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Brake pads wear out. How often they must be changed depends on how much do you ride and how much do you use your brakes. Downhill riders have to perform this procedure a lot more often than regular commuters. Nevertheless, this job is relatively easy and can be done at home. If you have hydraulic brakes, then you might have to adjust that, which can be a bit trickier part. Other than that - the operation is simple and straightforward. In this page you'll find step by step instructions with pictures and also video tutorials about it.
Detailed description how disc brakes work - via this link.
Insert the pin through the holes in brake pads and spring. Then bend the end of the pin so it won't slip off.
Once you remove the spring, you're pads will probably fall off by themselves. If they don't - give them a little push. When installing new pads, try not to touch the pad surface with your fingers as that can leave grease on them. Especially if you're dealing with brake fluids or oil at the same time, make sure you don't get any on your pads. They will suck the fluid and lose all braking efficiency.
Insert new pads from underneath, same way the old ones left.
Remove the spring that's holding the pads against pistons. Note that when you remove this spring your pads will probably drop from the brake caliper.
Before starting, you need to know what kind of brake pads you want to install. Basically you have two choices, organic and metallic. More about those on this page.
If you prefer video tutorials over instructions with pictures - here are the best ones available.
First video with hydraulic brakes (made by global cycling network) and second with mechanical brakes (made by Ivanhoe cycles). Hats off to these guys.
Start the operation by removing the wheel.
Finally put the wheel back on and test your brakes. If you had adjusted your brakes to fit your old, worn out pads, you probably have to adjust them again for the new ones. If you have really tightened the gap between the pads, it's also possible your rotor won't fit there anymore and you have to widen it in order to get your wheel back on.
If the brakes feel good - your're ready to ride.
Change bike brake pads to Shimano Deore - step by step
Hold the pads in place and insert the spring to hold them.
Twist the end of pin straight and pull it out.
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