Brakes vibrate, shake, vibrate and make noise – these are all common reasons for a customer to visit the store. Most of the time, these problems are caused by different components of the steering or braking systems needing replacement or repair, but other times, these problems can be caused by improper installation of brand new parts, such as new brake rotors and brake pads.
Your customer might ask, “how is this noise and vibration possible? I just changed my brake pads!”
As a technician, you know that proper break-in of new brake rotors and brake pads is imperative to getting customers back on the road safely. Completing this process correctly also helps you avoid annoying and easily avoidable noise and vibration problems.
Read on for tips from the OEM-trained technicians here at ADVICS to help you get the brake rotor and brake pad break-in process right, the first time.
What is Bed-In?
Simply put, brake bedding is a conditioning process to “break in” a new set of brake pads and brake rotor to be used together. Our technicians always recommend pairing an ultra-premium brake rotor with ultra premium brake pads.
The 30-30-30 rule
At ADVICS, our technicians follow the 30-30-30 rule for break-in and suggest this as the preferred method. That means doing 30 slow stops from 30 mph, with at least a 30-second cooldown in between.
This allows a fair amount of heat to build up on the brake rotor and brake pad surfaces, helping to deposit that all-important layer of transfer film on the brake rotor surface, seating or seating the brake pads. and new brake. rotors
The break-in process must be done carefully, as rapid heat build-up can cause warped rotors or glazed brake pads. At the 400-500 mile mark, the brake pads and brake rotors are seated well; be sure to tell customers that for optimal performance they should avoid hard or hard braking until they reach that many miles on the new brake rotors and brake pads.
When doing brake work, our technicians always recommend starting with new brake pads and brake rotors, but if you must use the customer’s existing brake rotors, inspect them thoroughly to determine that they do not have excessive runout of more than 0.004″ .(0.10mm).
If the existing brake rotor shows excessive runout, DO NOT proceed with its installation and DO NOT drive using that brake rotor. Excessively run out brake rotors can cause vibration problems, steering wheel wobble, and even complete brake system failure, so advise the customer that the brake rotor needs to be replaced and is not considered safe to drive.
Brake Rotor Surface Inspection
Fitting new brake rotors and brake pads requires that you be meticulous in inspecting the parts you are working with and installing on the vehicle. Failure to do so can have unintended consequences for your customer, such as brake chatter, tremors, and excessive noise.
If you are using new brake rotors and brake pads (which we recommend), you can continue with the 30-30-30 rule after proper installation according to the manufacturer’s instructions. If you must use the customer’s existing brake rotor and have inspected its thickness to ensure it meets the requirements for safe operation, clean the surface of the brake rotor to remove any residue or existing transfer film from the old brake pads. . In both situations, you still need to continue with the settlement process.
When compounds are present on the brake rotor surface, they can cause a slip-grab-slip pattern as the brake pads pass over the brake rotor surface when pressure is applied. This causes vibration to pass through the suspension and flywheel and can often be misdiagnosed as a warped rotor. That’s all the more reason to take your time during the inspection and make sure you get the full history of customers when they arrive for service.
While the above tips may be considered best practice, always refer to the manufacturer’s information for proper setup and break-in procedures to ensure customers leave your shop with the safest stop possible.
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