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How to Replace the Brakes on a 1989 Madza Miata

Madza has introduced three generations of the Miata since 1989. The sleek, lightweight roadster can reach up to 167 horsepower at 7,000 revolutions per minute. To keep your sports car operating safely, you need to routinely change your brakes to avoid squeaking and grinding noises. You can change your brake pads yourself to save money.

Tools Used: Floor jack, Jack stands, Lug wrench, Ratchet, Socket, Brake fluid, Turkey baster

Replace the Brakes

Remove and Replace Brake Pads

Drain approximately 1/3 of the brake fluid from the brake master-cylinder tank with a turkey baster. This prevents fluid from spilling once your press the brake caliper toward the bore.

Hoist the Miata with a hydraulic pump. Support the car with jack stands.

Loosen the bolts on the wheel with a socket. Take off the front wheels and tires on the Miata.

Remove the old brake pads and guide pins with a ratchet and socket.

Take off the bottom brake caliper bolt and turn the caliper upward.

Take off the brake pads, shims and anchor plate. Save the old shims located in the back of the brake pads.

Use a 1/8-inch C-clamp or use an old brake pad to push the brake caliper piston in the bore.

Examine the brake caliper, housing, anchor plate for damage. Clean the piston, housing and caliper with brake parts cleanser.

Place the lubrication that came with the new brake pads on the inner surface and in the back of the brake pad. Keep oil off the friction section of the brake pads.

Change the protective cap on the brake pistons when it is worn. Resurface or replace the metal disc brakes or rotors when needed. Change the rubber seals next to the guide pins when damaged.

Position the new brake pads, shim, guiding pins and spring clips in the reverse order it came off the vehicle. Torque the bottom brake caliper-mounting bolt to 15 to 23 foot-pounds.

Lower the Miata back to the ground. Pump the brake pedal to accurate set the pad before you test-drive the Miata. Refill the master-cylinder container with new brake fluid.

Replace the wheels and tires back in position. Tighten the bolts to 65 to 87 foot-pounds of torque.

Tips & Warnings

Spilling brake fluid on your paint can damage your vehicle.

Replace both sets of brake pads on each wheel.

When inspecting the brake pads get a measurement with a ruler.

Brake pads should measure a minimum thickness of 0.08 inches and a maximum thickness of 0.39 inches.

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