Replace Brake Shoes yourself

Changing Brake Shoes yourself–manuals and video tutorials

Helpful guides and tips on replacing Brake Shoes
Car parts category
Changing Brake Shoes: video tutorials

Most viewed video tutorials on the installation of Brake Shoes

  • Explore how to solve the problem with your car: video guide
    How to replace rear brake shoes on OPEL CORSA B TUTORIAL | AUTODOC
  • Explore how to solve the problem with your car: video guide
    How to replace brake drum and brake shoes on RENAULT SYMBOL/THALIA 1 [TUTORIAL AUTODOC]

Brake Shoes: frequently asked questions about replacement

When should brake shoes be replaced?

The service life of these components is 60,000 km or more on average. However, it can be reduced in case of bad driving habits. For example, not fully releasing the handbrake leads to the shoes rubbing against the drums and, as a result, quickly wearing out.

To monitor the condition of the brake shoes, use a special inspection hole on the drum backing plate. You can estimate the thickness of the friction linings with the car raised. If the size of the components reaches the minimum limit usually specified by the manufacturer, the parts must be replaced. Other signs of wear are the vibration of the brake pedal, increased braking distance, as well as the car skidding when braking.

What is the minimum allowable thickness of brake shoes?

The minimum allowable thickness of the friction lining of the parts is specified in the car’s service manual. Usually, it is 1.5–2 mm. If it is more convenient for you to measure the thickness of the lining together with the base, then this figure mustn’t be less than 5.0 mm. In practice, it’s better not to let the brake system elements reach this point.

Do I need to replace brake shoes in pairs?

Specialists recommend replacing these parts as a set on an axle. Changing them on one wheel only may reduce stability when braking. When carrying out this job, clean all elements of the system of dirt and check whether the brake mechanisms are properly greased. If the springs are corroded, they must also be replaced. Inspect the condition of the wheel cylinder boots too.  Air in the system or brake fluid leakage reduce the efficiency of even new components. You should also check that the handbrake is in good working order.