The heavy duty power of the Dodge Ram 2500 is what makes it such a useful and popular truck with workers and adventurers alike.
With its 6.4 liter V8 engine, it is up to some of the toughest challenges you can throw at it.
However, as powerful as it is, its stopping power must be equally as effective.
That’s why learning how to change the front brake pads on a Dodge Ram 2500 is so important.
Keeping up with this crucial aspect of maintenance is the best way to keep your Ram 2500 safe and secure on the road or on the job site.
In this guide, you’ll learn:
- What the front brake pads on a Dodge Ram 2500 do
- Why brake pads are so important
- How to change the front brake pads on a Dodge Ram 2500, step by step
- And more!
What Are Brake Pads?
Brake pads are perhaps the most useful part of your Dodge Ram 2500’s braking system. They are the mechanism that actually grabs onto the wheel and brings it to a stop when you press on the brake pedal.
Brake pads use areas made of metal, rubber or ceramic to create friction on the rotor attached to the wheel. These friction areas take the energy of the moving wheel and turn it into heat, which then disperses throughout the pads and is expelled through slotting and the surface of the rotor.
Read More >> How To Release Brake Caliper Pressure?
What are the Benefits of Changing the Front Brake Pads on a Dodge Ram 2500?
One of the downsides of brake pads needing to use friction in order to function is that they will eventually wear out.
The material on friction areas will thin down until they are no longer as effective as they were when the pads were brand new.
Because of this, brake pads must be changed regularly in order to ensure that they will be able to transform the kinetic energy of the wheel into heat and slow down the wheel.
Luckily, brake pads are relatively easy to change and are a fairly inexpensive item compared to other car parts. For this reason, you should never hesitate to change the brake pads of your Dodge Ram 2500 if you suspect they need to be.
When Should You Check the Front Brake Pads on a Dodge Ram 2500?
For the most part, brake pads should be changed every 30,000 to 50,000 miles. This is a general rule of thumb and there are many factors that will come into play.
Since brake pads are an expendable car part, they will need to replaced more often if they see an extraordinary amount of use.
If you regularly drive your Dodge Ram 2500 in stop and go traffic, this can put extra strain on the pads and wear down the friction areas sooner rather than later.
Pads should also be changed more often if you use your truck for off-roading or heavy work applications. This extra pressure can make the pads heat up and deteriorate at a much faster rate than regular street driving.
Check out the article below for more detail for when to replace your brake pads.
Read More >> When to Replace Brake Pads (5 Signs)
Why Should You Change the Front Brake Pads on a Dodge Ram 2500?
The Dodge Ram 2500 uses a drum brake system for the rear brakes, which operates on a system of fluids and drums in order to stop the wheels. This is because of the rear wheel drive of the truck and that type of braking system is much more efficient on the drivetrain.
However, the front wheels use a disc brake system which uses brake pads to slow down the wheel and bring the truck to a stop.
Because of this, the front brakes will be doing much of the stopping since they bear most of the weight of the truck as the pedal is applied.
You should regularly change the front brake pads on a Dodge Ram 2500 because faulty brakes in this area of the truck can reduce stopping distance and make the braking system less responsive.
The brake pedal is just as important as the gas pedal, and making sure that you have brake pads that are in good working order will ensure the efficiency of your truck and give you a confidence at the wheel that promotes safe driving.
So How Do Brake Pads Work?
Brake pads work using friction on a metal disc called a rotor. This rotor is attached to the wheel hub and spins with the wheel as you accelerate.
When you press the brake pedal, the fluid in the brake lines moves and pulls the pads together onto the rotor.
The pads then slow down the rotor and, in turn, slow down the wheel.
In order for this process to work efficiently, your pads must be in good working order and have a sufficient amount of friction area on them. If they don’t, they can cause damage to the rotors as well as other parts of the braking system.
Curious about what can happen if you continue to use worn down brake pads? This video gives some insight into the dangers of not replacing them when you should:
What Do You Need To Know About Changing the Front Brake Pads on a Dodge Ram 2500?
One of the most important things to know about changing the front brake pads on a Dodge Ram 2500 is that it must be done properly in order to be safe.
If you are not quite sure about your mechanical abilities, you should not attempt to do this job yourself. It could result in improper braking, which is unsafe for you, your truck and anyone else on the road.
