If you’ve ever seen an expensive car on the road, you’ll notice that they have a present shaped part under the wheel that is painted. And you wondered if you could do that to your car. Well in fact, you can, as long as you have disc brakes. How do you know if you have disc brakes. Well first if you have a car from the 1990s or later, you most likely have disc brakes all around, but you can easily check by looking into your wheel and seeing a metal plate covered with a metal housing in a quarter of it. If you have drums you’ll just see a thick metal circle. Disc brakes have the caliper which is the metal thing we will be painting, while with drum brakes don’t. Now that you know if you have the right brake in the first place, we can get into painting them.
1. Remove the Wheel
This one may seem obvious but with AAA, some people have never removed a wheel before. Simply you just need to jack the car on the proper jack paints on the car’s frame, then you can use a lug nut wrench to take off the lug nuts and then be able to remove the tire and wheel.
2. Remove Brake Pads
Now we need to remove the brake pads which are held in the caliper. We can do this without having to remove the caliper, but it is very necessary to do this step. If you don’t remove the brake pads then the paint could contaminate the brake pads causing bad breaking and even seizing up a part of the rotor. You just need to remove a couple bolts and then you can slip the pads out.
3. Clean Caliper
Just take brake cleaner and a wire brush to clean off all the grime, you can even bring some low grit sandpaper to take off all the dirt and grime that has built up over the years. Also, cleaning the caliper will help ensure that the paint sticks to it and last a long time.
4. Cover Rotor
Now just take some painters tape and cover everything that you don’t want to get painted. This includes the inside of the caliper, al of the rotor, and even behind the caliper. That way paint doesn’t contaminate any of the braking and also looks good.
5. Paint Caliper
While there is no law saying to use caliper specific paint, using Krylon or great value paint will likely not last as long as paint specifically made for calipers. Whichever paint you choose, apply it in a smooth fashion where you are around 1-2’ away from the caliper. Apply multiple coats and coat both sides of the caliper. Now you need to let the paint dry for at least an hour before you reassemble your brakes and wheel together, and at least 24 hours before you go and start driving your car again
6. Maintenance Tips
Your paint should be able to stand up to car washes, off roading, and other abuses but the nicer you treat your calipers, the longer they will last.