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PROJECT:

2002 Firebird Convertible 3.8l with 256,000 miles with several brake pads changes by me, already. Attempting to replace front bearing/hub assembles and the brake rotors and pads. Also attempting to replace rear brake rotors and pads.

PROBLEM:

2002 Firebird, with new, installed, rear, outer brake pads (with wear indicator) do not allow the caliper to close enough to install caliper mounting bolt.

PREVIOUS ACTIONS:

Removed rear caliper and rotor. Then, removed brake pads. Cleaned caliper and slide pins and clips with wire brush and brake cleaner. Installed clips. Greased clips and existing slide pins. Coated back side of new pads with brake quiet and let dry. Coated ends of new brake pads with grease. Pressed caliper piston in until flush with piston opening. Sprayed brake cleaner on emergency brake pads and inner workings. Cleaned new rotor with brake cleaner. Installed new rotor. Mounted caliper onto new rotor and installed upper mounting bolt only.

With caliper swiveled up, installed brake pads on either side of new rotor. Then, swiveled caliper down. However, no matter how hard I push, the caliper will not push in far enough to align the lower mounting holes to insert the mounting bolt. it is about 1/4 of an inch out of mounting hole alignment.

In a rush, I did not take notice of the old pads positions. According the Haynes manual, the outer pad is the pad with the wear indicator on it. It must go on the outside with the wear indicator on the bottom. However, it will not allow the bolt holes to align and install the bottom mounting bolt.

I noticed the new pad with the wear indicator has a tab in the middle of the pad that is longer than the middle tab on the brake pad without the wear indicator. If I put the outer pad on the inside, I can install both mounting bolts. Do I put the pad with the wear indicator on the inner side instead of the outer side? Or am I doing something wrong? Thanks for any assistance.
 

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1994 Firebird Formula 381ci LT1 / TH400+GV O/D
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Did you compare the shape of the new pads to the old one? Maybe they gave you the wrong pads... maybe the earlier 93-97 pads????
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
Thank you for your reply. No, did not compare. But I had store re check and pull another set of rear pads. I compared the pads they pulled to the new ones I have. They were the same. I have read, that some just switch Pads, but I need to know if the rear pad with the wear indicator and longer middle metal tab is only suppose to fit on the OUT side.
 

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1994 Firebird Formula 381ci LT1 / TH400+GV O/D
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The 2000 factory manual, which should be the same as yours indicates - REAR BRAKE PAD REPLACEMENT :

Ensure that the wear sensor is on the leading edge of the INNER pad during forward wheel rotation. If the wear sensor is not on the leading edge, use the other inner pad in the replacement kit.
 

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Wow. Thanks! That proves that the Haynes manual is wrong. I will install the pad with the wear indicator on the inside and report back to this thread. Thanks again for taking the time and making the effort to find the manual Info.
 

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1994 Firebird Formula 381ci LT1 / TH400+GV O/D
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You can download a copy of the factory manual from the thread "pinned" at the top of the Fourth Generation forum.

I was surprised the read that in the manual. I thought every wear sensor I had ever seen was on the outer pad. The manual shows the front caliper is just the opposite - trailing edge of the outer pad. ?????
 

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Discussion Starter · #8 ·
Haynes manual for Firebird and Camaro 1993 thru 2002, Front and rear brake pads (1998 and later), chapter 9 Brakes, 9-6,3.13k states, "Install the inner brake pad; if your replacing the front Pads, it's the one with the wear indicator on it, which must be positioned at the top (on the rear brakes, the outer pad has the wear indicator)".

Its Saturday, and I was about to replace front and back pads. However, after reading what you found in official manual and after reading the Haynes manual, I am very confused????????
 

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1994 Firebird Formula 381ci LT1 / TH400+GV O/D
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Did you try doing it per the FACTORY manual? Does it fit?
 

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Working on it now. Correct pad position was obvious once I compared front and rear caliper carrier middle clips and front and rear brake pad middle tabs. Will provide more detail after I finish installs. However, in a nutshell, rear Pads can only fit per factory manual you provided. In my opinion, the Haynes manual is wrong per rear brakes. The front Pads appear to fit either way and can choose wear indicator location.
 

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Update:
Completed front new bearing hubs/rotors/brake pads and rear new rotors/brake pads replacement.

Thanks to Injuneer for factory manual specs.

For my stock 2002, Haynes manual was incorrect as far as rear brake pad wear indicator pad placement. Rear brake pads have different height middle metal tabs and the caliper clip has a low and high side. Therefore, Pads can only fit per factory manual specs.

The front Pads have same height middle metal tabs and caliper clips are level, therefore wear indicator might be able to be placed in per factory or Haynes manuals. However, I installed front Pads per factory specs, not Haynes manual.
 
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