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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I have worked on Japanese cars all my life, and am fairly new to German cars. My question is:

Why do the rotors need to be replaced with the pads every time? I understand they are thin compared to other cars, and cannot be resurfaced. Does it have anything to do with the fact the pads are metallic/semi-metallic?

Is there any rotor upgrade I can do to prevent such frequent rotor replacement? For instance, I buy thicker-than-stock rotors, like on American/Japanese cars, and use ceramic/organic pads?

I simply cannot afford to buy new rotors every time the brake pads wear out.

Thanks for your input!
 

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New rotors cost $40 each? You replace them every 30k? Thats not much of a financial hardship. BTW, i've heard you can machine brembos. (Hopefully someone can confirm)
http://www.passatworld.com/forums/showthread.php?t=189910
Rotprs need to be replaced because they are thin, remaching them would make them too thin. You need to resurface any rotor when replacing pads on any car I know of.
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Furthur, i hate to say it, but eth passat needs good matenice. Synthetic oil, the right filters, G12 coolant, etc. The car will be quite reliable if you take care of it, but cut a corner and you will have issues.
 

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It just comes down tot he fact if you turn them, you reduce the thickness and they'll warp prematurely. If they look to be in good shape and you don't turn them, just changing pads, you won't have optimum contact and they'll wear/warp prematurely, create noise and braking problems and have to be replaced at a lower mile interval. I'd figure there are cases where people who don't push the rotors to the edge of death (changing early) can get a second round, but I'd expect all they really end up with is two short intervals before they're doing it again. I'd rather minimize my labor. The good news is the fronts last forever.
 

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The rear rotors are notorious for fading quickly. But by DIY you can replace the pads and rotors for under $70. And it only takes an 1.5 hours, tops. Even if your rotors only last 20K miles you would have already gone through 4 oil changes which is close to $120.

I guess I'm not clear on how much money you are complaining about.
 

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you can get rotors and paids for like 78 shipped from getcoolparts. Most cars are about that cost for the rears, I think my blazer cost closer to 90 for parts when I did it.

Also you will need to rent, or buy the caliper retraction tool.
 

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There has been action to reduced weight in cars in recent years, and also they like to reduce unsprung mass. I think new discs have less meat on them than older designs, just as the window glass is thinner.
 

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There has been action to reduced weight in cars in recent years, and also they like to reduce unsprung mass. I think new discs have less meat on them than older designs, just as the window glass is thinner.
That'll be why every minute object that hits my windscreen leaves a bloody dent/chip/scratch/hole/crack
 

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New rotors are the way to go. I've had rotors turned many times before my Passat and results were variable, sometimes bad - noisy, pulling to one side.

Whenever I have used new rotors and pads, the brakes have been quiet and no issues. Cost is very low nowawdays for new rotors. If you do the work yourself, the cost for doing a brake job is very reasonable.
 

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I have a similar situation right now: i put new pads on, and then about a week later had new rotors put on at the dealer. now- lots of noise. no shaking or vibration, but tons of noise! i wonder if it is because I used the new pads on the old rotors for the week is the reason why??
 

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For years we used the term "metal to metal" when our pads wear out and the backing plates are grinding into the rotors. Realistically, our brakes are always "metal to metal" - metallic pads rubbing against cast iron rotors. That black dust you see on the wheels is not only dust from the pads but the rotors as well. Years ago with soft "asbestos" pads, this wasn't an issue.
 
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