The simple answer would be to describe a pad slap. I will try to do this without putting down some brake shops out there as we are all here to make money and technically just replacing pads is not a bad basic thing to do. It's kind of like trying to bake bread without yeast though. A pad slap is simply pulling off the wheels, removing the caliper bolt, removing the old pads and forcing the new pads into the calipers. You will most likely be left with brake pads that will not slide properly and you will be replacing them within 6 months again.
The reason why this is done is simple, it is the quickest way to do a brake job. Mechanics are quite often incentivized to do things quickly due to flat rate pay scales. Flat ratein itself is not horrible but it can oftem promote a "get it in/get it out" way of doing things.
A proper brake replacement job consists of the following:
- drive the vehicle and see if there are any irregular noises or if the brake pedal feels funny.
- pull the wheels off.
- remove caliper
- inspect pads, rotors for any irregular wear.
- remove brake pads
- remove brake pad/caliper slider hardware kit.
- use proper tool to push calipers back to open position.
- clean caliper brackets to prepare for inserting new slider hardware kit.
- insert new slider kit.
- insert new brake pads.
- clean wheel hub (this is where the wheel and the rotor meet, this is usually rusty).
- replace rotors.
- put caliper back in place and torque bolt.
- put wheel back on.
- torque wheel nuts to spec.
- drive vehicle to ensure no issues.
This is the difference between a $100 brake job (pad slap) and a $400-$600 brake job. At Good News Auto, we pay our staff straight time and expect a brake replacement job to be done properly every time. We also recommend replacing pads and rotors at the same time to ensure your brake pads will last as long as possible.