I Have Aluminum Brake Calipers, What Do I Need to Know?
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If the engineers of your vehicle decided to use aluminum for the body of the calipers on your vehicle, they were probably more focused on performance than they were on the cost to manufacture. Aluminum calipers enhance the performance of a vehicle by reducing “un-sprung weight”, which helps acceleration and handling. Aluminum calipers also retain a cleaner look since they are less prone to corrosion. On the other hand, cast-iron calipers can have a rusty look.
Besides cost of manufacturing and care during installation, there aren’t many downsides to aluminum calipers. Other than those 2 items, the life expectancy and their function are pretty much the same as their cast iron counterparts.
One thing to keep in mind is that aluminum is much softer than cast iron or other metals. So, when installing aluminum calipers, make sure to only finger-tighten all fittings (Banjo bolt, bleeder screw, etc.).
Then, use a torque wrench to finish-tighten to the vehicle manufacturer’s specifications.
This is very critical because those fasteners are made from hardened steel and will very very easily strip out threads in an aluminum caliper if overtightened
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