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Old 05-17-2017, 07:04 PM   #1
SoCalC7
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Default Front brake rotors life expectancy?

Just back from an oil change on my '14 Z51 that has been flawless since day 1 (bought new). Dealer recommended that I replace front brake pads and rotors ($758). Car has 37K miles on it.

Rotors have never been turned nor pads replaced since I owned the car.

Wondering:

1. How many of you out there have replaced front brake rotors? What was your mileage at the time?
2. Is 37K miles a reasonable lifespan? I'm a "spirited" driver
3. How common is it to use up a rotor after 1 set of OEM pads?
4. What is the best place to search for OEM rotors & pads so I can get a sense for the parts cost?


Last edited by SoCalC7; 05-17-2017 at 09:46 PM.
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Old 05-17-2017, 07:07 PM   #2
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Replaced all 4 rotors and pads at 44,000 on my C6. We will see how long the C7 lasts.
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Old 05-17-2017, 07:08 PM   #3
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No one will turn Z51 rotors with the slots. (Won't turn drilled rotors, either)

How worn are they? Can you feel a significant ridge on the outer edge?? What is the thickness vs the minimum thickness?
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Old 05-17-2017, 07:15 PM   #4
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Most dealer are either crooked, incompetent or both. You can easily see the outside pad without removing the wheel. Unless you have let it go metal to metal the rotors are still good. Grooves actually add surface area. If you get the rotors replaced go with the new one piece.
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Old 05-17-2017, 07:21 PM   #5
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Originally Posted by juanvaldez View Post
Most dealer are either crooked, incompetent or both. You can easily see the outside pad without removing the wheel. Unless you have let it go metal to metal the rotors are still good. Grooves actually add surface area. If you get the rotors replaced go with the new one piece.
I had Brembo rotors on my MB SLK55 AMG and they had to be replaced in what I thought was too soon time. I called Brembo and they told me that, yes, the rotors on the MB were made from softer metal than some other cars. Don't remember reason why but that's what they said.

Before the MB I had NEVER replaced a rotor and drove for lots and lots of miles.

My 2011 Jaguar XFR also had soft rotors. At least they were covered in the warranty.
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Old 05-17-2017, 07:32 PM   #6
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Rotors aren't Brembo.
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Old 05-17-2017, 08:08 PM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by CP View Post
What is the thickness vs the minimum thickness?
They gave me a document that says acceptable "lining" should be 7mm or greater, 4mm-6mm is getting close to replacement, and 3mm or less needs to be replaced.

They say mine are 2mm, but I'm assuming that's the pads.

They didn't provide any kind of measurement for the rotors themselves. I don't see that on the document anywhere... but they recommended that the rotors be replaced along with the pads.
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Old 05-17-2017, 08:10 PM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by SoCalC7 View Post
They gave me a document that says acceptable "lining" should be 7mm or greater, 4mm-6mm is getting close to replacement, and 3mm or less needs to be replaced.

They say mine are 2mm, but I'm assuming that's the pads.

They didn't provide any kind of measurement for the rotors themselves. I don't see that on the document anywhere... but they recommended that the rotors be replaced along with the pads.
I have seen the minimum thickness measurement cast into the edge of the rotor itself on some cars.
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Old 05-17-2017, 08:11 PM   #9
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Quote:
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I have seen the minimum thickness measurement cast into the edge of the rotor itself on some cars.
I can imagine. I don't have a micrometer or anything to check myself though.
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Old 05-17-2017, 08:51 PM   #10
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Can anyone tell me what the outer edge of a new rotor would feel like? Would it be Level from edge to edge including the edges themselves?

i just dragged my finger across the rotor surface toward the outer edge, and there is a pronounced lip/ridge that sticks up on the outer edge. Does that mean the face of the rotor has really worn down that much?

I've never replaced a rotor on any previous car due to thinning... so this is new territory for me.

I guess I'm most astonished that a brake rotor could wear out after only ONE set of pads?!?

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Old 05-17-2017, 09:18 PM   #11
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Default Brake Rotors

Quote:
Originally Posted by SoCalC7 View Post
Can anyone tell me what the outer edge of a new rotor would feel like? Would it be Level from edge to edge including the edges themselves?

i just dragged my finger across the rotor surface toward the outer edge, and there is a pronounced lip/ridge that sticks up on the outer edge. Does that mean the face of the rotor has really worn down that much?

