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Suspension & Braking Forum by BimmerWorld
Have some questions about suspension or brake setups for your E46 BMW? Get all your answers here!
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Old 05-03-2016, 04:01 AM   #1
SCain
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Can't get to the bottom of loud brake noise

When I bought my e46, it sounded like it needed new pads, so I replaced the fronts. Shortly after this, I still noticed a screech at slower speeds so I replaced the back pads; still no dice, unfortunately.

I put a good amount of synthetic brake grease on every single pad. I also cleaned off each rotor with brake parts cleaner. What gives? Is it possible I need new rotors? They seem
fine to me.

The screech is only at slow speeds when I depress the pedal nearly all the way and is pretty loud. Thanks for reading!

Last edited by SCain; 05-03-2016 at 04:05 AM.
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Old 05-03-2016, 06:07 AM   #2
BaliDawg
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The rotors should be resurfaced or replaced when you replace pads. They are wear items just like the pads.
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Old 05-03-2016, 07:26 AM   #3
markusmarkus
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Did you put that pink stuff from CRC on the back of the pads? Did you clean the caliper guide pins? Did you lube the pins with anti-seize compound?

IMHO BMW rotors should never be turned as they're fairly thin from the factory. If the answers to the above questions are "yes" replace the rotors.

Did you break in the pads?
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Old 05-03-2016, 08:46 AM   #4
cvx5832
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Quote:
Originally Posted by SCain View Post
When I bought my e46, it sounded like it needed new pads, so I replaced the fronts. Shortly after this, I still noticed a screech at slower speeds so I replaced the back pads; still no dice, unfortunately.

I put a good amount of synthetic brake grease on every single pad. I also cleaned off each rotor with brake parts cleaner. What gives? Is it possible I need new rotors? They seem
fine to me.

The screech is only at slow speeds when I depress the pedal nearly all the way and is pretty loud. Thanks for reading!
Replace rotors, and don't use autozone-grade pads.
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Old 05-03-2016, 01:39 PM   #5
SCain
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Quote:
Originally Posted by markusmarkus View Post
Did you put that pink stuff from CRC on the back of the pads? Did you clean the caliper guide pins? Did you lube the pins with anti-seize compound?

IMHO BMW rotors should never be turned as they're fairly thin from the factory. If the answers to the above questions are "yes" replace the rotors.

Did you break in the pads?
Don't know what you mean by pink stuff from CRC. I put synthetic brake grease on the back of all the pads. I didn't thoroughly clean the caliper pins, but I did lube them with anti-seize.

Quote:
Originally Posted by cvx5832 View Post
Replace rotors, and don't use autozone-grade pads.
Might as well, no paperwork for new rotors came with the car (65k Miles). Don't know what the Autozone quip was about, I used Wagner Ceramics. Thanks for the advice though?

Last edited by SCain; 05-04-2016 at 10:47 AM.
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Old 05-03-2016, 05:21 PM   #6
veektor
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My brakes squeaked for a little while at low speeds right after I replaced them. Apparently Textar pads tend to do that, especially if combined with Zimmerman rotors. You can search the forum for "textar squeaking", someone explained how the geometry of the pad edge causes squeaking until the edges smooth out a bit. It took a few hundred miles, but there is no more squeaking from the new pads.
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Old 05-04-2016, 10:48 AM   #7
SCain
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Thanks veektor, but I've put well over 1000 miles on these pads
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Old 05-04-2016, 12:10 PM   #8
jsickz32
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check for small rocks in the back of the rotors where they seat in the bearing
also make sure the dustshield is not bent and slightly touching the rotor
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Old 05-04-2016, 03:14 PM   #9
veektor
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Originally Posted by SCain View Post
Thanks veektor, but I've put well over 1000 miles on these pads
That may not be enough to wear out the sharp edges on the pads. Only you know if that 1000 miles was long stretches, or short spurts between stop lights. Besides, the ceramic pads may take longer than semi-metallics. Once I understood why my brakes were squealing, and realized it would eventually work itself out, I just turned up the music. One day I realized the squealing was gone, and as of today I have just around 2000 miles on those pads, so hasn't been that long.

The reason those sharp edges cause squealing is the same as when you make a wine glass sing by moving finger around the rim. It only happens when you reach the right condition of pressure and speed to cause the resonance. From my original search into the matter I recall someone actually taking the pads off and shaving down the sharp edges of the pads to get rid of the squeal. Like I said, turning the music up worked for me.
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Old 05-04-2016, 04:16 PM   #10
Yewzer B Lewzer
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Can't get to the bottom of loud brake noise

I did almost everything wrong according to this thread.

I used ceramic pads
Pads are from Autozone
I put them on used rotors
I didn't clean or lube the guide pins

Absolutely and perfectly quiet. Never a squeak or squeal.

The only thing I can attribute my success to is using liberal amounts of the blue permatex brake pad grease at exactly the locations that the caliper touches the pads.
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Last edited by Yewzer B Lewzer; 05-04-2016 at 04:16 PM.
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Old 05-04-2016, 04:27 PM   #11
nateo
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I had same problem with mine. Put on autozone pads, new rotors and new pins. Same squeak. Had them on for a couple thousand miles now same issue. I notice there are some tiny groves forming in the rotors. I suspect its the pads. Some might have success with autozone pads but it could be a qc issue with certain batches.
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