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Shimano Brakes

Frequently Asked Questions

how to bleed shimano brakes? how to bleed shimano brakes without funnel? how to bleed shimano deore xt brakes? how to bleed shimano xtr brakes? how to bleed old shimano brakes? how to bleed brakes shimano? how to bleed shimano deore brakes? how to bleed shimano disc brakes? how to bleed shimano slx m675 brakes? how to bleed shimano deore disc brakes?

To bleed your Shimano brakes, you need a Shimano bleed kit with syringe, funnel and bleed block and Shimano mineral oil. If you need to bleed Shimano brakes without funnel, you can replace it ith a syringe without plunger. This method is suitable for any Shimano hydraulic disc brakes (including Deore XT, XTR, SLX and M-series).The step-by-step action plan is as follows: 

1. Remove the wheel with the brake disc that you are going to bleed (front or rear).
2. Remove the pads from the brake caliper to avoid accidentally splashing them with mineral oil. It is very important, after removing the pads, to insert the bleed block between the pistons in order to exclude their movement, otherwise the pistons may come together in the brake caliper during bleeding process.
3. Place the brake lever parallel to the ground, remove the bleed fitting cap screw and place the funnel there.
4. Fill a syringe with mineral oil (15-20 ml is sufficient) and remove air bubbles.
5. Place the syringe tube over the caliper bleed nipple. Using a 7 mm wrench, unscrew the bleed nipple in a counterclockwise motion (a quarter of a turn is sufficient).
6. Press down on the syringe while pushing the oil through the system.
7. Close the bleed nipple by reverse movement without applying great force.
8. Remove the funnel from the brake lever. Pre-insert the funnel piston to avoid spillage of mineral oil.
9. Tighten the bleed cap screw.
10. Wipe off the caliper and brake lever with isopropyl alcohol if you spill brake fluid on them.
11. Insert the pads and re-install the wheel.
12. Repeat the process for another wheel if needed.

how to change shimano brake pads? how to change shimano disk brake pads? how to change shimano 105 disc brake pads? how to change shimano rim brake pads? how to replace shimano brake pads?

To change Shimano brake pads, you will need needle-nose pliers, a clean dry rag, rubbing alcohol, a flat head screwdriver and a wrench on 10mm. Here are the step-by-step instructions for replacing disc and rim brake pads: 

1. Remove the wheel.
2. Inspect the brake pads. If the working part of the disc pads is thinner than 1.5 mm, it's time to replace them. Rim pads have wear indicators: if you can't see the vertical slotted lines on the pads, then it's time to replace them.
3. Remove the pad retention and pull out the brake pads. For disc brake pads, bend the right side of the cotter pin with pliers and remove it. Pull out the clamp holding the pads and remove the brake pads. For rim pads: slightly untighten the small screw on the side of the brake shoe so that you can move the pads, then gently push the pads toward the rear of the bike to pull them out.
4. Cleaning. Clean the entire inner surface of the caliper. When replacing rim pads, wipe the rim with alcohol. To remove rubber and dirt deposits from metal rims, use fine-grit sandpaper or a special brake cleaning block.
5. Install new pads. For a more convenient installation of disc brake pads, increase the free space inside the caliper. Take a wrench and slide it in between the pistons. Gently move the pistons apart to create as much clearance as possible. Connect the new brake pads to the clamp so that all the holes match up exactly to form one continuous passage, where you can then insert the cotter pin. Insert the clips into the inner space of the brake so that the retention holes are at the bottom. Guide the parts inward at a slight angle towards you, then insert the cotter pin and bend the end. Rim pads are easier to install: look for brake direction indicators on top of the pad (there are left and right indicators). The pad should be gently slid into the shoe, but as it goes deeper, you may need to use more force to fully secure it. Set the screw back in place to anchor the pad.
6. Re-install the wheel.
7. “Bed in” the new pads. For disc pads: clamp the brake lever several times, spin the wheel and make sure that the brake pads do not touch the brake rotor when rotating. If friction occurs, centre the wheel. To complete the brake setting, ride the bike and gently press down on one brake lever at a time, but do not stop completely. Repeat the process a few times for the front and rear brake. For rim pads: close the brake caliper's quick release to bring the pads closer to the rim, then check that the brake shoe is positioned correctly. The brake pads must be properly pressed against the wheel rim. The right pressure can be adjusted using shoe retentions: you must tighten the brake lever and loosen the screw on each of the pads. During the setting process, you must also ensure that the brake levers come together equally. Position adjustment is carried out using a cruciform spring tension screw. If the lever moves poorly, then the screw should be tightened, and when the lever moves too easily, untighten it.

how to tighten shimano brakes? how to adjust shimano brake levers? how to adjust shimano v brakes?

