This post may contain affiliate links. Learn more

How to Change Brake Pads and Rotors on a Chevy Silverado – Ultimate Guide!

So you want to learn how to change brake pads and rotors on a Chevy Silverado? You may also want to assess the different types of brake pads and decide on Semi Metallic VS Ceramic Brake Pads?

To make the vehicle function smoothly and effectively your braking system has to be up to scratch so you will find all the answers you need to get your Chevy back to braking hard and keeping you safe!

Among different parts and systems, in this article, we will discuss how to change brake pads on Chevy Silverado and which brake pads to choose.

The great news is that itis something that you can do it by yourself provided you have the right tools. You don’t need to go to the mechanic to get it done. If you don’t know how you can replace or change the brake pads on your Chevrolet Silverado, then this article is for you.

If you are also in the market for new brake pads check out our article on the best brake pads for Chevy Silverado.

How to Change Brake Pads and Rotors on a Chevy Silverado

So, lets just dive into it.

The process of changing the brake pads on the Chevy Silverado car model is divided into different stages. Here are different steps for changing brake pads:

Step 1: Front Brake Pads & Wheel Removal

The first step is to remove front brake pads and wheel from your Chevy Silverado model.

Step 2: Front Brake Caliper & Bracket Removal

For the front brake caliper removal, you will need a flat head screwdriver or angled pry bar and 14mm socket wrench.

Step 3: Compress Front Caliper Piston

To compress the front caliper piston, you will need a brake caliper compression tool, old brake pad, 10mm socket wrench, brake bleed kit, and drain pan.

Step 4: Remove Old Pads & Hardware

After compressing the front caliper piston, in this step, all you have to do is to remove old pads and hardware from the vehicle.

Step 5: Brake Pad Installation

This is the last and important stage in the process. In this step, you need to clean the front caliper bracket, install new front pad hardware, install the front brake pads, install front caliper bracket, install the front caliper, and finally, install the wheel.

This stage will take around 25 minutes.

The following videos will also provide visual insight into the process:

Replacing Front Brake Pads & Rotors on Chevy Silverado 1500

Replacing Rear Brake Pads & Rotors on Chevy Silverado 1500

What are the Brake Pads and Rotors?

Among different parts in a car, brake pads and rotors are the crucial ones. They are the component of disc brakes in vehicles. The main task of brake pads and rotors in the vehicle is to transfer the kinetic energy of the car into the thermal energy.

The kinetic energy transformed into thermal energy due to friction which then dissapates. This processs causes your vehicle to stop.

Among various parts and components involved in the braking system of vehicles, brake pads and rotors play a critical role. Brake pads, as well as rotors of the cars, trucks and other vehicles, turn the action into a physical force.

How to Change Brake Pads and Rotors on a Chevy Silverado

Types of Brake Pads

If we talk about brake pads of a vehicle’s braking system, there are different types. Here are the four main types of brake pads you will see in most vehicles:

01. Semi-Metallic Brake Pads

One of the most common types of brake pads in vehicles is Semi-metallic. Semi-metallic brake pads are made up of steel wire, graphite or copper, and friction modifiers.

This type of brake pad consists of around 30% to 65% metal. The problem with this type of brake pad is that it makes too many noises, wears down the rooters quickly and does not performs well at low temperatures.

02. Non-Asbestos Organic Pads

In the making of non-asbestos organic brake pads, fibers, high-temperature resins, and filler materials are being used. As we have seen, semi-metallic types of brake pads make too many noises but, if we talk about non-asbestos organic, they make less noise.

03. Low-metallic NAO B-Pads

Low-metallic NAO is the type of brake pad that is created from the organic materials. They have around 10% to 30% of metal like copper or steel. This type of brake pads has a better braking system.

04. Ceramic Brake Pads

The ceramic brake pad type includes a little amount of metal. It is basically made up of ceramic fibers, nonferrous filler materials, and bonding agents.

The only bad thing about ceramic brake pads is they are expensive as compared to other brake pad types.

Advantages of different brake pad types

What benefits you get is based on the type of brake pad & rotors you have selected. Here are the benefits of different types of brake pads:

  • Semi-metallic

Semi-metallic brake pads are made up of a mix of metals like iron, steel, and alloys. The best thing about this type of brake pads is that they provide great performance. It is the best type for the vehicles that do so much of heavy towing.

  • Non-Asbestos Organic

The best thing about Non-Asbestos organic brake pads is that they replace harmful asbestos linings. Basically, they make less noise as compared to other types of brake pads.

  • Low-metallic NAO Brake Pads

Low metallic NAO brake pads & rotors are made up of organic formula mixture with a very minimal amount of copper or steel. They provide better braking as compared to other brake pads.

  • Ceramic Pads & Rotors

The ceramic brake pad and rotor is made up of soft material. This type of brake pad is very helpful for long service life. As compared to other brake pad types, ceramic brake pads create less noise.

Ceramic vs Semi Metallic Brake Pads

Ceramic vs semi metallic brake pads is the most controversial topic in the automotive world. You must be known that with the change in time we have seen several new things coming and from when this earth and we all took birth.

