How Much Does A Complete Front Brake Job Cost? (2024)

It doesn’t matter how gentle you are with your vehicle; at some point, it will need to have the brakes replaced. How much does a front brake job cost and what does it consist of?

In this guide, I evaluate the average cost of a front brake job. I also figure out what the cost might be if you need additional parts, such as rotors or calipers.

How Much Does a Front Brake Job Cost?

The average cost for a front brake job is between $110 and $250 without brake rotors.On average, you can expect to spend $35 to $100 for parts on the front brakes. Additionally, labor might cost between $75 and $150, depending on where you live and the type of vehicle you drive.

However, if you also need a set of rotors, you are looking at an additional $25 to $85 per rotor, just for the parts. In general, the labor cost to replace brake pads and rotors at a shop is $125 to $250 per axle. Considering that most cars have two axles, you would be looking at double this price to get a complete four-wheel brake job.


The most expensive part to replace is the caliper. If you need one caliper, you might spend up to $125 on the part alone. With this in mind, you could spend $250 to $900 to have a complete front brake job, including the pads, rotors and calipers.

Of course, if you can do any of this work on your own, you are saving a lot of money. The parts aren’t the aspect that forces the bill to go higher. The majority of what you are spending is on the labor.

Factors Affecting Brake Replacement Cost

1. Vehicle Type

The type of vehicle you drive has a profound impact on the cost of brakes. For example, your tiny compact car isn’t going to cost nearly as much as your heavy-duty diesel truck.

The weight and size of the vehicle play a huge role in the cost of brakes. Many shops also charge more to work on bigger, heavier vehicles than they would a smaller sedan.

2. Vehicle Brand

American-made vehicles tend to cost less for brakes than other types. This is especially true if you drive a European vehicle, such as Audi, Mercedes, VW or BMW.

Not only are you going to pay more for the brake parts, but you might need a special mechanic to work on the braking system. These experts cost more per hour, thereby increasing your labor rate.

3. Shop Type

Going hand-in-hand with the last factor, the type of shop you visit has a profound impact on the total price. You can visit a local auto repair shop with entry-level technicians to pay a little less.

If you choose to visit a dealership or specialized shop, you are going to naturally pay more. However, the expertise that comes with these locations and the warranty protection often make it worth the added expense.When it comes to brake repair and brake service, you want to choose a reputable repair shop with the right expertise.

READ MORE: Mechanic Labor Rates Per Hour – US Market

4. Shop Location

Just as important as the type of shop you visit, its location also makes a difference. If you live in a rural setting, the labor rate will likely be cheaper than expected.

On the other hand, shops in an urban setting are going to charge more. There are also some states that have higher labor rates, in general.

5. Brake Materials

Brake pads are made from a variety of materials. The materials you choose change how much you are going to spend.

You can opt for organic, semi-metallic and ceramic brakes, all with different price points. Plus, if you choose a premium brand for the materials, you are going to spend more. The same is true if you opt for OEM brake components.

READ MORE: Ceramic vs Organic Brake Pads (Which is Better?)

How Often Should Front Brakes be Changed?

The majority of front brakes need to be changed between 30,000 and 70,000 miles. However, there are some that require brake pad replacement after 25,000 miles, while others can easily exceed 70,000 miles. The key to determining when a front brake job is needed is by paying attention to the symptoms.

If you hear grinding, squeaking or squealing when you apply the brake pedal, you want to have the pads looked at right away. Driving on bad brake pads can cause wear to other vital components, such as the rotor. Not only will you put your safety at risk by continuing to drive because of longer stopping times, but you are also creating a higher bill when the brake rotors get worn.

The good news is that brake rotors don’t always need to be replaced. Even if there is some minor wear, there are times when the rotor can be turned and resurfaced for longer life. This expense is cheaper than replacing the rotors.

READ MORE: How Often Should You Replace Brake Rotors? (Signs It’s Time)

Factors Affecting Frequency of Brake Changes

1. Materials

Just as the type of brakes affects the cost, they also determine how long the pads will last. If you are using high-carbon, severe-duty brake pads, you can expect them to last much longer than the regular semi-metallic pads.

However, you pay more for higher-quality brake pads. Take the ceramic pads, for example. These provide a quieter ride and create less dust, but the braking performance isn’t as good and you will spend more. It’s important to pick the appropriate material based on your budget, needs, and how often you want to change the brakes.

2. Driving Habits

If you like to ride the brakes, you can expect to change them more frequently. The same is true if you push hard on the brakes to stop.

If you want the brake pads to last longer, you should do more coasting than braking. You also want to apply consistent, gentle force when it’s time to brake.

Another killer to brakes is consistent towing and hauling heavy items. Every time you step on the brakes with these heavy loads, you are putting more strain on the system. You can expect brakes to wear out much faster in these conditions compared to the person enjoying a small compact car without anything heavy loaded inside.

3. Environment

If you are driving on the highway every day for your commute, you are less likely to go through brakes as often as someone traveling in a city. All of the stop-and-go traffic can take a toll on the brake pads and other components.