The instruction for tightening (adjusting) the brakes depends on the type of brakes. To adjust the v-brakes, press down tightly on the brake lever while pressing the pads against the rim. In this position, tighten the pads retention screws. Then apply the brake a few times while watching the brake levers move: they should move symmetrically, pressing the pads against both sides of the rim. If not, adjust the position of the levers using the adjusting bolts. By twisting the bolt clockwise, you tighten the spring, unscrewing it - weaken it. Tighten the bolts on the left and right sides until the pads come out the same distance when the brake lever is released. To adjust mechanical disc brakes, tighten the set bolts on the brake lever and caliper to achieve the desired brake lever travel. During operation, when the pads are worn and the cable is stretched, regularly tighten the set bolts, maintaining the minimum brake lever travel. To adjust the hydraulic disc brakes, loosen the bolts holding the caliper on the bike frame and press the brake lever several times. Evenly extending pads will centre the caliper to the brake disc. Without releasing the brake lever, tighten the retention bolts.

How much mineral oil to bleed Shimano brakes? how much mineral oil in Shimano brakes?

50ml of brake fluid should be enough to bleed a set of brakes, both front and rear, once. 

How to shorten Shimano brake hose? / How to shorten Shimano slx brake hose? / how to cut Shimano hydraulic brake hose?

Steps-by-step approach for how to shorten your Shimano bicycle brake cable without bleeding:

  1. Decide cable length

Start by removing the lever assembly from the handlebar and leave the caliper attached to the frame. Next, wire the cable along the frame to the handlebar where the brake lever will be placed. Do not make any tight turns or twists when doing so. Hold the hose there, and test that you have enough length by turning the steering handle all the way both ways. It should turn without restriction on the cable. Adjust accordingly - if restricted, loosen the cable length. Also, make sure it does not rub against the frame or fork suspension. 

Once happy with the length, make a mark on the cable where you wish you cut.

  1. Remove the brake caliper from the frame.
  2. Take off the brake pads from the caliper. 
  3. Delicately push the brake lever, just enough to move both pistons out by 2-3mm.
    That way, when the cable is cut, you will be able to push the pistons in again and expel any air that may have entered the system.
  4. Move on to the brake lever assembly.
    Here you slide out the rubber that is covering the cable fixing screw. Then use a bicycle spanner tool to unscrew the screw until it is loose. Once that is done, slide the bolt off and let it slide down the cable. 
  5. Next, you pull the cable from the lever compact.
    Remember to hold the hose up so it does not lose any brake fluids. 
  6. Cut the bike brake cable with a sharp knife.
    As the cable will be fitted into the lever house, you need to make a cut a little longer away from your mark. After, insert your new olive and then add the cable barb at the end of the hose by tapping it with a hammer. All this can be easier done if you have the cable strapped down.
  7. Re-attach the cable to the lever assembly. 
  8. Push the caliper pistons back in place by squeezing them - this can be done by using a plastic tyre lever. This will make any built-up air to be expelled from the cylinder. 
  9. Re-install the bike brake to the bicycle frame again. Then, route the cable along the frame to the handlebar.
  10. Clasp the brake lever a few times to make sure the caliper pistons are in the right position. After 3 pulls the lever should begin to tighten.

Once this is all done, you are set to hit the road!

When to replace Shimano brake pads? / when to change Shimano brake pads?

They should be replaced when there is less than 1.5mm left of the braking material.

How to adjust Shimano disc brakes? / How to adjust Shimano disc brakes on a mountain bike?

