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Suspension & Braking
Have some questions about suspension or brake setups for your E46 BMW? Get all your answers here!

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Old 09-29-2012, 07:51 AM   #1
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rotors with rear pads?

well, haven't done pads on this since i've owned it, backs looking low, i would replace rotors and pads up front but i feel rotors in back as long as the old ones are smooth is not needed

what ya think?

i see tischer has pads, rotors and sensors for $300

can i re use the old sensors on new pads if they haven't been triggered?

and if so, who has the best deal on just oe or oem pads?
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Old 09-29-2012, 07:57 AM   #2
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If you buy a $10 micrometer you can measure the thickness of the rotor (in a few spots). Odds are if you've only gone through one set of pads in the rear that you'll be above the minimum thickness stamped on the rotor.

My front pads wore down and triggered the sensor after 60K miles and the rotors were only halfway between new and minimum thickness...but you need to measure to be sure.

You may, however, reuse the sensor if it's not been triggered...but that said, if it hasn't been triggered, you still have pad surface left and don't need to replace them (in all likelihood...presuming even wear on both sides of the car). I was down to 1.5 mm 700 miles after my front pad light triggered. You'd get more miles left when the rear sensor triggers.
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Old 09-29-2012, 07:59 AM   #3
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My rule of thumb is replace rotors every second set of pads, unless you tear them up by running the pads too far down and scoring them. Sensors can be reused. I am running pagid reds from bav auto. Good pads but dust like a late 90s audi
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Old 09-29-2012, 08:07 AM   #4
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bought the car 5 yrs ago with 44k on it, dealer put new set and rotors on front free ,said backs were fine, now 62k, so, i have no idea if the rears have been done , i'd assume pads have at 62k, but no idea on rotors

and my thinking was, if i waited till i triggered sensor i'd have to spend that cash as well on sensors

since i do my own work i try to keep an eye on pads as i don't wana be sitting out there in the cold doing it, i get it good to go for winter, but that said, i don't drive it all that often once salt hits roads

i'd say there is a quarter inch on pad now
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Old 09-29-2012, 08:09 AM   #5
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If you have a 1/4" of pads, you could have more than a year of driving easily.

My rear pads have already gone maybe 80K miles and they're probably just halfway worn down.
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Old 09-29-2012, 08:17 AM   #6
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Yeah, not sure what the brake bias is on an e46, but sufficed to say, the rears do little compared to the fronts. You may wind up replacing the fronts 2-1 over the rears.
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Old 09-29-2012, 10:24 AM   #7
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perhaps i'll wait till spring then, at what thickness does sensor break?
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Old 09-29-2012, 10:35 AM   #8
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Well, 700 miles after my front sensors went off, I had 1.5-2 mm left. Suspect they went off at just around 2.5 mm. That's an educated guess, but you certainly have time with 6 mm still on them. New I think they're around 3/4" thick at most. I might have published the thickness in one of my threads as I know I measured them new. I'll see if I can find that thread and do a better estimate, but you certainly have time.
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Old 09-29-2012, 10:46 AM   #9
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Like Dmax said... you still have a long ways to go until your rear pads need replacing but when that time comes I would recommend you check out the StopTech Street Performance Brake Pads as it a great OE replacement pads while giving you an increase in stopping power and dramatically reducing brake dust.

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Old 09-29-2012, 11:45 AM   #10
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Like Dmax said... you still have a long ways to go until your rear pads need replacing but when that time comes I would recommend you check out the StopTech Street Performance Brake Pads as it a great OE replacement pads while giving you an increase in stopping power and dramatically reducing brake dust.

i run these on my honda, good choice , but compared to eom bmw pads?

i could care less about rotors on my honda as they are dirt cheap , but like dmax said, i'd be concerned with rotor wear on my 330
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Old 09-29-2012, 01:26 PM   #11
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i run these on my honda, good choice , but compared to eom bmw pads?

i could care less about rotors on my honda as they are dirt cheap , but like dmax said, i'd be concerned with rotor wear on my 330
I just want to clarify a bit, because I don't want anyone thinking I'm thinking of rotors and their cost, per se.

I mostly think you want to stop as quickly as you can, in all conditions you might drive in. I drive in all of them and thus won't risk getting 'better' in some conditions at the cost of getting 'worse' in others.

BMW brakes, as they came with the car, aren't really things that 99% of Fanatics should try to better.

Alex is in the 1% no doubt and can put together components that give him what he needs. I can think of 10 I know here and maybe there are another 10 or 20 lurking that know enough to come up with better. The rest, I think are just hoping they can get better for cheaper and end up mostly getting worse for more money (in the long run).

I just want to know that every Fanatics car can stop as fast as it can when it needs to...straight, controlled, predictably...and with what all I read about here, I have serious doubts.

Holes, grooves, 'chinese,' 'dust-less,' 'for 3 track days/year,' different sizes, different compounds in front and back...

That said, does anyone make a green compound pad that stops pretty good and which would cover my wheels in green dust?
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Old 09-29-2012, 02:28 PM   #12
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I thought I said that, Alex...somewhere hiding in one of my posts!

