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Old 09-06-2012, 09:00 PM   #39
Mango's Avatar
Join Date: Mar 2006
Location: Southern California
Posts: 26,478
My Ride: Lexus
Originally Posted by tomoyer View Post
I'm jumping in here quite late, but; steering wheel vibration under braking can be several things or a combination of several things. From the photos you posted, your rotors are worn and most likely warped/have excessive run-out, which will cause steering wheel vibration under most braking conditions. In 2 of the photos, it even looked as though the rotors were scorched, that is that they were excessively heated. This can be caused by a caliper that doesn't release when the brakes are left off, keeping one or both pads in tight contact with the rotor. Since it looks like they were warmed up pretty good, I wouldn't spend the money to have them turned. There are many different rotors out there by many good makers. For several years I've used cross-drilled rotors from R1 Concepts. With those rotors I've used both Metal Master pads and R1's full ceramic pads. I prefer R1 ceramic pads, the metal masters are great once they are warmed up a bit. In the past I've also used Padig pads and ATE cross-rilled rotors. The Pagid pads I used to use are hard to come by now and when you do find them, they are quite expensive. If you look, you will find many solid, cross-rilled, slotted and cross-drilled & slotted rotors for your car, all by good names. There are quite a few here that do not like cross-drilled rotors for street use, though there is nothing wrong with them. They actually perform better. There are also many different pads. Pads can be inexpensive to expensive, low dusting or high dusting, metallic, semi-metallic, carbon and ceramic. Everyone has their favorites.
If you replace your rotors and pads, make sure that you clean and lube the guide pins and use never-seize compound where the pads touch the holders and disc brake quiet to glue the pads.
Something else to consider, replacing the rubber brake hoses with stainless steel hoses. They again are some here that feel it is a waste of time and money to use stainless steel lines for street use, however there are several advantages; you many well never have to replace them, they do not "swell" and by not swelling keep constant pressure for overall better braking performance.
Now as to other things that can lead to steering wheel shake under braking; worn lower control arm outer ball joints, worn/torn front lower control arm bushings, worn tie rods, worn sway bar links, bent and/or flat spotted wheels, badly worn tires.
Most of these items are fairly easy to check.
But from the photos, for right now, I'd be replacing the rotors and the pads. They've seen their better days.
No offense, but the highlighted statement in bold tosses all credibility out the window. All... of... it. And rotors for all intents and purposes don't warp.
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