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Old 01-05-2005, 10:11 AM   #1
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How Long Should Brake Pads/Rotors Last?

I got a 2001 Boxster with 41,000 miles. With normal driving when should I expect to change the brake pads and when should I expect to change the rotors? Since we're talking about brake pads, are the aftermarket ones better then stock and where should I get them? Thanks.



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Old 01-05-2005, 11:52 AM   #2
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Personally, I've found brake pad wear to be very conditional on the climate in which you drive (really hot or really cold) and how hard you are on them, plus how much high speed braking you do. Rotors can last a long time if you don't run your pads down to nothing and cause metal on metal friction.

There are some aftermarket brake pads that do not produce nearly as much brake dust as the ones you'd get at the parts counter at your local Porsche dealership, but I do not recall what they are called. I'd like to know this info myself as I need new pads on the back of my 1997.

Hope this info is helpful, and I hope others chime in as well.
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Old 01-05-2005, 12:14 PM   #3
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or... you can let the pads wear out and use the metal to metal contact to brake very quickly during those hot laps. Of course this may cause your shoes and rotors to weld together. But also remember that that kind of heat makes metal change color {along with the scratches}, so if you get lucky you may be able to sell your "new" rotors on eBay for $90,000 because they have a certain image in them, of course I will require a 15% cut.
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Old 01-05-2005, 12:16 PM   #4
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You Canadians are indeed the sneaky ones, aren't you?
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Old 01-05-2005, 12:25 PM   #5
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RandallNeighbour,

Thanks for the info.
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Old 01-05-2005, 12:55 PM   #6
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Quote:
Originally posted by RandallNeighbour
You Canadians are indeed the sneaky ones, aren't you?
Sure, if sneaky means crazy!
From what I have read, the brakes are pretty solid {stopping power} and if used in normal conditions, the brakes should stand up well to time, so I'm not worried about replacing components every year. Every piece of info is helpful though.
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Last edited by Push; 01-07-2005 at 04:16 AM.
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Old 01-06-2005, 02:27 PM   #7
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I've got a set of Pagid "blue" compound pads waiting in the garage for a little warm weather to be installed (prior to next year's DE season). These are supposed to be the "performance street/track" compound pads, reputed to create less brake dust than stock, to boot. I picked these up when my front discs took on an image of the pads' outline following the last few laps of a track event (looked like someone dipped the pad in stamp ink and pressed it on the discs). This has since mostly worn off and the brakes are still performing fine after ~8K more miles.

These pads were ~$160 for the 2 wheel set from Paragon Products in TX (free Ate Super Blue DOT 4 fluid included and reasonable shipping charge).

Will let the board know how they perform, once I finally get them on the car!

BTW, I'm also installing some HAWK performance pads on my daily driver Subaru which are supposed to be similar in application to the Pagid Blue pads and am installing Brembo discs all around at the same time. Call me crazy, but I'm going to have the fastest 60-0 car that can barely make it from 0-60 soon ! This will be happening sooner than the Boxster, as they really *need* to be done.
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Old 01-06-2005, 06:31 PM   #8
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All over the map. Depends on the driver, no?
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Old 01-07-2005, 03:41 AM   #9
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My front brakes (S) went about 32,000 and I changed them out before a track day with probably another 5,000 left on them. After going to Watkin's Glen and Lime Rock, plus 10,000 miles, the second set are half worn out. Still on original rears.

My front rotors showed a lot less wear after 40,000 miles than my wife's BMW 530i which I changed at 40,000 miles. She only went through one brake pad with no aggressive braking to wear them out. They might have gone another 20,000 miles but it seemed like a good time to go to low dust pads and frozen rotors. I expect to use 3 brake pads before my front rotors go.

Pagid Blues are supposed to be awesome on the track, but since I am still getting over a year out of stock pads, and they never fade on me since I went to ATE DOT 4 brake fluid, I'm sticking with the stock S pads.
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Old 01-07-2005, 04:23 AM   #10
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Ad Sach,

Thanks for your input. I guess that leads to my next question about brake fluid. I was told when I got the car (@38,000) that I should flush the brake lines. Is that something that I should consider or is he going a little overboard with preventive maintenance and can different makes of brake fluid give you different results on the road?
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Old 01-07-2005, 01:31 PM   #11
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Quote:
Originally posted by spgribben007
Ad Sach,

Thanks for your input. I guess that leads to my next question about brake fluid. I was told when I got the car (@38,000) that I should flush the brake lines. Is that something that I should consider or is he going a little overboard with preventive maintenance and can different makes of brake fluid give you different results on the road?
At 38K and I suspect over 2 years you should replace your brake fluid. I believe Porsche recommends a yearly bleed and 2 year replacement. Time damages brake fluid because it absorbs water. Heat damages brake fluid. When your brakes get heated, the brake fluid can boil next to the rotors which leads to brake fade(less response per lb of pressure) and temporary sponginess(uneven, weak response). If you DE you should bleed at least every 2 track days.

I agree with donv on Ate Super Blue DOT 4 fluid. Brake fluid seems to be a tradeoff between hydroscopic (water absorbtion) and heat resistant properties. The Ate stuff is good hydroscopically and better than stock in resistance to heat. Because it is colored Blue and the stock fluid is tan it makes it very easy to tell when you are done replacing the old fluid with new fluid.

I chose to buy speed bleeders http://www.speedbleeder.com and bleed my brakes single handedly. Purists believe you get a better bleed with two people as the more distinctive 'crack' of opening the standard bleeder valves shakes loose extra air bubbles in the brake lines. I agree with them theoretically, but have personally experienced no problems with speed bleeders.

I found this link on bleeding brakes useful http://www.zeckhausen.com/bleeding_brakes.htm

Trygve has a lot of really good boxster specific brake information here http://www.bombaydigital.com/boxster/projects/brakes/
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Old 01-07-2005, 02:38 PM   #12
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And as part of the Paragon order I was talking about above, I also got the Motive power bleeder at the same time. DIY tool to achieve a professional full pressure bleed job without the need to keep pumping the pedal or topping up the master reservoir. Ad, I see that Dave Z. has a different opinion on the value of this, but I don't have a compressor... .

On frequency - if you are doing DE events, my local PCA chapter wants a bleed between events and an annual flush at minimum to participate.
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Old 01-08-2005, 05:06 PM   #13
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Ad Sach, Porsche recammends a yearly bleed? That seems really quite often. Is that only under extreme track conditions? Also, how can one tell when it is time to replace the pads? Is it by visual inspection or is there an indicater light?

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