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Discussion Starter #1 (Edited)
Replaced front & back pads on our 2018 XC90. We're at 30k miles and had our last free service. Dealer indicated that 2-3mm remain and quoted $800 for the whole job.

Tools needed:
- 7mm allen key for back brakes
- 11mm allen key for front brakes (I used a Torx T55 driver, however)
- Medium C clamp
- Large C clamp
- Piece of aluminum bar (or other, to place against brake piston)
- Small flat head screw driver
- Breaker bar or large ratchet
- 19mm socket, small extension
- Torque wrench capable of 100 ft-lbs (lug nut spec is 103 ft-lbs)
- Needle nose pliers (or special brake piston tool)
- Jack
- Jack stand
- Wheel blocks
- 9v battery, a couple wires (more on this later)
- Brake caliper grease (optional)
- Shop towels, paper towels, gloves

References:
Front Brake Pad Video
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=eJGnrfmaxOI

Back Brake Video
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=jv0GfWv7C1I&feature=youtu.be

Electric Parking Brake reset video
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=8y54DKRHlAo

Jack points


Preparation:
Remove cap from brake master cylinder in engine bay

Rear Brake Steps:
[1] Remove lug nut caps with the Volvo supplied tool (look in glove box)
[2] Loosen lug nuts with 19mm socket and breaker bar (use volvo supplied key for the lock nut, look in your trunk)
[3] Use jack to elevate vehicle
[4] Place jack stand under sturdy/strong element of suspension or body as backup
[5] Remove wheel
[6] Pop off dust covers from both caliper bolts
[7] Remove the retaining spring, use a flat screw driver if needed
[8] Remove caliper bolts with 7mm allen key & ratchet
[9] Pop off yellow cover and remove parking brake wire
[10] Remove old pads
[11] Push in brake piston with C clamp
[12] Screw in brake piston with hand tools, or use dedicated brake piston tool. Clockwise until the piston stops.
[13] Spin back parking brake with 9v battery and wires (positive to 'top' pin of parking brake inner plug, negative to bottom)
[14] Install new pads (optional: apply grease to the lugs on each end of the pad)
[15] Reinstall everything in reverse older. Torque lug nuts to 103 ft lbs.

Front Brake Steps:
[1] Wheel removal and use of jack as before
[2] Pop off dust covers from both caliper bolts
[3] Remove the retaining spring, use a C clamp to ease pressure on center portion of spring (squeeze toward outer edge of caliper)
[4] Remove caliper bolts with 11mm allen key & ratchet (or T55 Torx)
[5] Remove old pads
- Inner pad comes out easily (held by springs)
- Outer pad may appear to be stuck if it was installed with 3M VHB tape. Tap it loose with a hammer.
[6] Push in brake piston with C clamp (no need to screw it in)
[7] Install new pads (optional: apply grease to the lugs on each end of the pad)
- Inner pad has springs, it will require both hands to get this done. I used a 5gal bucket to support the caliper during this step
- The outer pad may come with 3M VHB tape applied. If so, clean the caliper first with brake parts cleaner.
[8] Reinstall everything in reverse older. Torque lug nuts to 103 ft lbs.

Don't forget to put the lid back on the master brake cylinder!

Notes:
- There is no place to hang the calipers as with some other vehicles. No holes, hooks, springs - can't use the coat-hanger trick! Be careful with that brake hose.
- The back caliper is quite light and easier to work with
- Front caliper is heavy, I used a 5gal bucket as my helping hand
- The front caliper spring is stiff. Getting it off required a C clamp to ease the tension in the middle. Getting it back on required very firm pressure to bend the arms back over the caliper.
- To wind back the parking brake I used a 9v battery. It is also possible to remove the parking brake assembly if you prefer, then wind it back manually. Leave the parking brake off!


Location of master brake cylinder under hood


Cover popped off. Unscrew the lid.


Back wheel jack point at the side of the car (see previous diagram)


Removing lug nut covers with supplied tool


Removing lug nuts with 19mm socket


Jack stand in the back. I found a sturdy looking bar and rested the weight of the vehicle on both the jack and the stand.


