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3-Series (E46, E90) Chat relating to the BMW 3-Series from 1999 to Current. Models include: BMW 316i, BMW 318i, BMW 318Ci, BMW 320i, BMW 323i, BMW 325i, BMW 330i, BMW 328 Ci, BMW 328i, BMW 325i/xi, BMW 330Ci, BMW 320d, BMW 330d, BMW 335d.

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Old 03-27-2006, 08:28 PM   #1 (permalink)
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new rotors = new pads?

Hello forum.

I've got some warped rotors, and need to replace them. Pads were just replaced less than a year ago. These are front brakes we're talking about.

I was thinking that i'd just replace the rotors and be done with it, figuring I still have some life in the pads.

A buddy said I'd be right back to problem land in no time if I don't replace the pads while replacing the rotors. I know that in other cars - I've replaced PADS and not rotors with no problems. So does the logic in reverse not work?

the question - can I replace my rotors, and keep the current pads, or am I running the risk of ending up with probelms again in short time?

I have to say - I love the BMWs - but the brake situation is pretty much garbage. I've owned VW's all my life and still have a Jetta - knock on wood - never had brake problems like I have with my BMW.

Anyway - thanks in advance for the replys and advice!

mass
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Old 03-27-2006, 10:29 PM   #2 (permalink)
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Its highly recommended that you change your Pads along with your Rotor change. Its normal to change just your pads if your rotors are'nt worn out. But you will be damaging your new rotors with your worn pads.
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Old 03-28-2006, 08:02 AM   #3 (permalink)
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Your rotors and pads develop the same wear patterns over time. Replacing one without replacing the other is like replacing the Yin without the Yang... you'll just end up copying the wear patterns onto the new/flat parts.

One option is to sand the pads down smooth and flush, similar to the rotors. But quite frankly, having just done mine this past weekend, it'll cost you about $120 for new front rotors and pads if you install them yourself. And fyi, have an impact wrench and a breaker bar handy to get the rotor retaining bolt and the pad carrier nuts off. Oh, and my rotors were practically rusted onto the hubs, so have some liquid wrench handy and bang away at the back of the old rotor if need be with a hammer.
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Old 04-13-2006, 10:36 AM   #4 (permalink)
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Don't worry about it...

Its probably better to replace both but its not that big of a deal, I've done it both ways. The pads are designed to wear, its how they work... Pads can't warp a rotor. How they are used can. I rarely hear of BMW rotors warping. I replace my pads a lot because of track days, and have replaced discs when needed. I don't waste the pads. Endurance racers replace pad and rotors and pads-and-rotors. I've seen them pull them right out of the box and stuff 'em in there. Don't worry too much about bedding them in etc. if they are used fairly hard.
Replace the discs when worn or warped.
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Old 04-13-2006, 07:11 PM   #5 (permalink)
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agree with jehu, if the pads have a ton of life in them, you could re-use. but, you may go to a harder rotor, like an aftermarket powerslot etc. they warp less, even when used hard (i use them with hawk hp plus, no sign of warping after about 16k).
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