I'm looking at upgrading the brakes on my vehicle with a larger set. As such, I'm looking at calipers and came across a set that were rebuilt. Specifically, the calipers have had helicoils installed on some mount holes, and some bleed screws were drilled out and replaced with repair kits.

I don't really know what this means other than it indicates that the calipers were in rough shape at some point. Are there any concerns or compromises in performance that would be evident from calipers that had undergone repairs like this?

  • 1
    A helicoil is used when the original threads have been stripped. It is installed by drilling and tapping the bolt hole at a larger size, then threading the helicoil in to the larger hole to to reduce it back down, allowing you to use the original bolt size. Here is a picture: i.ytimg.com/vi/m4e5d-QeRjI/hqdefault.jpg Jun 20, 2016 at 16:20
  • I would never buy a 'rebuilt' anything that had helicoil inserts. That isn't to say I would not use them for certain applications on my vehicle if I stripped the threads somewhere on it but I would NEVER buy anything that had the inserts in them. Jun 21, 2016 at 20:26

1 Answer 1


Just because the callipers have had a rebuild does not necessarily mean that they were abused previously.

Brakes as a component are prone to some of the worst wear of any component in the car. Not only do they go through tremendous heat cycles, the various chemicals in the brake pads can eventually eat at the aluminium that many callipers are made from. They get hit by debris from the road, often submerge in water, get coated in mud... etc etc. Over time they deteriorate.

I've had a few hassles so far with the bleed nipples on my track car breaking... They do that when they're old. Getting them out usually requires a lot of hassle, as they are a much stronger material than the calliper, so you usually end up having to tap them with new threads. Same with the mounting holes, though that does sound more like someone cross-threaded them when installing.

Needless to say, if they've been repaired it should be OK. I would possibly see if you could find out where the work was done, but it shouldn't be too much of a problem on a road car.

Though to be fair, I wouldn't run brake parts held on with helicoils on my racecar, as the forces involved are much higher than in a normal road application.

  • I feel like this is a good basis to a great answer. Perhaps a couple sentences about what the repairs are would help fill in the gaps. Because right now, the only thing I really get from this answer is "repaired calipers are ok, but I wouldn't race on them" with no context as to why that is the recommendation.
    – Ellesedil
    Jun 20, 2016 at 17:40

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