In most cases, when needing to adjust the disc brakes it is because the brakes have shifted somewhat or because you have switched to wheels with a slightly different disc position. To manually align the brakes into the right position you simply move the calliper marginally sideways until there is a gap between the rotor and the pads are evenly spaced when you spin the wheel. When you are happy with the adjustments, tighten the bolts. 

To make the small adjustments easier, we recommend making sure the bolts are at a tightness where you need to press reasonably firmly to move them. It is normal to have to do a couple of small repositions and retighten adjustments before you get it right.

After, squeeze the brakes together a few times and spin the wheel to make sure everything runs smoothly. 

How to adjust Shimano XT brakes / How to adjust Shimano 105 brakes? / How to adjust Shimano hydraulic disc brake levers? / How to adjust Shimano hydraulic disc brake levers mountain bike?
  1. The first thing you do is to loosen up the brake lever by unscrewing its bolts. Then slide the lever towards the middle of the handlebar so that it is out of the way.
  2. Next, naturally, place your hand in the grip and extend your pointer finger. With your other hand, you move the lever so that it sits right at the tip of your pointer finger. You want the tip of the finger to sit comfortably in the curve of the brake lever. 
  3. Pull the brake lever and make sure everything feels good and natural.
  4. Once that position of the brake lever feels natural and comfortable, you tighten the bolts.
  5. Do the same for the other side.
  6. Next, adjust the angle of the brake levers to fit your riding style. Start by placing it at a 45-degree angle, and then slightly adjust it up to find the right position.
    This can be done by sitting on the bicycle in different riding positions, like, standing, sitting, leaning back or leaning forward.
    Most riders find that the 45-degree angle is the most comfortable. 
How to adjust shimano hydraulic disc brakes? / how to adjust Shimano mechanical disc brakes / How to adjust Shimano ultegra hydraulic disc brake lever?

To manually align the brakes into the right position you first loosen the two bolts on the brake disc that holds the calliper to the bike frame, then pull the brake lever a couple of times to centre the calliper on the rotor. Without letting go of the lever, tighten the bolts and then release the lever. Spin the wheel to see if the rubbing or dis-alignment has stopped. If not, loosen the bolts again and fine-tune the position of the calliper by visually align the gap. Then re-tighten the bolts.

How to change disc brake pads Shimano?/ How to change shimano xt brake pads / How to replace shimano xt brake pads?
  1. Remove the front wheel.
  2. Use long nail pliers to grab the brakepads (one at a time), they are located in the calliper next to the rotors brakes. Push the pad out towards the centre and pull down. Next, remove the central splint clip.
  3. A key thing to note with new pads is that they have more brake material on them so you have to re-set your brake pistons. Use a bicycle tool to push them further from each other. 
  4. Place the new pad together and add the central splint clip. Then re-install the bike brake pads onto calliper until fully seated. 
  5. Re-install the wheel.
  6. Pull the brake lever to ensure the brake pads move out the correct amount. Pull the lever 5-6 times, and the pads will move to sit at the correct position.
How to remove Shimano brake levers?


  1. Remove grip handle
  2. Use a small wrench to loosen the hose bolt from the brake lever. Then pull the hose completely off the lever.
  3. Then slide the brake lever off the handlebars
How to replace Shimano hydraulic brake hose?


  1. Remove grip handle
  2. Use a small wrench to loosen the hose bolt from the brake lever
  3. Loosen the bolts on the lever and then slide the brake lever off the handlebars
  4. Replace it with the new lever - slide it on and tighten the bolts into a comfortable position.
  5. Remove the hose from the old lever and install it into the new one.
    This is done by fully unscrewing the old bolt from the older lever and dragging the hose off. Once the cable is off, reinstall it into the new lever and tighten the hose bolts. 
  6. Then bleed the brakes. 
  7. After, you reinstall the grips to the handlebar. Reposition the brake lever to fit your riding style and ensure comfortable braking. Clean the lever and handlebar to make sure it has no leftover brake fluids. Last, pull the lever a couple of times, it should feel tight.
How to tighten Shimano disc brakes? / How to tighten Shimano hydraulic disc brakes?
  1. Use an Allen key to loosen the brake pads on the brake housing. 
  2. Then slide the pads up and down to centre it. 
  3. Tighten the bolts again and squeeze the pads together. 
  4. Check that pads are aligned, if not, loosen the bolts and centre pads again.
What brake fluid to use in Shimano brakes?

