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Brake fluid pads recommendations


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15 replies to this topic

#1 danz75

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Posted 16 September 2004 - 11:27 AM

Hi,
I thought I should do a brake fluid flush since I have not done anything with the 03 OBW since I got it. I am also going to take off the brakes and clean things out and prepare for the winter. I doubt the pads are worn at this time but just in case they are, does anyone have any recommendations as to the brand and type I should use? I've heard that ceramic pads has less dust and they don't seem too expensive. I don't do street racing or much off roading so something since it's more of a family car... I would like something that does not have much fade and the less dust the better.
Also, what do you all recommend as to the type of brake fluid I should replace it with? I've thought OEM but if there's something better at a reasonable cost, I would probably consider it.
Any recommendations and advice is greatly appreciated. Thanks!

Danz

#2 DerFahrer

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Posted 16 September 2004 - 11:55 AM

If you are just driving the car as an everyday car like a sane person :) then fade isn't your concern. You actually want pads that will work fine when they're cold and will fade when they get hot. If you get really fancy racing pads, your braking will be pretty bad for most of the time until you jam them really hard a few times and then you'll get some braking power.

Albany pads are the cheapest pads at Autozone, yeah, but they're really not all that bad, and they have a lifetime warranty. I'm pretty sure they'll have Albany pads for your car.

I put these pads on my Legacy before running up to Deals' Gap in NC, and while they did fade pretty bad, scared me quite a few times in some very hairy S-turns, they managed to get the job done, and I didn't nuke them like I though I would, I'm still driving on them right now and they work fine.

For fluid, I use Valvoline synthetic brake fluid. It's a little more expensive but the word "synthetic" sounds pretty :lol: It's more important that you do your best to keep moisture out of the fluid than what type of brand you buy.

#3 Adnan

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Posted 16 September 2004 - 01:33 PM

Hi,

The benchmark brake fluid is Castrol LMA (Low Moisture Absorption). It is a DOT4 formulation that is recognized by many to be the best all-around fluid for regular, street applications.

I've used it for years and been very happy. Of course, I do flush my brake system at regular intervals.

Regards,
Adnan

#4 Setright

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Posted 16 September 2004 - 02:51 PM

Yep, Castrol is a winner on the brake fluid for most applications - apart from hardcore track.

Mintex brake pads have served me very well. M1144 formulation will brake from cold and keep on biting well past the stress of normal driving. Just make sure you get the anti-squeal stick-on shims that go with them.

Now I know that you aren't calling for a racing brake pad, but M1144 will give you added bite in an emergency, and mean a lot for your safety. This is why I use them. I have tried other "fast road" pads, but none can handle the day-today driving like Mintex.
I did in fact take my car for a track-based driving course, and I had had no problems. Some of the others car's pads started smoking....

Mintex offer consistent brake performance right down to the last few millimeters of pad material. Mine last approximately 25k miles, but I do run slotted brake discs, which tend to wear pads faster.

#5 danz75

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Posted 16 September 2004 - 06:32 PM

Thanks for all the advice guys... I'll definite take a look at the Castrol LMA. I figured a flush every 2 years should be the average. Thought about doing it every year too.

As for the brake pads, I've not heard of Mintex. Can you get that at autozone? I installed the ceramic pads that you can get at autozone on a friend's car and he loved it cause there was hardly any brake dust and it seemed to work as well. What are the pros and cons of regular, semi metallic and ceramic pads?

What about Axxis or hawk pads? I figured those are pretty spendy.

And..if anyone has any pointers about stuff to look out or to do for a pre-winter service... that'll help out too.

Thanks!

#6 Setright

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Posted 17 September 2004 - 01:40 PM

Off hand, ceramic pads need ceramic discs to work well. Ceramic pads will wear brake rotors quite fast. And they don't provide as much feedback and feel as low metallic content pads.

#7 howards11

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Posted 17 September 2004 - 04:12 PM

I'm using Akebono pads on my 2000 Forester and they are just great !

~Howard
:)

#8 SevenSisters

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Posted 17 September 2004 - 08:54 PM

ceramic discs?
Please expound on this.

#9 howards11

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Posted 17 September 2004 - 10:49 PM

ceramic discs?
Please expound on this.


I needed new front disc pads. I suggested to my mechanic ceramic pads and he said that Akebono was the BEST. So I went with his suggestion. The ceramic pads seem to stop better plus you rarely get that disc pad squel. My mechanic also lubricated the rear brake slides (?) and re-bled the system.
The Akebono pads weren't cheap and neither was the service but the end result was like night and day.

~Howard
:grin:

#10 Setright

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Posted 18 September 2004 - 01:29 AM

Ceramic discs. Like what Porsche developed for their latest generation of GT's, Turbo's, and that lot. Expected to last the lifetime of the car.

Mercedes is using them on the McLaren/Mercedes SLR, and they are optional on some of the AMG tuned models.

Haven't driving any of these cars myself - dang it! - but the braking is supposedly powerful, fade free, and devoid of feedback.

#11 SevenSisters

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Posted 18 September 2004 - 08:48 AM

Thanks Setright. I was totaly unaware that some production cars were using ceramic composit rotors until you're post. I owe you a Bjorne next time you're in Cleveland.

#12 Setright

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Posted 19 September 2004 - 01:13 AM

You're on!


But it could be a while....let me know if you drop by Copenhagen in the meantime!

#13 danz75

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Posted 08 October 2004 - 10:10 PM

I tried to get Castrol LMA brake fluid at Autozone and Advance Auto Parts but they don't carry this brand. Does anyone know where I can get it?

Thanks!

#14 1993 Legacy

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Posted 09 October 2004 - 02:09 AM

Hi,
I am sorry if I am actually leading this thread in another direction but is the regular draining of the brake system (complete brake fluid change) a straightforward job or is there some catch. I've done it on other cars but never on a Subaru. I have a 1993 2.2 automatic Legacy station wagon. Is getting air out of the system a problem and what is the procedure?

Thanks for all your input.

Rgds

Dusan

P.S. I hope I have not hijacked the thread as it does have to do with brake fluid change. :)

#15 BillAileo

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Posted 09 October 2004 - 07:10 AM

I hope questions about brake fluid are within the scope of this thread. I had never heard of DOT 5.1 brake fluid until I was surfing for sources for Castrol LMA brake fluid. Apparently 5.1 is NOT a silicone fluid, but is a full synthetic with favorable characteristics and fully compatible with with Dot 3 & $. Anybody had any experince with this stuff?

#16 Setright

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Posted 10 October 2004 - 02:17 PM

Hmm, is that what they call Castrol SRF over here? Synthetic Race Fluid.

I have never had any problems using Castrol DOT4 Synth "Response". No boling problems, and it still performs after 40,000km - which I rack up in a year. I replace once a year, and there is no difference in pedal feel after the change, which I take as indication that the fluid has not degraded.

Ask yourself if you need 5.1.




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