Skip the auto shop - Our mechanics make house calls

Q: Warped brake rotor--what causes that and how to repair

asked by on

What causes brake rotors to warp? I have a slight vibration in my brakes and I think the rotors can be warped. Can I repair the worn rotors or do I need to replace them? Can I replace the rotor but not change the pad? Do I need to change both?

You need to change both. My advice is not to have them turned because if you have rotors made out of steel and they warp, and you turn them the other way to make them flat then they are thinner. They already warped once and they are going to warp again even faster.

So just replace them with new rotors and brake pads. They are not all that expensive.

The only difference between expensive and cheap pads is that cheap pads will make noise but with brand new rotors, they are not going to make any noise. So you don’t have to spend that much doing it. And the reason they warp is because heat just eventually builds up and they get so hot that they warp. So you’d want to check the things like if the master cylinder is sticking out, if the caliper is sticking out, are the brake hoses collapsing. Because if they keep warping, it means that for some reason the brakes are running sticky on and getting too hot.

Was this answer helpful?

Need advice from certified mechanic? Get help now!

Over 1000 mechanics are ready to answer your question.
The statements expressed above are only for informational purposes and should be independently verified. Please see our terms of service for more details

Ask a Mechanic
(100% Free)

Have a car question? Get free advice from our top-rated mechanics.

Ask A Mechanic
Over 10,000 questions answered!

Get an instant quote for your car

Our certified mechanics come to you ・Backed by 12-month, 12,000-mile guarantee・Fair and transparent pricing

Get a quote

What others are asking

Q: my rear brakes are making squeaking sounds

Wheel bearings will typically whine, howl, or grumble constantly so that is not likely. Disc brake pads have ears on the metal backing of the pad that rest on stainless tabs and there is metal to metal contact on...

Q: Master cylinder issues with vehicle. Hard to stop.

The booster won't make your pedal go to the floor. If you bled all the brakes, and there are no leaks, then it's most likely the master cylinder. You can take them apart and clean them, but if the seals...

Q: Brakes locking up

The brake pedal being hard to push is telling me that there is a problem with your brake booster. The booster uses engine vacuum to help you apply force to the brake pedal. When the booster is not working this...

Related articles

Rules of the Road For Iowa Drivers
Driving on the roads requires knowledge of the rules, many of which are based on common sense and courtesy. However, even though you know the rules in...
P2428 OBD-II Trouble Code: Exhaust Gas Temperature Too High Bank 1
P2428 code definition A P2428 trouble code signifies that the PCM has detected a problem in the exhaust gas temperature sensor circuit in bank 1, which subsequently contains the number one...
P2103 OBD-II Trouble Code: Throttle Actuator Control Motor Circuit High
P2103 means there is a fault with the throttle actuator control motor circuit, likely due to a defective electrical component or part.