How to properly bed-in new brake pads

Discussion in 'GS Boxers' started by BMW JEEP, Feb 6, 2013.

  1. BMW JEEP

    BMW JEEP Been here awhile

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    May 14, 2012
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    Howdy ya'll,

    I know there are numerous threads on grabby brakes, brake component preferences and brake pad and disc maintenance, but one important discussion that I can't find (and please redirect me to a thread if you know of one) on how to properly bed in new pads on existing rotors?

    Here is the scenario: I've read the 'grabbing/juddering front brake threads and have properly sanded and cleaned the disc, which has plenty of thickness remaining. I have new OEM Brembo pads for my 2005 R1200GS and have removed the old pads and cleaned the caliper and piston area well with brake cleaner. A lot of folks often complain and ask how to solve their grabby brakes issue and there are several threads about not holding hot brake pads during stops, etc. What appears to be very important in preventing irregular front wheel braking and much is said about the necessity of proper brake pad bedding in, but like other issues, there are many differing and countering opinions on this (i.e., 8-10 low speed repeated slow-ups without complete braking from 30-40 mph to doing the same from 60 mph, or two different periods of low, then high speed slow-downs with cooling in between). I'm personallly tired of a never-ending juddery brake issue and have to think that the bedding-in must be of great importance in preventing this.

    So, I'm wondering what this vast pool of experienced GSers have for advice as to how to properly bed new pads in to avoid the all-too-common grabbing that many experience, especially with the servo-asssited generation of 12GS's?

    Again, If this is already established and published here, pleases redirect. Thanks in advance, and if the response is worth it, I would suggust possibly adding this to the "100 things every ..." list or to the Hall of Wisdom.

    Thanks,
    Curt
    #1
  2. def

    def Ginger th wonder dog

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    I still have the OE brake pads on my front and have changed the rears twice. Each time, I merely use only moderate rear brake pressure while the pads are new. But, are your brakes the integrated servo brakes? If so, proper bedding in requires short, mpoderate applications for the first, say, 50 miles.

    Finally, when servicing my Brembo brakes (ABSII), I remove the used pads and rough them on a flat surface (concrete garage floor) and re install them until their end-of-life. This helps retain excellent feel and performance of the brakes.
    #2
  3. Iron Rey

    Iron Rey Wingnut Extraordinaire

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    I have done nothing special on either my '08 or '10 GSA's. I just give the new pads a quick squirt of cleaner to remove any manufacturing debris, install and go...OK, the first time I brake, I do so from moderate speed increasing the brake pressure to make sure there are no issues, other than that nothing. Also, I do not know of ANY manufacturer that reccommends you "scruff" the disk when you change the pads, if you think about it, what are you trying to accomplish? If you have overheated your rotors, replace them, "scruffing" will do nothing for you.

    Oh yea, be sure you pump the lever a few times after you change them to prevent the "oh shit" feeling when you try to stop.
    #3
  4. Dan-M

    Dan-M Long timer

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    Normal braking is just fine. You will only run into issues if there is contamination (grease or oil on pad surface) or you overheat them. just take it easy for 100 miles or so.

    I talked with a Wagner brake rep recently. There were some vehicles (cars and light trucks) that had excessive brake squeal problems even when new pads and rotors were installed properly. He went through all the issues with rotor density and harmonics related to pad material. He told me the engineers suggested a 30/30/30 approach. 30 stops from 30 mph with 30 seconds in-between stops. This gives the right bed-in without overheating the pads. :deal
    As you can imagine, this approach is not very practical. A shop that does say, 20 brake jobs a week would spend an additional 5 to 10 hours driving cars.

    Instead, we switched brands of pads on the trouble models. Problem solved.

    Edit: as Rey said, clean & smooth rotors are all that is necessary when dealing with MC stainless surfaces. Cast iron auto rotors must be resurfaced with every pad change.
    #4
  5. def

    def Ginger th wonder dog

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    Scruffing the disc can be a remedy for brake shudder. I would prefer to call it roughing the disc. Use sandpaper, 220 grit. You're not trying to remove material but change the surface and remove any brake pad compound that is causing the shudder.

    Also, my reference was to the scuffing the pads. This breaks the glaze and brings up a new surface on otherwise good pads with mileage remaining. Sandpaper can be used here as well.
    #5
  6. malloy

    malloy Been here awhile

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    The folks at EBC told me the best way to bed new pads is to travel at a moderate speed, preferably downhill, and tap the brakes lightly numerous times (50 or 60) before coming to a complete gentle stop. Do this cycle several times gradually increasing the intensity coming to the complete stop.
    #6
  7. def

    def Ginger th wonder dog

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    The EBC folks know brakes so, there's your answer.
    #7