guzzle's 2002 Ford Powerstroke Diesel Caliper Slide Pin Lubrication and Upgrade
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After reading many posts about the front brake calipers slide pins corroding and freezing in the pin bores on the Ford 7.3L Powerstroke Diesel trucks I was getting a little paranoid about the possibility of having brake failure or expensive caliper/rotor repairs due to the original slide pin design. Ford has a slide pin upgrade kit (2C3Z-2C150-AA) available for about $20 and since I was planning to do a little front axle maintenance anyway, I decided to tackle this job.

As an added bonus, the pulsation I have been feeling when coming to a stop, like the brakes were quickly grabbing and releasing, is somewhat reduced. I still believe that the factory rotors are warped and replacement rotors will be one of my next projects. This job is surprising easy to do.

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Ford has 3 different styles of the front brake calipers. This picture shows the caliper bore on the first generation caliper and can usually be found on the 99 model Superduties. If your caliper pin bore looks like this, the newer caliper pins described in this article will not work. You will either have to upgrade your calipers or use the older pin kit #YC3Z-2C150-AA

old caliper kits

Upgraded pins

These are the parts you will need. Ford # 2C3Z-2C150-AA. Oneset per wheel will be needed.

caliper kits

One pin in the kit looks identical to the original; the other has a new rubber boot that is slipped over the bore end of the slide pin. The kit also comes with new pin boots. Notice that the two heads of the slide pins are a different shape and are the same color and shape of the originals. You will want to replace the pins in the same bores that the original came from.

caliper difference

Removing the brake caliper

Park the truck in the work area and set the parking brake. Jack the front end up and set the axle housing on a set of heavy jack stands and remove the hubcaps and wheels. With a heavy breaker bar and a 13/16" socket, break the two caliper mounting bolts loose.

break bolts loose

With the breaker bar and a 3/4" socket, break the caliper slide pin bolts loose.

Slide Pin Bolt

After removing the caliper mounting bolts sit the caliper on the brake rotor and remove the two caliper slide pin bolts. With the caliper in this position, slide the caliper slide pin bracket towards you and it should easily slide off the brake pads and come free.

caliper free

Set the bracket on the work area and pull the old boots and slide pins from their respective bores. Pay close attention to which colored pin comes from which bore. It may be helpful to mark the bracket with one or two punch marks for the bore that holds the green slide pin. The bores on my brackets were very dry but had not yet started corroding.

slide pin bracket1

Clean out the slide pin bores in solvent. I used a screwdriver with a small piece of ScotchBite pad wrapped around the tip as to not scratch the interior of the slide pin bore. Using a 'butter churn' action while turning the screwdriver did the job.

bore cleaning

If you have corrosion in your bores, you may want to try wrapping some emery cloth around a wooden dowel and polish out the bore holes or you could wrap some steel wool around a drill bit and spin it inside the bore until the cylinder is rust-free..

bore cleaned

Coat the new slide pins with a Silicone Brake Lubricant. Don't go too heavy as the bore opening will remove any excess. With cotton swab, coat the interior of the bore with a VERY thin layer of Silicone Brake Lubricant. If too much is put in the bore, when the pin is inserted, the unit will hydro-lock and the caliper will not be able to fully open. Do not attempt to use a product like a anti-seize. These lubricants will not hold up to the heat that can be generated by disk brakes and will eventually fail, causing catastrophic damage to the calipers.

pins lubed

Push the slide pins in the bores to every distribute the lubricant and remove them.

pins inserted

Install the new boots that came in the kit on the slide pin shoulder flange.


Install the slide pins into the new boots and down into the bores. Make sure that the boots slip over the retaining ring at the top of the slide pins.
The slide pin with the notch needs to be installed in the bore that will be at the top of the caliper (farthest from the ground) when the caliper is installed.

pins installed

Reinstall the bracket on the caliper

Place the caliper in the same position as when you removed the bracket. By positioning the bracket in this manner and sliding it on, reversing the manner in which it was removed, the caliper will go together. This procedure is more difficult than separating the bracket from the caliper body and you will have to pinch the front pad retaining springs closed to allow the retaining springs to clear the tops of the front pads.

bracket install

When positioning the slide pin heads in the caliper body, make sure that the heads seat in the shoulder notch that is designed to keep them from rotating. They should be flush with the body and not sitting on top of the ridge. Install the pin bolts and lightly cinch with a 3/4" socket.

pin bolts install

Install the caliper on the hub mount

Position the caliper back over the rotor assembly. To keep the rotor in position if it comes loose, you can tighten one lug nut on to the rotor. Line up the caliper bolt holes to the hub mounting holes and install the mounting bolts.

caliper installed

Torque the caliper slide pin bolts to 42 lbs-ft.

caliper installed

Torque the caliper mounting bolts to 166 lbs-ft.

caliper installed1

Install the rims and tires on the hub and torque to 150-165 lb-ft. Reinstall the hub caps. Start the engine and pump the brake pedal to fill the caliper pistons. Put the truck in gear and test the brakes. Release the brake and slowly begin moving while tapping the brakes to re-position the brake pads in the calipers. When the brakes feel normal, take a test drive as listen for any unusual sounds coming from the front wheels. All should be OK and you will feel good knowing that you have a well functioning set of brake calipers on your truck.

Now that you've gone this far, why not take 4 more nuts off and lube those needle bearings? If you lose one of those because it's dry, figure about $750 from the dealer, per side. This link will take you to how I lubed my needle bearings.

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