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How to clean brake discs

26th January 2024

Looking to give your car some TLC? Cleaning your vehicles brake discs isn’t typically a step most motorists take when maintaining their vehicle at home, but can help keep them in good condition for longer. Find out how to clean your brake discs in our helpful guide.  

Why clean brake discs? 

Many cars are fitted with alloy wheels that are made up of an alloy metal, which combines two or more elements for additional structural support. Whilst there are many benefits to having alloy wheels, the downside is that they allow you to see directly through them – showing dirt from the brake discs and calipers underneath. If there is any trapped dirt or grit, this can also cause your brake pads to wear out faster. Which is why we recommend cleaning your brakes regularly, to avoid a build-up of unsightly dirt.  

How long do brake discs last?

Typically, brake discs last upwards of 50,000 on average or more – depending on how well they are maintained and driving style.  

Steps to cleaning brake discs 


To begin, your vehicle must be securely off the ground and supported on an axle stand. Once this is done, take each wheel off one at a time using a wheel nut. 


Next, you will need to detach the brake caliper by taking out the caliper bolts. Once they have been removed, the caliper itself should be able to easily slide up and off the brake disc. If you find it difficult to move, give it a little twist until you can feel it getting looser.  


After removing the caliper, you should be able to see the brake discs. From here, you will need to remove the bolts that keep the brake disc in place and set them aside. 


Now you’re ready to begin cleaning your brake discs. To do this, we recommend using brake fluid and a cloth to wipe clean the surface. You may find a thin layer of rust around the rim of the brake disc; this isn’t something to be alarmed by and is usually to be expected.  


Once you have cleaned the brake discs, we recommend inspecting them for any signs of wear and tear. Once you are happy with the condition of the brake discs after they have been cleaned, proceed with putting them back into place using the correct bolts you set aside earlier. Repeat these steps for the remaining three tyres.  

If you notice any corrosion or marks, this may be a sign that your brake discs need to be replaced 

How Merityre can help

If you notice any of these signs, we recommend visiting your local Merityre Specialists branch for a free brake check. Our expert technicians will check the condition of your brakes and offer advice if they need to be replaced. For more information, contact out helpful team today.