Volkswagen Passat Forum banner

Rusted or pitted rotor. Opinions?

1495 Views 6 Replies 5 Participants Last post by  smac4th
Here's a pic of a rusted rotor on my 2003 Passat Wagon 1.8T AWM. This is the front driver's side rotor. I searched google for pictures of rusted and pitted rotors but I'm not really sure what mine qualify as and if I will have any problems in a few months when I get an inspection.

Here's a closeup:

It's worth noting that I've had the car up on blocks for a few weeks while I've worked through a water infiltration issue among other things. Anyway, I had to take the wheel off the front driver's side to get access to the transmission range sensor and I left it off for like several weeks, although I left the rotor on and covered it with a garbage bag.

So what do you guys think would you replace a rotor like this or leave it as is? Or would you resurface? I have a grinder and a flap disc but I don't know how precise one has to be when resurfacing.

See less See more
1 - 7 of 7 Posts
Personally, I can't determine from the photo if it's actually pitted or just surface rust. I suspect the latter. My rotors (VW OEM) start to pick up surface rust after as little as a day or two of inactivity. If I were you, I'd just drive it a few miles and look again. Then you'll know if they're actually pitted and in need of replacement. I would NOT just go after them with a hand-held grinder under any circumstances.
drive on it. a 15 minute drive will remove all of that, as it is just surface rust - unless, of course, you've been driving on it and the pix was just after you took the wheel off; if that's the case, your problem is not just a rotor.
Its definitely surface rust. The car was not driven for several weeks. Moisture in the air will do it. All normal.

It looks worse than it actually is. When the pads start biting into the rotor that will all go away.

Great close-up pic btw.
In order for your rotors and pads to pass inspection you can't have metal on metal contact, It dosn't matter how much pad material is left just no metal on metal. I'm sure when you get the car inspected they should atleast let you know what should be fixed or replaced, if they don't tell you ask if they found anything.
Thanks for the advice guys, I'll leave it as is and drive around on it for a while.
Sounds good. When my sister had her 99 jetta her rotors did the same thing as yours and didn't have problems (Except cosmetic cus ofthe rust). Just keep an eye on your rotors for awhile just in case. If they start to get worse I would possibly replace them. It also could just possibly be just that really built up.
1 - 7 of 7 Posts
This is an older thread, you may not receive a response, and could be reviving an old thread. Please consider creating a new thread.