Peugeot 207 CC
Part five: Servicing the brakes proves to be an ordeal.
There was a time when replacing brake discs and pads was a simple and straightforward task. Think back to the days of the Ford Sierra, where you’d undo a single 13mm bolt, the caliper would swing down on a pivot and you could fit a set of pads in about 20 minutes. Working on the rear discs on most cars was a case of undoing two bolts and squeezing the piston back with a big pair of grips. Would the Peugeot 207 be so easy?
Like other PSA cars, as well as Vauxhall vehicles, the 207 uses rear calipers where the rear pistons need to be wound back using a special tool. If you have the special tool to wind back the pistons – they’re not that expensive and Draper sells one for around £30 – then it’s not too bad, as long as you remember that the 207 has pistons that wind back clockwise on one side and anticlockwise on the other, which can throw you. On our 207, it was the driver’s side that was anti-clockwise, but don’t take that as gospel because they can vary.
The other issue is PSA’S love of Torx bolts. In the old days, when caliper carriers were bolted on using regular 17mm, 18mm and 19mm bolts, they were easy to remove even if they were heavily corroded. Torx bolts are far less forgiving and the suspension and brake parts on our 207 are quite rusty, so Gary Cooke at Parkside Autos really struggled to get them undone. If yours look rusty, it’s an excellent idea to order in a set of eight new caliper carrier retaining bolts.
There are other difficulties to overcome. It’s likely the front bleed nipples will be rusty and won’t undo without a fight. Forget using a tiny ring spanner; some really good self-locking grips are what you need. Start by applying penetrating fluid– Plusgas is reckoned to be the best – and give the area a going-over with a wire brush. A light tap on the end with a small hammer can also help, before using the grips to undo the nipple. Chances are it’ll snap off in the caliper, at which point the unit is scrap, but it won’t leak fluid. If it does come undone, nip to your local dealer or factors and buy a new set of nipples. Similarly, the bolts holding the disc to the front hub can be a swine to undo. If they round out, just hammer a slightly bigger spline drive into it.