I have a 2005 Ford F150 2WD and just got a call from my auto mechanic that it is time for me to replace my front brake pads. I only have 55,000 miles on the truck now, but the brake pads are original . He is quoting me $450 to replace the front brake pads and to machine the rotors. He also wants to flush out the brake fluid, and that is included in the price. Good deal?
Hi there Tom,
Depending on how you drive, and what kind of miles you have been putting on this truck (highway or stop and go driving) I would not be too surprised that the front brake pads are due for replacement by now. Some people can get twice that mileage, but they drive mostly on the highway…or they never use the brake.
The price of the brake pad replacement, good deal? Hummm, I think you can do a little better. But I would suspect he is charging you for premium or dealer brake pads, and the rest is pretty much labor costs.
You should be able to get a really good set of replacement brake pads from your local auto parts store for about $65 or so and the mechanic should spend about 2 hours total for the pads replacement and the time to resurface or “true” the 2 front brake rotors to make them nice and smooth again.
The brake fluid flush, that is an add on sales item. It’s a good idea, and flushing the brake system should be part of your regular maintenance program but there is no need to open the brake system up during this repair. Should you flush the fluid, it’s your call. If you want to do it now, great, but I don’t see why you can postpone it for another time, like during the rear brake replacement.
The rear brakes will last twice as long as the front, since the front do most of the stopping power.
So, $65 for brake pads, $10 for misc cleaner etc. and 2-2.5 hours for the repair labor is what you really should be paying for in your case. Each car is slightly different, so if you have a BMW the price is going to be double!
But, for a standard “vanilla” American car or truck, I would estimate the repair time on a front brake job to take about 2-2.5 hours.
At $100 an hour (wish I could charge that, but many are) labor should be $200-$250, and parts about $75 plus tax…so about $300 max in your case.
I would assume the balance of your quote is the brake fluid flush, which again is not really part of the brake pad replacement procedure at this time.