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  #1  
Old 02-04-2011, 12:46 PM
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Default How long does it take rotors to acquire so much rust that they cannot be turned down?

I got new rotors 4 years ago and I need to get new brakes now. My mechanic is saying I need all new rotors as well, not because they have grooves but because they are rusty. I don't know much about rotors, but they don't look that rusty to me, and they have never been cut before, so I was assuming I could turn them down at least once before spending all that money on new ones. Can rust really make a rotor unsalvageable that fast?

Also, what should the cost of all new brakes be (incl labor) as opposed to the cost of new brakes and rotors (incl labor again)? This is a 98 Camry V6.

Thanks all
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Last edited by numberforty1; 02-04-2011 at 12:48 PM.
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  #2  
Old 02-04-2011, 06:30 PM
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The disks are not painted or treated to prevent rust. Some rust on the surfaces where the brake pads do not rub is normal. If the car has sat for some time, weeks perhaps, there could be rust on the rubbing surfaces A car that has sat for a long time can have disks so rusty they require turning.

Have you been driving the car regularly, if so the rubbing surfaces should be free of rust.

If rusty your should be able turn them down. However first try cleaning the rust off with sand paper. Turning down rotors on the car costs about $100 for 2 wheels. New aftermarket rotors may be cheaper.

How do the brakes work, any vibration of the brake pedal or steering wheel when braking? Do the brakes make a squealing noise when applied?

Rotors might cost $50-60 each at a shop, cheaper if purchased yourself. Toyota brand rotors would be more expensive. Try the Brembo brand.

Installing a rotor is not that time consuming. If the pads are being replaced, there is only one more part to take off to access the rotor. The rotors slide off the hub.

If you can remove a tire, take one off and inspect the rotor. The rubbing surfaces of the disk should be shinny from the pads rubbing on them. If some rust, use sand paper.

Rotors do have a minimum thickness that they can be ground to.
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Old 02-05-2011, 04:07 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by toyomoho View Post
If rusty your should be able turn them down. However first try cleaning the rust off with sand paper. Turning down rotors on the car costs about $100 for 2 wheels. New aftermarket rotors may be cheaper.

How do the brakes work, any vibration of the brake pedal or steering wheel when braking? Do the brakes make a squealing noise when applied?
Hi, the brakes still work fine, they are just approaching the end of their life. The car is only driven once a week though, so it makes sense that it gets some rust, but it seems to me that turning them down would easily fix that. But $50 to turn a rotor? I thought it was more like $15! Aren't they just putting it on a machine for a few seconds and basically sanding it down? If it really is $50 it wouldn't be worth doing, rotors sell for $20 online (plus shipping), even for American brands.

So what is a reasonable cost for a garage to charge for replacing all brakes and rotors? What about just brakes and turning down the rotors?

Thanks for what you wrote before.
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Old 02-05-2011, 08:40 PM
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What is the reason you think the rotors are nearing the end of their life?

What exactly is wrong with the the rotors that they require replacement? Rotors can require replacement for a lot of reasons.

What are the reasons stated that the rotors much be replaced and not turned?

Check with a few shops for prices on:

Changing the pads and rotors.

If the rotors are able to be reused, the cost for having the rotors turned and changing the pads.

If it is possible to turn the rotors off the car to save money or they need to turned on when still on the car.

No doubt they will have their opinion on what is best, part of this may be a profit factor.

Most shops make money from markups on parts prices. If your mechanic will allow you to bring on your own parts then buy the disk and pads and bring them in. Most shops will not allow this.
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Old 02-06-2011, 02:09 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by toyomoho View Post
What is the reason you think the rotors are nearing the end of their life?
I didn't say that the rotors are approaching the end of their life. I meant the brakes pads are approaching the end, because they are almost worn all the way down, like any brake pad will be eventually. My whole question is about the rotors, and whether a little rust on them actually requires replacing them. The general concensus seems to be that turning down any rotor will remove any rust, so I think that is what I want to do.

The question now is whether a garage will charge me more for a new rotor or to turn down the old ones.

So any comments on a decent price for replacing all 4 brakes, and replacing all 4 brakes with turning rotors, and for all 4 brakes and new rotors? I can't get a straight answer out of this shop, which makes me want to go elsewhere.

Thanks again
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Old 02-06-2011, 10:08 PM
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Not surprising the shop is hedging, this allows them to up the work (and price) if they find something else wrong.

Pads, my mistake.

Turning the rotors will remove the rust. However as you state rust should not be an issue. Unless the rotor were exposed to heavy salts from road deicing, etc driving the car once a week should keep any rust from getting out of hand.

The body of the disk will rust as it is not painted.

I suggest you just sand the disks by hand with sand paper. GM now recommends this instead of turning when doing pad replacement if the rotors are otherwise OK.

If the rotors have never been turned there should be lots of metal left.

If the brake pedal does not pulse or steering wheel shake when applying the brakes, the rotors are not "warped".
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Old 02-06-2011, 10:55 PM
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Thanks, yes, what you are saying makes more sense to me than what I was hearing from the shop. Where do you work?
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Old 02-07-2011, 09:17 PM
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Retired.
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Old 02-07-2011, 09:17 PM
 
 
 
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1998, brakes, camry, cost, long, nearing, remove, replacing, rotor, rotors, rust, rusted, rusty, sand, turn

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