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Discussion Starter · #1 · (Edited)
I noticed last week that the front left brake on my '00 Rav4 was dragging. I couldn't feel any drag, but the drag was made apparent by a rhythmic squeal sound that only occurred after I released the brakes from having been nearly stopped or fully stopped. At first the sound quickly wore off by the time I reached 10 or 15 mph. However, and within a few days, it got worse, as once after stopping in traffic on the freeway and then accelerating, the sound continued up till I was going over 30 mph.

When I got home that day, I pulled off the front driver's side wheel and inspected the calipers. I quickly found that the boots on the caliper pins (not the caliper piston boots) had failed, and perhaps had been in such a state for a little while. The metal seating on the bottom of the boots had disconnected from the rubber part of the boots, and so dirt and water was able to reach the slide pins, causing friction and rust. The dirt and rust on the slide pins, and the failed boots themselves, caused the caliper to drag instead of release after fluid pressure was relieved.

Note: A similar brake drag can occur if the wrong grease was used to grease the slide pins. The top slide pin on each caliper has a small rubber bushing on the end. The proper grease for these pins is Toyota Rubber Grease or Sil-Glyde Lubricating Compound. Normal caliper grease contains ingredients which will cause the bushing to swell, which impedes the travel of the pin and causes drag. If this is the only problem, you can simply replace the bushings and lubricate the pins with the proper grease.


This DIY shows how to easily fix either of these problems. There are many other problems which could be causing drag, including problems with the caliper or brake booster. This DIY considers minor drag caused by impedance of the caliper pins travel.

Reference Diagrams:







TOOLS and SUPPLIES:

wrenches or sockets in sizes 12mm, 14mm, and 17mm
torque wrench
clamp
wire hanger, wire, or rope (to hang the caliper)
Sil-Glyde lubricating compound, or Toyota Rubber Grease (part #)
3/4" or 22mm socket (to help drive the boots into the caliper brackets/torque plates)
hammer (to drive the boots into the caliper brackets/torque plates)
Q-tips


PARTS:

Replacement Toyota parts (I couldn't get myself to spend $42 per caliper on these little things!):


Caliper Pins: 47715-30080, $9.08 each. Requires two per caliper.
Caliper Pin Boots: 47775-22040, $11.34 each. Requires two per caliper.
Cylinder Slide Pin Bushings: 47769-22040, $0.97. Requires one per caliper​


Replacement aftermarket parts (which is what I used):


Wearever Disc Caliper Pins, #14112: comes with two pins and two bolts. $10.72 at Advance Auto, after coupon.
Wearever Caliper Boot Kit, #18036A: comes with 4 boots and 4 bushings (you only need 2 boots and 1 bushing per side). $13.87 at Advance Auto, after coupon.​



STEPS:

1.) If your Rav4 has ABS, disconnect the negative terminal of the battery to prevent a possibly ABS code.



2.) Remove the wheel. Use at least one lug nut to hold the brake rotor in place so that it doesn't fall off when you remove the caliper later. Familiarize yourself with the brake components and names.







3.) Remove the 12-mm bolt on the brake line bracket.





4.) Remove the two 14-mm bolts that hold the caliper to the caliper bracket (or "Torque Plate" in Toyota-speak). These 14-mm bracket bolts screw into the tops of the caliper pins (like union bolts), so to loosen them, hold the caliper pin with a 17mm open-end wrench, and loosen the 14mm bolt using a socket.




5.) Once the 14-mm bolts are removed, you can pull the caliper off the torque plate and away from the brake pads by hand. The slide pins will still be in place on the torque plate. Hang the caliper up on wire, suspended from the strut or another suitable spot -- do not let the caliper hang on the brake line, as it will likely damage the brake line.





6.) Remove the front and rear brake pads by pulling them out. Mark the pads for re-installation in the same position. You do not need to remove the pad clips to get the pads out -- just wiggle the pads free.



7.) Remove the two 17-mm bolts on the back, by the suspension parts, that hold the torque plate in place. Remove the torque plate.





