Brake caliper refurbishment services don’t need to be a ‘one size fit’s all’ concept. We have two options to choose from here at BCS, which one you would like depends on your needs or how bad your calipers are. See below for more info.
Make sure you take a look at the optional coatings when having either of the two services below.
Brake Caliper Un-Seize & Repair Service
We know that some customers don’t need a complete brake caliper refurbishment (also known as re-manufacture), so we have introduced a more budget option where we simply solve the problem of a seized caliper and get it working again. This way you can be back on the road much quicker.
- Same day turnaround in some cases
- 3 Month warranty
- Fluid seal(s) replaced
- Lower cost alternative to complete caliper refurb
- Complete strip and rebuild with ultrasonic clean
- No shot-blasting or painting required
- Any piston un-seized, no matter how bad
- Send your carriers too, we’ll clean and re-grease them free of charge
Total Brake Caliper Refurbishment
Everything as per the piston Un-Seize & Repair Service and so much more…
Depending on the caliper coating you choose, whether the remanufacture basic gunmetal grey, our standard paint service or our high-end painting service. You’ll receive a 4, 5 or 10 year warranty (respectively). Even our most basic paint is far better than the industry standard electroplate or zinc passivate and even the coloured coating on many well known brake calipers.
The the full service description for the complete Brake Caliper Refurbishment, also known as re-manufacture
Whether you know it or not, when you replace your brake caliper(s) through a garage or you buy them from main dealer or an part factors, it is almost guaranteed to be a caliper that has been re-manufactured by a company who does millions of them each year. You probably think they are new, but they are actually several years old at least (vehicle depending).
There is nothing wrong with this, in fact you are contributing to saving the planets resources, so actually this is great! However, now imagine a company re-manufacturing 1 million calipers per year, if you they are able to save £1 per caliper on using cheap caliper parts, the company makes an extra £1,000,000 per year. Still a good option?
We don’t work on millions per year, we celebrated our 10,000th customer in year 6 of business and we’re approaching year 8 now. That’s a lot of experience, but unlike big re-manufacturing companies, every caliper we work on is for a customer we have spoken to on the phone and we do it it the way they want and it meets their needs.
Optional Coatings For Your Caliper Refurb
If you have a complete re-manufacture of your calipers, we use a pretty tough coating as standard which is far superior to electroplate usually used when you buy calipers new or re-manufactured calipers from autofactors & Halfords etc.
Standard Brake Caliper Paint - Superior alternative to Powder Coating Brake Calipers
An improved optin to brake caliper powder coating. The finish is very similar to a good quality powder coat, but better suited to cope with the heat and abrasion, the gloss is great too.
Colour Options: Any solid (non-metallic) colour, also silver, gunmetal and metallic black.
You will get an additional 1 year warranty on the function of your caliper(s), so that's 5 years in total and 2 year total warranty on the paint finish.
High-End Brake Caliper Painting Service
This is the bees knee's of coatings. You'll get a 10 year warranty on the function of your calipers (as the casts are much better protected) and a 10 year warranty on the finish of the coating. So if the paint flakes or corrosion is present, we'll re-work them again for no charge at all and we will even pay for shipping both ways.
Caliper Paint Colours: Anything, we can match to any standard automotive colour code, BS and RAL codes and most Pantone references too.
Our caliper paint truly is an awesome creation! It can cope with the heat produced when braking, abrasion of brake dust flying around and even wheel acid. If you've seen painted OEM (original) calipers flake, this is usually acid related, it won't happen with our paint.
Non-Priority Turnaround Time
- Re-Manufacture: 11-13 working days
- Standard Brake Caliper Painting: 5-7 working days when combined with re-man (double if this is the only service you are having)
- High-end Painting Service: 12-15 working days
- Logo stencilling (not vinyl): Add 2 days (unless custom or complex graphics or multiple colours, then potentially much longer)
- Candy paint & other custom paints: 2 working days (unless complex work requested)
- Cast smoothing: Add 3 days (unless casts particularly poor)
- Thread repair, helicoils or inserts being made: Add 2 days, or if outsourced to engineer, up to 5 days
- Custom manufacture of stainless steel pistons: Add 2-5 days, depending on complexity of profile
Combine turnaround times when combining services.
Turn around times start from when calipers are received by us NOT when they are sent.
Turnaround times do not include weekends or published holiday periods (i.e. Christmas) and are based on averages on common brake calipers. We don't recommend you use these turnaround times for rare or classic vehicles or for booking work at garages etc.
