Brake Calipers and Brake Caliper Parts
Shop Replacement Brake Caliper Parts
Do you think that your brakes are starting to fail?
Does your car squeal or come to a grinding halt at red lights?
Is it taking you longer to come to a complete stop than it used to?
Then it may be time for a brake service. Unfortunately, the bad news is that braking components aren't typically included in a car's warranty, as they are considered preventative maintenance/wear and tear items that need to be regularly replaced.
You and your passenger's safety is our main priority. When you're faced with hazards on the road, you need to make sure you're equipped with adequate stopping power. Save on premium quality brake pads, brake pistons, calipers, wheel bearings, brake fluid, brake master cylinders, and more at NAPA AUTO PARTS.
The good news is that NAPA AUTO PARTS carries a wide selection of premium brake components for a wide range of vehicles that can be reserved online and picked up in-store. If you have a drum brake system or a disc brake system, we still have the know-how to keep you on the road.
In addition, we have stellar brake installation hardware and recommendations for your area's best brake inspection and caliper replacement services. Find a local store near you if you aren't comfortable doing the work yourself and speak with one of our qualified associates to find the best quality product for you.
For those with a disc brake system, we have all your replacement caliper needs and a quick breakdown of the components and how they work.
Why Do Brake Systems Go Bad?
Major causes of brake failure are overuse, a buildup of excessive brake dust, brake fade, damaged pistons, and uneven wear in your brake pads.
Finding the correct brake caliper assembly, replacement brake pads, or a replacement brake rotor will allow you to squeeze the most out of your brake performance.
How do Brake Calipers Work?
At their core, brake calipers squeeze brake pads against a spinning rotor and use friction to slow a vehicle. Because the force necessary to stop a heavy vehicle is large, most disc brake systems are powered by hydraulic force. The brake fluid moves the force from the brake pedal seamlessly to the brake pistons that squeeze the pads against the rotor.
This differs from the form of brake employed by most parking brakes which use a cable to press a pad against the rear wheels, essentially operating the parking brake as a singular rear brake.
Modern vehicles almost exclusively use disc brakes but employ different kinds of metal disc (performance rotors are often ceramic) and brake pads to create friction.
What are the Parts of a Brake Caliper Assembly?
While you can overhaul your disc brake system, it is a task that necessitates a bit of knowledge and some special tools.
If you are curious about how even to begin a brake job yourself, we will break down the components of a replacement caliper.
Every type of braking system begins with the brake pedal.
Depressing the pedal will transfer energy to the pistons, which will close the brake pad around the rotor. Performance brake and factory brake-alike are all controlled by the brake pedal.
Brake cables use hydraulic pressure to move force from the pedal to the pistons. Therefore, ensuring no air in your brake line or assembly is critical to maintaining good braking power and clamping force.
Brake Caliper Assembly
This is the housing for your caliper piston and brake pads. They can be taken off as one piece, but NAPA AUTO PARTS has new mounting caliper brackets, slide pins, locking bolts, and dust boots to ensure your brake caliper assembly is running in tip-top order.
Brake Caliper Pistons
Caliper pistons are where the "rubber meets the road" with braking. The pairs of pistons press against one another to provide a force on the brake pads.
There must be a good seal through the piston bore to maintain compression and braking force. Many automobiles use multiple pistons however, smaller vehicles like motorcycles operate on single piston systems.
No matter how many pistons are present in a brake caliper, there are performance applications that can be applied as long are there is a strong piston seal.
Brake pads are a critical (and easily replaced) component of powerful brakes. The brake pads provide friction against the rotors. There are many different types of brake pad material, but the most common are ceramic, organic, or metallic pads.
Disc brake pads are often where brake squeal comes from, so if you are dealing with braking noise, you can pick up new pads, a different type of pad, or brake shims that dampen vibration and attempt to cut down on squeal that comes from excessive wear.
Brake rotors are the piece of metal attached to the moving wheel, like the pair of metal plates that attach a drum brake. It's the friction that is placed against the rotor that stops a vehicle.
This process creates heat transfer, so it is critical that the brake rotor in your car can vent that excess heat effectively. Choosing the right brake kit will have a dramatic effect on your stopping power.
How Many Different Types of Calipers Are There?
There are many different types of brake calipers, but the driver's choice will be largely dependent on the type of vehicle being driven. Driving style will also affect your braking needs.
For example, performance street drivers often update factory-style components to smaller brake calipers with slotted brake rotors or cross-drilled rotors that dissipate extreme heat more efficiently than stock disc brake rotors.
In contrast, a daily driver needs a stock replacement brake rotor and not performance components. It's a racing maxim that weight saving does not necessarily translate to street performance.
Track drivers need even bigger brake rotors to handle the heat from aggressive diving and mount superior braking through an efficient level of cooling throughout the braking system. The bigger the rotor, the greater the heat dissipation.
The downside is that these specialty parts often only work well in extreme heat, if they are too cold, they are much less effective.
No matter which type of brake caliper you need, you can find compatible parts for your car, truck, or SUV using our search by vehicle feature. Simply click here and select your vehicle, ex. '2004 Jeep Cherokee', '2005 Ford F-150', or '2015 Chevy Silverado 1500'.