How to replace Lotus Elise brake pads

Front brake pads:

  • Remove the service panel to get access to the brake fluid reservoir
  • Protect any paintwork around, and remove some of the brake fluid with a syringe. The pistons will be compressed which may overflow the reservoir.
  • Jack up the car and make sure you’re safe. Remove the wheel
  • Remove the clips or the locking wire and extract the pins. The locking can be either on the inside or outside of the caliper.
  • Remove the spring plate, make note of the arrow pointing upwards.
  • Undo the 2 caliper bolts on the side of the caliper with an 8mm hex key. Replace if their state is doubtfull.
  • Wiggle the caliper a bit to free up thepads and pistons.
  • Take off the caliper but do not kink the brake hose.
  • Compress the pistons using the old pads still in place (by hand or appropriate tongs)
  • Remove the old pads
  • Clean up the caliper and optionally replace the buffer tape at the edges of the pad to avoid rattle.
  • Install new pads with the appropriate grease on the contact points with caliper and piston (ceratec for example) In my experience pads with a total thickness of 14.6 – 15.2 mm can be fitted easily wheras a bigger total thickness is impossible (i had 15.7 mm thick pagid rs4-2 pads the second batch instead of 14.6 mm which i sanded down to 15.2 mm total thickness)
  • If you use a different pad some sanding the disks may be adviced.
  • If you want to replace the disks this is the time to do that
  • Slide caliper back on the disks
  • Threadlock and torque the caliperbolts to 45Nm using the 8mm hex key
  • Reinstall pins, spring and locking clips or stainless wire.
  • Same for other corner and/or attack the rear
  • Top up brake fluid.
  • Press the brake pedal a few times (with engine running in case of 111r assisted brakes) and have them bedded if neccessary.
Lotus Elise brake pad size pagid, service thickness of the pad = 9.5 mm

Rear brake pads:

  • Disengage the handbrake
  • Remove the service panel to get access to the brake fluid reservoir
  • Protect any painwork around, and remove some of the brake fluid with a syringe. The pistons will be compressed which may overflow the reservoir.
  • Jack up the car and make sure you’re safe. Remove the wheel
  • tap out the pin and spring,
  • wiggle the caliper just a bit,
  • slide outer pad downwards and take out,
  • remove the brake disk (tilting the caliper by removing the upper caliper bolt is NOT necessary in that case). No need to undo caliper bolts.
  • Remove the inner pad.
  • Check the ability to slide the caliper along both slider pins/caliper bolts.
  • Use a pinch tool to rotate the piston back clockwise, this needs 10 to 20 revolutions.
  • Put some Ceratec on the backing plate where it will mate to the piston or the caliper.
  • assemble in reverse and attack second corner.
  • Top up brake fluid reservoir
  • Apply brake en handbrake a few times to mate the pads to the disks. Remember you may have power assisted brakes so the engine may as well be running.

The thickness of the rear replacement pads (pagid rs4-2 blue) are:

total thickness: 13.0 mm
backing plate: 4.1 mm
———————– –
rear pad service thickness 8.9 mm

Lotus Elise rear brake pad size, rear pad service thickness = 8.9 mm