While we stock most parts for most calipers, there are calipers which have rare parts which we have to source on demand and the turnaround times are affected by the speediness of the 3rd parties we rely on for sourcing some parts. We will inform you as soon as we are aware of any issues, while this is relatively rare, it is worth considering asking us if we have issues with your calipers before sending them into us if i.e. you have a track day or holiday booked shortly after you hope to have your calipers back. If you have a rare or classic vehicle, we will only assume that parts are available and we cannot be held responsible if we are unable to source parts or if we are waiting on backorder parts from manufacturers. So if your car is classic or rare, the turnaround time guidelines shown here may not be relevant to your vehicle. Please understand that there are tens of thousands of parts which are required running our business.
Additional Engineering Work
Please also be aware that not all calipers arrive needing only the work quoted, we frequently find snapped bolts, sheered brackets and all sorts of other issues. For some jobs we outsource to our local engineer (30 years exp) who can deal with anything that can't be dealt with in our workshop. This will also add time to your job, while this is relatively rare, it is worth considering asking us if we have issues with your calipers before sending them into us if i.e. you have a track day or holiday booked shortly after you hope to have your calipers back. In the rare event you aren't happy with an updated invoice price, please note there will be an assessment charge to cover the cost of the work already performed.
Re-use of Parts
Our complete refurbishment service involves the replacement of all parts where required. We don't quote for pistons to be replaced as standard as these are often in good working order, rather than push the average price of our services up and replace all pistons as standard, we think it is fair that they are only paid for where required. Our function warranty on a full refurb ranges from 4 years to 10 years, so we have to be sure that they will at least last duration. Where we have quoted for rubber parts to be replaced, some are reused, but go through a refurbishment process themselves. We believe that refurbishing brake calipers is an environmental friendly option and as such, don't believe in filling land fill with perfectly good parts that would have outlasted our warranty. This occurs around 1 in 10 times.
Turnaround times are based on averages and are guidelines, not promises and they are not set in stone, they vary from week to week depending on how busy we are. Sometimes we are much faster and frequently turn what should have been a 7 day job around in 2 days, although rare the same type of 7 day job can take longer than expected, although this is usually due to additional work or waiting for parts, this can cause very rare delays of up to 3 months if we are waiting on backorder parts. Please do not take this guide literally or make appointments with garages etc based on the turnaround times described here as sometimes work can take longer or our quality control measures pick up the occasional fault which can require rework.
Combine turnaround times when combining services.
Priority Turnaround Times
Choosing the PRIORITY service will add a surcharge to your invoice. If we do not complete the work within 2 days of quoted time, you will receive a full refund on the additional cost paid to us.
Depending on the value of your invoice or how often you use us, we may provide Priority at no additional cost. In this case, where priority failures occur, you will not be entitled to any refunds. We will not be held liable for any expense incurred for car hire, missed holidays, MOT slots, track time/events or any other thing that may be considered similar.
PRIORITY is only available where parts are easily accessible, so we would not offer this to a customer with a set of calipers where data is limited, i.e imports or where parts have to be sourced from USA etc. Please do not assume you can have the PRIORITY service without speaking with us first.
Combine turnaround times when combining services.
We cannot guarantee that your invoice will match your estimate, sometimes customers require additional engineering work or to custom make parts not available. Potential additional charges include engineering work including bolt extractions, re-threads, helicoils, making inserts to name a few. Charges can range from £15 to £120 per job depending on the level of work required. While these kinds of additional costs are relatively infrequent, we are obliged to inform you of any such potential charges.
Public Liability & Professional Indemnity Insurance
All our work is fully insured with up to £5,000,000 for Products and Professional Services Indemnity and £10,000,000 for Public Liability. A copy of our certificates can be emailed to you at your request. There have been no claims in the history of our company and we have QA and QC systems and processes in place to ensure this remains the case. As a company that specialises in only brake calipers, our insurers regard us as a high risk trade and as a result, such cover comes at a considerable cost to the business, although we would never be without it. We have high regard for our own peace of mind and yours.
We operate a Lean Six Sigma process that ensures we are constantly improving. Our systems and processes, coatings, software and communication methods are regularly scrutinised. We ask all customers for feedback via an automated questionnaire (ensuring we never forget to ask your opinion), we believe that you are the best judges of our products and services and all the Six Sigma in the world won't be able to deliver our 'current state' as well as you can.