The same is true if you travel through a mountainous location. The more you have to ride the brakes to reduce speed while going downhill, the more wear the brakes are going to endure.

Categories: Brakes, Estimator

How Much Does A Complete Front Brake Job Cost? (2024)


How Much Does A Complete Front Brake Job Cost? ›

A complete brake repair — one that includes pads, rotor and caliper replacement — typically averages between $300 and $800. However, depending on the make and model of your vehicle, you can easily spend more than $1,000 on a complete brake job.

How much should a complete front brake job cost? ›

A single caliper can cost up to $130 and several will reach prices even higher. A complete brake repair that includes pads, rotors, and calipers typically averages between $200 and $800 depending on the vehicle and parts used.

How long does a front end brake job take? ›

Typical Brake Service Times. When carried out by experienced technicians, the most common types of brake maintenance and brake repair take between 15 minutes and 1 hour.

How much does it cost to replace front discs and pads? ›

Cost to replace brake pads and discs by engine size
Engine sizeFront pads costFront pads and discs cost
Up to 1600cc£114.95£204.95
Up to 1900cc£119.95£214.95
Up to 2200cc£129.95£229.95
Over 2200cc£134.95£239.95
1 more row
Mar 4, 2024

Is it cheaper to replace front or rear brakes? ›

On average, expect to spend $600 to $1,000 to have the brake pads and rotors replaced on one axle. On most vehicles, the front brakes are cheaper to replace than the rear. If you were to have both axles done, it might cost $1,000 to $2,000.

Is it OK to just replace front brakes? ›

Generally, your brake pads should all wear at the same time, which makes for an easy replacement. Typically, you should have both your front brake pads replaced at the same time, and your rear pads replaced at the same time, to ensure proper braking power.

What is the life expectancy of front brakes? ›

Most car brakes will last between 25,000 and 60,000 miles–between three and six years for most daily drivers–but some sets may last even longer for those who exercise good habits. Don't forget, we're talking about the brake pads.

How long will grinding brakes last? ›

You shouldn't drive at all with grinding brakes.

Get it fixed immediately. Every mile risks more damage and reduces safety.

How often should front brakes be replaced? ›

As a general rule, you should get your brake pads replaced every 10,000 to 20,000 miles to keep wear to a minimum. When it comes to your rotors, you have a bit longer. Your rotors should be replaced between 50,000 and 70,000 miles to keep your brakes in peak health.

What does a front brake job consist of? ›

The standard list involves replacing the front disc brake pads, resurfacing the rotors, replacing the rear drum brake shoes, resurfacing the drums. bleeding the brake lines, inspecting the system for leaks or other problems, and of course, adjusting the parking brake.

How do I know if my front brake discs need replacing? ›

A loud screech usually points to issues related to the brake pads, but a grinding noise can often be from a brake disc. Excessive vibration is a tell-tale sign of when to replace the brake discs.It might be that the surface is not smooth, could be cracked, or possibly warped.

How much for front pads and rotors? ›

Brake rotor and pad repair generally comes out to around $250 to $500 per axle when visiting a professional shop. Calipers are the most difficult and expensive aspect of the braking system to replace. A single caliper can cost up to $130 and several will reach prices even higher.

Are front brake pads more expensive? ›

On average, it costs $100-$300 per axle to replace the brake pads in a vehicle. In other words, replacing either the front or rear brake pads would be $100-$300, and replacing both the front and rear brake pads would be $200-$600.

What is a fair price for a brake job? ›

Generally* speaking, the varying cost for a brake job are as follows: Brake Parts: $35–$150 per part. Brake Repair Labor: $80–$160 per hour. Total Brake Pad Replacement: $150–$300 per axle.

How to tell if rotors are bad? ›

Some common symptoms of bad rotors include vibration or pulsation in the steering wheel, high-pitched squealing noise when braking, shaking steering wheel, brake pedal pulsing, vehicle taking a long time to stop, loud bangs while braking, large edges on the outer part of the brake rotor, and scratch marks on the rotor.

How much is labor for brakes and rotors? ›

The average cost for a Brake Rotor Replacement is between $290 and $393. Labor costs are estimated between $102 and $129 while parts are priced between $188 and $263. This range does not include taxes and fees, and does not factor in your unique location.

How much do Pepboys charge for brake pads? ›

Pep Boys Cost and Service Breakdown
Brake PadsBrake Pads & Rotors
$209-$250 per axle (includes rotor resurfacing)$350-$435 per axle

Why are front brakes more expensive? ›

Typically, front brakes will be more expensive to replace since they are bigger, whereas the rear brakes are simpler in design. However, if you are noticing a high price for your rear brake pad and rotor replacement, this is likely due to the labour cost, not the cost of the parts.

How much is labor for brake caliper replacement? ›

If you're confident about doing the job yourself, you can save money by fixing the caliper yourself. The average price ranges from $50 – $100 depending on the work required. Otherwise, professional service would set you back anywhere between $861 and $896. The cost of labor ranges between $132 and $167.

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