When should I change brake pads?
First a big thanks to all those who post write-ups and pics of the DIY (and many times ridiculously easy) upgrades and maintenance jobs we can perform on our LSs. You give us the confidence and know-how to save us cash and learn new skills! You guys and gals are great!
Now to my question/story...
I do a good chunk of the maintenance on my 99 LS because a) I enjoy the learning and self-reliance and b) it has been difficult to find a mostly honest and reasonably-priced (doesn't need to be the cheapest) mechanic that treats my car almost like their own. It's always good to get a professional opinion so periodically I'll take it to a mechanic for a check-up to make sure all is well. I recently did this and received a clean bill except for the brakes which would need to be changed in 1-2k miles.
This would cost $250+ per axle (OEM pads, resurface the rotors, and labor) at the mechanic and I thought this would be a good time to learn to change my brake pads. Found some great instructions, ordered some Akebono ProACT ceramic pads from RockAuto, and was ready to get my hands dirty.
I changed out the rear on Sunday (if you can build IKEA furniture, changing brake pads is a piece of cake) and thought there still seemed to be a fair amount of material left but remembered they said "only 1-2k miles left" which was about 1k miles ago. I was changing the fronts today and saw they had a lot left as well. So I didn't change them, put it all back together, and want to get your thoughts on when pads need to be changed.
I have the service manual which states a minimum of 1.0mm for the pads. I measured the current pads and they have 9-10mm left. I measured the new Akebono pads and they had 13-14mm of material.
So what do you think? Do I need to change the fronts? Should I still change them since I already changed the rear and have all the parts for the front?
Thanks in advance for your help.