8.) Remove the caliper slide pins from the torque plate. When you remove the slide pins, the rubber boots should NOT move with them -- rather, they should remain seated in the torque plate. You should have to wiggle the pins free from the top of the rubber boot, but the boot should itself should stay seated in the torque plate. If the boots are not still seated in the torque plate, they must be replaced with new boots and re-seated into the torque plate. You will likely see the metal seating from the boots still in the torque plate, as in the pictures below.













9.) Inspect the caliper boots, slide pins, and torque plate pin holes. The pins should be clean, rust-free, and lubricated, and the torque plate pin holes into which they fit should be clean and lubricated. The boots should be flexible, hole-free, tear-free, and seated in the torque plate. Otherwise, replace the pins and boots. Clean the holes in the torque plate using Q-tips or another method to remove all grease and dirt.





10.) If necessary to install new boots, install the new boots into the torque plate. The old metal seatings are likely stuck in the torque plate: to remove them, carefully tap them out by their flanges using a flat-head screwdriver or the like.




Then, install the new boots:


- To do this, find a 22-mm or 3/4" socket that you don't mind hammering and place the boot into the socket, then align the metal seating of the boot with the hole in the torque plate.
- Use a hammer to drive the boot seating into the hole: it may take some effort because the fit should be very snug.
- Be sure not to allow the socket to move up when hammering because it will pinch the boot rubber, and it may damage the rubber or make a hole in it.
- The seating will likely go in unevenly, but continue hammering it in place until all parts of the flange are in contact with the torque bracket surface.​





11.) If the old pins are re-useable, make sure they are clean. The little rubber bushing goes on the top slide pin only (there is no bushing on the bottom pin). The pins themselves are identical and interchangeable, just be sure that whichever pin you place in the top position has the bushing on it. Reuse this bushing only if it shows no signs of swelling and does not impede the travel of the pin. Otherwise, replace the bushing. Lubricate the pins well with Toyota Rubber Grease or NAPA Sil-Glyde (do not use regular caliper grease or any other non-rubber-safe grease).



12.) Seat the caliper pins into the boots. This requires a little extra care to be sure that you don't accidentally create too much of a vacuum. This is hard to explain, but easy to see in the pictures below. You do not want the boot to "suck in" when you move the pin up, and you want the pin to bounce back when you press and release it. Place a light coat of Rubber Grease or Sil-Glyde on the inside and outside of the boots.





13.) Re-install the torque plate and tighten the 17-mm bolts to 79 ft-lbs (yes, 79 ft-lbs -- they need to be tight!).



14.) Re-install the brake pads. If you forgot to mark the pads, you will notice that the rear (inside) pad will have a round imprint on it from the caliper piston.



15.) Inspect the caliper piston and rubber boot that fits around the piston. The piston should be in good condition, and the boot should not be leaking. Apply a light coat of Rubber Grease to the piston boot.



16.) Push the caliper piston in using the clamp. To do this, you can use an old brake pad or a piece of wood or other stiff material to protect the piston while tightening a clamp. The piston should travel in smoothly. (If the piston is very hard to move or does not travel smoothly, or leaks when traveling, there is a problem with the caliper and needs to be addressed before completing this job.)





17.) Place the caliper back over the pads and fasten the 14-mm bolt into the slide pins. Hold the slide pins with a 17-mm wrench, and torque the 14-mm bolts to 20 ft-lbs.


18.) Re-install the brake line bracket (12-mm bolt).



19.) Remove the lug nut that's been holding the rotor in place and re-install the wheel. Torque the wheel lug nuts to 76 ft-lbs.



20.) In the cab, without starting the engine, press the brake pedal several times until the pedal feels normal. The pedal will travel all the way down when you press it the first time, then it will get harder to press, until it is back to normal.


Re-connect the battery and take the Rav for a test drive, being sure to hard brake from different speeds. Hopefully the dragging is gone.

I last did my front brakes about 3.5 years ago, replacing the rotors and pads. After seeing this on my driver's side, I pulled the wheel on my passenger's side. The boots in that side were just fine, and when I removed the pins, they were are clean as when I put them in 3.5 years ago. So when the boots work, they work quite well. The boots on my passenger side are still the originals, but now I have aftermarket boots and pins on the driver's side.

