1989 Toyota 4Runner Replace Calipers

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The Toyota 4Runner was introduced in 1984. The 1989 Toyota 4Runner was produced with the option of two different engines: a 2.4-liter in-line 4-cylinder engine, and a 3.0-liter V-6 engine. The 1989 Toyota 4Runner was equipped with four-wheel drive. The 1989 4Runner had front wheel disc brakes standard, and the option for rear wheel disc brakes as well. All of the tools and materials necessary for this project are available at an auto parts store, or through your local Toyota dealership.

Tools Used[edit]

3/8-inch drive ratchet and socket set
New brake calipers
Large container of brake fluid
Small pry bar
2-ton or greater capacity jack
2 jack stands

Replace Calipers[edit]

Replacing the Brake Calipers

  • Loosen the torque on either the front or rear wheels, depending upon which end of the vehicle you are replacing the calipers. Raise the end of the vehicle you are working on using a 2-ton jack or a jack with greater capacity. Place jack stands beneath both ends of the axle housing to support the 4Runner throughout the duration of the this project. Remove the wheel lug nuts from the wheels then remove the wheels completely from the vehicle.
  • Place a drain pan beneath one of the caliper assemblies. Remove the brake line from the back of the caliper using an open end line wrench. Turn the line fitting on the back of caliper counterclockwise until it comes free from the caliper. Turn the end of the brake line upward to reduce the amount of brake fluid lost during this procedure.
  • Remove the caliper mounting bolts from the back of the caliper, using a 3/8-inch drive ratchet and socket. Turn the bolts counterclockwise until they are completely removed from the caliper. Remove the caliper from the brake assembly, using a pry bar to pull the caliper free, if necessary.
  • Remove the brake pads from the brake caliper, using a pry bar to pull the pads free, if necessary. Place the old brake caliper into a drain pan so as not to spill brake fluid onto the ground.
  • Install the brake pads onto the new brake calipers by hand. Push the pads into their proper position until they snap into place on the new caliper. Lubricate the backside or shim side of both brake pads, using certified caliper grease. Place the new caliper onto the brake assembly. Lubricate the caliper mounting bolts with caliper grease, then start the bolts into the caliper. Tighten the caliper bolts using a certified torque wrench to 90 foot-pounds of torque.
  • Insert the brake line into the rear of the new brake caliper and tighten the brake line using an open end line wrench. Turn the brake line fitting clockwise until the line is snug on the back of the caliper, then turn the line fitting 1/4-turn farther. This "snug-and-a-quarter" tightening method will tighten the line enough, without damaging the brake line or fitting.
  • Repeat Steps 2 through 6 to complete the caliper replacement on the second side of the Toyota. Repeat the project in its entirety to replace the calipers on the second end of the truck.

Bleeding the Brake System

  • Place the drain pan beneath the caliper you are going to bleed first. Ask your assistant to sit in the driver's seat of the vehicle. Turn the brake bleeder screw counterclockwise to open the bleeder. Ask your assistant to push the brake pedal to the floor and hold it down. Using vocal cues like "down" when the pedal is depressed, and "up" when the pedal is in the upward position can help the project along. When the pedal is in the down position tighten the bleeder screw shut with a line wrench.
  • Ask your assistant to pump the brake no less than five times, then let the brake pedal go up to the top position. Open the bleeder screw when your assistant says "up." Tell your assistant to depress the brake pedal again. When your assistant says "down," close the bleeder screw again. Add brake fluid into the brake fluid reservoir frequently while bleeding the brakes.
  • Switch over to the other side of the 4Runner and repeat the steps for bleeding the brakes. Continue bleeding the second side of the brakes until you have a solid brake pedal and a decent pedal height. If you are bleeding the brakes on all four wheels, then bleed the brakes in an "X" pattern. If you start on the front driver's side caliper, bleed the passenger rear caliper next. Then go back to the front and finish the pattern on the other two brake assemblies.
  • Replace the wheels on the 4Runner only when you have verified that you sealed all of the brake bleeder screws you opened. Snug the wheel lug nuts using a tire iron, so that the tires are flush with their mounting position. Lift the part of the 4Runner you are working with up, using a 2-ton jack or a jack with greater capacity. Remove the jack stands from beneath the 4Runner. Lower the 4Runner to the ground. Tighten the wheel lug nuts between 90 and 110 foot-pounds of torque, using a certified torque wrench and wheel nut socket.

Tips & Warnings[edit]

  • When replacing brake calipers it is recommended that you replace the brake pads as well. Replacing the pads will ensure that your brake system is evenly proportioned.
  • Never lift a vehicle on uneven ground or a slope. Lifting a vehicle on uneven ground can cause jacks or jack stands to collapse. Failure to adhere to this warning could result in vehicle damage, personal injury, or even death if the vehicle collapses upon you.