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Sunday, January 28, 2007

Brake Pad Break In Procedure

BRAKE PAD BEDDING IN PROCEDURE To ensure maximum performance and customer satisfaction, new brake pads must be bedded in upon installation. Correct bedding guarantees that new brake pads and new rotors work flawlessly together. In order to function optimally, organic brake pads must develop friction coal on its surface. This friction coal develops at a temperature of approximately 280°C (537°F). It is very important that this temperature is reached continuously and slowly. This gradual process generates temperatures that not only penetrate the surface of the brake discs and pads, but also distribute evenly through the whole disc and pad material. This is essential when using new brake discs, since the disc often shows signs of stress (due to the casting process and fast cooling) in the materials. A steady and careful warming and cooling process guarantees a good release of both materials. The bedding in/break in procedure should be done as follows: Drive at approx. 35 mph (60 kmh) for about 500 yards (solid front discs) to 800 yards (vented front discs) while slightly dragging the brakes (i.e. light brake pedal pressure). This process allows the brake temperature to slowly and evenly build up to 300°C (572°F). Now, if possible, drive about 2200 yards maintaining the same speed without braking. This will allow the pads and discs to cool down evenly. After this cool-down, perform a normal brake application from 35 mph to 0. No panic stops! Now, the friction surface has evenly developed friction coal, the pads have bonded with the disc surface, and tensions in the disc materials will have disappeared. Only trained master mechanics should perform this procedure before delivering the vehicle to its owner. Do not expect your customer to properly finish your brake job! This bedding process is only suitable for the front axle - not the rear. This is due to the brake force distribution of front and rear axles. In order to reach 300°C (527°F) on the rear pads you would have to drive several miles with dragging brakes. However, in that time the front brakes will be glowing red, overheating and thus destroying the front brakes. Final note – don’t forget to clean hubs and check the wheel bearings. Also, the brake fluid should be replaced at least every 2 years.


  1. I had to replace my rear break again after driving my car home from the mechanic. I was really disappointed.

    I guess i see what was the problem.

  2. Aside form placing pads and rotors properly, one should assure that the quality of pads and rotors are good. I’ve also learned about this when I asked EBC Active Brakes Direct last week. And it’s a great help.