Ford Expedition /
Lincoln Navigator
Front Brake Rebuild


Does your Ford Expedition / Lincoln Navigator have squeaking brakes? Do your front wheels stay black from excessive brake dust? Then the following step-by-step guide for rebuilding the front brakes on your 2003-2007 Ford Expedition may be helpful. The instructions are equally applicable to a Lincoln Navigator from the same years but this has not been verified. This is not a difficult job by any means and most folks with even modest mechanical ability would pile right in even without instructions. Even if you're an accomplished do-it-yourselfer we have documented the process and some of what you'll find in these instructions might save you some time and headache. Although not designed to be completely exhaustive in nature (i.e., idiot-proof), anyone with even the most modest mechanical skills and some relatively common tools should be able to readily accomplish the procedure described. That said, your brakes are a critical componenet of keeping your car safe and roadworthy. If you read through the described procedure before beginning and get concerned about your skills to accomplish the task then take your car to a reputable repair shop (if you can find one) and have them rebuild your front brakes. If you do decide to take on this procedure yourself please drop us a line and give us some feedback on the content of this site. We're always trying to improve our content and we love getting feedback from fellow Do-It-Yourselfers. feedback on the content of this site. We're always trying to improve our content and we love getting feedback from fellow Do-It-Yourselfers

Excessive Brake Dust Issue

Ford has had complaints regarding the excessive brake dust produced by the OEM brake system on Expeditions and Navigators. You can read more about that HERE.

Getting Started

Rebuilding your front brakes usually involves two basic brake components; the front brake pads and the brake rotors. The brake pads become worn through normal use. Since the brake pads "grip" the brake rotors to stop your car the rotors wear right along with the pads. Anytime your replace the front pads you also need to have the rotors resurfaced (turned) or replace them altogether if they are too worn (too thin) to be resurfaced. Don't ever replace your brake pads without resurfacing or replacing the rotors as well. These two components are designed to "wear" and break-in as a pair and you will shorten the life of both if you replace one and not the other; not to mention your brakes won't perform as they should.

Tools & Supplies

This is one of the simplest procedures on Autoclinix and it does not require many tools. Although the list is short, if you the necessary tools at your side when you need them it will save you some time.

Tools & Supplies You'll Need...
  • Floor jack or bottle jack and a jackstand.
  • 3/8" or 1/2" drive ratchet
  • 18mm socket
  • Lugwrench
  • Brake spreader OR large C-clamp
  • Chisel (optional)
  • #7 Allen socket/wrench
  • Rubber Mallet (optional but handy)

We have observed that Ford engineers seem to be fascinated with 18mm fasteners. We have found them on everthing from a 1996 Mercury Cougar to a 2003 Ford Expedition. This is notable because most metric wrench sets and socket sets do NOT come with an 18mm tool. You may need to purchase an 18mm socket for this repair if you don't already have one.

Looking Inside...

The picture below shows the "before" picture of our test car's front brakes. Some of the basic brake components are labeled.

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