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Best Brake Rotor Setup for the Common Daily Driver

By Canadabrakes on August 16, 2017, 6:29 am

If you're looking to replace your brake rotors, what matters the most is the type of driver that you are. Casual drivers and aggressive drivers seek different functionality from their braking systems, and the types of brakes best suited to them will be based on their driving style and budget.

For the Casual Driver

If you're the type of driver who likes to drive defensively, rarely increases speed, and usually goes for long, leisurely drives and daily commutes, we recommend blank OEM rotors and drilled only rotors. These are cost-effective, durable options that will last. Casual drivers are often in traffic, follow speed limits, and drive conscientiously. They need consistent stopping power and safety, but may not necessarily need high-performance or high-speed components.

 

Brake Kits

Blank OEM rotors:

Blank OEM rotors are the most affordable options and are designed to be identical or better in performance to the brake rotors produced by the vehicle's manufacturer. This is the perfect all-around choice for a daily driver.

 

Brake Kits

Drilled only rotors:

Drilled rotors have holes in them that are designed to dissipate heat more effectively. Drilled rotors are a good solution for those who have daily commutes or are in traffic for a long time, as they won't heat up as quickly -- which can cause premature wear to brake pads.

 

For the Aggressive Driver

An aggressive driver is a driver who seeks to get the most out of their vehicle. They may often drive in areas that have a lot of twists and turns and may seek out roads with intentionally high speeds. Aggressive drivers often have high-performance vehicles and high-performance engines, and they need stopping power that's going to greatly exceed what a casual driver might require. For an aggressive driver, we recommend drilled and slotted or slotted only rotors.

 

Brake Kits

Drilled and slotted rotors:

Drilled and slotted rotors are going to have superior heat management compared to other types of rotors, ensuring that the brakes remain cool and don't lock up even when the vehicle is moving at high speeds and the engine is being tested. These are high-performance rotors that are designed to be used by those who are racing or who otherwise need high-speed maneuverability and functionality.

 

Brake Kits

Slotted only rotors:

Slotted only rotors have similar heat management capabilities to drilled and slotted rotors. They may not have as much heat absorption attached to them, but they will be more durable because there's more material on the rotor itself. Slotted rotors last a longer period of time vs drilled rotors. Slotted rotors will usually use up brake pads faster than drilled and slotted rotors, but the tradeoff is that they will need to be replaced less frequently.

 

Importance of Maintaining your Brakes

By Canadabrakes on March 7, 2017, 2:24 am

You may know that it’s important to keep your vehicle brakes in good working order, but do you understand how often to check your brakes and the routine maintenance that your brake system needs? If not, you risk putting your life in danger by foregoing brake maintenance that ensures your car can stop when you need it to.

The Importance of Changing Your Brakes Regularly

By Canadabrakes on March 7, 2017, 2:23 am

Brakes give off warning signs that they’re not working properly. By paying attention to common brake problems and their symptoms, you can avoid a brake failure.

When your brake rotors or pads begin to wear down, they can no longer stop your car effectively. It may take longer for you to stop than it did when everything was operating perfectly. Unfortunately, this could mean the difference between stopping in time to avoid an accident or hitting a car or pedestrian.

Reducing your risk of an accident is as easy as following the general maintenance requirements for your vehicle and knowing the warning signs of brake problems.

General Brake Maintenance Tips

By Canadabrakes on March 7, 2017, 2:23 am

Every vehicle owner’s manual provides a manufacturer’s recommended brake maintenance schedule. This is a good resource; however, your driving frequency and habits may mean your brakes need a slightly different maintenance schedule.

As a general guideline, automakers suggest replacing brake pads every 25,000 miles or when pads become worn to 1/8 inch thickness. You can inspect the brake pad yourself and take measurements with a caliper.

As with oil, brake fluid should be replaced when it starts to look dirty. Your auto mechanic can check this during an oil change, or you can replace your own brake fluid and save money.

Brake rotors may last for up to 70,000 miles — if you are a careful driver. Urban drivers tend to require more frequent rotor replacement, since city driving necessitates regular hard stops. However, if you drive aggressively or your rural lifestyle requires frequent hard stops to avoid meandering deer, rotors will wear out more quickly.