Removing parking brake wire lock (yellow)


Parking brake wire open. If using 9v battery to rewind, connect positive to the upper inner post, negative to the lower post.
(NOT on the yellow plug, but on the plug that's part of the caliper)


Pop off caliper bolt dust covers


7mm allen key for rear brake caliper bolts


Caliper bolts loose


Rear brake caliper removed. Note piston and the little dimples that will be used to screw it in after pushing in with C clamp.


Push in rear piston with C clamp. Likely you won't get it in all the way... I had a quarter inch remaining


Caliper grease for good luck! I only applied to the little lugs at the end of each pad (ie. where they ride on the caliper)


After pushing in the back piston you may need to screw it in. There are dedicated tools but something else may work.
I used the tool that came with my angle grinder, it fit perfectly. Needle nosed pliers is another option.


Some grease on the ends of the pads, only the part that rides against the caliper


Peel any plastic backing from the pads prior to installation


Use of torque wrench. I set it to 100 ft-lbs, close enough IMO.


Front Jack Point, the raised area with the two large holes


Additional side lift point, toward the back. Don't know what it's for. Could use it for jack stand...


Front caliper assembly. Note the position of the spring, you'll need to get it back. Very stiff!


I used a torx T55, 11mm allen is supposed to be the proper tool


Backing out the front caliper bolts. When installing them again, I just made them "good n tight", don't know torque.
(They are not particularly tight)


Use of C clamp to remove the caliper spring makes removal easier. Otherwise it's stuck a little groove in the middle.
(Did not use during assembly)


The new pads. Inner pad has the springs, outer pad has 3M VHB tape. Remove that paper prior to assembly.


Front caliper supported by a 5gal bucket and a sand bag. I later use shop towels instead of the bag, worked better.
(You will need this unless you have a helper. Installing the inner pad requires pushing it in with both hands.)
(Ignore the screw driver, it's just to hold the caliper steady - not needed)


Remove paper from 3M VHB adhesive. Clean the caliper prior to putting in this pad, it is the outer.


Some grease on the ends of the pad plate


Both pads in place, front caliper. They're not going to move!
 

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Well detailed... Thank you!! My next brake job will be done at home definitely...


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Discussion Starter #5 (Edited)
Nice walkthrough. Better than prior posts on the subject.

If you don't want to use a C-clamp to rewind the piston, you can get a dedicated tool to rewind it from Amazon for about $15.

https://smile.amazon.com/gp/product/B076RZGT89/ref=ppx_yo_dt_b_search_asin_title?ie=UTF8&psc=1

I didn't find it necessary to remove cap from brake master cylinder. Was able to have the rewind tool push the piston back.
Thanks! IMO that thing is worth getting. When using regular hand tools it would be easily to slip and puncture the piston boot (surface of the brake piston is slippery.)

Link to an allen set with 11mm size included. These are very uncommon:
https://www.amazon.com/dp/B004BWBANY/ref=emc_b_5_t

Just the 11mm socket, 1/2in drive
https://www.amazon.com/Titan-Tools-...id=1586775867&sprefix=11mm+all,aps,178&sr=8-5
 

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Just FYI- Once the parking brake motor is retracted, the piston just pushes in. No need for the tool that spins it.
 

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Discussion Starter #7
Just FYI- Once the parking brake motor is retracted, the piston just pushes in. No need for the tool that spins it.
Are you sure about that? I wasn't paying attention to the order I did things (ie. parking brake first then brake piston, or brake piston and then parking brake)

If that's true, then can one ignore parking brake entirely? Seems like one could just use the piston tool linked from Amazon and accomplish both at the same time: Push in the brake piston while screwing it in and the parking brakes also retracts...
 

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I'm sure.

We put the parking brake into service position with VIDA, then push the piston in and take it out of service position when done.

For a DIYer, you can reverse the parking brake motor with a battery, then push in the piston. Or remove the motor, screw in the worm gear from the back of the caliper and push in the piston.

I don't think you can just turn the piston in and have it also turn the motor. You probably need to remove the motor first. But I've only done it with VIDA.
 

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Discussion Starter #9
I'm sure.

We put the parking brake into service position with VIDA, then push the piston in and take it out of service position when done.