I didn't take a picture of the Wearever pins, but they are very similiar to the OE pins: however, the OE pins appear to have some kind of surface treatment that the Wearever pins did not (probably an anti-corrosion treatment). The Wearever pins and bolts are also 17-mm and 14-mm, just as the OE.

I hope this was helpful -- please add any tips or additional tidbits regarding this job!
 

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Discussion Starter · #2 ·
I forgot to include that the part number for Toyota Rubber Grease is 08887-01206.

It is described by Toyota as a "lithium soap base glycol grease." It is made by Cosmo Lube, Tokyo Japan. This is the MSDS:

http://dolphinmsds.taiamerica.com/MSDSImage/907500/907769.pdf

It is pink, and the 100g tube is about the size of a toothpaste tube. I don't think I'll use it all in 20 years. I got it for about $8 a few years ago.
 

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demoder - Great write up ^^ and detailed photos.
- caliper Pin de-rusting on a wire wheel bench grinder and appropriate lube (pin grease) is critical
- and probably often overlooked
 

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Our '08 RAV4 Limited rear Caliper Pin corrosion issue was caught early enough, and the sticking brake caliper piston boot was attended to, (cleaned up and ceramic lubed) - avoided a new caliper replacement cost.

-----------------------------------------------------------------------------------

Permatex 24125 Ceramic Extreme Brake Parts Lubricant, 8 oz.
- 100% synthetic formula with ceramic solids forming a premium quality brake lubricant
- Resistant to moisture, corrosion and contaminants - will not wash out
- Silences brake noise across a much wider temperature range and maintains lubricant integrity
- Lasts longer and easily outperforms ordinary caliper greases and traditional disc brake quiet products
- Suggested applications include disc brake caliper hardware, pistons, brushings, rubber sleeves and seals
https://www.amazon.com/Permatex-241...5+Ceramic+Extreme+Brake+Parts+Lubricant,+8+oz.
 

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Nice thread, demoder! I made it a sticky. Please create another album on your profile page and upload your photos there. At any time Imgur may get greedy like Photobucket did and your nice pictures will all go away.
 

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Discussion Starter · #6 ·
Thank you, JuneBug!

Yes, I will make another album and a pdf when I get a little more time later in the week. Photobucket ruined so many forums! I am also working on albums for pictures originally posted in several older posts that *poof* vanished thanks to Photobucket.
 

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ASA I saw this thread I knew it deserved Sticky Status but I wish we had an all-generations Mechanical forum because this brake diagnosis & repair procedure would certainly apply to 4.2s and 4.3s, and as their miles accumulate, the 4.4s. But the only cross generation forum we have is RAV4 Lounge "General discussion about the RAV4, not limited to any particular generation." I just don't think it would get noticed much there.
 
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Recognizing this thread's last response is now 2 years ago, i'll try to add an observation and note a SNAFU as i scour the web in order to find remedy to the caliper guide pin lube-locking into the —OP calls it a torque plate; Chevy calls it a— caliper bracket.
Additionally, for my car, the caliper bracket has more of a formed bore, complete with a molded, upper lip, around which the guide pin boot seats with the opposing end of that boot seating around the underside of the guide pin. Functionally and visually, the same as what Demoder outlines here.

What i've learned is that the bushing on one of a pair of caliper guide pins (two pins per wheel, right?) is INTENDED for mounting in the leading position relative to the caliper location/wheel rotation.
For my car, perhaps for all cars IDK...the front calipers are ahead of the rotor. On the rear wheels, the calipers are on the bumper-side of the rotor.

What that means is that, in my instance anyway, the front wheels' guide pins (w/bushings) are mounted in the top bore and in the rear, the pins with bushings are mounted in the bottom bore.

Why this is so, i haven't yet stumbled onto. What i've learned firsthand, however, is that these guide pin bushings are a widespread problem.

