How to Paint Brake Calipers
Vehicles with open-spoke alloy wheels have their brakes visible, which
means owners have the opportunity to show off their brake calipers with
different colors. Italian sports cars such as Ferraris and Lamborghinis
have painted calipers, and you might desire a similar sporty look.
Painting the calipers will give your car an expensive, custom look. Paint
brake calipers by removing the wheels from the car, and preparing the
surface properly so the paint will stick to the calipers and give them a
1Remove the wheels from the vehicle to give you access to the calipers.
It is possible to paint the calipers with the wheels on the car, but for
best results, take them off. Start with the 2 wheels on one side of the
car, and then do the opposite 2 wheels.<Loosen the lug nuts with a half
turn, using a lug wrench.
Set the parking brake.
Use a car jack to raise one side of the car off the ground. It should be
high enough that both wheels come up from the ground.
Put one jack stand under the surface of the car, near the front, and
another jack stand under the surface near the rear of the car. These
stands will hold the car securely off the ground.
Remove the lug nuts completely, and take off the wheels. Set the wheels
2Clean off the caliper. Begin by hosing down the caliper with a hose to
remove loose dirt and debris.Dip a wire brush into a cleaner and scrub
the brake caliper. Use gasoline, mineral spirits or an alloy wheel
cleaner that you can find at most auto parts stores. Remove any grease or
dirt on the caliper.
Rinse the caliper with water.
Apply a brake cleaner, which can be bought in a spray can. It will dry
quickly and prepare the surface of the caliper for painting.
3Mask anything in the immediate area of the caliper that you do not want
to paint.Use small plastic bags or newspaper and masking tape to cover
the rotors and brake lines.
4Choose a paint and a color. The calipers get hot, so be sure to choose a
paint that is heat resistant.Shop for paint specifically made for
calipers at auto supply stores and hardware stores. You can also use a
paint designed for metals.
5Paint the calipers.Use a cup or bowl and a paintbrush, even if you buy
paint that comes in a spray can. Spray some paint into a container
instead of directly onto the caliper to keep the paint job neat and
detailed. This will also help you get spots that are hard to reach.
Dip the paintbrush into the cup, and spread a coat of paint over the
Allow the paint to dry. The instructions on the paint tin will tell you
how long to allow the paint to dry.
Paint the caliper 3 more times, so there are 4 coats of paint on the
caliper. Allow each coat to dry before applying another one.
Spray a coat onto the caliper for extra coverage. This will provide a
smooth finish, and will give your calipers the look of a powder coating.
6Allow the calipers to dry for 24 hours.
7Replace the wheels and remove the jack stands, so the car is back on the
8Take the car out and drive it, to make sure the brakes are working
properly and to admire the painted calipers.
9Apply some copper grease to the brake parts after you test drive it.
This will keep the brake parts lubricated, which will prevent anything
from freezing up.<
You can choose any color you like. The most popular colors include black,
blue, red and yellow.
Brake parts on older cars may contain asbestos, which can be lethal and
contribute to lung cancer. Wear a mask and gloves when working near the
Things You'll Need
Small cup or bowl
Sources and Citations