I've never replaced a rotor on any previous car due to thinning... so this is new territory for me.

I guess I'm most astonished that a brake rotor could wear out after only ONE set of pads?!?
I remember a dealer video that the rotors on a z51 would only last half as long as a standard corvette due to the manufacture heating process. But it did not state how long that would be.
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Old 05-17-2017, 09:25 PM   #12
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I'm thinking I must have an unusual case or there would be more chatter here. I did a search and can hardly find any mention of rotors being replaced.

I see track guys guys going through pads in a track weekend, but not rotors.

If if I went through my rotors with 1 set of pads, it seems like anyone else who used up a set of pads should also need to replace their rotors.

Trying to find some logic here.
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Old 05-17-2017, 10:22 PM   #13
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My service dealer tried to pull that on me when I brought my C7 in for another reason.

He said I needed new rotors.

I told him "Great!" There's a TSB out there saying that if the rotors on 14 C7's are defective to replace them with the upgraded 1 piece design that is now standard on GM's dime.
http://www.corvetteactioncenter.com/...pply-1270.html

I told him, go ahead and change the rotors, because it should be covered under this Technical Service Bulletin.

He tries to tell me that my 14Z51 isn't covered, and I show him the TSB and tell him that it is, and go ahead and change the rotors and send GM the bill.

He goes back to his manager and then comes back and voila...all of a sudden the rotors are fine and don't need to be changed, and so they can't honor the TSB.

But if your rotors are defective, then they should be replaced free of charge to you.
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Old 05-17-2017, 10:25 PM   #14
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A Service Manual often lists some different rotor specs:

New
Worn but acceptable for new pads
Minimum acceptable for service.

On previous Corvettes, the Manual said that rotors should be turned only if they had excessive pitting, grooving, or runout.

Since I can't yet buy a Manual for our 2017, perhaps someone with a 2014 can look in theirs. The specs may be different between the different types of rotors (base, Z51, GS, etc). You need a micrometer that will open up enough to get past the ridge that's on the edge of worn rotors.

Beware of using rotors that meet the minimum spec now, but will be below the discard thickness by the time your new set of pads is used up.
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Old 05-18-2017, 12:51 PM   #15
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Quote:
Originally Posted by SoCalC7 View Post
Can anyone tell me what the outer edge of a new rotor would feel like? Would it be Level from edge to edge including the edges themselves?

i just dragged my finger across the rotor surface toward the outer edge, and there is a pronounced lip/ridge that sticks up on the outer edge. Does that mean the face of the rotor has really worn down that much?

I've never replaced a rotor on any previous car due to thinning... so this is new territory for me.

I guess I'm most astonished that a brake rotor could wear out after only ONE set of pads?!?
Your picture shows a really really deep groove creating that lip (what you ran into on the outer / inner edge).

Are you riding the brake with your left foot while you drive around?

Those rotors are done for sure.

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Old 05-18-2017, 01:01 PM   #16
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I have 48,500 miles on my 2014 Z51. I just had the oil changed and my pads/rotors were fine. I drive a significant amount of highway miles though and I generally don't drive too hard.
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Old 05-18-2017, 01:04 PM   #17
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Quote:
Originally Posted by slythetove View Post
Are you riding the brake with your left foot while you drive around?
You mean I'm not supposed to do that?!? I read on fastracerboi.com that it makes any car handle way better.

Yes. I can assure you I don't ride my brakes. Lol.
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Old 05-18-2017, 01:11 PM   #18
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Quote:
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I generally don't drive too hard.
Thanks for this data point.

I definitely drive mine like a performance sports car. I had considered a vanity plate of L8BRAKE,
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Old 05-18-2017, 01:18 PM   #19
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Quote:
Originally Posted by SoCalC7 View Post
You mean I'm not supposed to do that?!? I read on fastracerboi.com that it makes any car handle way better.

Yes. I can assure you I don't ride my brakes. Lol.
Hahah hey just checking!!

You running stock pads still? (Just another check the basics question)
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Old 05-18-2017, 01:32 PM   #20
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Quote:
Originally Posted by slythetove View Post
Hahah hey just checking!!

You running stock pads still? (Just another check the basics question)
Yep. Stock pads. That was item #3 in my OP.

This is why im so perplexed. Do I just drive my car harder than most... or is everybody changing out their rotors after 1 set of OEM pads as SOP?
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