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Brake FAQ

Old 11-27-2018, 11:11 PM
  #226  
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use it to strip paint lol. i have a use for dot 5 fluid but 3 and 4 wont work for i use it for
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Old 11-28-2018, 07:38 AM
  #227  
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Walmart has brake fluid in both DOT 3 and DOT 4 for ~ $4 / 946 mL - the cheapest around and more than enough to replace/clean the reservoir --> bleed brakes --> top off the system. In general the DOT3 and DOT4 bottles breathe enough that an unopened container will pickup moisture over the 1-2 year stated shelf life. New fluid is so cheap you're better off buying new and using it right away than chancing issues with NOS fluid.
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Old 11-28-2018, 07:55 AM
  #228  
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Originally Posted by Chrishoky View Post
Thanks! What can I do with the old stuff? My local auto place only takes used oil.
Definitely do not use that old brake fluid. It is absolutely full of water.

For street driving, it doesn't much matter whether you use DOT 3 or DOT 4, and for the record, they are compatible and can be mixed in a pinch if needed.

As for where to dispose of old brake fluid, Firestone service centers take it in my area. I discovered that by Googling something like "brake fluid drop-off location" or something like that. No one wants to take brake fluid, because unlike motor oil, they have to pay to have it taken away.

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Old 01-14-2019, 12:01 PM
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Great post and sticky..

The only info I disagree with is on the drilled and slotted rotors. It is much past my imperical knowledge but there must be an advantage to drilled rotors as high powered, high priced super cars have drilled rotors. I know they use carbon ceramic rotors so its not comparing apples to apples but i'm sure they have done the R&D to prove them to be beneficial and installing them on their cars.
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Old 01-14-2019, 12:59 PM
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Originally Posted by BARNETT89 View Post
Great post and sticky..

The only info I disagree with is on the drilled and slotted rotors. It is much past my imperical knowledge but there must be an advantage to drilled rotors as high powered, high priced super cars have drilled rotors. I know they use carbon ceramic rotors so its not comparing apples to apples but i'm sure they have done the R&D to prove them to be beneficial and installing them on their cars.
Good call. Wish more people understood this.

AFAIK the main benefit is better cooling.

There's also some very slight weight reduction, for whatever that's worth; e.g., for the Brembo BBK for the RX-8, you can get drilled or slotted rotors, and the drilled rotors weigh about 0.4 lbs (~3.5%) less per Brembo.

I've also seen a study that suggested that holes can slightly improve high-speed braking vs. blanks, though I don't know if that applies in all cases.
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Old 01-14-2019, 01:25 PM
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Originally Posted by BARNETT89 View Post
Great post and sticky..

The only info I disagree with is on the drilled and slotted rotors. It is much past my imperical knowledge but there must be an advantage to drilled rotors as high powered, high priced super cars have drilled rotors. I know they use carbon ceramic rotors so its not comparing apples to apples but i'm sure they have done the R&D to prove them to be beneficial and installing them on their cars.
They are beneficial: they look hot and sell for a premium!

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Old 01-14-2019, 01:34 PM
  #232  
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Originally Posted by IamFodi View Post
Good call. Wish more people understood this.

AFAIK the main benefit is better cooling.

There's also some very slight weight reduction, for whatever that's worth; e.g., for the Brembo BBK for the RX-8, you can get drilled or slotted rotors, and the drilled rotors weigh about 0.4 lbs (~3.5%) less per Brembo.

I've also seen a study that suggested that holes can slightly improve high-speed braking vs. blanks, though I don't know if that applies in all cases.
But don't the holes also multiply the mechanical stress and make them more prone to cracking? I would think this makes them a bit unreliable for track use.

For street use, well the benefits are not really worth it and you won't see much of a performance difference.
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Old 01-14-2019, 02:19 PM
  #233  
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Originally Posted by BARNETT89 View Post
The only info I disagree with is on the drilled and slotted rotors. It is much past my imperical knowledge but there must be an advantage to drilled rotors as high powered, high priced super cars have drilled rotors. I know they use carbon ceramic rotors so its not comparing apples to apples but i'm sure they have done the R&D to prove them to be beneficial and installing them on their cars.


Supercars are more a slave to fashion than ordinary cars. They have to look like supercars.

Drilled rotors are useless, but even Porsche has admitted they put them on their cars because most people who buy very expensive cars don't know **** about cars and expect "racy" looking brake rotors (can't find the quote right now). (Plus, Porsche gets to sell them rotors more often when they crack.) Drilled rotors are left-over from the 1950-60's when brake pads sucked. They would out-gas when they got hot, and that would reduce braking. Shitty old brake pads farted. So they drilled holes in the rotors to let the farts out. Brake pads haven't been that way for 50+ years.