Genuine Shimano Mineral Oil is the only fluid compatible with Shimano brakes

What is free stroke on Shimano XT brakes?

Free stroke is how far the lever has to travel before the brake pads start engaging the rotor.

How often to bleed Shimano brakes?

Every 6 months. If you are an aggressive terrain rider that performs heavy breaking then we recommend you bleed your brakes more often. 

Which Shimano brakes are best?

Our best seller is the Shimano Altus Br-MT200 Front Disc Brake BL-MT200 Right Lever. The Altus is easy Installation, reliable and operates super quiet. 

Are Shimano brakes good?

Yes! Shimano is one of the biggest brands when it comes to bike parts. The brand is known for its durable, reliable and high-performing bicycle components.

What are the strongest bike brakes?

We recommend trying the Shimano Altus Br-MT200 Front Disc Brake BL-MT200 Right Lever. These are strong, reliable and efficient brakes.

How to identify Shimano brake pads? / What type of Shimano brakes do I have?

You can find this either on the inside of your calliper or brake lever. There you will find a model number to identify which pads you will need.

How to install Shimano hydraulic brakes? How to install Shimano xt brakes? How to install Shimano brakes?

Installing hydraulic disc brakes can be tricky, so if you don't have the knowledge or experience needed to set it up properly, it's best to consult an experienced bike technician. To install Shimano hydraulic disc brakes yourself, follow these instructions: 1. Turn the bike over, remove the wheel and mount the rotor on the hub; 2. Mount the brake lever and connect the hydraulic line; 3. Install the calliper with an adapter on the frame. It should not be immediately strengthened; 4. Install the wheel with a rotor; 5. Straighten the hydraulic line with clamps or guide cells; 6. After connecting the hydraulic line, check its operation. To do this, slowly depress the brake levers of the bike. If everything is done correctly, the pads compress the disc evenly and the calliper becomes in its working position. Now it remains to tighten mounting bolts and your bike is ready to go.

How to service Shimano hydraulic disc brakes?

To service Shimano hydraulic disc brakes, you have to check the brake pads for wear and replace them if needed, bleed your brakes and clean all the parts. Here is step-by-step instruction: 1. Remove the wheels. 2. Check the brake line connections for fluid leaks. 3. Check the wear on the rotor and measure the thickness of the disc by putting the rotor between the two jaws of the calliper and moving them together. If the jaws don’t touch the braking surface evenly, the brake calliper position needs adjustment. 4. Check the bolts on the rotor and tighten them according to the recommended torque. 5. Remove the old pads and inspect the pistons and the callipers for leaks. 6. Remove the pistons and clean them with a special brake cleaner. After cleaning, grease the pistons with Shimano mineral oil before putting them back into the calliper. 7. Bleed the brakes. 8. Install new brake pads. 9. Align the calliper and tighten its mounting bolts. 10. Re-install the wheels. 11. Adjust the brakes by squeezing the lever several times. Shimano hydraulic disc brakes will adjust automatically.

Can I use hope rotors with Shimano brakes?

Yes, you can use Hope rotors with Shimano brakes. All Shimano callipers and rotors are cross-compatible, and there are very few rotor brands that don't work with Shimano's products.

Can you use any mineral oil in Shimano brakes?

No, you cannot use any mineral oil other than genuine Shimano mineral oil, as this is the only fluid compatible with Shimano brakes. If you use the wrong kind of brake fluid, you can damage the seals and rubber parts of the brake. Using Shimano mineral oil for your Shimano brakes is your safest option.

How do Shimano roller brakes work?

Shimano roller brakes work similarly to coaster brakes. When you press the brake lever, it pulls a cable, the opposite end of which drives the eccentric lever inside the roller brake. The eccentric lever's protrusions rest against the rollers as it rotates, causing the rollers to press against the pads. As a result, the brake pads rest against the working surface of the drum, slowing its rotation. Since the roller brake drum is connected with the wheel hub by splines, the rotation of the bicycle wheel itself also slows down.

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