Rick's Free Auto Repair Advice

Replace brake hardware

Reusing brake hardware clips can cause annoying brake noise

Brake hardware degrades due to high heat and corrosion

Car makers install brake hardware abutment and anti-rattle clips on almost all disc brake mechanisms. Abutment clips snap onto the steering knuckle abutment or brake caliper bracket

brake hardware showing Anti-rattle clips

Anti-rattle clips

and provide a smooth channel for the brake pads tabs to ride in. Many designs also exert some spring tension on the brake pad tabs to reduce vibration and rattle. Abutment clips also prevent abutment wear that might otherwise be caused by the continual force of the brake pad backing plate being forced against the metal abutment. The thin

brake hardware abutment clip in brake caliper brakcet

Abutment clip shown in land of brake caliper brakcet

stainless steel abutment clips take the brunt of the force instead of allowing the brake pad backing plate to dig into the cast metal abutment.


Abutment clips may also be referred to as anti-rattle clips. When used to reduce vibration and rattle, the clips are built with a spring mechanism to exert force against the brake pad tabs.

Do abutment clips and anti-rattle clips wear out?

YES! First, they can rust and prevent brake pad tab movement which results in

anti rattle clips

High heat degrades the spring tension of the anti-rattle clips and rust can cause the brake pad “ears” to bind

uneven brake pad wear and brake pad binding in the lands of the abutment. Second, the abutment and anti-rattle clips can lose their spring tension due to the high heat and cooling cycles incurred in normal braking. In fact, test shows that brake noise reduction clips can lose their effectiveness in 35,000 to 45,000 miles.

Tests by an independent lab show that 100% of all abutment clips and anti-rattle clips in a test batch were actually out of spec by quite a bit after 35,000 to 45,000 miles, even though they looked fine.

Reinstalling used brake hardware is, ah, just stupid. It’s a great way to create noise and uneven brake pad wear.

How much do abutment clips and anti-rattle clips cost?

Some premium brake pads come from the factory with new brake pad hardware kits. If the brake pads you buy don’t come with them, you can buy them in kit form from most auto parts stores for about $10 per axle.

Best brake pad hardware kits

CarlsonQualityBrakeParts.com is a great source for innovative brake clips that go beyond OEM standards. Their QUIETGLIDE BRAKE PAD ABUTMENT CLIPS have extra features like a PTFE (TEFLON®) coating on the brake pad tab side and a rubber compound on the abutment or caliper bracket side. The PTFE allows the brake pad tabs to slide smoothly in the abutment or brake caliper bracket land areas and the rubber compound dampens vibration transfer to the abutment or brake caliper bracket. That reduces audible brake noise overall.

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Posted on by Rick Muscoplat


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