Common Brake Problems and Their Symptoms

By Canadabrakes on March 7, 2017, 2:18 am

If you hear any of the following signs of brake problems in between general brake maintenance, have your car checked out by a mechanic:

 

  • Screeching sound: Brake pads are designed to clue you in to their wear and tear by making noise as they become significantly worn. If you hear a grinding noise when you depress your brakes, you may need new front or rear brake pads.
  • Grinding sound: If you hear a grinding or scraping sound as if metal is rubbing together, you are overdue for new brake rotors.
  • Vibration when you brake: Does your car seem to pulse or vibrate as you brake? Vibrations coming through the brake pedal (which you feel in your feet) or through the wheel (which you feel in your hands) suggest a problem with the brake rotors. If you ignore this signal, your brake rotors could become warped — causing additional damage.
  • It takes your car longer to stop: As brake pads wear down, it actually takes your car longer to stop. If you feel as if you have to depress the brake pedal all the way to the floor to come to a stop, you may need new brake pads.
  • Brake warning light: If the brake warning light on your dashboard comes on, it’s important to have the system inspected.Never hold off on brake repair or replacement because you are worried about the cost. The costs and ramifications of an auto accident are much more expensive — and that is exactly what you risk if you ignore brake system warnings.

Special Tools Used In Brake Service

By Canadabrakes on February 23, 2017, 5:54 am

In this article, We'll introduce you to the specific tools designed to be used when replacing brake components and servicing your brake.

Disc Brakes and Drum Brakes Explained!

By Canadabrakes on February 23, 2017, 5:53 am

If you have owned a car or truck for more than a few months, you are indoubtedly aware that your vechicle's brakes occasionally need.

Brake Rotors

By Canadabrakes on February 23, 2017, 5:53 am

Get up to speed on the most common types of brake rotors, their pros, and their cons to make an informed choice of the brake rotor style.

Why is it important to do a brake fluid flush?

By Canadabrakes on February 23, 2017, 5:52 am

You may know that auto makers recommend changing the brake fluid in your car periodically.

When Do Brakes Need to Be Checked?

By Canadabrakes on November 21, 2016, 12:21 am

But even though brakes may commonly squeak, there are some indicators that your brakes do need to be checked.

 
  • An unusual sound that doesn't go away. If your vehicle didn't squeak before and does now -- and the squeaking sound persists -- then it's possible that your brake pads have thinned. In this situation, you need to get them changed out right away.
  • A combination of squeak and performance issues. If your vehicle feels as though it's braking differently while it's making unusual sounds, there could be something wrong with the brake system itself.
  • An exceptionally loud sound. Squeaking and squealing is usually fine, but loud sounds such as grinding are not. Grinding generally means that there is a mechanical problem.
  • A scraping sound. If you're hearing a scraping sound from your drum -- not disc -- brakes, it's possible that you need to get them lubricated. This is fairly simple, but a failure to do so could lead to maintenance problems down the line.

Drivers are generally accustomed to the normal sounds of their vehicle. If your brakes have been louder than usual or have been squealing for longer than usual, it's likely that you need to get them checked. Brakes are a critical component to vehicle safety, so don't procrastinate -- a brake check is usually fast and affordable.

The Most Common Reasons for Squealing Brakes

By Canadabrakes on November 21, 2016, 12:18 am

In the early morning, many people's brakes will squeak. This is due to both moisture and temperature -- condensation will often have formed on the brakes themselves. As the vehicle warms up, the brakes will stop squeaking. This usually isn't a harmful problem, and it can be more pronounced in springtime and cold weather.

 

Of course, some brakes always squeak. If you've installed fairly cheap brake pads, you may experience some minor squeaking every time you brake. As long as this has always happened, it usually isn't indicative of an actual problem. But if you are bothered by the squeaking, you should know that more expensive brake pads are much quieter. In general, the lower the metal content of the brake pad, the less squeaking you'll experience.

Brake Issues: What Do Squeaking Brakes Mean?

By Canadabrakes on November 21, 2016, 12:16 am

Squeaking, squealing brakes can be an extreme annoyance -- but they don't necessarily mean that anything's wrong with your vehicle. Many brakes will squeak intermittently simply from normal operation or environmental factors. Depending on the type of squeak you're experiencing, you could need a check-up, or you could simply need to wait.

Organic Brake Pads What are Their Pros and Cons?

