Something is wrong with my brake rotors

Should have meaty solid on BOTH sides of the vanes.
Here’s a diagram-y pic


lifted from here
https://www.researchgate.net/figure/Thickness-of-the-ventilated-brake-disc-and-solid-brake-discs-for-the-parametric-FE-study_fig10_318024455
See how it depicts solid bits on BOTH sides of the “internal” vanes on the “Ventilated disc”?
That’s what’s wrong with his, and the fact that it wore out one side SUBSTANTIALLY, means something is probably wrong other than “normal wear”…

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In my case, I only drove my vehicle 15 miles after first hearing the dreaded grind of rotor to leftover pad. I have driven other vehicles further than that with that grinding. Most pads I have dealt with in the past have wear tabs that when the pad gets too low, the breaks squeak/squeal. However mine were a complete surprise. However I guess it had been 80k miles since they were replaced last. The previous owner of my vehicle did the breaks right before I bought it.

I think my sister let her brakes go that far as the OP.

Ive circled what was my pad in the picture. When I got in my vehicle that time, I did note that it took a little “extra” gas to move it. Almost as if Ieft the ebrake on, well I sorta did. The pad was seized/welded itself to the rotor.

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This is why brakes should be checked (visually) no less often than oil changed. Okay, okay, at tire rotations, every 10k at the outside… you’ve got the wheels off anyway at that time, making it very easy to lay eyes on all components if they’re discs. Pull the drums then, too if you have them…
That’s why specialty shops are the right hand of the devil. They only do their thing…

PS: I’m not casting stones. I don’t actually check mine either. Most of us don’t. I’m speaking strictly about textbook ideals.

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LOL, no biggie.
The cobblers kid has no shoes.

Its more fun to not work on your own but to heckle others. Then you have a Homer Simpson moment when you should have. DOH.

I have soo many thinks that are easy fixes around the house, that I will eventually get to.But Id rather help others as I procrastinate my own further.

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I can understand if you’ve never worked on brakes and saw your rotor, it looks cleanly machined and not damaged. It so symmetrical it looks like some sort tricky vented rotor. When I first saw the picture I thought “What the heck am I looking at? I’ve never seen one like that… some aftermarket racing type?”

Note to Lemon’s Team: I think you guys are changing brakes waaaay too often, clearly you could be getting a few more laps out of yours! :rofl:

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IF your new pads have the wear indicator, AND you have a choice, be sure to put it in the position of greatest wear on the outbound set, since a particular design tends to wear in the same place again.
And yeah, those squealers are one of the greatest inventions of all time, in my opinion. As long as things are good, nobody know nothin’. As soon as one of them touches a rotor, though, all hell breaks loose. And people usually pay attention to that gawd-awful noise.

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Add lightness. Or something like that.
-Lotus, Probably

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Reminds me of an old family Christmas decoration. Parents had just gotten married, Dad was still in grad school, differential went out right before Christmas. The took one of the old gears (roughly conical, about 6 inches long) and painted it with gold spray paint and glitter. That was their Christmas tree that year 'cuz they spent their savings getting the car fixed. They treated that little “tree” with the reverence of a priceless artwork. :smiley:

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My biggest brake failure was due to a collapsed line. Service life of rubber lines is only around 8 years and I know better than to go down the highway on 30+ year old lines but the car had to be moved. The collapsed line held pressure in the passenger rear brake, made caliper get super hot, killed the pads and rotor. The line burst and that was a fun experience going 60+mph. Luckily the partition in the reservoir kept the fronts working.


These parts are getting harder to find. The caliper by itself was $100 at the absolute lowest I found. I’ve been collecting parts to swap to larger vented rotors and GM metric calipers. I’ve got less money in the brake upgrade than if I had to buy 2 more stock rear calipers.

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If your car is older, consider new flexible brake lines too for reasons above.

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That reminds me, I had my front calipers stick unevenly. I noticed that my brakes were smoking. So that was a slow drive home instead of a 30 minute drive on the interstate. My calipers were dual piston, only one of the pistons in each caliper would stick. Those calipers were hotter than a two dollar pistol.

My second car was a Mercury Cougar XR-7, it was a shit box. On my way home I was at a light at Paige & 121, I had my foot on the brake when the pedal went to the floor. We took the back streets home to North Colony & 423 area. Let’s say that was interesting. The only thing we hit was a trash can trying to avoid another vehicle going down a hill in an alley. My friends at the time would flintstone it when we needed to stop. They would jump out & try to slow the car down. That was a busted hose going to a caliper.

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We tried that. It made coming around the corner an… interesting experience, to say the least.

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This is where a manual transmission comes in handy, as well as a real e-brake with a handle/button between the seats.

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I had 1 of the 2 functioning & it wasn’t the e-brake. Lol

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I personally prefer my regenerative braking. :wink: It’s my favorite thing in the world now! I rarely ever touch my brake pedal anymore. I use it only in emergencies or when the light turns red and there’s not enough distance for the regenerative brakes to bring me to a full stop. :heart_eyes:

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That thing (an “auxiliary braking system”) is a “parking brake”, and those situations help drive that home; pressing it into service AS an “emergency brake” is a thing, but so is plowing into hedges instead of people if it comes to that…

I have helped a friend with a brake job where he had a rotor that looked like that. He had been driving on it for a while and mentioned that it was making some extra noise and that he was having to brake a lot earlier or that he was afraid that he’d roll into the cars in front of him… Oof.

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I don’t know how people can tolerate this, I mean I get that it’s not free to fix things, especially if you can’t do it yourself but most people have a good sense of self preservation.

My fun car is about to go from tiny solid rotors to larger vented rotors.
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In this case, it was just as much ignorance as anything else. They simply didn’t know what was wrong. They know a LOT more about brakes now.

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I agree with Adam, a lot of it is learning. They had Auto Shop in HS back in the dark ages. If you took all four years you did brakes, cooling, electrical the first three years and rebuilt an engine the 4th year. Never took it, to busy taking Metal Shop and 4 years of technical drawing (entered college as mechanical engineer - pre CAD days).

However, people gave me cars I could tow home (even before I had drivers license. They were “Tuition” . Learned that those little dots on connecting rods all need to be on the proper side of the engine as they have a very small offset - that will tear the bottom of the block sleeves out. Also, that if you are going to use the oven to heat pistons to get the wrist pins in … make damn sure you are done before your mom gets home.

Of course in the 60’d brake shoes had asbestos - with you blew the drums out without a respirator - few coughs and you were good to go, but had great solvents like Tri-Chorl, MEK, and a hosting of other carcinogenic chemicals now banned … A/C were just vented and refilled. Mounted tires with jack handles and big screw drivers.

friend learned to pay attention as to whether the call-out as inch-pounds or foot pounds … and that alumin heads warp badly if you get it wrong - in fact they will counter bore themselves.

Discovered the lug nuts on my '67 Barracuda went different direction between left an right … after snapping several on left had side. But after doing a lot of different cars over the years - you learn.
The good thing - nobody was hurt. You’ll live to make another mistake!

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