Anyway, OP, wandered over to see how you're making out all the way over here! This is going to be a pain as I suspect it will be for Alex and many others wanting to help, but having to go to many subforums to do so.

Also a bump to see if anyone knows of actual stopping distance comparisons of pad/rotor combinations. All I've ever seen is anecdotal reports of 'these pads are great' or 'man my wheels are clean and they stop as good as oe,' but no data.

I know BMW made comparisons and have stuck with the OE compound for a long time...had the same on my e36. I don't believe BMW would try to save $5 a pad and make this an exclusively 'profit motivated' selection. I think someone at BMW would have said, 'we want to give our owners the shortest stopping distance we can in heat and cold, rain and snow, down steep mountain passes so they live and can buy more bmws.'
yeah, well, i didn't move it
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I just want to clarify a bit, because I don't want anyone thinking I'm thinking of rotors and their cost, per se.

I mostly think you want to stop as quickly as you can, in all conditions you might drive in. I drive in all of them and thus won't risk getting 'better' in some conditions at the cost of getting 'worse' in others.

BMW brakes, as they came with the car, aren't really things that 99% of Fanatics should try to better.

Alex is in the 1% no doubt and can put together components that give him what he needs. I can think of 10 I know here and maybe there are another 10 or 20 lurking that know enough to come up with better. The rest, I think are just hoping they can get better for cheaper and end up mostly getting worse for more money (in the long run).

I just want to know that every Fanatics car can stop as fast as it can when it needs to...straight, controlled, predictably...and with what all I read about here, I have serious doubts.

Holes, grooves, 'chinese,' 'dust-less,' 'for 3 track days/year,' different sizes, different compounds in front and back...

That said, does anyone make a green compound pad that stops pretty good and which would cover my wheels in green dust?
they make pink pads, in bath tissue aisle i believe
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Old 09-29-2012, 11:06 AM   #13
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Gilbert...do you have any links verifying that these stoptech pads stop quicker than OE...as in an independently run side-by-side comparison?

I refuse to believe that you can have less dust and shorter stopping distance, that is, until I see proof! Nothing personal. I also have to wonder that if the pads do stop the car in comparable distance, if that maybe they wear the rotor quicker. I've heard that the 'dustless' really just means that the dust is lighter colored, and doesn't show as much, but if it's really less dust, and they do stop the same, then I'd think that means the rotors are getting worn more quickly...adding to the long-term cost of 'dust-less' pads.

I'm curious...not looking to start a fight!
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Old 09-29-2012, 12:59 PM   #14
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I refuse to believe that you can have less dust and shorter stopping distance, that is, until I see proof! Nothing personal. I also have to wonder that if the pads do stop the car in comparable distance, if that maybe they wear the rotor quicker. I've heard that the 'dustless' really just means that the dust is lighter colored, and doesn't show as much, but if it's really less dust, and they do stop the same, then I'd think that means the rotors are getting worn more quickly...adding to the long-term cost of 'dust-less' pads.
All brake pads "dust" or shed material. The amount of dust has nothing to do with braking better.
When people refer to "dust Less" they refer to how much is visually noticeable. OEM pads have a high content of graphite, this is what you see "dust" and make the wheels dirty. It also clings to wheels. So yes, different compounds of brake pad material are what makes up a "dust" "less" pad.
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Old 09-29-2012, 01:15 PM   #15
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I thought I said that, Alex...somewhere hiding in one of my posts!

Anyway, OP, wandered over to see how you're making out all the way over here! This is going to be a pain as I suspect it will be for Alex and many others wanting to help, but having to go to many subforums to do so.

Also a bump to see if anyone knows of actual stopping distance comparisons of pad/rotor combinations. All I've ever seen is anecdotal reports of 'these pads are great' or 'man my wheels are clean and they stop as good as oe,' but no data.

I know BMW made comparisons and have stuck with the OE compound for a long time...had the same on my e36. I don't believe BMW would try to save $5 a pad and make this an exclusively 'profit motivated' selection. I think someone at BMW would have said, 'we want to give our owners the shortest stopping distance we can in heat and cold, rain and snow, down steep mountain passes so they live and can buy more bmws.'
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Old 09-29-2012, 02:42 PM   #16
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i'd like to get it narrowed down to who has oem pads for best price, as i've yet to see a pad that stops better, dust aside

but if there is new data i'm all ears
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Old 09-29-2012, 04:08 PM   #17
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well the oem BMW pads are some of the best initial bite pads i've come across and most agree are very good. so they are great for street. they however are not so great for higher demands and that's where people will do the trade-offs. matching a hotter pad to rotor and such.
people will also buy different brand pads for less of the black graphite the BMW pads leave on the wheel, price, quietness, feedback and response.

basically what i'm saying is depending on the driver and what he wants and doesn't want may be the difference in one pad over the other. when there are choices and differences in pads there is not a single pad best for everyone.
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Old 09-29-2012, 04:41 PM   #18
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if there is a street pad with as good of bite with less dust i've yet to see it

can another pad come close?
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Old 09-30-2012, 04:40 PM   #19
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don't everyone gimme hookups all at once now
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Old 09-30-2012, 05:07 PM   #20
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bmaparts...my pads...textar is the OE maker...were $50 I think.

Do I have to do everything around here?
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