When changing rotors, is it ususal to change the pads too?

JTsyo

Lifer
Nov 18, 2007
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Car was making noise when braking so when it was time to do the oil, I asked to check the brakes too. I was told that the rotors and pads needed to be changed. When I got the paperwork at the end, it was stated that the old pads still had 8-14mm still left of them. That seemed like that's a lot of life left in those pads.
 

Muadib

Lifer
May 30, 2000
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What car? On my Audi Q7, the rotors & pads were connected. Meaning both had to be changed at the same time.
 

UsandThem

Super Moderator
May 4, 2000
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Pads are pretty inexpensive. It would make sense to change them at the same time you replace the rotors.

When I did the brakes and rotors on two of my vehicles a few months ago, the pads still were a decent thickness, but they were overall not in great shape (time and temperature, salt, water, etc).

Of course having a shop do your brakes can get pricey, but if you buy your parts from a place like Rock Auto, you can save some $$$
 

JTsyo

Lifer
Nov 18, 2007
10,682
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What car? On my Audi Q7, the rotors & pads were connected. Meaning both had to be changed at the same time.
Ford Fusion Hybrid. I was expecting the brakes to last over 100k since most of the braking is regenerative. I was at 57k miles.
 

olds

Elite Member
Mar 3, 2000
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Ford Fusion Hybrid. I was expecting the brakes to last over 100k since most of the braking is regenerative. I was at 57k miles.
57K isn't horrible on pads, not great on rotors. But definitely replace the pads with the rotors.
Do you do a lot of stop and go vs highway driving? Ride the brake?

Newer rotors seem to be thinner probably for weight savings.
 

JTsyo

Lifer
Nov 18, 2007
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57K isn't horrible on pads, not great on rotors. But definitely replace the pads with the rotors.
Do you do a lot of stop and go vs highway driving? Ride the brake?

Newer rotors seem to be thinner probably for weight savings.
Most of my braking is regenerative. I think the rotors warped causing the sound. They might be thinner since they know it won't be used much.
 

zinfamous

No Lifer
Jul 12, 2006
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the fit between a rotor and pads is pretty directly related. If you need to replace a rotor(s) because of warping, expect the pads to be wore down unevenly. This will certainly affect your braking if you use those uneven pads on a new, fixed rotor.
 
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EXCellR8

Diamond Member
Sep 1, 2010
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What car? On my Audi Q7, the rotors & pads were connected. Meaning both had to be changed at the same time.
Would you mind expanding on this? That's the first I've heard of anything like that and I've been doing brakes for many years...
 

Muadib

Lifer
May 30, 2000
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Would you mind expanding on this? That's the first I've heard of anything like that and I've been doing brakes for many years...
I hear you. I thought they were trying to pull one over on me, as I had never heard that before on any car. I asked a co-worker who also had a Q7, but his was a year older. He said he was told the same thing at his dealer, but he told them to forget it, and he went to his mechanic . His mechanic took care for him, as he paid half of what I paid.

If you need more, call your local Audi service center, and tell them you need brakes on a 2015 Q7. I'd be curious to see if you are told the same.
 

Midwayman

Diamond Member
Jan 28, 2000
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Most of my braking is regenerative. I think the rotors warped causing the sound. They might be thinner since they know it won't be used much.
Did they tell you that? Actual warping is really rare. Most often its pad deposits.

As for replacing pads with rotors, yes it is completely normal. A little odd not to do it actually. Pads and rotors wear in together and replacing the pad only could risk putting down a weird wear pattern on the rotors.
 
Feb 25, 2011
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Did they tell you that? Actual warping is really rare. Most often its pad deposits.

As for replacing pads with rotors, yes it is completely normal. A little odd not to do it actually. Pads and rotors wear in together and replacing the pad only could risk putting down a weird wear pattern on the rotors.
If pad deposits make the rotor misshapen, or if different parts of the rotor are different thicknesses, I think a lot of techs might mis-characterize it as rotor warp. Symptoms are largely the same (wheel shimmy while braking) and solution is the same (either lathe or replace depending on remaining rotor thickness) so it's hard to blame them.
 

EXCellR8

Diamond Member
Sep 1, 2010
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I hear you. I thought they were trying to pull one over on me, as I had never heard that before on any car. I asked a co-worker who also had a Q7, but his was a year older. He said he was told the same thing at his dealer, but he told them to forget it, and he went to his mechanic . His mechanic took care for him, as he paid half of what I paid.
Interesting... I mean I wouldn't put past the Germans to over-engineer something simple and thus making it super costly to repair--just had never heard of such a thing. That's pretty lousy for a dealer to distort the truth about the job but not uncommon. I'm sure they've done the same to plenty of other people who don't know any better.
 

