forced back up into the reservoir.

Don't forget to put the cap back on the reservoir.

Once the pistons has been compressed, now slide the caliper onto both pads.
There might be some struggle, but just rock the caliper back and forth until it slides onto the pads.

Now take the two caliper bolts and tighten them to 32 ft. lbs.

Once the other side is completed make sure you pump the brake pedal before driving the Jeep for a test drive. Keep pumping the brake pedal slowly until it begins to feel firm.

If you have resurfaced your rotors or just replaced them, you will have to make sure the brake pads will set nicely into the rotors. In order to do this, drive around the neighborhood and do several stops from 20 mph or so. After this just be easy on the brakes to ensure the pads will set.

Finally the job is done and now we can give ourselves a thumbs up.
Note: I had a band aid on before.



Did I ever say this can be a messy job, so make sure to wear gloves most of the time.
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Last edited by bob123; 02-01-2010 at 09:25 PM.
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Old 01-03-2010, 09:16 PM
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Thanks for sharing, I am sure this will help many members who attempt this maintance on their own.
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Old 01-03-2010, 09:49 PM
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what o-ring on the hub are you referring to? is it a seal or an actual o-ring? how easy is it to break?
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Old 01-03-2010, 10:03 PM
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The o-ring is there to secure the rotor to the hub. Most cars don't have them since the wheel and the tightened lug nuts secure the rotor in place.

Both of mine stayed together and did not seem brittle at all.

In the picture I put the screwdriver right by the o-ring so that users can it easily.
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Old 01-04-2010, 07:26 AM
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Usually the rotor freezes to the hub at the center bore.
I imagine the o'ring is there to try to keep that area dry....obviously, doesn't work.
Whenever I have a rotor or drum removed, I sand the hub clean and sand the centerbore untill I can slide it on and off the hub freely.
I apply a coating of grease (not as messy as anti-seize and just as effective) to the hub face and centerbore.
A coating means like fingerpainting, not gobs, as the exess would be thrown about, possibly working its way to pads or shoes.
The next time service is required, the rotors slide off with no aggravation.

Just thought ya'all might find that useful.

Rob
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Old 01-06-2010, 07:06 PM
tripod tripod is offline
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going ocd here. even if the o-ring did keep moisture out wouldnt there be condensation regardless? in theory this condensation would then be trapped amplifying the rust problem? if there was no o-ring wouldnt this allow air to cross the surfaces and dry the condensation. or in the off road world is the rust encouraged because there would be less stress on the studs/lugs.
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Old 01-17-2010, 10:26 PM
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I think the o-ring is a means to keep the rotor securely fixed flush to the hub to ease in thea assembly / disassembly process, that's it. Some cars (notably european with lug or wheel bolts instead of studs) use screws.
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Old 01-29-2010, 10:29 AM
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Excellent instructions with photos and anecdotes. You can also use a c-clamp to compress the pistons if you don't have a brake spreader - be sure and use an old brake pad or something to protect the caliper and piston.
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Old 02-01-2010, 10:57 AM
DatacomGuy DatacomGuy is offline
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Great guide, thanks
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