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Question/Advice on Brakes

Old 9/12/16, 06:12 AM
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Question/Advice on Brakes

Bought my first Mustang recently. It is a 2006 model with 6cyl engine. The Mustang has 74,000 miles.

I'm hearing a groaning sound when I brake, which I assume is the "squeal pads" indicating that the brake pads are worn?

Since it has 74k on the odometer, I think it may be time to replace the brakes.

Do Mustangs get a set of brake pads and rotors at the same time? Or do you replace the pads when they are worn and separately replace the rotors when they are worn?

What brand of pads/rotors do you recommend for Mustangs? THANKS!!!
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Old 9/12/16, 07:12 AM
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Ha ha I JUST went through all this, this summer.

I thought the same, but was told that you replace both the brakes and the rotors at the same time.

I went with Raybestos rotors and Hawk HPS 5.0 pads. Seems like a good combination. Breaking power is much better than my older breaks.
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Old 9/12/16, 01:11 PM
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If you replace the rotors you have to replace the pads. If you are just doing the pads you don't necessarily have to do the rotors. If the rotors are flat and smooth you can leave them be. If they have an uneven surface you need to get them turned if there is enough material. Every rotor should have a number on it which is the minimum recommended thickness. If there is not enough material to turn them you should get new ones. Putting pads on with a crumby rotor will just lead to accelerated and uneven pad wear. I've swapped pads 3 times and never changed or turned my rotors.

Cool little tool I used last week when I swapped in new pads.

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For 30 years I've just been using a big C-clamp to compress the pistons but this made it a ton easier and was much faster. Convenience has it's price though. I think it was like $35-$40, but well worth it in my book.
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Old 9/12/16, 07:21 PM
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It is no problem to replace the pads and/or rotors separately. It's a "good idea" to do them together as a set, but not necessary.

The pads are the main wear item. The rotors may be a bit worn also. You can tell by looking at the ridge around the edge -- if it is substantial, then you need new rotors. If that ridge is big enough, it gets to be a real pain to get the caliper off the rotor because the pads get hung up on that ridge.

Take off rotors can be a great deal. Check your local Craig's List. Guys are constantly upgrading their brakes and then nearly giving away their old parts just to get rid of them.

The front pads are easy to replace, you can squeeze the pistons in by hand or with a c-clamp or a tool like the picture above.

The rears are a pain because of the emergency brake built in. I assume the rear calipers on your V6 are the same as my 2010 GT. If so, two important points:
1) get the right tool to compress the pistons. the one shown in the picture above is not the right one. You have to turn and compress the piston at the same time. You might be able to borrow one from local auto parts store, or you might have to buy one. Do not attempt to use the stupid little cube tool, they are useless, only good for more bruised knuckles and hair loss.
2) make sure the two little slots in the piston are vertical (perpendicular to the centerline of the pad) before you install the pads. This is so the two little tabs on the back of the pad will fit in those slots. If the pistion is not oriented correctly, the tabs will sit up on top and the pad will drag and the brakes will get ridiculously hot. (ask me how I know . . . LOL . . . . )
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Old 9/12/16, 07:24 PM
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What are you wanting to get out of your brakes? Is this strictly a daily driver, do you go to the track at all, etc.? That may help in figuring out what pads may be best for you.

I'm at 97K miles currently. As a daily driver, I've had to replace pads and turn the rotors once, and last month I changed the pads again and replaced all 4 rotors.

At the time of both brake jobs, my front rotors were warped and the steering wheel would shake very noticeably when braking. So the choice to turn (the first time) and now replace the front rotors was easy to make. As for the rear rotors...A friend of mine that worked in a shop was doing the first brake job for me and he could turn all the rotors. No charge, so why not make sure they're perfectly flat. This time around, I wore one of the rear pads down to the metal and you can clearly see the difference in wear pattern from the metal grinding vs the pad compound. I was gonna replace the rear rotors anyway, but that confirmed that the rotor was now toast.

Here's kind of a dead thread that I posted in with other relevant brake job info. My most recent brake job cost me ~$150 with parts from Autozone/NewTakeOff and doing labor myself, and I'd guess it would've cost roughly $600+ at a dealership.