By Canadabrakes on September 1, 2016, 8:11 am

No matter how well you take care of your car or truck, it will need to have the brake pads replaced on a regular basis as a matter of automotive safety. The question is, do you know what kind of brake pads you really need to best protect your car based on your vehicle type and your driving style? Educate yourself about the different kinds of brake pads and the pros and cons of each to select with confidence the right pair for your automotive needs.

There are four main types of brake pads on the market: 

While brake pads come at a range of price points, the most expensive brake pad is not necessarily the best brake pad, or even the right choice for your car. More than cost, what matters is performance, composition, heat transfer, and other characteristics. 

Take the first step in determining which brake pads are right for you and learn about the use cases for each of these different kinds of brake pads. When you understand the advantages and the disadvantages of brake pads by type, then you’ll make a more informed choice over what your car really needs.

Low Metallic Brake Pads What are Their Pros and Cons?

By Canadabrakes on September 1, 2016, 8:08 am

While they are similar in composition to semi-metalliclow metallic brake pads have less metal and create less dust as a result. These brake pads typically have anywhere from 10 percent to 30 percent metal content versus 30 to 65 percent in semi-metallic versions.

Low metallic brake pads are often used in commercial vehicles (such as trucks and buses) due to their reliability and low cost; however, they can still be installed in passengers cars and trucks. They generally have the same advantages and disadvantages as the semi-metallic version. For example, these brake pads still make noise and cause dust when braking since they contain a fair amount of metal. They are better at dissipating heat than the semi-metallic version, and provide reliable braking even for large commercial vehicles. Like metallic brake pads, they work well for aggressive drivers who may need to quickly respond to other drivers or road traffic.

Semi-Metallic Brake Pads What are Their Pros and Cons?

By Canadabrakes on September 1, 2016, 8:07 am

The most common and traditional choice for brake pads, a metallic pad is an inexpensive and reliable option for cars and trucks. In the past, these were made with asbestos; nowadays, a semi-metallic or metallic brake pad is typically composed of 30 to 65 percent mixed metal (such as steel, iron, or copper) bonded with resin. 

In general, a metallic brake pad is more aggressive than a ceramic one, which tends to perform better with gradual braking. If you consider yourself an aggressive driver, or worry about your vehicle coming to a stop when you jam on the brakesmetallic brake pads may be the right choice for you. 

These brake pads do create dust, and can operate somewhat noisily compared to ceramic brake pads. Still, they are a good everyday option and are recommended for drivers on a budget. 

If you live in a cold climate, you may find that metallic brake pads do not operate as well as they do in warmer temperatures. It may be worth it the peace of mind to purchase different brake pads for use in winter, and know that you will be able to stop if you hit a patch of ice because your brakes perform consistently.

Ceramic Brake Pads What are Their Pros and Cons?

By Canadabrakes on September 1, 2016, 8:05 am

Nowadays, ceramic brake pads are very commonly recommended for consumers. A relatively new type of brake pad,ceramic pads are composed of a ceramic compound. 

Popular for their durable construction and lack of dust emitted while braking, ceramic brake pads will stop hard when you need them to without putting undue wear and tear on your brake rotors over time. Ceramic brake pads are strong, quiet, and will not overheat due to brake system friction.

While they have a lot to recommend them, ceramic brake pads are more expensive than other types of brake pads so they may not be right for drivers on a budget. If you have ever had to clean brake dust off your wheels, then you may enjoy the convenience of these low-maintenance brake pads and find them well worth the cost.

What Types of Brake Pads Exist?

By Canadabrakes on September 1, 2016, 8:03 am

No matter how well you take care of your car or truck, it will need to have the brake pads replaced on a regular basis as a matter of automotive safety. The question is, do you know what kind of brake pads you really need to best protect your car based on your vehicle type and your driving style? Educate yourself about the different kinds of brake pads and the pros and cons of each to select with confidence the right pair for your automotive needs.

There are four main types of brake pads on the market: 

While brake pads come at a range of price points, the most expensive brake pad is not necessarily the best brake pad, or even the right choice for your car. More than cost, what matters is performance, composition, heat transfer, and other characteristics. 

Take the first step in determining which brake pads are right for you and learn about the use cases for each of these different kinds of brake pads. When you understand the advantages and the disadvantages of brake pads by type, then you’ll make a more informed choice over what your car really needs.