How to Change the Brake Pads on a 2005 Honda CR-V

brake calipers image by Tom Oliveira from

While front disc brake pads are featured on the 2005 Honda CR-V, the rear brakes can include either drum brake shoes or rear disc brake pads. There's a minimal procedural difference replacing either the front or rear disc brake pads. The front brakes account for up to 75 per cent of the braking power for the SUV while the rear brakes (shoes or pads) take on the remaining braking force. Rear brake shoes may last longer but are not as effective as rear disc brake pads with regard to braking performance.

Remove half the volume of brake fluid from the master cylinder of the CR-V using a brake fluid suction baster and discard the old fluid.

Position a wheel wedge against the outer tread of the tire on the opposite axle of the one you're replacing the brake pads on.

Place a compatible socket onto the breaker bar then crack the wheel nuts loose on the two tires of the same axle you're replacing the brake pads on. Do not turn the lug nuts more than half a turn.

Lift one side of the axle at a time using a jack then lower the jack so the CR-V is supported onto a jack stand placed under the respective lift point located on the front and rear rocker panels. When one side of the CR-V is supported on a jack stand, lift the other side of the same axle and support that on a jack stand as well.

Remove the wheel nuts and tire assemblies from both side of the appropriate axle.

Remove the lower caliper bolt for the front brake pad to be replaced using the ratchet and a metric socket, or remove both caliper bolts on the rear caliper using the ratchet and a metric socket. Pivot the front caliper downward and away from the brake pads and caliper support plate, or remove the rear caliper from the brake pads and caliper support plate. Hang the rear caliper with a length of wire to the rear suspension.

Insert the caliper piston compression tool inside the caliper housing so the drive screw is inside the caliper piston and the plate of the tool is braced against the inside of the outer caliper housing. Tighten the drive screw to push the caliper piston inward until it is fully seated inside the caliper bore.

Remove the outer and inner brake pads (front or rear respectively) from the caliper support plates.

Apply brake pad/caliper grease to the tabs of the replacement brake pads that mate to the caliper support clips then apply a thin coating of grease on the outside pad plates. Insert the replacement pads into the caliper support plates.

Replace the calipers (pivot the front ones upward over the brake pads and support plates, or remove the wire from the rear calipers and place them over the pads and support plates), then align the caliper bolts to the calipers. Tighten the front lower caliper bolts to 25 foot-pounds with the torque ratchet and compatible socket, or tighten the rear caliper bolts to 16 foot-pounds with the torque ratchet and socket.

Replace the tire assemblies and wheel nuts. Tighten the nuts in a crisscross fashion using the breaker bar and a socket until the tire assemblies are firm against the wheel hub. Lower one side of the CR-V at a time then torque the wheel nuts (using the crisscross motion) to 80 foot-pounds with the torque ratchet and a socket.

Top the master cylinder off with brake fluid then replace the cover. Pump the brake pedal to extend the caliper pistons and seat the brake pads until you can no longer press the brake pedal more than halfway to the floorboard. Recheck the brake fluid level and top off to the full line with brake fluid. Replace the cap, remove the wheel chocks then test-drive the CR-V for braking performance.

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