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E90/E91/E92/E93 (2006 - 2013)
The E9X is the 4th evolution of the BMW 3 series including a highly tuned twin turbo 335i variant pushing out 300hp and 300 ft. lbs. of torque. BMW continues to show that it sets the bar for true driving performance! -- View the E9X Wiki

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  #1  
Old 07-21-2013, 08:11 AM
pastman pastman is offline
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BMW brake pad warning light

Hello Members:
My brake pad warning light (red lit figure of car on a lift) came on last week. My replacement pads have arrived, but I want to know how much time (miles) I have until my rotors start to suffer. I've driven about 150 (highway) miles since the warning appeared. Please advise.
Thanks,

Alan
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  #2  
Old 07-21-2013, 08:16 AM
Ilovemycar Ilovemycar is offline
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Measure them with a micrometer. You can find cheaper than the link below for sure, but something like this is nice because the little pointy things let you clear the lip of the rotor (without modification to the tool) for more accurate readings. You'll want to take numerous readings for the best understanding of the condition, you can google around, it's extremely easy to use. You will see the minimum thickness stamped right on the rotor hat, and from there you may be able to gauge how much life is left.

http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B00...?ie=UTF8&psc=1
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Old 07-21-2013, 12:17 PM
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CALWATERBOY CALWATERBOY is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by pastman View Post
Hello Members:
My brake pad warning light (red lit figure of car on a lift) came on last week. My replacement pads have arrived, but I want to know how much time (miles) I have until my rotors start to suffer. I've driven about 150 (highway) miles since the warning appeared.

Gee dunno....will you brake much?

What the future holds here is about a predictable as:


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Old 07-21-2013, 12:24 PM
pastman pastman is offline
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Thanks for the helpful reply, is this forum a release for your comic genius?
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Old 07-21-2013, 12:29 PM
Pilgrim Pilgrim is offline
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When brake pads have worn thin, they are less effective under heavy use because they have less mass to absorb and dissipate heat. It's a good idea to replace them BEFORE they are metal on metal (which is actually too late).

In other words, replacing them right away is an excellent idea.
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Old 07-21-2013, 12:38 PM
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CALWATERBOY CALWATERBOY is offline
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Originally Posted by pastman View Post
Thanks for the helpful reply, is this forum a release for your comic genius?

No, Adobe's.

Pilgrim gets it....squeezin' a nickle ain't gonna be pretty.
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Old 07-21-2013, 01:44 PM
hondo402000 hondo402000 is offline
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well since BMW recommends that you replace the rotors at every pad change what does it matter if you wait till you score the rotors????? unless you want to push the limits

I just replaced the pads on my 335i, and that was before the wear sensor came on, still had about 100 thousands over min thickness on the rotors, but then there is always at least 10 percent safety factor in the thickness so I am waiting till the next pad change to replace rotors

but you decide if you want to push it
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Old 07-21-2013, 02:38 PM
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bocabimmer bocabimmer is offline
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BMW brake pad warning light

You'll definitely be able to source rotors and then change them if that's what you're asking. If you were planning on keeping the rotors... are you sure you want to do that? They are only an extra $150 or so and will save you the aggravation of squeakiness and/or decreased stopping power.

I just swapped out my rotors yesterday because a week of new pads and old rotors were torture.


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Old 07-21-2013, 05:14 PM
Pilgrim Pilgrim is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by hondo402000 View Post
well since BMW recommends that you replace the rotors at every pad change what does it matter if you wait till you score the rotors????? unless you want to push the limits

I just replaced the pads on my 335i, and that was before the wear sensor came on, still had about 100 thousands over min thickness on the rotors, but then there is always at least 10 percent safety factor in the thickness so I am waiting till the next pad change to replace rotors

but you decide if you want to push it
Waiting until you have metal on metal means the brakes are functioning poorly at that point. Not a good idea because it's not going to let you stop as fast as you normally would be able to. Besides, scoring the rotors is an indication that maintenance has been neglected.

The issue with brake pad thickness is something I learned in a state patrol police driving instructor's school. For a single stop, no biggie, But if you have to brake hard and repeatedly with badly worn pads, you will experience brake fade much earlier and much more severely than you would with pads at full thickness. It's simply the physics of mass and heat dissipation.
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