What brings me here —and will lead me onward elsewhere in search of what's increasingly becoming like the fountain of youth or the golden fleece— is that my car's brake pads were wearing unevenly, inner vs. outer. After taking apart brake hardware at the wheels, i discovered the common issue of rusty corrosion. Instead of fooling with rotor turning, etc, i bit the bullet and ordered a full set of drilled/slotted rotors and ceramic pads. I also ordered new caliper guide pins, brake hardware and calipers. Overkill, probably, but that's a debate for another day.

In any event, i share these considerations to frame what is the crux of my search: with all of those new components, using Sil-Glyde as widely recommended, hitting ALL caliper bracket, mating surfaces with a wire-wheel AND using wooden cotton-tipped swabs through two caliper bracket bore cleaning sessions, first using brake cleaner and then using (of course changing swabs after a single use) denatured alcohol, then popping onto the bore's entry a NEW, OEM pin boot, swabbing it's interior with Sil-Glyde, lightly coating a NEW pin which of course has a NEW bushing and inserting into the caliper bore...i still get this vacuum effect (ONLY) ON EVERY PIN LOCATION WHERE A BUSHING IS PRESENT.

Exactly what Demoder (tip o' the cap to you, BTW, for a terrific how-to) shows to the right in #12 is happening to me at every caliper bracket, with every new guide pin/bushing assy, and what is shown/explained in #12 to the left, is EXACTLY how my bushing-free pin locations respond.

I've pulled the pins and swapped their locations (for my car, the front wheel pins are longer than the rear) and end with the same results.

IOW, the issue is with these bushings being too snug in the bore.

If someone reads this and has insights, i'm all ears.
If not, hopefully someone reading this will find useful my wee bit of knowledge share and, while correctly positioning their caliper guide pins in a leading/trailing fashion, will have better luck with these @#)$*(@! bushings than i have.

Good luck
 

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Discussion Starter · #9 ·
In any event, i share these considerations to frame what is the crux of my search: with all of those new components, using Sil-Glyde as widely recommended, hitting ALL caliper bracket, mating surfaces with a wire-wheel AND using wooden cotton-tipped swabs through two caliper bracket bore cleaning sessions, first using brake cleaner and then using (of course changing swabs after a single use) denatured alcohol, then popping onto the bore's entry a NEW, OEM pin boot, swabbing it's interior with Sil-Glyde, lightly coating a NEW pin which of course has a NEW bushing and inserting into the caliper bore...i still get this vacuum effect (ONLY) ON EVERY PIN LOCATION WHERE A BUSHING IS PRESENT.

Exactly what Demoder (tip o' the cap to you, BTW, for a terrific how-to) shows to the right in #12 is happening to me at every caliper bracket, with every new guide pin/bushing assy, and what is shown/explained in #12 to the left, is EXACTLY how my bushing-free pin locations respond.
Wow, what a headache!! Try this, on a long shot: if the Chevy boots are like the Toyota boots, you can pinch them at the top just enough to let some air in (reduce the vacuum). Try that, and see if you can find a point at which they will bounce back properly. But you have to be careful not to cause the boot's bellows to "suck in" on themselves -- you've probably seen that, where they sort-of fold in on themselves. Try pinching out some air while you have the pin at different depths, and see if there's a sweet spot.

Also, double check that haven't got too much grease in there. Try a few test cases:

  • what happens when you try it dry?
  • what happens when you try it with a tiny bit of lubricant on the bushing?
  • what happens when you try it with a little bit more lubricant?

I'm not a fan of these bushings, for exactly the reasons described here, and also it does seem like they aren't elastic enough to tighten up when you slip them on the pins into the keyed area, because they have to be elastic enough to fit over the thicker part, but yet they don't seem to contract enough when they reach the keyed part. It seems like they should be more elastic, such that they "hug" the pin better at the keyed part, but as you probably have seen (if the Chevy's are like the Toyotas), they aren't quite as tight as it seems like they should be.

I haven't ever checked to see if there are different sizes: are you positive that you're matching an OEM bushing to an OEM pin? Maybe the aftermarket pins or bushings have a slightly different diameters at the keyed section where the bushing fits, such that they push the bushing out too and cause it to drag...??

I'm sorry you're having all this trouble...what a headache. Brake jobs are supposed to be simple! haha
 
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