As mentioned above, our trade is high-risk for insurers. Without measures in place, there is a lot that can go wrong in our business and the stakes are high. Thankfully, we are a company who puts customers before profit and never cut corners, our ever improving systems and processes ensure we maintain our very high standards and we make sure our customers have the best stopping power in the world. Our insurance company also demands that certain standards are met in order to remain in cover, this includes a specific industry proven method of pressure testing brake calipers. In all, we hope that we are the best caliper refurbishment company in the world, as it is certainly our aim.
Returns & Re-Work
Mistakes rarely happen, while this is very rare, we accidentally ship calipers back to our customers with minor faults.
Should you make us aware of any faults either before or during fittment, we will arrange shipping with our carrier and at our expense both ways. We will not be held liable for shipping expenses where you have paid retail prices for shipping. We will only refund a maximum of £10 for any shipping transactions you have made without our approval.
We are require at least one opportunity to rectify any defects or faults with our work. No refunds will be provided unless a second attempt to rectify any faults is unsuccesful. Due to the nature of some brake calipers, certain operational checks cannot be completed unless the caliper is fitted to the vehicle, in particular handbrake mechanism faults under no-pedal pressure.
Alcon brakes, Alfa Romeo, AP Racing, Aston Martin, Audi, Austin, Bedford, Bentley, BMW, Brembo Brakes, Chevrolet, Chrysler, Citroen, Dacia, Daewoo, DAF, Daihatsu, Ferrari, Fiat, Ford, Honda, Hyundai, Isuzu, Iveco, Jaguar, Kia, Lada, Lamborghini, Lancia, Land Rover, Lexus, Leyland, Lotus, Mazda, Mercedes-Benz, MG, Mini, Mitsubishi, Nissan, Peugeot, Polski Fiat, Porsche, Proton, Reliant, Renault, Rolls Royce, Rover, Saab, Seat, Skoda, Smart Car, Ssangyong, Subaru, Suzuki, Talbot, Tesla, Toyota, Triumph, Vauxhall & Opel, Volkswagen, Volvo, Talbot, Yugo
If your vehicle is not listed, it doesn't matter as we will be able to re-manufacture them.
Do it the easy way: Get Pricing Here
Professional Caliper Remanufacturers
A couple of our caliper rebuilds
Refurbishing Brake Calipers
We at the Brake Caliper Specialists strive for perfection each day, with badly seized calipers, solving problems with sticking and squeaky brakes, no matter how rusty your calipers are, we perform a complete remanufacturing service with the option for our high-end paint upgrade. Each rebuild comes with 2 year function warranty or 3 years if you upgrade to the high end painting service!
How to stop your brakes squeaking
The squeaking which comes from braking systems is caused by vibrations which come from either the contact between the pads and discs OR the contact between the brake pads and pistons. Usually, this will happen within the first 1,000 miles of your pads being fitted.
When you fit new brake pads
You must use a heatproof silicone grease on the face of the pistons.
Standard copper grease is not suitable as its difficult to avoid getting the grease on the piston dust-covers, being made of rubber this can make them perish eventually allowing moisture to get round the piston. The silicone grease should be enough to dampen any vibrations between the pad and piston.
Bedding in new brake pads
When you fit discs & pads you must make sure you do plenty of intentional braking in the first few miles, try and pull in a few ‘almost but not quite’ emergency stops too. This is because when pressure is applied to the brake pedal and the pads are firmly pushed against the disc, they don’t quite sit flat and flush, this can cause the brakes to squeak also.
My brakes squeak, they are not new discs or pads
This could be down to the piston seal which is becoming slightly perished losing an amount of flexibility. This causes the actual piston to vibrate against the pad no matter how much grease you apply to the back of the pads.
Jag Mk2 Brake Caliper Rebuild
Un seized, stripped & shot blasted
Caliper rebuilt with new seals & basic paint
Ford Focus RS Brake Caliper
On arrival at BCS
Custom painted in pearl blue
High-end painting upgrade
After degrease in original red coating
Aston Marting calipers painted with custom stencilling
Seized pistons dealt with
Not the worst we’ll see, but bad
Custom Chrome Airbrush Stencilling
Full Brake Caliper Refurbishment Process
With a measure twice, cut once approach to a caliper refurbishment, we ensure we cover ever aspect of the service. These days we do much more than we used to, we are forever learning and developing new ideas and improving the process of caliper refurbishment. Our current process as below.
- Total dis-assemble of your unit
- Total degrease on our pretty fancy degreasing machine
- Air dry parts for inspection
- Generate report for parts department so they can pick or source parts for rebuild
- Our parts department will call you to confirm service, add-ons, payment, shipping & any other issues
- Once approval is confirmed with you, your calipers will move around our workshop as follows
- Total shot-blast to bare metal. Unless original coating needs to be maintained, please make a note of this in your package with your calipers so we know early on.