Now, let's hear from some professionals that make brake systems:

Stoptech:
]Which is better, slotted or drilled rotors?

StopTech provides rotors slotted, drilled or plain. For most performance applications slotted is the preferred choice. Slotting helps wipe away debris from between the pad and rotor as well as increasing the "bite" characteristics of the pad. A drilled rotor provides the same type of benefit, but is more susceptible to cracking under severe usage. Many customers prefer the look of a drilled rotor and for street and occasional light duty track use they will work fine. For more severe applications, we recommend slotted rotors.
Baer Brakes:
What are the benefits to Crossdrilling, Slotting, and Zinc-Washing my rotors?

In years past, cross drilling and/or Slotting the rotor for racing purposes was beneficial by providing a way to expel the gasses created when the bonding agents employed to manufacture the pads...However, with today’s race pad technology, ‘outgassing’ is no longer much of a concern...Slotted surfaces are what Baer recommends for track only use. Slotted only rotors are offered as an option for any of Baer’s offerings.
And let's here from the motorsports experts at Grassroots Motorsports:
Cross drilling your rotors might look neat, but what is it really doing for you? Well, unless your car is using brake pads from the '40s and 50s, not a whole lot. Rotors were first drilled because early brake pad materials gave off gasses when heated to racing temperatures, a process known as "gassing out." ...It was an effective solution, but today's friction materials do not exhibit the some gassing out phenomenon as the early pads. Contrary to popular belief, they don't lower temperatures. (In fact, by removing weight from the rotor, they can actually cause temperatures to increase a little.) These holes create stress risers that allow the rotor to crack sooner, and make a mess of brake pads--sort of like a cheese grater rubbing against them at every stop. Want more evidence? Look at NASCAR or F1. You would think that if drilling holes in the rotor was the hot ticket, these teams would be doing it...Slotting rotors, on the other hand, might be a consideration if your sanctioning body allows for it. Cutting thin slots across the face of the rotor can actually help to clean the face of the brake pads over time, helping to reduce the glazing often found during high-speed use which can lower the coefficient of friction. While there may still be a small concern over creating stress risers in the face of the rotor, if the slots are shallow and cut properly, the trade-off appears to be worth the risk. (Have you looked at a NASCAR rotor lately?)

Originally Posted by Loki View Post
They are beneficial: they look hot and sell for a premium!
Bullseye!

Last edited by wankelbolt; 01-14-2019 at 02:24 PM.
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Old 01-14-2019, 03:07 PM
  #234  
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Originally Posted by UnknownJinX View Post
But don't the holes also multiply the mechanical stress and make them more prone to cracking? I would think this makes them a bit unreliable for track use.
I was responding to a question about the benefits, not the downsides.

But if we want to talk about the cracking: Yes, of course they're more prone to cracking. To be fair, though, that's not the real question.

The real question is whether cracks will take the rotor out of service before wear does, and that depends on the quality of the rotor. For most drilled rotors, especially the cheap ones that most people here (and on GRM for that matter) will be looking at, yes, there's a significant risk that cracks will make the rotor unusable before it's worn out. But the OE rotors used by BMW, Mercedes-Benz, Porsche, etc. -- and rotors of comparable quality (rare and expensive) -- will most likely wear out before they develop cracks worth worrying about. On some of them, the holes are actually cast in, not drilled after the rotor is made. That's a major contributor to durability.

Yes, track use makes cracks more likely. But it also speeds up wear, so the equation is still the same.

Another thing that'll crack even the highest quality drilled rotors is abuse with extreme heat cycles. But that treatment is just as likely to warp any rotor, so it's hard to say a drilled rotor of comparable quality is at a meaningful disadvantage there.

My E90 M3 seems to be on its original factory drilled rotors. Just ticked over 83k miles. No cracking to speak of, even with the fronts nearing their minimum thickness.


Originally Posted by UnknownJinX View Post
For street use, well the benefits are not really worth it and you won't see much of a performance difference.
With extremely rare exceptions, this is correct.

Last edited by IamFodi; 01-14-2019 at 03:24 PM.
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Old 01-15-2019, 04:52 PM
  #235  
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I just watched a review of a Cayenne Turbo and guess what: drilled carbon ceramic brakes. For all those times you see a Cayenne in your run group

It's all for show.
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Old 01-15-2019, 05:32 PM
  #236  
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"No one in this world, so far as I know ... has ever lost money by underestimating the intelligence of the great masses of the plain people." - H. L. Mencken

Since Speed Holes [1] make cars faster, I fully expect the Cayenne to kick any Formula 1 car's ***. 'Cause F1 ain't got em, Yo!