This turned out to be a longer reply than I intended. I hope some of this is helpful or informative.

07Boss: Where did you get that caliper tool? I borrowed one from Autozone to get the job done, but the one you have looks considerably easier to use.
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Old 9/13/16, 10:39 AM
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I just replaced my rotors with Autozone stuff. I used the same Hawk pads that were on there already. I was getting the warped rotor action when I hit the brakes. All is good now.
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Old 9/13/16, 11:13 AM
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Rotor warpage is why I don't like turning rotors. Thinner rotors warp more easily. If they're smooth, I'll change the pads. If not, rotors and pads get changed. Brakes are crucial for safety, so I do not like the skimp there.
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Old 9/13/16, 04:14 PM
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Originally Posted by stupidgenius36 View Post
07Boss: Where did you get that caliper tool? I borrowed one from Autozone to get the job done, but the one you have looks considerably easier to use.
Haha, it was an impulse buy. Went on amazon to get the Red Stuff Pads and it popped up on the screen. I said what the heck, and I'm glad I got it. Just set it in there squeeze lightly as you ratchet it down to the pistons and then just keep going until it stops. Flip the little lever and ratchet it back a couple of times and it slides right out. Literally took less than 10 seconds to depress both pistons.

I do brakes for a bunch of friends and neighbors (bottle of crown or case of sam adams) so it will get used a lot along with my harbor freight 20 piece rear caliper set. Well worth it to me but I do more than the occasional job.

https://www.amazon.com/Lang-Tools-27...e+caliper+tool

They have a couple of different styles but this one looked like the most basic and easiest to use.

https://www.amazon.com/s?ie=UTF8&pag...caliper%20tool
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Old 9/16/16, 07:01 PM
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Bert is right on- it takes a different tool for the rears- and its pretty much a must-have to return the parking brake cam/screw stuff- i doubt you could turn otherwise without boot damage... I bought one, think only like 30 bucks, works great- breaking loose initially takes some torque on the little tee handle, but other than 'they coulda used a longer bar' it wasnt bad at all

if you want rotors, NTO still has them- original ford, new takeoffs...ive bought several sets- i'm cheep, and have had bad luck with some chinese part store stuff...
http://www.newtakeoff.com/mustang_gt...2009_pair.aspx $50 fronts/$45 rears, they put on sale for 29 or so once in a while...
http://www.newtakeoff.com/ford_musta...2005-2008.aspx
with free shipping, they are near giving them away..

Last edited by ford4v429; 9/16/16 at 07:07 PM.
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Old 9/22/16, 02:21 PM
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Originally Posted by 07 Boss View Post
Haha, it was an impulse buy. Went on amazon to get the Red Stuff Pads and it popped up on the screen. I said what the heck, and I'm glad I got it. Just set it in there squeeze lightly as you ratchet it down to the pistons and then just keep going until it stops. Flip the little lever and ratchet it back a couple of times and it slides right out. Literally took less than 10 seconds to depress both pistons.

I do brakes for a bunch of friends and neighbors (bottle of crown or case of sam adams) so it will get used a lot along with my harbor freight 20 piece rear caliper set. Well worth it to me but I do more than the occasional job.

https://www.amazon.com/Lang-Tools-27...e+caliper+tool

They have a couple of different styles but this one looked like the most basic and easiest to use.

https://www.amazon.com/s?ie=UTF8&pag...caliper%20tool


Wow, I have never seen this tool until today! SOLD!!!!! I bought one!!!!


(FTR I already have the Harbor Freight tool for the rears... tried it the first time with a big screwdriver, THAT is not recommended... )
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Old 9/22/16, 04:47 PM
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46 years driving & 31+ years as a state LEO.

I do not turn good rotors. I do not turn bad rotors. If a rotor on a car of mine is bad, I replace it. Turning is a waste of time & money IMHO, the only two times I've had it done, I still had to replace the rotors a short time later. If pads are worn and brakes smooth, I replace pads only and .... maybe I scuff the rotor with a pad.
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