How to paint brake calipers

If you wish to let your car maintain its cleanliness at all times, it is not so good to allow dirty brake calipers to degrade the general look of your car. If you had to buy new wheels or you newly painted your car, you will want the rest of the car to look good also. It is effortless to have your brake calipers come out clean and new.

There is no rationale to allow your brake calipers to spoil the general image of your car. Many people have the notion that painting your brake calipers is a tasking job, but it isn't. Knowing how to paint brake calipers is necessary if you like your car to look as good as new. 

How to paint brake calipers

These are some necessary tools you need to have in place before you can paint your brake calipers. You do not want to get stranded in the process. 

  • Lug wrench
  • Jack stands
  • Wire brush
  • Cleaning solvent
  • Brake cleaner
  • Newspaper
  • Masking tape
  • Paint
  • Tire iron
  • Google
  • Dust mask
  • Paper towels

Step by step procedures


To get a clean job after, the first process is to assemble all your tools. Preparation is key. Gather all your tools together, and be sure you have all the important ones.
Using the lug wrench, loosen the nuts on your wheels, but not completely. Then jack up the front part of the car with your jack and jack stand. Remove the nuts entirely from the front wheels and remove the tires. Be sure to keep your nuts well as you would need them to replace the tires when you're done painting.

Your brake calipers will be visible once you remove the wheels. They will most likely be dusty and dirty. This is where your cleaning solvent comes in. Spray some brake cleaner into a brush and start to scrub the calipers. You need to thoroughly clean the calipers before you paint so that you can have a smooth surface to work with.

Use masking tape to cover the parts of the brake you do not want to paint. Some people prefer to remove brake calipers altogether from the brakes, so they don't get paints all over other parts of the car. But you can make use of masking tape to cover those parts.

Accurately cover the parts before you start painting. You need to include the rubber protectors around the calipers, the brake rotors, and the panels around the wheels. You can also use newspaper instead of masking tape.

Choose a paint that is heat resistant as calipers are usually exposed to high temperatures during use. There are also paints specially designed for brake calipers, and you can go for those.

Paint the sides of the calipers one at a time. Spray smooth and multiple coats on the calipers to have an even coating. Be sure to follow the directions on the paint to have a clean job. Leave the side to dry for some minutes before you move to the other side.

Repeat the procedure on the other side of the caliper. Be careful while turning the caliper, so you don't twirl the brake line. There is no need to paint the inner part of the caliper, and it may affect the operation of the brake.

Leave the caliper to dry thoroughly before replacing it. There is no definite time when it will be dried, and it depends on the temperature at the time.

Replace the brake pads on the caliper. Then place the brake caliper back on the rotor. Be sure the bolts are in place and properly tightened.

Place the tire back on the car and tighten the nuts you removed from it earlier. Use a tire iron to tighten the nuts in a criss-cross pattern.

Jack up the car to remove the jack stand underneath and lower the car back to the ground. Be sure that all your nuts are tightened.

Leave the car for a day before you take it out for a drive. This is to allow the paint to dry thoroughly and not be peeling off while braking. 

Tips

  • Wear gloves on your hands all through the process. This is to keep your hands clean.
  • Use google on your eyes to prevent any accident of paint getting into your eyes.
  • Make sure to have a dust mask against your nose. This is to guide against the dust from the caliper when cleaning it.
  • Avoid paint on the brake pads and rotors. It may affect the performance of your brakes. If you have to remove your caliper from the car to achieve this, it is advisable.
  • Go for a color that will make your wheels stand out.

What is bleeding in brakes? 

Brake bleeding is carried out on hydraulic brake systems in which the brake lines are cleansed of any air beads. Brake lines are the pipes and hoses that contain the brake fluid. 

The brake fluid is incompressible, while air bubbles are compressible. The presence of air bubbles in the brake system reduces the hydraulic pressure of the system, thereby reducing the general performance of the brake system. Brake bleeding is essential maintenance that should be carried out regularly on brakes.

There are majorly five methods that can be used for brake bleeding. Each method is quite efficient, and it only depends on the number of people available and the tools available for the job.

1. The pump and hold method 

In this method, one bleed screw is opened, and the brake pedal is pressed simultaneously. The bleed screw is opened to let air escape from the brake. After the air bubbles have been released, the bleed screw should be closed. This should be done before the brake pedal is released. 

2. The vacuum method 

A vacuum pump is connected to the bleeder valve. It is then opened, and liquid is extracted until there are no more air bubbles in the brake line. 

3. The pressure method 

In this method, a pressure pump is connected to the general cylinder and allowed to pressurize the brake system. Each of the bleeder valves is then opened one at a time until there is no more air in the brake fluid.  

4. The reverse method 

A pump is connected from the bleeder valve to the main cylinder to drain the fluid from the former to the latter. Since the main bottle is above the bleeder valve, this method works with the principle that air naturally rises in the liquid. This makes the air escape out of the brake system. 

5. Gravity bleeding 

This is the most simple and most straightforward method to drain and replace automotive brake fluid from the brake system. It is not as effective as other methods, but it also helps to bleed air bubbles from brake systems. 

How To Paint Brake Calipers... The easiest Way!

How to paint brake calipers FAQs

Can I paint brake calipers without removing them? 

If you can be careful of protecting other areas of the brake, you can paint without removing them. Allowing the paint to get to other parts like brake pads and rotors can affect the performance of the brake system. 

How long does caliper paint last? 

A good caliper paint should last about three to four years. For aluminum calipers, it should last for seven to ten years. 

Does painting caliper void the warranty? 

Painting calipers doesn't void the warranty on it. You still have your warranty coverage, whether you paint it or not. The only time you no longer have a warranty is when you break anything on the caliper. 

Can I use brake cleaner on my calipers? 

Brake cleaner can be used on brake pads, rotors, brake shoes, and of course, brake calipers. It can be used on all braking systems. 

Does brake cleaner remove rust in brakes? 

Brake cleaner is only used to clean the dust on your wheels, brake calipers, and all brake mechanism. It has nothing to do with rust. 

Can I change my caliper without bleeding? 

You don't have to bleed the whole brake system when changing one caliper. You can make use of a clamp to stop the brake fluid from flowing into the main cylinder. Brake bleeding is not necessary when replacing the caliper. 

Is it compulsory I use a brake shield for my brake system? 

Dust and dirt from the road cause quick wear of the brake system. Using a brake dust shield can increase the lifespan of brake pads, rotors, and brake calipers. 

Why is my brake making a grinding sound?

Brake Grinding occurs when the rotor is in contact with a part of the brake caliper. This is mostly caused by extensive wear to the brake pads or rotors. Any strange metal in the brake system can cause significant damage. 

Conclusion

After you have bought a set of new wheels for your car, you do not want your calipers standing alone rusty and dirty. Following the procedures on how to paint brake calipers will give your calipers a colorful look you desire. 

John
 

John D. Archer is a mechanical engineer and writer based on the area of automotive accessories at brakeshub.com, A resident expert and professional, John is passionate about all things automotive and loves to share his knowledge. He has good experience in all kind of automotive accessories. He has worked as a chief mechanical engineer in some reputed automotive garage firm.

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