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Question DetailsAsked on 1/22/2018

how long should braks last?

front caliper-front roter-front pads

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Depends on quality of the pads and discs, and especially on how you drive. We drive conservatively and drift into stop signs and red signals with only gentle braking so do no hard braking - and get 80-90,000 on a set of pads (or about half that on brake shoes on drum brakes), but average is probably around 50,000 miles plus or minus about 20,000 on disc brake pads. Of course, if most of your driving is wide-open highway they will last a lot longer than if you do mostly city driving with stop and go every block or so. Discs commonly last two sets of pads, and in some vehicles rear pads can last quite a bit longer than the front - especially if the driver does a lot of rapid stops because that wears on the front end more than the rear.


The calipers (other than replacing the easily replaceable rubber anti-chatter inserts and any anti-rattle springs at every pad change or two) should last as long as the car as long as you do not eat a rock that breaks one.


Note - pads and discs must be changed as a pair - both on the same axle should be changed at the same time to avoid uneven braking which can cause swerving or skidding when braking. A damaged caliper replacement or reboring/replacing a caliper piston can be done safely on only one side.


Note - if the disc is integral to the hub, so the wheel bearings come off with it or are exposed when it is taken off (as opposed to removeable discs which just slide on over the lug bolts and come off as just a disc without disturbing the bearings) then if they have run any distance to speak of they should be inspected for wear and regreased before reinstallation - very little additional cost for that compared to what it costs to pull it down the road because of a shot wheel bearing.


People who do jackrabbit starts and stops can go through a set of pads in 20,000 miles or even less - and can warp the discs in less than that with panic stops or very heavy (so very hot) braking.

Answered 9 months ago by LCD




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