GM Full Size Vans 1987-1997 Repair Guide

Brake Pads

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INSPECTION



See Figures 1 and 2

Support the vans on jackstands and remove the wheels. Look in at the ends of the caliper to check the lining thickness of the outer pad. Look through the inspection hole in the top of the caliper to check the thickness of the inner pad. On 1987-95 models the minimum acceptable pad thickness is 1 / 32 in. (0.8mm) from the rivet heads on original equipment riveted linings and 1 / 2 in. (13mm) lining thickness on bonded linings. On 1996-97 models the minimum acceptable pad thickness is 0.030 in. (0.76mm).



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Fig. Fig. 1: Inspecting the brake pads



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Fig. Fig. 2: Brake pad wear indicators

These manufacturer's specifications may not agree with your state inspection law.

All original equipment pads are the riveted type; unless you want to remove the pads to measure the actual thickness from the rivet heads, you will have to make the limit for visual inspection 1 / 16 in. (1.6mm) or more. The same applies if you don't know what kind of lining you have. Original equipment pads and GM replacement pads have an integral wear sensor. This is a spring steel tab on the rear edge of the inner pad which produces a squeal by rubbing against the rotor to warn that the pads have reached their wear limit. They do not squeal when the brakes are applied.

The squeal will eventually stop if worn pads aren't replaced. Should this happen, replace the pads immediately to prevent expensive rotor (disc) damage.

REMOVAL & INSTALLATION



Delco System

See Figures 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8 and 9

  1. Remove the cover on the master cylinder and siphon out 2 / 3 of the fluid. This step prevents spilling fluid when the piston is pushed back.
  2.  



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Fig. Fig. 3: Delco brake pad and caliper assembly - 1987-95 models



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Fig. Fig. 4: Delco brake pad and caliper assembly - 1996-97 models with a GVW rating of 6100 to 9500 lbs.



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Fig. Fig. 5: Delco brake pad and caliper assembly - 1996-97 models with a minimum GVW rating of 10,000 lbs.



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Fig. Fig. 6: Compressing the Delco caliper piston - 1987-95 models



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Fig. Fig. 7: Removing the Delco caliper bolts - 1987-95 models



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Fig. Fig. 8: Compressing the Delco brake pad ears - 1987-95 models



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Fig. Fig. 9: Suspend the caliper out of the way

  1. Raise and support the front end on jackstands.
  2.  
  3. Remove the wheels.
  4.  
  5. Push the brake piston back into its bore using a C-clamp to pull the caliper outward.
  6.  
  7. Remove the two bolts which hold the caliper and then lift the caliper off the disc.
  8.  


WARNING
Do not let the caliper assembly hang by the brake hose.

  1. Remove the inboard and outboard shoe. Use a small prybar to disengage the buttons on the outboard shoe from the holes in the caliper housing.
  2.  

If the pads are to be reinstalled, mark them inside and outside.

  1. Remove the pad support spring from the piston.
  2.  

See Figures 10 through 17



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Fig. Fig. 10: Remove the wheel to gain access to the caliper and pad assembly



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Fig. Fig. 11: Typical front disc brake assembly



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Fig. Fig. 12: Loosen the caliper mounting bolts ...



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Fig. Fig. 13: ...then remove the mounting bolts and, if applicable, the sleeves



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Fig. Fig. 14: Grasp the caliper assembly and pull it off the rotor



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Fig. Fig. 15: Use a piece of wire to support the caliper so that the weight does not pull on the brake line



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Fig. Fig. 16: Remove the outboard brake pad ...



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Fig. Fig. 17: ... as well as the inboard brake pad

  1. Position the support spring and the inner pad into the center cavity of the piston, snap the retaining spring into the piston. The outboard pad has ears which are bent over to keep the pad in position while the inboard pad has ears on the top end which fit over the caliper retaining bolts. A spring which is inside the brake piston hold the bottom edge of the inboard pad.
  2.  
  3. Push down on the inner pad until it lays flat against the caliper. It is important to push the piston all the way into the caliper if new linings are installed or the caliper will not fit over the rotor.
  4.  
  5. Position the outboard pad with the ears of the pad over the caliper ears and the tab at the bottom engaged in the caliper cutout.
  6.  
  7. With the two pads in position, place the caliper over the brake disc and align the holes in the caliper with those of the mounting bracket.
  8.  


WARNING
Make certain that the brake hose is not twisted or kinked.

  1. Install the mounting bracket bolts through the sleeves in the inboard caliper ears and through the mounting bracket, making sure that the ends of the bolts pass under the retaining ears on the inboard pad.
  2.  

For best results, always use new bushings, bolt sleeves and bolt boot.

  1. Tighten the mounting bolts to 38 ft. lbs. (51 Nm). Pump the brake pedal to seat the pad against the rotor. Don't do this unless both calipers are in place. Use a pair of channel lock pliers to bend over the upper ears of the outer pad so it isn't loose.
  2.  

After tightening the mounting bolts, there must be clearance between the caliper and knuckle at both the upper and lower edge. The clearance must be 0.010-0.024 in. (0.26-0.60mm). If not, loosen the bolts and reposition the caliper.

  1. Install the wheel and lower the vans.
  2.  
  3. Add fluid to the master cylinder reservoirs so that they are 1 / 4 in. (6mm) from the top.
  4.  
  5. Test the brake pedal by pumping it to obtain a hard pedal. Check the fluid level again and add fluid as necessary. Do not move the vehicle until a hard pedal is obtained.
  6.  

Bendix System

See Figures 18, 19, 20, 21, 22 and 23

  1. Remove approximately 1 / 3 of the brake fluid from the master cylinder. Discard the used brake fluid.
  2.  



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Fig. Fig. 18: Bendix brake pad and caliper assembly



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Fig. Fig. 19: Bendix disc brake assembly



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Fig. Fig. 20: Compressing the Bendix caliper piston



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Fig. Fig. 21: Removing the Bendix caliper support key



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Fig. Fig. 22: Suspend the caliper



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Fig. Fig. 23: Installing the Bendix caliper support key

  1. Jack up your vehicle and support it with jackstands.
  2.  
  3. Push the piston back into its bore. This can be done by suing a C-clamp.
  4.  
  5. Remove the bolt at the caliper support key. Use a brass drift pin to remove the key and spring.
  6.  
  7. Rotate the caliper up and forward from the bottom and lift it off the caliper support.
  8.  
  9. Tie the caliper out of the way with a piece of wire. Be careful not to damage the brake line.
  10.  
  11. Remove the inner pad from the caliper support. Discard the inner shoe clip.
  12.  
  13. Remove the outer pad from the caliper.
  14.  

To install:
  1. Lubricate the caliper support and support spring, with silicone.
  2.  
  3. Install a NEW inboard shoe clip on the shoe.
  4.  
  5. Install the lower end of the inboard shoe into the groove provided in the support. Slide the upper end of the shoe into position. Be sure the clip remains in position.
  6.  
  7. Position the outboard shoe in the caliper with the ears at the top of the shoe over the caliper ears and the tab at the bottom of the shoe engaged in the caliper cutout. If assembly is difficult, a C-clamp may be used. Be careful not to mar the lining.
  8.  
  9. Position the caliper over the brake disc, top edge first. Rotate the caliper downward onto the support.
  10.  
  11. Place the spring over the caliper support key, install the assembly between the support and lower caliper groove. Tap into place until the key retaining screw can be installed.
  12.  
  13. Install the screw and tighten to 15 ft. lbs. (20 Nm). The boss must fit fully into the circular cutout in the key.
  14.  
  15. Install the wheel and add brake fluid as necessary.
  16.  

 
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