How to Get the Right Brake Job that’s Best for You At The BEST PRICE
Read Below For the Facts About Brake Jobs & Parts!
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The Cost Verses the Benefit.
The cheapest brake job may compromise your safety, and yetthe most expensive brake job may not make your vehicle any safer if your driving conditions are less demanding.
Yesterday and Today
A brake job 25 years ago was for disc and drum brakes that only used two types of friction materials, semi-metallic and asbestos. Since then, automaker suppliers have developed additional friction compounds, and the aftermarket now offers a huge array of replacement brake products that vary widely in quality and performance.
How to tell if you need new brake pads
a. Usually, the first sign of excessive brake-pad wear is a high-pitched squealing.This sound comes from a soft-metal wear indicator that rubs against the brake rotor to alert the driver that a change is needed.
b. Other symptoms can include the vehicle pulling to one side under braking, the brakes grabbing or vibrating and the brake pedal feeling softer to depress.
c. A grinding sound means that pad replacement is long overdue and the metal that holds the brake pad in place is grinding on and damaging the brake rotors. Always check the owner’s manual for any brake-related recommendations, including pad replacement intervals.
d. Many high-end vehicles have sensors that are built into the brakes and send a signal to the dash notifying the driver to check the brakes.
What are the different types of brake pads?
There are different friction materials in brake pads today that have significant benefits to consider. While one may offer superior heat transfer and better braking performance it may also be noisier and more prone to depositing unsightly brake dust on the wheel rims.
Four general types of brake pads for cars and trucks
These pads are more durable and have excellent heat transfer, but also wear down rotors faster, can be noisy, and may not perform optimally at low temperatures. Best for lots of stop-and-go traffic, frequently carry heavy loads or numerous passengers, hilly or mountainous areas, or a daily commute down a steep grade. They will be a bit noisier, produce more dust, and possibly respond with a harder pedal feel, but these pads cost less, last longer and provide better braking than Ceramic brake pads.
2. Non-asbestos organic:
This type of pad is made from fibers, such as glass, rubber, carbon, and Kevlar, with filler materials and high-temperature resins. These pads have a bit less stopping power than the other three pads, are softer and create less noise, but they wear much faster and create more dust.
3. Low-metallic NAO:
These are made from an organic formula mixed with small amounts of copper or steel to help with heat transfer and provide better braking power than Non-asbestos, but not as powerful braking as Simi-metallic and Ceramic pads. These pads don’t wear fast and create as much brake pad dust as the Non-asbestos Organic.
These are composed of ceramic fibers, nonferrous filler materials, bonding agents, and possibly small amounts of metal. Lighter in color and more expensive than the other brake pads, ceramic pads put much less duct on the aluminum wheels, are quieter, have a comfortable pedal feel and offer excellent braking characteristics without wearing down the rotors.
Do you need new calipers?
Brake calipers work in a push-pull process to squeeze and release the brake pads against the rotors to slow and stop the wheel from rotating.
As we press the brake peddle the caliper piston slides towards and grips the brake rotor to slow the wheel. When we lift pressure from the brake peddle the caliper piston retracts releasing its grip of the rotor.
But if the caliper binds on the slide pins, the brake pads wear unevenly and quickly. Binding is a very common problem! But that doesn’t mean you have to replace the calipers often costing up to $300 per pair. Instead, the shop simply needs to replace the slide pins for about $20 in parts and lubricate them with high-temperature synthetic grease. So if replacement calipers are recommended, ask if they can be fixed by replacing the slide pins.<br><br>
In most cases, calipers can be reused. But don’t argue if you’re told that the brake caliper is leaking fluid or the piston won’t retract. Then it must be rebuilt or replaced.
Do you need new rotors?
a) Less metal in the rotors is a bad idea. A generic rotor weighs 20 percent less than the premium brand for the same vehicle.
The brake parts market is flooded with inferior rotors that wholesale for as little as $10 each. Some shops buy those instead of premium rotors, charge you the higher price, and pocket the difference. To the untrained eye, the generic rotors look just like the high-quality versions. But when you place them side by side, the differences become obvious. The friction surfaces on the generic rotors are noticeably thinner and they weigh about 20 percent less.
b) With less metal to absorb heat and fewer cooling fins to dissipate the heat, the generic rotors heat up faster, warp more often creating pedal pulsation, make more noise and simply wear out faster. They’re a lousy choice all the way around even if you’re trying to save money. Just as with brake pads, ask the shop for a quote that’s based on brand-name professional grade as opposed to “service” grade) rotors.
c) Ask for brand-name parts
Top-quality manufacturers are proud to put their name right on the package.
Generic brake parts offer a lower quality and are almost always packaged in plain white or yellow boxes.
d) Ask about brake pad certifications
Many consumers assume all aftermarket replacement pads will perform just as well or better than factory parts, but that’s not necessarily the case.
New vehicles must meet federal performance standards with a minimum stopping distance in a variety of situations under a specified pedal effort. Top-quality brake parts manufactures will indicate by a certification that they meet these standards.
Consumers must remember that not all aftermarket brake parts are certified by their manufacturer.
e)How to find a reputable brake shop
Top-quality shops automatically use the best parts because they do not want “comebacks” where the brake job is redone at the expense of the shop. The shop can charge a fair price up front without resorting to gimmicks and up-selling. Call a few shops in your area and ask what brand, type and quality-level pads and rotors they use. Here are some well-known brands: Bendex, Raybestos, Akebono, Hawk, Wagner, NAPA/United, Carquest, Centric, Motorcraft, ACDelco, Monroe, Brembo and EBC.
Once you find a shop that carries brand-name parts, ask for a price quote over the phone. Any reputable shop will provide a fairly firm quote that includes machining the rotors, replacing the slide pines and installing high-quality pads and hardware. Shops don’t need to see the vehicle to provide a price, a break job isn’t brain surgery. If a shop balks at providing a phone quote, call a different one.
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