For a DIYer, you can reverse the parking brake motor with a battery, then push in the piston. Or remove the motor, screw in the worm gear from the back of the caliper and push in the piston.

I don't think you can just turn the piston in and have it also turn the motor. You probably need to remove the motor first. But I've only done it with VIDA.
Good to know!

Interested to hear reports from others. I'll have to wait another couple years before I need new pads.
 

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Anything that needs to be done to the e-brake after the pad install? Did you reverse the battery to wind it back? Did you used the e-brake couple times on/off to get the brake into ready position?
 

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Great write up, but my local dealer is only charging a bit over 200 bucks for rear brake, probably the same or less with front brake, so I'll just let them do it. My audi dealer wanted to charge me $2000 to replace front and rear brake plus rotors, so I did that myself and upgraded to two piece rotors for the same cost.
 

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Discussion Starter #14
Anything that needs to be done to the e-brake after the pad install? Did you reverse the battery to wind it back? Did you used the e-brake couple times on/off to get the brake into ready position?
Nothing needs to be done beyond activating the parking brake a couple times. The motor will return to the normal position.

Great write up, but my local dealer is only charging a bit over 200 bucks for rear brake, probably the same or less with front brake, so I'll just let them do it. My audi dealer wanted to charge me $2000 to replace front and rear brake plus rotors, so I did that myself and upgraded to two piece rotors for the same cost.
$200 is a great deal, you're fortunate.

Probably not less for the front, the pads are about 2x larger than the rear. Parts alone would a little to the cost.
 

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Great write up! I replaced my rears with Wagner ThermoQuiet ceramic pads. Did them April 2019 when I realized one of my pads was metal to metal. Yikes. Replaced both rotors with R1 solid and coated rotors. After several months the rear wheels looked clean but the fronts were full of dust, so I just replaced the fronts with Akebonos. They're ceramic too, unfortunately Wagner doesn't make Thermoquiets for the fronts, only semi-metallic. I went to several places including O'Reilly's, Lowe's, Home Depot and could locate 11mm bed wrench!! I couldn't believe how difficult it was to locate it. All the had were 10mm and 3/8" hexes as their largest available. Finally went to Harbor Freight and found a 7/16" hex which fit perfectly. For some reason, I tried the t55 Todd which I owned but it felt loose like my 10mm hex. Didn't want to take a chance on stripping it so. Front rotors were original and were j. Very good shape so I kept them, no warpage or pulsating when braking. Existing pads had about 3/16 remaining, but was just tired of the brake dust all over the wheels. 20200510_172555_HDR.jpg 20200510_172546_HDR.jpg 20200510_172543_HDR.jpg 20200510_172537_HDR.jpg
 

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Please take note that the rear park brake connector and yellow locking tab might need some lubrication/clean-up with brake clean or similar so is ease to slide and disconnect. Once is clean it slides very easily.
I leave in Canada so my connectors were very dirty and managed to break the yellow locking tab. I used a zip tie to lock that connector in place. Second one came out very easy after I cleaned it.
The 9V battery trick works very well. It is a bit difficult to connect the bare wires to the pins but following the polarity recommended is all good. I had to run the motor for a good 10 to 20 seconds to retract. No code or error after.
 

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Well detailed... Thank you!! My next brake job will be done at home definitely...


Sent from my YAL-L21 using Tapatalk
Did my S90 inscription front brakes... So far so good... Thanks for Craftsman impact wrench. 40 K miles.


Notes:
- I used Akebono brake pads EUR 1865 (these works on SPA 345mm rotors).

- Resurfaced OEM rotors (they are only 15K miles old).

- I didn't notice any difference in stopping power compared with OEM Volvo Brake pads. However, Akebono are known for being dust free and very quiet...

- The bolts (18mm) holding the Caliper retainer are tough due to the threadlocker. So, I turned the steering wheel to get enough room and used Craftsman impact wrench.

- Cleaning OEM brake pads dust took me around two hours with carefully cleaning all the brake components.

- Brake fluid was over the max, so I took out some and had it in the middle between the Min and Max. I stored the rest in a bottle in case needed after the pads get older.


Here are some pic.





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