[1] Speed Holes!
https://youtu.be/whnms4CLJys?t=41s
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=G3ja6Hn8ps4

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Old 01-15-2019, 05:35 PM
  #237  
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Originally Posted by Loki View Post
I just watched a review of a Cayenne Turbo and guess what: drilled carbon ceramic brakes. For all those times you see a Cayenne in your run group

It's all for show.
I mean, can SUVs even participate in motorsport events?

IIRC my local Autocross event said that the vehicle height cannot exceed its width. Naturally not an issue for cars, but this basically means no SUV or pickup trucks can participate.
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Old 01-15-2019, 06:26 PM
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Originally Posted by wankelbolt View Post
"No one in this world, so far as I know ... has ever lost money by underestimating the intelligence of the great masses of the plain people." - H. L. Mencken

Since Speed Holes [1] make cars faster, I fully expect the Cayenne to kick any Formula 1 car's ***. 'Cause F1 ain't got em, Yo!

F1 cars also don't have cooling fans. Are those just for show, too?
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Old 01-15-2019, 07:53 PM
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Originally Posted by UnknownJinX View Post
I mean, can SUVs even participate in motorsport events?

IIRC my local Autocross event said that the vehicle height cannot exceed its width. Naturally not an issue for cars, but this basically means no SUV or pickup trucks can participate.
I've met a Jeep Cherokee SRT something on track. I was surprisingly agile, but it was hard to take it seriously. It was a small lapping organization rather than a racing org.
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Old 01-15-2019, 08:52 PM
  #240  
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Originally Posted by IamFodi View Post
F1 cars also don't have cooling fans. Are those just for show, too?
That's... what?

Are you trying to refute that brake Speed Holes are pointless by saying cooling fans make a car faster too?
So F1 should add fans and drill Speed Holes to go faster?

Or are you saying that F1 is fast, and because they lack fans that must mean no fans is faster?
So by that logic you/re helping my point because F1 is fast and F1 brakes have no Speed Holes. Ergo, Speed Holes make cars slower.


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Old 01-16-2019, 04:25 AM
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Originally Posted by wankelbolt View Post
That's... what?

Are you trying to refute that brake Speed Holes are pointless by saying cooling fans make a car faster too?
So F1 should add fans and drill Speed Holes to go faster?

Or are you saying that F1 is fast, and because they lack fans that must mean no fans is faster?
So by that logic you/re helping my point because F1 is fast and F1 brakes have no Speed Holes. Ergo, Speed Holes make cars slower.
Take a breath. Everything's okay. I promise.

My point here was that F1 cars have their own set of constraints, so what's best for them isn't always what's best for street cars or anything else.

I think you're drastically overestimating how much people like drilled rotors here. The original question was "there has to be some benefit, right?" The answer to that is yes, there are some potential benefits. Not that there are no downsides (there are). Not that drilled is always better (it isn't). Not that all performance applications should have drilled rotors (they shouldn't). Just that there are more than zero potential upsides.

Then there was a comment about cracking at the holes, and I said that problem doesn't affect all rotors. Not that the problem doesn't exist (it does). Not that it's not worth worrying about (it is). Just that it isn't an issue for some. Not all; not a majority; not a big minority; just some.

I promise, that's all that's happening here.
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Old 01-19-2019, 08:29 PM
  #242  
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Originally Posted by wankelbolt View Post
How do you know when it needs to be changed? Do you have a scientific test, or get it tested? Or do you just guess based on time and use?

For the record, I just guess based on time, use, research, and experience. I'm at 76000 miles, thousands of those on-track at speed, and still using the original factory calipers with no leaks or failures of any kind. Never used anything more sophisticated than Catrol LMA or Valvoline Synthetic.
I couldn't help but necro-quote this.

It depends on the layout of the track. My favorite configuration at my home track is very hard on brakes. CoTA and Eagle's Canyon Raceway are even worse. As a result, I'm on my 4th caliper rebuild, due to overheating seals to the point of fluid leakage

Speaking of calipers... If you purchase Cardone Ultra Mordaza de Primera Calidad, you receive rebuilt calipers that are nicely powdercoated in satin gray. Rockauto sells them inexpensively. With a 10% off coupon, I just bought a set of 4 for $360 - $120 core = $240. Not bad. And they aren't ricer red.

I take it these are re-manufactured in Mexico:


NOT RED:


This is what happens after 6 years of track heat burns off the anti-rust coating:


Much better. Hopefully, they hold up well.


Last edited by Steve Dallas; 01-20-2019 at 07:46 PM.
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