- Floor Jack (If you have a lift, you are epic)
- Jack Stands (At least two)
- 17mm socket
- Breaker Bar (Optional)
- 10mm wrench
- 13mm wrench
- 14mm wrench
- 7mm allen key (or allen socket)
- Clamp (C-Clamp or other large clamp)
- Empty Container for Fluids
- Brake Fluid (I would recommend at least 32oz, the more the merrier)
- Brake Parts Lubricant
- 1/4" Inner Diameter Tubing (Optional)
- Plenty of Shop Towels
- Front Caliper, Left (B3YF-33-61X)
- Front Caliper, Right (B3YF-33-71X)
- Caliper Bracket x2
- Brake Pads (B3YF-33-23Z)
- Front Rotor x2
- Caliper Spring Clip x2
- Bolt, Upper x2
- Bolt, Lower x2
- I performed this on my own vehicle. Please take caution when performing any types of maintenance or upgrades on your own vehicle. I am not responsible for any errors or damage caused to anyone's vehicle, property, or friends.
If you are not comfortable working on brakes yourself, please leave it to the professionals.
- Always, ALWAYS, put the car on jack stands when lifting the vehicle off of the ground.
There is no reason to not use jack stands. It does not matter how much of a hurry you are in or how limited your space is. If you can't put jack stands under the car, you should not be anywhere near it in the first place.
- I refer numerous times to the term "friend". Some people commonly have these around and others do not. No need to fear. One can usually obtain a person to assist easily with bribes of food, favors, or beer. This is not a job that will be easily done with only one person.
- This job requires bleeding and/or flushing the brake system.
If you do not know how to perform this job, you will need someone who does know how to do so.
This is a relatively easy upgrade to do. If you have ever changed out brake rotors/pads on a car, this is just one more step beyond that. As far as costs are concerned, this is really only feasible to do if you can pick up most of the components used. I priced out the whole list of parts at the dealer and it was just shy of $2,000 for just the parts listed above with Mazda part numbers. I picked up my calipers from a local salvage yard for under $200 and only needed to go order the bolts to mount the brackets to the hub. All together, this project cost me about $350.
First, you will want to prepare your calipers. I chose to paint mine red from the luxury of my office at home.
You should make sure you lubricate the slide bolts. This is a very fast, simple, and easy step to do and one of the most overlooked when doing brake jobs. Usually brake lubricant is about $1 at any auto parts store and helps keep the efficiency and proper life of your brakes. Just spread a few dabs on each of the slide bolts and slide them back into the caliper. The rotation of threading them in will spread it around and through the hole.
Also make sure to reinstall your black dust covers over the slide bolts when finished. You want these to remain clean over time.
Once you are ready to begin installation, start with jacking up the car and putting it up on jack stands. I cannot stress how important it is to make sure the car is on jack stands before starting any work underneath of the car. After the car is jacked up and in place, you will need to take the wheels off. If you do not have access to air tools, you will want to break the lug nuts loose before jacking the car up.
Once you have your wheel off, you're ready to go. I immediately placed a plastic bucket behind the caliper ready to catch any stray brake fluid and any dripping while I switch the brake line from one caliper to the next.
The first step is to break loose the caliper support bracket bolts. This is where you will need your 17mm socket. This is usually much easier with a breaker bar, but a ratchet will work. Be careful, as these bolts are normally very tight. When they break loose, it is easy to slip and lose your grip, which is the #1 cause for smashing your hand into nearby suspension components. I forgot to take a picture of the back of the caliper while it was still mounted, so if you cannot find the bolts, they are directly at the top behind the caliper and the other is a few inches lower.
After you break the two 17mm bolts loose, do not completely remove them. It will make this next step easier.
The next part is to remove the brake line from the caliper. You will need your 13mm wrench and your 14mm wrench for this part. Caution is needed in this step
. These bolts are very easy to round off. Make sure you have a solid grip on the bolt as you try to turn it. I almost rounded off one of my brake line nuts while I was doing this, but managed to stop myself before doing too much damage. It WILL feel like the bolt is turning while you strip the edges off, so please be careful.
Place the 13mm wrench on the nut closest to the surface of the caliper. This is the one you will turn. In order to prevent kinking and twisting of the brake line, place your 14mm wrench on the nut just above it to keep it steady.
Once you have completely removed the brake line from the caliper, allow the line to drip into your container. If you leave the cap on the brake fluid reservoir, the dripping will be much slower since air is not introduced into the system. Now you can go ahead and completely remove the 17mm bolts from the back of the caliper.
[img width=576 height=768]http://img20.imageshack.us/img20/9647/1000186md.jpg[/img]
This is where it's time to break out your BAMF (Big A** Mother F*****) hammer. This saved me quite a bit of work, especially considering I was not re-using any of the current brake components. First, tap the caliper towards the outside of the rotor. It will slide off very easily. Set your old caliper aside. Next, tap on the outer edges of the rotor to break it loose. This could take some "harder" tapping to break it loose initially. I had to all but slam it with a hammer to get mine loose after 92,000 miles of use.
Installation of your new Mazdaspeed3 calipers and rotors goes in the reverse of how they were disassembled. It only took me about 30 minutes for each side to remove and install the new components. A few tips and tricks that may help in installation:
- It was helpful to have a friend hold up the caliper in place while I aligned the bolts into the new caliper. The Mazdaspeed3 calipers are pretty heavy and holding it up then aligning the bolts is awkward to try and do alone.
- If your caliper does not want to slide over the rotor, you will need to compress the piston in the caliper so that the brake pads spread far enough apart.
- "Bench Filling" the caliper with brake fluid will speed up bleeding times later. Bench filling is where you put fluid into the brake line hole to fill up the piston in order to minimize the amount of air introduced to the brake system.
- Avoid getting brake fluid on your rotors and pads. This will prevent proper break in of your new pads and rotors, not to mention unsafe braking conditions.
Once you have your new brakes installed, it is time to bleed the brakes. Make sure you take the cap off of the brake reservoir and fill it up with new brake fluid. I had about 16-20oz drain out into the bucket during swapping calipers. You never want the master cylinder to run dry.
This is the point where you will need to bleed the brakes. Have one friend inside the car and the other person to go around to each wheel and bleed the brakes. Depending on how adventurous you are feeling, you can also bleed the rears while you are at it. The order to go by is to start at the rear passenger, then rear driver, followed by the front passenger and concluding with the front driver. You need to start at the caliper at the furthest point from the master cylinder and work your way closer.
I made the job of bleeding very easy by putting about a foot of 1/4" ID vinyl tubing onto the bleeder of the caliper and submerging the other end in the existing bucket of brake fluid. It made it easy to see the air bubbles pushing out and helped keep air from getting sucked back into the caliper. Also, I made sure a block was laid in the car behind the brake pedal to prevent pedal from traveling all the way to the floor. This was a precaution in case the reservoir went low on fluid and to prevent damage to the master cylinder.
A few comparison pictures I took with parts sitting on the floor of the garage.