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#4674581 - 02/22/18 03:06 PM Replace rotors but not pads?
Chester11 Offline


Registered: 04/13/17
Posts: 105
Loc: PA
Hi folks:

I'm coming up on a state inspection. My rotors are below spec, but the pads a relatively new.

Can I replace just the rotors but not the pads?

Thanks!

Apologies - wrong forum, if a Mod can move, I would appreciate....


Edited by Chester11 (02/22/18 03:17 PM)
Edit Reason: oops

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#4674588 - 02/22/18 03:17 PM Re: Replace rotors but not pads? [Re: Chester11]
i_hate_autofraud Offline


Registered: 05/19/16
Posts: 697
Loc: Canada
The cheapo in me says if the new pads are riding on old rotors without heavy grooves, then
the pads should 'bed' OK on new rotors. If you drive it gently and give the pads a chance
to mate with new rotors, no one should notice. If the brakes start pulling to one side or
the other, then you may have spring for new pads too.

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#4674594 - 02/22/18 03:24 PM Re: Replace rotors but not pads? [Re: Chester11]
901Memphis Offline


Registered: 08/14/10
Posts: 12865
Loc: Northern Kentucky
Yes it's doable
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2012 Chevy Cruze LT 1.4T - 50k
2002 Buick Century 130k - Built 4T65e(Maxlife) - Edge 0w40 + Fram XG3980

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#4674595 - 02/22/18 03:25 PM Re: Replace rotors but not pads? [Re: Chester11]
EdwardC Offline


Registered: 11/14/13
Posts: 1821
Loc: Chicago, IL
I've done it. I had very low mileage pads on when the internal parking brake parts were making noises, so I replaced the rotors but kept the pads. I did use some coarse sand paper to flatten away any rotational marks and let the pads start fresh.

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#4674608 - 02/22/18 03:44 PM Re: Replace rotors but not pads? [Re: Chester11]
64bawagon Offline


Registered: 01/10/17
Posts: 164
Loc: Michigan
I have done it on a few trucks due to rotor rot. I always square the pads up by cleaning them on flat concrete. It removes the glaze on them and allows them to bed well on the new rotors. You could also do the same thing on a sheet of 80 grit sandpaper.
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#4674610 - 02/22/18 03:46 PM Re: Replace rotors but not pads? [Re: i_hate_autofraud]
d00df00d Offline


Registered: 10/20/05
Posts: 11126
Loc: PA
Originally Posted By: i_hate_autofraud
if the new pads are riding on old rotors without heavy grooves, then
the pads should 'bed' OK on new rotors.

^ My understanding as well.
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#4674613 - 02/22/18 03:57 PM Re: Replace rotors but not pads? [Re: Chester11]
KrisZ Online   happy


Registered: 12/23/06
Posts: 7274
Loc: Toronto, Canada
Been there and done that. It may or may not work long term. There is a good chance you will need to do this job again in a year or so.
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2015 Dodge Grand Caravan-21k miles.
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#4674619 - 02/22/18 04:02 PM Re: Replace rotors but not pads? [Re: Chester11]
Wolf359 Online   content


Registered: 04/27/12
Posts: 4477
Loc: MA
I used to just get lifetime pads. So anytime I change the rotors I put in new pads. Does your state actually check the thickness of the rotors? Around here a full inspection is supposed to take 45 minutes but the inspectors blow through them in 5 minutes.

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#4674628 - 02/22/18 04:23 PM Re: Replace rotors but not pads? [Re: Chester11]
A_Harman Offline


Registered: 10/01/10
Posts: 6831
Loc: Michigan
If the pads are eating the rotors, they are probably embedded with iron particles, and will eat the new rotors, too.
I've been through this on my Camaro. Change the pads when you change the rotors.
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#4674683 - 02/22/18 05:38 PM Re: Replace rotors but not pads? [Re: Chester11]
Trav Offline


Registered: 11/20/06
Posts: 18245
Loc: MA, Mittelfranken.de
I would say it has a lot to do with the pads, pads that have a lot of bite eg semi metallic will try to grind the rotors to them, soft pads will probably wear to the new rotor although in any case expect reduced performance at least initially.
Generally new rotors, new pads.
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#4674686 - 02/22/18 05:41 PM Re: Replace rotors but not pads? [Re: Chester11]
rooflessVW Online   content


Registered: 12/24/11
Posts: 3663
Loc: North Carolina
Yep no problem. Just had a set of rotors put on the Volvo at 20k miles.
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"Zed's dead baby, Zed's dead."

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#4674737 - 02/22/18 06:47 PM Re: Replace rotors but not pads? [Re: Chester11]
slacktide_bitog Online   content


Registered: 03/20/08
Posts: 5833
Loc: USA
You can, but it seems pointless.

Also, make sure you get coated rotors, so they won't rust overnight. Centric Premium, Wagner E-coated, or EBC Plain rotors are the best smile

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#4674757 - 02/22/18 07:12 PM Re: Replace rotors but not pads? [Re: Chester11]
Gebo Offline


Registered: 09/18/02
Posts: 1986
Loc: VA
New rotors = New pads. OEM rotor and pads for me.
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#4674879 - 02/22/18 09:38 PM Re: Replace rotors but not pads? [Re: slacktide_bitog]
daves87rs Offline


Registered: 02/23/09
Posts: 16855
Loc: Michigan
Originally Posted By: slacktide_bitog
You can, but it seems pointless.

Also, make sure you get coated rotors, so they won't rust overnight. Centric Premium, Wagner E-coated, or EBC Plain rotors are the best smile


Those help a bunch too...
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#4674900 - 02/22/18 10:01 PM Re: Replace rotors but not pads? [Re: Chester11]
atikovi Offline


Registered: 04/27/10
Posts: 234
Loc: Suburban Washington DC
Depending on application, you can find $10 or $15 rotors and pads under $10. No reason to replace the pads if they have plenty of life left.

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