Tried to do a brake job and all I got was… Dirty!

Originally uploaded by worshipeldertj

My day begins like this… I take my van to the local mechanic to get an oil change and tire rotation today. When it gets finished the shop called me and said “you need brakes all round and you need front rotors. It will cost 328.00”.

So I do what any sensible guy with enough know-how to be dangerous would do… I went to the parts store and bought me some brake pads thinking I will get some rotors if I find out I need them, or get these “turned”.   Got everything I needed for 55 bucks and sped home.

When I get home, I got my tool kit (which seems to have less tools everytime I open it), and I started taking stuff apart.  Starting on the driver’s side, I get as far as taking the old pads off, and I realize the rotors are indeed going to need to be turned.  Problem is, Melissa is in the car at the church, and the parts store closes at 9.   Ugh.  Second problem, which turns out to be worse than the first problem, is the thing that holds on the caliper is in the way and I can’t get the rotor off  without removing it.  The biggest problem, I am either too wimpy or I lack the correct tools to remove this apparatus from the van!

So I decided I would do what any other guy who in the middle of a brake job realized he’s not a mechanic would do: put it all back together with the old pads (which were NOT indeed metal-on-metal, and were not even worn down to the “indicators”) so I could drive to the parts store and get either what I need or a shoulder to cry on.

I get it all together and jump in the drivers seat to see if what I dismantled and put back together still worked and uncovered yet another big problem. In the process of playing mechanic, I tried resetting the caliper piston (the thing that squeezes the brake pads together on the rotor to stop the wheel) and ended up just sucking a bunch of air back into the brake lines, and my arms and legs aren’t long enough to pump the brake pedal AND release the air out of the bleeder valve behind the front wheel at the same time!

Moral of the story… When will I ever get it in my thick head: I’M NOT A MECHANIC!!!


7 thoughts on “Tried to do a brake job and all I got was… Dirty!

  1. Jim says:

    Ummmmmm…….Dummy! 🙂

  2. dean says:

    no sir! you ARE a mechanic, and don’t you forget it!! don’t you realize it’s all melissa’s fault? you need to work on your blame, buddy…

  3. Jeff says:

    Yea, what Jim said… 😉

    Of course, I’m impressed you got that far. Couldn’t you have just turned off the car and rebooted it?

  4. Jeff says:

    And what in the world are these girly, fru-fru icons showing up next to our names when we comment?!

  5. tjscott says:

    IDK. It automatically started showing up and I can’t find a way to turn it off!

  6. tjscott says:

    Do you have an avatar for your openID?

  7. Walter says:

    I enjoyed reading your story. I am afraid just putting gas into my car… You brave soul…
    Please join our minister’s kid community at!


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