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How To Install Caliper Covers

Upgraded rims can suddenly expose factory brake calipers that don’t measure up visually. We show how easy it is to bolt on a stylish set of form-fitting caliper covers.
Caliper Covers Variety Banner

If you've fitted a set of aftermarket wheels on your car or truck, you've probably noticed how they show off everything behind them in a way your OEM ones simply couldn't. Your factory brake calipers are now suddenly visible to the world, and odds are they do not live up to the high standards of crisp visual appeal your new wheels and tires have set. Or you may have a nice set of factory wheels which expose the brake hardware, and it's a look that you feel could stand some improvement.

While painting the calipers can be a viable solution for some, caliper covers come with their own built-in advantages, including ease of installation.

We've heard from some customers who are reluctant to proceed with the caliper cover purchase, fearful of an involved and complicated installation. But fear not! The installation is easier than you might realize. In fact, the most difficult part of the job is jacking the vehicle up in order to remove the wheel & tire assembly. Once that's off and out of the way, the caliper cover install can be accomplished in just minutes per wheel, with simple hand tools. You do NOT need to touch the vehicle's braking system!

Yellow Lexus Caliper Cover
All caliper covers we sell are vehicle-specific for a perfect fit.

Caliper covers we sell are vehicle-specific - meaning they have been carefully designed around the dimensions and clearances of your make and model's OEM calipers and related brake hardware. Mounting brackets and clips for the covers are placed exactly where they need to be for easy installation without drilling or modifying anything.

Chevy Corvette Caliper Cover

When it comes to brake dust, caliper covers do a good job of containing it. That black powdery residue won't build up on your wheels as much, and your car will stay looking cleaner between washings. Should you decide to clean behind the caliper covers periodically, they can be temporarily removed just as easily as they're installed.

The instructions below are generic in nature, and are intended to apply to any brand brake caliper. We carry the full line of MGP caliper covers, as well as the ACC (American Car Craft) Stainless Steel Brake Caliper Covers.

Steps To Installing A Caliper Cover

Caliper Covers Installation Process

Caliper cover installation is very easy to do, and takes just a few minutes per wheel (once the wheel/tire assembly has been removed). All necessary hardware is included, and simple hand tools are all that you'll need. Depending on your vehicle's original caliper design, your kit may come with a "slot" type or "stud" type clips or brackets. Below, we've outlined the steps that are typically involved with caliper cover installation.

Torqueing Reinstalled Wheel Nuts

NOTE! Before you begin, measure the clearance between the wheel and the caliper. There needs to be a minimum of 1/8" clearance for the caliper covers to fit.

CAUTION! When removing each wheel, be sure to practice all workshop safety practices! This includes but is not limited to: using a properly-rated floor jack, using jack stands for support, and properly torqueing the wheel nuts/bolts when they are reinstalled.

Depending on vehicle application, your brake pads may have retaining wires which can pose a clearance issue during caliper cover installation. If necessary, use a pair of pliers to bend and flatten these wires. Doing this is perfectly safe and will not affect brake operation at all.

'Slot' Type Clips Or Brackets

Slot Type Clip

Step 1

Placing Caliper Cover

First, place the caliper cover on top of the brake caliper - centering it across the front. Brackets attached to the cover piece should line up flush against corner areas of the caliper bracket.

Step 2

Caliper Cover Secure Installation

To fasten the caliper cover in place, slide any separate clips over the cover bracket (with stud) and the caliper bracket below it. These clips should fit snugly in place.

Step 3

Caliper Covers Adjustment

You'll receive lock nuts with your kit. Screw them onto the threaded studs, and tighten them with gentle hand pressure using a hand wrench or socket wrench. Check clearance to ensure there's enough room between the clip and brake rotor to slide a business card without jamming - this will be about 1/8th of an inch if you're using a feeler gauge.

Do not overtighten the lock nuts! They should be torqued to 25 inch-pounds, or, finger-tighten them, then turn them an additional 1/2 a turn.

In some cases, the tabs on the caliper covers may need adjustment for best fit. Using a pair of pliers, the tabs can be slightly bent up or down to ensure that the cover lies as flush as possible against the caliper.

'Stud' Type Clips Or Brackets

Stud Type Clips

Step 1

Sliding Clips

First, slide the clips that come with your kit onto/around each side of the brake caliper bracket. These clips should fit snugly in place.

Step 2

Placing Cover Over Caliper

Place the cover over the caliper and position the holes in the cover bracket piece over the threaded studs on the clips you installed in step 1. Because everything is designed to fit securely, fitting the second bracket place over the stud may require a small bit of extra pressure.

Step 3

Caliper Cover Lock Down

You'll receive lock nuts with your kit. Screw them onto the threaded studs to lock down the caliper cover. Tighten the nuts with gentle hand pressure using a hand wrench or socket wrench. Check clearance to ensure there's enough room between the clip and brake rotor to slide a business card without jamming - this will be about 1/8th of an inch if you're using a feeler gauge.

Do not overtighten the lock nuts! They should be torqued to 25 inch-pounds, or, finger-tighten them, then turn them an additional 1/2 a turn.

In some cases, the tabs on the caliper covers may need adjustment for best fit. Using a pair of pliers, the tabs can be slightly bent up or down to ensure that the cover lies as flush as possible against the caliper.

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