Brake rotors need to be re-surfaced every ten to twelve months it seems

Tiny
RICHARD EVANS
  • MEMBER
  • 1995 HONDA ACCORD
  • 4 CYL
  • 2WD
  • AUTOMATIC
  • 113,500 MILES
About every ten to twelve months it seems I need to have my brake rotor re-sufaced.
While applying the brakes the steering wheel starts to move back-and-forth and the faster I go the harder I have to brake the more violent this becomes. Why do the rotors need to be resurfaced so often?

Thank You
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Friday, February 26th, 2016 AT 11:25 AM

12 Replies

Tiny
CARADIODOC
  • EXPERT
Are you having them machined or replaced? If you are reusing old ones, have they been measured for minimum thickness?
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Friday, February 26th, 2016 AT 11:34 AM
Tiny
RICHARD EVANS
  • MEMBER
Absolutely every time.
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Friday, February 26th, 2016 AT 12:10 PM
Tiny
CARADIODOC
  • EXPERT
Which is it? Machining old rotors or installing new ones each time?
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Friday, February 26th, 2016 AT 1:40 PM
Tiny
RICHARD EVANS
  • MEMBER
Machining i.E. Resurfacing due to warping.
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Friday, February 26th, 2016 AT 2:00 PM
Tiny
RICHARD EVANS
  • MEMBER
Sorry for the confusion with absolutely every time I was referring to measuring for the minimum thickness. I replaced the rotors with new five years ago resurfacing then ever sense.
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Friday, February 26th, 2016 AT 2:05 PM
Tiny
CARADIODOC
  • EXPERT
Dandy. New rotors often warp and need one light machining, then they are okay. That affects Chinese rotors. We age cast iron parts for ninety days before they get their final machining; they do not, so they age on your car. Other than that, there is nothing wrong with their quality.

The first thing to look at is the rotor thickness. There is a published legal minimum thickness they can be machined to, ("machine to" spec), and a smaller "discard" spec they can be allowed to wear to after they have been machined. Besides the legal ramifications that all professionals know about and obsess over, if they are too thin, there will not be enough metal to dissipate the heat. Hit a hot rotor with water from a puddle, and there is a good chance it will warp.

Check for missing splash shields, especially given the age of the car. They help direct cooling air to the rotors and keep water off of them.

If the rotors are full of deep rust pockets on the backside, it is time to replace them. You cannot get even friction on both sides of the car.

The next thing to consider is a dragging brake. Suspension geometry has been modified on front-wheel-drive cars to prevent a brake pull when one brake hydraulic circuit stops working, so you will often not notice the car pulling to one side when a brake is sticking. Stop on a slight incline, shift to neutral, release the brakes, then see if the car creeps downhill on its own. If it does not, a brake is sticking. Everyone assumes the calipers are causing that, but it is more common to have a restricted rubber flex hose. To find that, you have to open the hydraulic system at various places to see where the brake fluid is being trapped. Start with the steel lines at the master cylinder. If that lets the brakes release, we have to talk. Contaminated brake fluid will cause that, and that is a very expensive repair, possibly more than the car is worth.

Also look at the calipers' mounting surfaces. If there is insufficient brake grease on them, grooves will wear into them and allow the pads' backing plates to catch and resist releasing. That can keep one pad in contact with the rotor and cause it to get hot. You can often find that by feeling the unequal temperatures next to the two front wheels after a drive on the highway.

The last thing is hot spots. Cutting bits will skip over them but you may not feel that right away. As the softer metal wears down, the hot spots are much harder so they do not wear as fast. In effect, it looks like those spots raise up over time until you feel it in the pedal.
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Friday, February 26th, 2016 AT 2:21 PM
Tiny
RICHARD EVANS
  • MEMBER
Thank you. I Believe it to be the first part of your answer inferior products. Thanks again for your time and expert knowledge you help me a couple days ago with my 2003 Jeep Wangler it was the throttle positioning sensor and I trust that your answer for the Honda is equally correct. Thank You, sincerely Richard
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Friday, February 26th, 2016 AT 2:55 PM
Tiny
CARADIODOC
  • EXPERT
Happy to hear about your Jeep. I am in the middle of adding to my web site page about sensors. Just typed a section about the TPS last night. I am updating my site right now in between dispensing wondrous knowledge here.
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Friday, February 26th, 2016 AT 3:03 PM
Tiny
RICHARD EVANS
  • MEMBER
Your humorous as well.
Thank You, truly
Good luck with your update
I am sure it is going to be full of wondrous knowledge as well.
You have been most helpful sir will look forward to having you get me out of my next auto issue. You been a great help.
Sincerely Richard
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Friday, February 26th, 2016 AT 4:23 PM
Tiny
KEN
  • ADMIN
Glad we can help, please tell a friend and use 2carpros. Com anytime
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Monday, March 7th, 2016 AT 4:54 PM
Tiny
RICHARD EVANS
  • MEMBER
Hello Ken, all yes answers.
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Tuesday, March 8th, 2016 AT 1:06 PM
Tiny
KEN
  • ADMIN
Why thank you :-)
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Tuesday, March 8th, 2016 AT 6:24 PM

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