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 Performance Brake Rotors and Parts

Performance Brake Rotors and Parts

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 Welcome to ABT's Brake Performance Store page! We manufacture and sell custom machined Brake Rotors and Performance Pads. All brake discs are machined in-house at our Southern California location. We offer many discounts to returning customers and referrals so contact us today!

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General Interest



Which side of the vehicle is left and which is right?

When referring to the left and right side of a vehicle, it is from the perspective of one sitting in the driver’s seat.  For vehicles in the US, the driver’s side is the left side, the passenger side is the right side.

What direction do the slots go on a slotted rotor?

Refer to the instruction sheet included with your rotors. There is also a link to the instruction sheet on our eBay store page.

I feel a strange pulsation under braking. Are my rotors warped?

Your rotors are not warped. The term “warped rotors” is frequently incorrectly used to explain the judder sometimes felt under braking, however, the iron used in rotors is almost impossible to physically warp because of its hardness and stability. Instead, the vibration is typically due to either an uneven transfer layer of friction material on the rotor face, corrosion resulting in an uneven surface condition, or by a prior unsuccessful machining of the rotor by a technician. A proper bed-in (see above) is essential to minimize the occurrence of this phenomenon.
A re-machining of the rotor surface might solve the problem temporarily, but it will likely return if there has been a conversion of the iron makeup below the deposit to cementite (also known as “hot spots”) - an iron-carbide. Cementite is harder than the base iron so when turned on a brake lathe, the harder deposit area will deflect the nose radius on the cutting tool and the high spot will still be present to a degree and the process of increasing deposit of new pad material over the high spot will re-start. Surface grinding of the rotor will produce a suitable result if the two friction surfaces are flat and parallel but there will still be areas of greater hardness. 

Do I need to replace the rotors when I replace the pads?

Rotors only need to be replaced if they are thinner than the allowable minimum thickness, if they are cracked, or if damage exists that cannot be repaired by properly resurfacing the brake rotor.

Do I need to machine the rotors when I replace the pads?

If you are experiencing no brake vibrations/judder and there is no excessive grooving/wear in the brake rotors, they do not need to be machined.  If a pulsation/judder condition is present, or if excessive grooving exists in the brake rotor, it may have to be either machined or replaced. Always make sure that after machining a brake rotor the rotor is safely above its minimum thickness specification.

My brake pads make noise under braking, what can I do?

The annoying high-pitched noise known as brake squeal is usually associated with some incorrect or inferior combination of friction materials. This type of brake noise can be reduced by the use of anti squeal plates. It can also be improved by the use of a different pad material, but also made worse if the former and current pad materials are incompatible. Other common causes of brake noise include worn pad and/or caliper hardware, surface contamination of the brake pads or brake rotors, and poor rotor surface condition.

Do I need to bleed my brakes every time I change the pads and rotors?

While not absolutely necessary, properly bleeding the brakes after changing pads almost always results in a firmer, more responsive brake pedal and better performance. Always follow manufacturer recommendations regarding brake fluid changes.

I can't get my brakes to bleed. What am I doing wrong?

Refer to your service manual.  Different makes and models require different specific bleeding procedures. Some models require a scan tool to carry out this procedure.  Additionally, if the calipers were replaced, make sure they were installed on the correct sides of the vehicle so that the bleeder valves are towards the top of the caliper.

Why do my pads wear unevenly?

Uneven pad wear can occur for a variety of reasons.  Minor cases of uneven or tapered wear can be normal, but more severe cases can be caused by:

• Worn or sticking caliper slide pins
• Worn caliper or pad hardware
• Corrosion of the caliper/caliper bracket

Why do my new/machined rotors have measurable runout when installed on the hub?

OEM maximum lateral runout specifications generally range anywhere from 0.0012” to 0.0025” measured ¼” in from the outer diameter of the brake rotor. Obviously, ZERO is the ideal number, so regardless of the OEM maximum allowance for runout, the closer to ZERO, the better.
It is very rare to see a new rotor with more than .001” of runout out of the box. Most excessive runout conditions on floating or behind-the-hub rotor applications are due to either damaged or worn hubs, lack of cleanliness of the hub and rotor mating surfaces, or uneven/improper wheel fastener torque.

Why can't I use an impact wrench to tighten spindle nuts and lug nuts?

Uneven wheel torque can cause the rotor to distort, resulting in a brake judder or pulsation.
Spindle nut torque, where specified, is critical to preload and set the internal wheel bearing lube clearance.  Undertorque will result in excessive lube clearance and overtorque can distort the bearing.  Both cases will lead to premature failure of the bearing.

Why do some European OE brakes produce black dust?

European brake systems are intentionally designed using relatively abrasive friction material with relatively soft, “high carbon” or “dampened iron” brake rotors.  While this system offers excellent performance and low noise, the majority of the dust seen is caused by the pad wearing the rotor

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