Read More >> Top 5 Best Brake Pads for a Honda Accord
What Supplies Do You Need To Change the Front Brake Pads on a Dodge Ram 2500?
Changing the front brake pads on a Dodge Ram 2500 is a relatively simple job. With a few basic tools, it can be done in an afternoon. To do the job properly, you will need:
- A car jack and jack stands
- A tire iron
- An adjustable wrench and pliers
- A hammer
- A wire brush for removing dust and grime
- A new set of brake pads for a Dodge Ram 2500
How To Change the Front Brake Pads on a Dodge Ram 2500 (5 Steps)
Step 1: Remove the front tires
The first step of changing the brake pads on a Dodge Ram 2500 is fairly self-explanatory. In order to get to the pads, you will have to remove the front wheels and tires.
You should have a tire iron that came with your Dodge Ram 2500. This will be specially sized to the lug nuts that hold the wheel onto the truck’s axle hub.
Get the truck up on jack stands by placing them under the front axle. Then, remove the tires and put them somewhere out of the way.
It is very important that you have proper jack stands for your Dodge Ram 2500. Cinder blocks or blocks of wood are incredibly unsafe and should never be used to hold up such a heavy truck.
Step 2: Remove the caliper from the mounting bracket
Once you remove the wheels and tires, you will see the brake caliper that is holding the pads over the rotor.
This caliper must be removed from its mounting bracket in order to get the old pads out.
To do this, loosen the bolt holding the caliper onto the bracket. This bolt will not loosen unless you hold the pin on the back side as well.
Hold the pin with the pliers and loosen the bolt. This will free the caliper from its mounting bracket and you can let it hang loose in place. This will prevent it from being damaged by placing it on the ground.
Step 3: Push back the caliper pistons
On the caliper, there are small pistons that hold the old brake pads in place.
These pistons must be pushed back with the adjustable wrench in order to get the old, dusty pads out of their clips.
Once you have pushed these pistons back, you should be able to pull the old pads out. After you have done this, take the wire brush and clean away any dust or rust that has accumulated inside the caliper and on the rotor.
By cleaning out this old grime, you can be sure that you are getting a fresh start with your new pads and that they won’t wear down too quickly.
Read More >> Top 5 Best Brake Pads for F250 Super Duty
Step 4: Attach the new pads
After pushing the pistons back and removing the old brake pads, you will then have to attach the new brake pad clips.
This hardware should come with the new set of pads and will usually be made of alloy or stainless steel.
It should be noted that high quality hardware is just as important as high quality pads. It will ensure that the pads have a tight fit on the caliper and won’t vibrate when you apply the pedal.
Once you have attached the new clips to the pads, you can slide the new pads into place where the old ones were.
Make sure that the clips are located on the outside of the pad and that everything has a tight fit when it is installed.
Read More >> How to Release Brake Caliper Pressure?
Step 5: Tighten the caliper
After performing these tasks, you are ready to push the pistons back in place and put the caliper back on the axle hub.
Always work in backwards from the same order you took the calipers off. This will ensure that everything will be in the correct place and is tightened in the correct order.
If you are not sure about your ability to do this, it is always a good idea to take photographs as you are removing the calipers. This will give you a point of reference when you are putting them back on.
After this is completed, you can then put the wheels and tires back on and bring the truck back down off the jack stands.
Take the truck out for a test drive on some quiet streets if possible. Listen for any squeaks or squeals when applying the brakes and make sure there are no unwanted vibrations when you press down on the brake pedal.
If there are no issues with the brakes or the way they sound, you should be good to go for another 40,000 miles of trouble-free braking!
Our Final Thoughts on How to Change the Front Brake Pads on a Dodge Ram 2500
Knowing how to change front brake pads on a Dodge Ram 2500 is a great way to understand the entire braking system of the truck.
The more you know about your vehicle, the easier it will be to identify and possibly fix any issues that may come up in the future.
By learning how to change the front brake pads on a Dodge Ram 2500, you can be as informed as possible about how your truck works and how to get the best possible performance out of it.
On top of that, nothing beats the satisfaction of fixing something yourself and keeping your Dodge Ram 2500, as well as the vehicles of others, safe on the road.