VIDEO: Truck Brake Rotor Removal Made Simple (Seriously)
Due to corrosion and rust buildup, Ford truck brake rotors often become frozen to the hub. They then become difficult to remove. It is standard practice to use a sledgehammer in an effort to try to force the rotor off of the hub. And if this doesn’t work, it may be tempting to use a torch to heat the metal in an effort to make it expand and therefore less difficult to bang off. Here’s an easy, safer method to remove Ford truck brake rotors frozen to the hub.
Tools You Will Require
- 2 grade #8 ½ inch X 3 inch bolts
- 4 large flat washers
- 4 ½-inch nuts
- ½-inch open-end wrench
- ratchet handle and ½-inch socket
CAUTION: Always were safety glasses when turning bolts under pressure or hammering metal.
We are going to use the brake caliper-mounting bracket to assist us in breaking loose the rotor. Thread one of the 3-inch bolts through the top hole of the bracket. On the backside of the bracket, between the bracket and the rotor, thread two of the flat washers over the bolt. Next, thread one of the nuts onto the bolt, leaving about three-quarters of an inch of thread exposed at the end of the bolt. Thread another one of the nuts over this end of the exposed bolt. Finger tighten the first bolt up against the flat washers. Finger tighten the other bolt up against the back of the rotor. You should have about 1-1/2 inches of bolt still exposed on the side of the caliper bracket.
Using the remaining bolt, nuts and washers, do the same for the lower caliper bracket.
Grab your ½-inch open-end wrench along with your ratchet and ½-inch socket. Place the open-end wrench on the upper nut touching the washers, and use your ratchet on the bolt to snug up bolt to the washers. Do the same for the lower nut.
Now placing your socket over the bolt head, and while still holding the nut with the open-end wrench with your other hand, begin to turn the bolt against the rotor. It will begin to feel tight while it exerts more and more pressure onto the rotor. Alternate top and bottom, turning the bolts against the rotor. Keep turning the bolts while holding the bolt against the washer with the open-end wrench. Eventually, the pressure from both bolts will be great enough to break the rotor loose from the hub.
When the rotor is loose, use a hammer or mallet to coax the rotor off of the hub completely. Remove the bolts, nuts, and washers from the caliper mounting brackets, and you are ready to begin the next phase of the brake job.