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Discussion Starter #1
I was told by a tech at the local dealership that replacing pads on the front wheel on an ABS bike is very tricky... that you are not supposed to depress the pistons back, (forcing fluid back through the "ABS system") in order to make room for the new pads.
Is this true, or is it something that is ok to do? I've never had ABS before, and just don't know.
Mine really needs new pads, and I'd like to do it while I have the front wheel off, replacing wheel bearings.
Anybody have any experience with this issue?
 

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The Angry One
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Well if it's "very tricky", I would think this topic would have come up more. I have changed my pads, front and rear, with no issues.
 

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Retired citizen
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After ABS pad changes the ABS module is supposed to be reset using the shop Digital Tech computer, per the service manual. The reset cycles the ABS pump and reprograms the pad position in the caliper.
 

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I was told by a tech at the local dealership that replacing pads on the front wheel on an ABS bike is very tricky... that you are not supposed to depress the pistons back, (forcing fluid back through the "ABS system") in order to make room for the new pads.
Is this true, or is it something that is ok to do? I've never had ABS before, and just don't know.
Mine really needs new pads, and I'd like to do it while I have the front wheel off, replacing wheel bearings.
Anybody have any experience with this issue?
Funny, I was about to send you this link thinking it was coincidental.
 

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Discussion Starter #5
to gtrman66.... yep. Coincidence. I'm a firm believer in asking a lot of questions from people that know a lot more than I do... which, unfortunately for me, includes nearly everyone.:laugh

I looked through my manual, and didn't notice anything about resetting the ABS. If I read it correctly, it just said to change them pretty much the same way you do the non-abs ones. I'll re-read it this evening to make sure.
If it has to be reset, no problem. I just hate to pay an hour of service time for someone else to do something I can easily do myself.
 

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Just Ride
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Do it yourself, don't turn on your bike till after you hit the front brakes a few times to get the pads against the rotors.
 

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I'm not sure if the HD ABS is like ABS on a car, but when I used to do brakes for a living, we squeezed the caliper pistons back into the caliper the same way on an ABS system and a nonABS system.


Sent from Motorcycle.com Free App
 

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Señor Member
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I think the tech was trying to get some more business.
 

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I {Heart} Hookers.
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I think the tech was trying to get some more business.
Techs give advice "by the book" most of the time. As well, if the guy replaces his own pads and something goes south, they can't come back and say "Well, the Tech told me....."

If the manual says connect the digital scanner, he usually does, and you get billed accordingly.

Not surprising, really.
 

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I was told by a tech at the local dealership that replacing pads on the front wheel on an ABS bike is very tricky... that you are not supposed to depress the pistons back, (forcing fluid back through the "ABS system") in order to make room for the new pads.
Is this true, or is it something that is ok to do? I've never had ABS before, and just don't know.
Mine really needs new pads, and I'd like to do it while I have the front wheel off, replacing wheel bearings.
Anybody have any experience with this issue?
changed my rears on my 09 FLHRC 5 days ago, when you push pistons back in with old pads still in place use a screw driver and do it slow, when caliper is re installed I pressed brake pedal lightly and slow only using half of pedal travel and letting pedal back up slow, didn't have no problem ABS works fine, guess fronts should be the same just do it slow and easy!
 

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Discussion Starter #11
well... thanks for all the advice. I'm gonna do it myself. The big question now is, do I pay the $100 plus for two pairs of HD pads, or go with an aftermarket set for WAY less...
 

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I saw a thread on here on just that question. Dave63 had a link to a website that had brake pads for less.


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Saw the same thread just as mine were needing replacing. Bought the cheaper ones ($21 front, $24 rear from Dennis Kirk) and they work great. Just got back from a 1000 mile trip and noticed they stopped smoother and quieter than my old ones did.
 

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Just Ride
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Ebay. Complete set for under $40. Front and rear. 30k and wearing fine.
 

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I {Heart} Hookers.
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Ebay. Complete set for under $40. Front and rear. 30k and wearing fine.
Agreed. I paid $90 for a front set (4-pads) on a holiday weekend. No reason for such high prices other than to gouge customers.
 

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Addicted Since 2010
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If you're worried about it crack the bleeder valve open and squeeze the piston closed until it's all the way in and close the bleeder valve

The way, the fluid doesn't go back up the system.. You could then top it off after if you're concerned with how much came out.
 

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Discussion Starter #17
Agreed. I paid $90 for a front set (4-pads) on a holiday weekend. No reason for such high prices other than to gouge customers.
Agreed.... that's just what I got through doing. I had already gone over a week off the bike... serious withdrawl. I bit the bullet (bent over and grabbed my ankles?) and got the pads from the stealership. $118 out the door... what a bargain.
Good news is that the pads are on the bike, and the test ride is done. Bike runs good, and more importantly, stops well. Thanks to all for the advice and encouragement. Next time will be aftermarket pads, without a doubt.
This is enough to make me anti-MoCo.... :fitz

This whole episode involved replacing front wheel bearings as well. I did buy an aftermarket bearing removal tool.. it was just over $80 and did the job very nicely. Pretty well made tool, overall. Same tool at the MoCo is around $300. :what?
Remember, it's not just a bike... it's a LIFESTYLE. :rollin

Yeah, right....
 
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