How to Prevent Excessive Brake Rotor Wear

January 27, 2012

Excessive brake rotor wear can lead to expensive, and needless, brake repair jobs and can be prevented. Typically rotors wear less than pads on account of them being much, much harder material. Rotors are made from cast iron, making them cheaper and more durable then if steel was used. So what can you do to prevent unnecessary rotor wear?

The most common cause of excessive break wear is high temperatures. Riding your brakes, or hard stops at high speeds, will heat your rotors up at a fast pace, allowing them to warp or wear at a faster rate. Once a rotor starts to fade, it will require more pressure on the pedal to brake.

Trucks, SUV’s and large, heavy vehicles will also generate more heat, meaning the brakes will wear faster than smaller cars. Additionally pads that collect build up or abrasions can cause rotors to wear at a faster rate.

Using slotted, or vented, rotors can decrease the amount of heat generated allowing for cooler braking. In years past it was believed that vented rotors tore up brake pads, but this is most often a myth. Only the most poorly constructed vented rotors will tear up brake pads.

The use of vented rotors, careful, and slow application of braking, and not riding your brakes on sloped roads will help keep your pads cool and ensure they have a long life. If your pads do become warped, they can often be machined down without being replaced. Rotors are the most expensive brake component to replace, and keeping them in good condition will keep brake repair costs low.

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