Excessive use of copper grease on the back of brake pads can lead to serious risk of contamination and before any brake discs are installed, it’s vital the mounting surface of the disc and the vehicle’s hub are clean, free of rust and debris. The hub should be cleaned using a soft wire brush or emery paper, then wiped with a cloth and solvent. The smallest piece of dirt or rust can, over time, can affect the disc and induce ‘Disc Thickness Variation’ (DTV), which leads to complaints of judder. This will drastically reduce the life of the discs and void any warranties.
Once installed, the disc run out should be measured before re-assembly of the calliper and associated components. If the run out exceeds 0.08mm, the disc must be removed and the hub cleaned again. If this has no effect, the hub should be measured for run out as well. Hub run out in excess of 0.04mm is likely to cause a problem and should be investigated.
New pads and discs installed together must be bedded in properly to ensure a great pedal feel and promote longevity of the components. When done correctly, associated issues relating to brake squeal and complaints of judder are unlikely.
Borg & Beck BECKTEC coated brake discs have a water based coating using Zinc-Aluminium flakes, which protects the disc inside and out against rust and corrosion. This needs to be removed by performing a few very light braking applications – cleaning off the surfaces without building up too much heat in the discs. Sufficient bedding in then needs to be carried out, to gradually build-up heat in the discs and pad compound to a point where a thin layer of transfer film is laid down smoothly and evenly onto the disc surface, minimising the chance of judder.
The bedding in period lasts about 400 miles. Advise customers to avoid heavy braking (unless an emergency), as rapid heat build-up can create thermal shocks, causing surface cracks. When bedding in new pads and discs, it is also important to avoid sitting stationary with the brakes firmly applied – this can create hotspots, especially if the braking system hasn’t had sufficient time to cool. The hot spots can create an uneven surface, resulting in DTV.
DTV can easily develop as a result of minor oversights during the installation process or not taking care during the bedding in process. Therefore it is important to be aware of the causes and ensure the correct procedures are followed. This will significantly reduce complaints of judder, saving time and inconvenience for technicians and consumers.
What are the benefits of complete braking kits for technicians?
Brake Kits enable technicians to fit parts that are sourced from the same supplier, therefore preventing potential issues that can arise with mixing and matching. All relevant components are supplied by Borg & Beck, so there will be no need to re-use worn parts.
How do BECKTEC discs differ from other coated discs?
Some manufacturers offer a coating on the hat and rim of the disc arguing that coating the friction surface can reduce efficiency. This is only the case for coated discs with a painted finish, which is oil based and cannot be applied to the friction surface – this can adversely affect friction performance due to its organic content. The coating on Borg & Beck’s BECKTEC Discs is a water based product, which is designed to not reduce, but improve efficiency via heat dissipation.
To a technician who hasn’t fitted Borg & Beck, what are the advantages?
The Borg & Beck product team specify the exact material makeup of the Borg & Beck Discs and Pads, ensuring that all components meet the high standards expected for safety critical items. Parts are supplied with all the necessary accessories for complete ease of fitment, as well as the additional benefits that the BECKTEC Coated Discs and double rubber Wolverine® shimmed pads provide. Backed up with a comprehensive 2 year / 24,000 mile warranty against manufacturing defects, technicians can have complete confidence when installing any Borg & Beck product.
Where do you see the market going for braking?
The latest technology in the Braking world are the Bi-Metal Discs, also known as the Semi Compound Discs, found on high end BMW applications. These Discs have a corrosion resistant aluminium hub joined to the cast iron friction ring by special steel pins, which allows the heat generated during Braking to spread freely preventing distortion.
The use of aluminium in Brake Discs makes the Discs lighter, helps with fuel consumption and provides a smoother drive. Intelligent thermal management is key to Disc design as it avoids overheating.