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I was just at the dealership for an oil change (bought the service plan at my dealership). The tech in service said brakes were going to need done soon on my '17 Touring. For ease, I inquired about the cost and its $399 (USD) per axle. I said nevermind and that I would do it myself (between my parent's shop and my self), to which they had the rebuttal that I technically cannot without needing service as the vehicle would need to be (quoting the service guy at Kia) "Placed into service mode in order to do it properly and to even allow the calipers to release". Is this truly the case, or can this be done by yourself for obviously MUCH cheaper? Thanks in advance all!
 

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How many miles is on your car? Did they measure the pads and show you the measurement. Most hybrids almost never need brakes unless your over say 130k mi. (being conservative). My last Prius lasted me 166k. mi. and the Toyota dealer I used at the time said I had 3mm left which you should think about doing ther brakes with a regular car but the Prius had still at least another 10k mi. to go. I'm not sure if you really need specialised equipment to just replace the pads but I'd question if you really need brakes, unless of couse you got really high miles or any signs of brake trouble. If your comfortable doing the brakes yourself you should be able to measure what you have left on the pads.
 

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I just did my own brakes on a 2017 with 103K on the clock, my service center is the same. You gotta love in my case Jay, calling and telling me in need $1400 of service done to my KIA Niro like its no big deal. Brakes, Radiator flush, brake fluid. Anyway, I recently got my tires done which I must brag made it to 103K also, went with the Michelins again. Again, not much tread but they worked till 103K!

I ordered a brake kit from R1 concepts and got 30% off. They send a kit wit everything needed, I ended up doing rotors as well. I live in the north east and the winter weather had eaten my rotors pretty bad. Also, with what you're saving, doing it yourself its just easier. Especially for another 100K miles!

I did just check and they seem to only have the front rotors in maybe shoot them an email. Regardless they work just as good as new. Cant say for durability as Ive only put 1000 miles on them. Easy job tho.
 

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"Placed into service mode in order to do it properly and to even allow the calipers to release". Is this truly the case, or can this be done by yourself for obviously MUCH cheaper? Thanks in advance all!
That quote from the Kia person is completely BS. Doing brakes on hybrid is no different than any other car except that the brakes should not require replacement for a long, long time.
Brake "service" is a good idea on a yearly or at least every other year basis but that does not require the replacement of parts and should not cost more than 1 hour labour per axle.
 

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Unlike older cars, the Niro has "full retraction" brakes - no rubbing of the pads on the disk. And indeed, the car rolls super well (better than any prior car, and even better than my motorcycle). I put my car into neutral at stops (to limit current from the creep function) and if road is not flat, it starts rolling and I have to apply the brakes.

Which is a roundabout way of asking if brake pad and disk replacement may possibly require additional steps? I'm not sure how this retraction works (second question) but assume it is similar to bicycle hydraulic disk brakes that magically self adjust as pads wear, yet do not touch the disks when not in use.
 

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Not quite sure what you mean by "full retraction" when compared to "older cars".
All disc brakes calipers are supposed to be "retraction" brakes.
The "O ring" inside the caliper provides the seal for the hydraulic pressure but it also provides for the retraction when hydraulic pressure is released. The O ring sits in a groove that is wider than the width of the O ring itself, so when the brake is applied, the seal distorts or twists slightly (because it can). The piston will not move only slightly to apply the brakes. When the brake is released, the seal returns to its normal "at rest position" by untwisting and hence, the retraction of the piston.
 

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I was just at the dealership for an oil change (bought the service plan at my dealership). The tech in service said brakes were going to need done soon on my '17 Touring. For ease, I inquired about the cost and its $399 (USD) per axle. I said nevermind and that I would do it myself (between my parent's shop and my self), to which they had the rebuttal that I technically cannot without needing service as the vehicle would need to be (quoting the service guy at Kia) "Placed into service mode in order to do it properly and to even allow the calipers to release". Is this truly the case, or can this be done by yourself for obviously MUCH cheaper? Thanks in advance all!
It's my impression that likely all the new cars, including our Niros, that have electronic emergency brakes have to be put into "service mode" to be worked on. You can do this with different scan tools, I wouldn't venture to name them off but I'm sure they're on the higher end of scanners. The car needs to relearn the position/clearance of the pads to the rotor to work correctly. I've not run across this for the front axle but it may just be my limited experience.
 

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Techy: please describe what you mean by yearly brake "service" in post #4.
 

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Techy: please describe what you mean by yearly brake "service" in post #4.
Because the average car only has caliper piston(s) on 1 side of the caliper, it is important to keep the slides/pins clean and lubricated with the correct grease so that the pads wear evenly. The surface that brake pads contact on the caliper should also be cleaned and lubed with the correct grease because they have to slide in small increments as well. Any seizing because of dirt buildup and the effects of high heat from braking (not generally an issue with regenerative braking) will breakdown this grease.
Performing this operation once every 2 - 3 years should be OK with the Niro. Other cars should be annually.
 

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Because the average car only has caliper piston(s) on 1 side of the caliper, it is important to keep the slides/pins clean and lubricated with the correct grease so that the pads wear evenly. The surface that brake pads contact on the caliper should also be cleaned and lubed with the correct grease because they have to slide in small increments as well. Any seizing because of dirt buildup and the effects of high heat from braking (not generally an issue with regenerative braking) will breakdown this grease.
Performing this operation once every 2 - 3 years should be OK with the Niro. Other cars should be annually.
...meant to add that any amount of seizing will cause uneven pad wear.
 

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Because the average car only has caliper piston(s) on 1 side of the caliper, it is important to keep the slides/pins clean and lubricated with the correct grease so that the pads wear evenly. The surface that brake pads contact on the caliper should also be cleaned and lubed with the correct grease because they have to slide in small increments as well. Any seizing because of dirt buildup and the effects of high heat from braking (not generally an issue with regenerative braking) will breakdown this grease.
Performing this operation once every 2 - 3 years should be OK with the Niro. Other cars should be annually.
This happened to me with my Prius. The Toyota Tech said it was even more important with a hybrid since the brakes get used less. He said they generally check it at the oil changes but you should lubricate the pins at least once a year.
 

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It's my impression that likely all the new cars, including our Niros, that have electronic emergency brakes have to be put into "service mode" to be worked on.
Not all Niro models have e-brakes. All of the EV models do, but for HEV/PHEV that didn't happen until the 2020 model year. I've done brake jobs on cars for decades, but very few with e-brakes. But I've never needed an expensive specialty tool. I did have to borrow a caliper retractor tool from Auto Zone for one car, as there was a trick to fully retract the calipers, and the tool simply made it easier. Since Auto Zone loans tools for little to no cost, it made sense to just go get one from them.
 
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