- Ferrous materials are then soaked in a de-rusting solution until the painter is ready to add your free or upgrade coating. The de-rusting solution also means that it dissolves anything the shot-blaster may have missed.
- Our painter then applies your desired coating, standard re-man coating, Aviation Polymer or High-End Paint.
- By this time, the parts department have usually matched and picked your parts, any brake caliper parts not stocked are sourced from trusted suppliers. We are very fussy on materials used, so beware of cheaper alternatives (eBay etc.)
- The rebuild technician then re-assembles them with your new parts as necessary. As standard we replace all rubber components within the quoted price, if pistons required these are billed separately. Piston failure rate is 13% (based on last 12 months).
- We pressure test up to 2,500 psi on our brake testing rig. Bear in mind that in an emergency brake some vehicles are capable of generating over 2,000 psi.
- The are then cleaned up and placed on our QC area for inspection by management before a QC passed sticker is placed on your paperwork, they are then packaged up and ready for dispatch.
- Once dispatched, you will get an automatically generated email and SMS with your tracking number and delivery date.
How To Rebuild Brake Calipers
We do not recommend that anyone attempts a rebuild yourself on a road going vehicle for obvious reasons. If you are safety conscious and respect the lives of other road users, you shouldn’t need any encouragement to leave rebuilding your brake calipers to experienced professionals.
You must bear in mind that some of the caliper repair kits available on sites like eBay are often substandard in quality, if anything goes wrong with your rebuild, the seller of the repair kit has no responsibility for the failure of the parts, as it is easy to blame it on the customer who performed the rebuild.
When reassembling calipers it is very easy to slice chunks out of the piston bore seals with the piston when sliding it into the bore, you would not know you have done this until the caliper is fitted and enough pressure is applied to the brake fluid, this may not be until you drive your vehicle.
Stripping and rebuilding brakes is not difficult in principle, but seized pistons are a nightmare to deal with even if you have the equipment we do. It is usually the stripping, cleaning and shot blasting that is the time consuming element of the re-manufacturing process, once everything is prepared, treated and ready to take the new replacement pistons, seals, dust-covers, bushes and anything else your calipers require, the rebuild is pretty easy going so long as you know what you are doing of course.
The bit that you cannot do at home is a proper pressure test on the calipers, this tests that there is a perfect seal between the piston, bore seal and the caliper itself. We are happy to set out a few instructions for those who wish to self-diagnose faults on their calipers, but the rebuild needs to be left to people who have experience of this, needless to say the ability to pressure test the integrity of the piston seals is critical. If you have a multiple piston caliper, we recommend not doing anything, extracting the pistons is difficult and you probably won’t have the tools to hand to be able to do this, so this guide is for single piston calipers only. You will need: Compressed air, swan neck grips, brake fluid, a Brillo pad or Scotch-brite, gloves, goggles and a paper towel or a cloth.
Stripping Your Calipers
You will need to first drain the brake fluid from the caliper as you are going to inject compressed air into the chamber and you do not want any blown back on you. So, ensuring your goggles are on do exactly that, where the flexible hose attaches to the caliper you should be able to force air through. This should pop the piston out of the bore, if not, your going to have to secure the caliper in a vice and get your swan neck grips round the face of the piston, rotate it back and forth while forcing air through. If this does not dislodge the piston you’ll have to keep on persevering and if its still not out an hour later then give up, you’ll have to leave it to us (Book Here). Assuming you have managed to remove the piston from your caliper, it will probably have an element of corrosion round the surface of the piston, this is normal so don’t worry. To decide if you need to replace the piston, or not you will have to clean the corrosion as much as possible to see if there is any corrosion has eaten away at the surface. If this is the case, when the piston surface slides along the bore seal, the two will not meet tightly enough to stop brake fluid from leaking out of the chamber. This will of course lead to a loss of fluid out of the reservoir and on an emergency stop the force required will not be delivered to the brake pads & discs. If the piston is clean and corrosion free it can be reused and will have plenty of years of life left in it after a rebuild. Rebuilding Your Calipers. We do not suggest that you do this, you can do it at home in relative ease but you will be unable to properly pressure test your caliper, so there is no way of knowing that the seal between the piston and caliper casting is good enough. It is only possible to test this properly with at least 150 PSI, most home compressors can only produce around 60-100 PSI at best.