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Chevrolet Equinox Rear Brake Pads Replacement Guide
How to change the rear brake pads on a 2nd generation 2010 to 2016 GM Chevy Equinox with photo illustrated steps.

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2012 Equinox Rear Wheel
Loosen 5 Lug Nuts
Raise Rear of Vehicle
This automotive "how-to" guide was specifically written to assist owners of the second generation (2010, 2011, 2012, 2013, 2014, 2015 & 2016) GM Chevy Equinox in changing the rear brake pads and lubricating the two caliper slider pins.

Owners of other GM vehicles such as the Spark, Sonic, Cruze, Volt, Malibu, Impala, Camaro, Corvette, Traverse, Tahoe, Suburban, Colorado, Avalanche, Silverado, Verano, Encore, Regal, LaCrosse, Encore, Enclave, Canyon, Sierra, Terrain, Acadia, Yukon, Savana, ATS, XTS, CTS, SRX and Escalade may also find these DIY instructions to be helpful.

The items needed to complete this rear brake job include a floor jack, jack stands, a lug nut wrench, a 14mm socket with ratcheting wrench, a thin 17mm cone spanner wrench, a "C" or "F" clamp, and a new set of pads.

Some compatible aftermarket brake pads include the following with their part numbers: ACDelco 14D1275CH, Wagner QC1275, Akebono ACT1275, Monroe CX1275, Centric 105.1275, Bendix D1275CT, Raybestos PGD1275C, Dash4 # MD1275 and Bosch BC1275.

Spin Off Lug Nuts
Remove Rear Wheel
Rear Brake Caliper
The first few steps are to park the vehicle on a level surface, make sure the transmission is in "Park", and chock the front wheel to prevent the vehicle from moving.

Slightly loosen the 5 lug nuts on the rear wheel with the tire iron.

Raise the rear of the vehicle with the floor jack and securely support it with two jack stands. (I prefer to work on one side of the vehicle at a time for extra safety.)

Once you pull off the wheel, you'll be able to see the rear brake caliper, bracket, rotor and suspension.

Loosen Lower Caliper Bolt
Hold Pin - 17mm Wrench
Brake Line In Way
Loosen the lower caliper bolt with the 14mm socket and ratcheting wrench by turning it clockwise (as seen from the outside of the vehicle).

If the caliper slider pin spins as you try to loosen the caliper bolt, hold it in place with a thin 17mm cone spanner wrench.

Use Extension Bar
Loosen Upper 14mm Bolt
Remove Upper Bolt
The upper caliper bolt is obstructed by the brake line so you'll need to either attach an extension bar to the ratcheting wrench or use a regular 14mm wrench.

Spin out the two caliper bolts and set them aside in a safe place.

Remove Upper Bolt
Pull Off Brake Caliper
Rest On Suspension
Pull the brake caliper out of the bracket and carefully rest it on the suspension arm or tie up to the spring with some twine.
Remove Old Outer Pad
Wear Bar - Bottom Inner Pad
Replace Anti-Rattle Clips
Remove the old brake pads from the bracket and make a mental note of how the wear indicator or "squeal" bar is situated.

The wear bar on this 2012 Equinox was positioned at the bottom of the inner pad.

I recommend buying the OEM GM ACDelco 14D1275CH brake pads since they have excellent reviews on Amazon.

If your set of new rear brake pads came with new metal pad abutment or "anti-rattle" clips, pull the old ones out of the top and bottom of the bracket and install the new ones.

Thoroughly clean off the brake rotor, caliper bracket, brake caliper assembly and the lug nut studs with brake parts cleaner spray. Do not use compressed air or blow with your mouth to clean off the brake parts since breathing in brake dust can be harmful to your health. Brake dust can be carcinogenic (causes cancer) if inhaled.

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.

To remove the existing rotors and install new ones, just remove the two bolts on the rear of the caliper bracket that attach it to the steering knuckle. Then loosen the old rotor with a rubber mallet, pull it off, and slide the new one in its place.


Remove Lower Caliper Pin
Lubricate & Replace Pin
Install New Outer Pad
In order for the brake caliper to work properly, the two caliper slider pins need to be well lubricated.

Gently pull out the upper and lower caliper pins from their rubber dust boots. Apply a thin layer of brake caliper grease to each pin and then re-insert them back in to their rubber dust boots.

Twist Off Brake Fluid Cap
Slowly Compress Piston
Wear Bar - Bottom Inner Pad
The brake caliper piston will need to be compressed backwards so that it will fit over the thicker new brake pads.

Attach the "C" or "F" clamp to the caliper piston using the back of an old brake pad to evenly distribute the force.

Move to the engine bay and twist off the brake fluid reservoir cap by turning it counter clockwise.

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

Slowly compress the caliper piston and repeatedly check the level in the brake fluid reservoir to ensure it doesn't overflow.

If it does overflow, clean up any spilled brake fluid immediately since brake fluid can easily damage painted surfaces.

Continue slowly compressing the brake caliper piston until it is flush with its rubber dust boot.

Replace the brake fluid reservoir cap by twisting it on in the clockwise direction.

Push Pads Against Rotor
Lower Caliper In Bracket
Insert Lower 14mm Bolt
Install the new brake pads in to the bracket and make sure that the wear indicator bar is situated at the bottom of the inner brake pad.

Push the two pads flush against the rotor and gently lower the caliper over them.

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

Thread In Upper Bolt
Tighten Upper Bolt
Hold Pin With 17mm
Line up the two bolt holes in the caliper with the holes in the caliper slider pins within the bracket.

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

Tighten the caliper bolts with the 14mm socket and ratcheting wrench to just past hand tight or about 20-25 ft lbs of torque.

If the caliper slider pins turns as you tighten the caliper bolt, hold them in place with the 17mm cone spanner wrench.

Rubber Valve Cap
Brake Fluid Bleeder Valve
Replace Rear Wheel

Double check that both the upper and lower caliper bolts are tight before moving on to the next steps.

If your brake pedal previously felt soft or spongy, the brake fluid may be contaminated with water or the brake lines may contain some air bubbles.

The brake fluid bleeder valves are located on the top of each rear brake caliper by the brake line under a rubber valve cap.

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 DOT3 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.

Spin On Lug Nuts
Slightly Tighten Nuts
Lower Vehicle From Stands
Replace the rear wheel and spin on the five lug nuts by hand to prevent them from becoming cross threaded.

Slightly tighten the lug nuts with the tire iron and lower the vehicle from the jack stands until the tire holds enough weight to keep it from spinning.

Torque Lug Nuts
Replace Brake Fluid Cap
Rear Brake Pads Replaced
Progressively tighten the lug nuts in a "criss cross" or "star" pattern to about 1/4 to 1/3 turn 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 the 140 lb-ft of torque specification in the owner's manual.

If you haven't already, replace the brake fluid reservoir cap.

Sit in the driver's seat of the vehicle and pump the brake pedal a few times to restore the brake line pressure. Check the brake fluid in the reservoir and verify that it is at the proper level. If it is low, add some new DOT 3 fluid.

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

It's also a good idea sometime in the next few days to check your driveway for drops of brake fluid which may indicate a leak, check the brake fluid level in the reservoir, and also verify that the lug nuts are still tight.

For more, check out my other GM Chevrolet Equinox DIY Repair Guides.

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