What is the Brake Rotor/Disc all about?
A brake rotor is a smooth metal disc attached to the wheel hub. Most new cars (1999 and above) come with rotors at each wheel. Older cars may have drums instead of rotors at the rear wheels . Brake rotors play an important part in the braking system. It is the friction between brake pads and rotors that cause your car to slow down and stop. As the rotors wear out (become thin or warped), they are unable to dissipate the heat caused by the braking system. This will cause the brake fluid to boil and reduce the effectiveness of brake system significantly.
Keep in mind:
Brake rotors are replaced in pairs. If you choose front brake rotors, both front wheels will get new rotors. This service comes with brake pads. Unless brake pads were replaced recently, pads must be replaced while replacing the rotors.
How it's done:
- Measure the thickness of brake rotors.
- Remove and replace rotors and pads.
- Perform a brake safety inspection.
- Perform test drive.
It is a good idea to get the thickness of brake rotors measured annually. Your mechanic should measure the rotor thickness every time the brake pads are replaced. Brake rotors usually last twice as long as brake pads, which usually means you need to replace rotors every other brake service. If you drive the car with worn-out brake pads for too long, you will destroy the rotors.
What common symptoms indicate you may need to replace the Brake Rotor/Disc?
- Vibration or pulsation when applying brakes.
- Blue discoloration of rotor surface.
- Grooves or hot spots in rotors.
How important is this service?
All services associated with proper function of your brakes are important. In addition to safety issues, ignoring small repairs can quickly lead to more serious (and more expensive) problems.