Midwayman

Diamond Member
Jan 28, 2000
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If pad deposits make the rotor misshapen, or if different parts of the rotor are different thicknesses, I think a lot of techs might mis-characterize it as rotor warp. Symptoms are largely the same (wheel shimmy while braking) and solution is the same (either lathe or replace depending on remaining rotor thickness) so it's hard to blame them.
Pad deposits can often be fixed simply by rebedding the brakes, but they don't make nearly as much money that way.
 
Mar 11, 2004
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Ford Fusion Hybrid. I was expecting the brakes to last over 100k since most of the braking is regenerative. I was at 57k miles.
Where do you live? I saw some people saying that they didn't even change the pads (let alone the rotors) on their Prius until like 200k because they didn't need to (which my Mom's has almost 185,000 miles and its gotten full inspections several times and they have kept saying the brakes are fine). I wonder if you live in an area with a lot of rain or road salt that it might cause rusting (which due to less use of the hydraulic brakes on a hybrid might lead to more rust buildup and thus it creating bigger issues). I notice that the times it rains, when we come to a stop where you can feel the regen brake let go and the normal brakes take over they're especially grabby and will squeak a bit until you've stopped a few times and rubbed the little bit of rust build up off.

My guess is they did probably fleece you a bit in that you could've probably kept both but with a resurfacing of the rotors (or maybe even rebedding yourself). Which it might not have necessarily been malicious and just been a tech that looked up the Fusion maintenance recs and just saw the non-hybrid ones or something.
 

JTsyo

Lifer
Nov 18, 2007
10,682
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Where do you live? I saw some people saying that they didn't even change the pads (let alone the rotors) on their Prius until like 200k because they didn't need to (which my Mom's has almost 185,000 miles and its gotten full inspections several times and they have kept saying the brakes are fine). I wonder if you live in an area with a lot of rain or road salt that it might cause rusting (which due to less use of the hydraulic brakes on a hybrid might lead to more rust buildup and thus it creating bigger issues). I notice that the times it rains, when we come to a stop where you can feel the regen brake let go and the normal brakes take over they're especially grabby and will squeak a bit until you've stopped a few times and rubbed the little bit of rust build up off.

My guess is they did probably fleece you a bit in that you could've probably kept both but with a resurfacing of the rotors (or maybe even rebedding yourself). Which it might not have necessarily been malicious and just been a tech that looked up the Fusion maintenance recs and just saw the non-hybrid ones or something.
In NJ. I definitely do notice the rust and extra friction after rains.
Time before I went in for an oil change they said it was close to a service milage (~45K). As I was waiting for them to finished I remembered that the service intervals for the hybrid was 10k miles.
 

PattenTank

Junior Member
Sep 6, 2019
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Sounds like BS from garage.

But Original factory spec these days will always recommend they are both done together. The trouble is they dont wear the same, they should build them so they wear together.
 

sdifox

No Lifer
Sep 30, 2005
75,765
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I'm no grease monkey, call your local Audi dealer.
Brake rotor is attached to axle, brake pistons and pads attached to car. If the brake assembly is attached to the rotor, your car cannot move since axle cannot spin.
 

Muadib

Lifer
May 30, 2000
15,239
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Brake rotor is attached to axle, brake pistons and pads attached to car. If the brake assembly is attached to the rotor, your car cannot move since axle cannot spin.
I found this:
Youtube has everything.:) Could it be something Audi wants?
 
Last edited:

Meghan54

Diamond Member
Oct 18, 2009
8,642
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What car? On my Audi Q7, the rotors & pads were connected. Meaning both had to be changed at the same time.
As you can see in the yt video you posted above, Muadib, the pads and rotors are not "connected" in any form or fashion. In fact, the brake assembly on that Audi is set up pretty much exactly the same as on my '03 Chevy Silverado. Rotors are attached to the axle (lug nuts/bolts go through the rotor attaching it to the hub/axle) and turn with the wheel; brake pads float within the caliper which is attached to the steering knuckle, which is part of the car (suspension) and they don't move or turn.

You can easily see this happen by jacking up your car at one front corner and then turn/spin the tire/wheel. It turns and the rotor turns with it, as well. But the pads and caliper stay stationary. Wouldn't be so if the pads and rotor were "connected," as the BS from the garage was put.
 

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