Ceramic Brake Pads

Let us first have a look at ceramic brake pads, so these are the type of brake pads which are made up of ceramic fibers and several agents with the help of which those fibers are bonded with each other.

Although in such type of brake pads you would be able to find a small amount of metal in it. The ceramic brake pads are also known as the newest kind of brake pads which are introduced and by keeping this fact in our mind we can assume that this type of brake pad would be the best one.

There were several older brake pads which people were using for several years, but from the time these ceramic brake pads are introduced, slowly every automotive application is heading towards such brake pads only.

Although before making any decision, make sure that the Ceramic Brake Pads are expensive than other types of brake pads.

Let us have a look at the specifications of Ceramic Brake Pads

These type of brake pads are made up of high-quality and a dense ceramic material which has an addition of metal substances such as copper fibers and many more.

Semi-Metallic Brake Pads

The second type of brake pads that are used the most are Semi-Metallic Brake Pads, and I am sure that you might have got an idea about with what material these brake pads are made.

So these brake pads consist of 30-65% of metal in it, in addition to which you would be able to see graphite lubricants, various filters and friction modifiers in it.

Let us have a look at the specifications of Semi-Metallic Brake Pads

These types of brake pads are made up of 30-65% of metal in it, and the rest of 35% comprises filters, friction modifiers which helps in friction, and it works. In some high-quality semi-metallic brake pads you would be able to see graphite lubricants in it.

This video should help you decide on the right brake pad for you:

Semi Metallic VS Ceramic Brake Pads: Individual Advantages

Advantages Of Ceramic Brake Pads

Let us now have a look at the advantages of Ceramic Brake Pads those advantages are as follows-

  • The first and most significant benefit that you would be able to take with Ceramic Brake Pads is that you would be able to enjoy a quieter drive than ever.

As you know, there are several brake pads, which produces some noise whenever they are applied or get in contact with the moving disc. But in the case of Ceramic Brake Pads, you would be able to get a noise-free or negligible noise production while driving.

  • You must have noticed brake dust that almost every brake pad produces but in some cases this brake dust gets attached with the tires permanently which does not look good, and it’s hard to clean too.

But if you choose a Ceramic brake pad, then you will not produce that much amount of brake dust that another type of brake pads produces and hence there would be clean tires every time.

  • Whenever we replace our brake pads, we have one wish in our mind, and that is, it should have a longer lifespan.

So if you are also having the same thoughts in your mind, then you can choose ceramic brake pads as these brake pads are called the pads with the most extended lifespan ever noticed.

  • When you are on a long and hectic drive, the temperature on your car’s brake pads increases and the performance of your brake pads gets decreases.

But when you have ceramic brake pads, then you would be able to get high-quality performance even under higher temperature conditions also.

This was the list of advantages of Ceramic Brake Pads.

Advantages Of Semi-Metallic Brake Pads

Let us now have a look at the advantages of Semi-Metallic brake pads

  • The first advantage of using semi-metallic brake pads is that they can provide you with a better braking performance than organic brake pads. This is because the semi-metallic brake pads do not produce much break rust.

While the organic brake pads made a considerable amount of rust.

  • The second benefit is that you would be able to get better performance under high-temperature sections also.

This is one of the most crucial advantages, as several other brake pads reduce their performance under high-temperature conditions.

  • There are some brake pads that need to be warmed up whenever you are using them under colder conditions.

But in the case of semi-metallic brake pads, you would be able to get higher performance during colder conditions also, and that too without warming up.

  • If you are using a semi-metallic brake pad. Then you would be able to notice, that you won’t have to press the pedal with immense pressure as with a small pressure also you would be able to get a firmer brake pedal feel.
  • These semi-metallic brake pads have several types, which you can use for street driving to other track usages also. This means you would have brake pads for every climatic or track usage condition.

This was all about the advantages of Semi-Metallic Brake Pads.

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)

Here are some frequently asked questions on brake pads:

Q: How long do brake pads last?

A: If we talk about the lifespan of brake pads and rotors, it is based on so many factors. Mainly it is based on the type of pads or rotors you have in your vehicle. It may also get affected because of your driving style.

Q: Why some brake pads are expensive?

A: While buying brake pads, you don’t just pay for the final product. Brake pads need great testing and engineering as they are made separately for different vehicle models. Hence the pricing varies from one brake pad company to another.

Q: What includes in the box of brake pads?
A: Basically, the box of brake pads includes four pads. Depending upon whom you are buying, the hardware in the box may vary. It may include shims, anti-rattle clips and wear sensors.


The right selection of the right brake pad is based on the vehicle model you are using. Surely, a brake pad is the most important part of the vehicle braking system. And the most effective duty of the brake pad is to convert the driver’s action into physical energy.

Depending on your car model, the brake pad installation process may vary. To help you select the right brake pad and install it properly, here we have discussed what is brake pad, different types of brake pads, how to change brake pads and rotors on a Chevy Silverado, and benefits of brake pads.

If you found this post helpful, Share it with your friends...