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How to brake pads & rotors on Porsche 911 (2009-2012)

Maintenance Interval: Will vary based on driving style

Dealer Cost: ~$2,500

DIY Cost: ~$850

Difficulty: Moderate 

Repair Time: 3 hours

Recommendation: Do-it-yourself if you're mechanically inclined

Overview:

Changing your own brakes is probably the easiest way to save yourself a lot of money. Dealers charge an arm and a leg to replace brakes on Porsches. Another thing to consider is whether you should change out just your brake pads or both the brake pads and rotors. Porsche recommends both be changed at the same time. While we generally agree, if your brake rotors still have a lot of life left in them, you could just change the brake pads.

To perform this DIY, check out this helpful tutorial above from YouTuber, CarFanatic. Detailed steps can be found below.

 

These service instructions apply to:

  • 2009-2012 Porsche 911 (997 / 997.2)

Torque Specs:

Caliper bolts: 63 ft-lbs

Wheel bolts: 96 ft-lbs

Instructions:

  1. Gather tools and parts.
     

  2. Next, extract a little bit of brake fluid from the reservoir to prevent it from overflowing during this procedure. Open front compartment area, remove plastic panel covering brake fluid reservoir, and extra a little bit of brake fluid using a new turkey baster. Replace the brake fluid reservoir cap when you are done.
     

  3. Now, you can raise your car one corner at a time or raise the entire vehicle; in either case you will need a jack and jack stand(s). For each corner follow the steps below:
     

  4. Remove wheel using 19mm socket; place wheel guide bolt to help you remove the wheel.
     

  5. If you are replacing the brake rotors, start by applying WD-40 or another penetrating oil to all the fasteners that hold the brake caliper in place.
     

  6. Next, if your vehicle has the red Brembo calipers, remove the black pin which holds in the brake pad spring clip. Remove the cotter pin using a pair of pliers, then gently punch out the pin. Keep some pressure on the spring clip, so it doesn't pop out.
     

  7. Carefully, pull out the brake pad sensor from the brake pad; disconnect the brake pad sensor completely.
     

  8. Using a brake pad spreader, spread out the brake pads. This will prevent the brake pads from catching on the "lip" worn into the rotor when you attempt to take them out. You also want to spread the brake pads out wide enough, so the new brake pads, which are thicker, will fit between the rotor and the brake pistons.
     

  9. Next, use a putty knife to separate the brake pads from brake pad dampers (the backings stuck to the pads).
     

  10. If you are just replacing your brake pads, you can now re-install the new brake pads and repeat everything in reverse. If you are also replacing the brake rotors, follow the steps below.
     

  11. To replace your brake rotor, you will need to remove the brake caliper. Start by removing the brake line bracket which is held on by a 10mm bolt.
     

  12. Take string or bungee cord and tie the brake caliper onto the suspension. This will prevent the brake caliper from hanging by the brake line when you remove the caliper.
     

  13. Remove the brake caliper, which is held on by two bolts, using a 10mm hex socket.
     

  14. Now it's time to remove the brake rotor; remove the 2 screws holding it in place. If you have difficulty getting the brake rotor off, apply some penetrating oil to where it meets the hub and use a hammer to lightly tap around the wheel hub area. Let the penetrating oil get to work for a few minutes, then use a rubber mallet to loosen the rotor.
    Note: For the rear brakes, make sure your parking brake is not engaged or you won't be able to get the rotors off.

     

  15. Install the new brake rotor; apply anti-seize to where the rotor meets the wheel hub and to the brake rotor set screws to prevent them from seizing in the future. Hand tighten the set screws.
     

  16. Install your new brake pads; apply brake lubricant around the edges of the brake pad to prevent squealing.
     

  17. Re-install your brake caliper; be sure to apply thread locker to the bolts and tighten them to 63 ft-lbs.
     

  18. Re-install everything in reverse and be sure to use a new brake pad sensor. Torque wheel bolts to 96 ft-lbs.

  19. Repeat procedure on each corner.
     

  20. Give your brakes a few pumps, then top off your brake fluid reservoir (do not overfill).
     

  21. Clean up and put all of your tools away.
     

  22. You're all done!