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  1. #1
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    New disc brakes squeal

    Hello, I am new to the forum and looking for a little assistance.

    I just purchased a Trek FC Wahoo LX and have TekTro disc breaks on it. After the first day of riding it, the breaks now 'squeal' (it is more of a shriek) and am not sure what to do.

    I went to the dealer that sold it to me and they said to put dirt and water on the pad itself to lessen the break howl. Is there anything else that I need to know about breaking in new disc brakes?

    Thanks in advance,
    JD

  2. #2
    Senior Member commo_soulja's Avatar
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    Sounds like the lbs gave you some bad advice...
    Mythical Creatures Touched Me in my Bathing Suit Area.

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    The LBS advice isnt bad, but there are better ways to get pads bedded in which should reduce the noise.

    Going that it's a new bike, the discs and pads should be clean with no contamination from oil, the brakes need to be bedded in, you can google how to do this, or there is a guide here http://www.bikeradar.com/gear/articl...ke-pads-31337/

    Some discs will always make a noise, some won't do they stop you? as thats more important than a little noise.

  4. #4
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    commo_soulja: I just wasn't sure if the advice was any good. He 'fixed' the squeal for about a day or so and now it's back which leads me to believe that there is a bigger problem than what he told me...

    jimc101: The brakes do stop me. The noise sounds like an 18 wheeler stopping right next to me when the brakes end up squeaking. I did some research online and it seems that these are most certainly high-end brakes, but I didn't think that they would be this noisy.

    The specs of my bike are here: http://www.trekbikes.com/us/en/bikes...r_sport/wahoo/

  5. #5
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    Is there a possibility that anything could be out of alignment? I have never owned a bike with disc brakes before and am not sure exactly how to tell when there is something wearing out, out of alignment, or faulty.

    Thanks for the replies thus far!!

  6. #6
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    Rubbing dirt on it? What in the world? Uh, don't do that.

    Brakes sometimes howl because there are tiny, tiny imperfections on very new discs, or discs that are warped for some reason. These imperfections cause the calipers to bounce on and off the disc when braking is applied, creating vibration, leading to brakes that can howl.

    Dirty calipers can also cause this. A great, simple way to clean discs is to take a CLEAN rag and wipe down the rotors with rubbing alcohol (70% by volume or higher). You might also want to do this to the calipers as well, if you're comfortable removing them. It's really quite easy and they're a piece of cake to put back in.

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    I was told once to remove all oils from the rotor by washing in the dishwasher. If that didnt work to buy new brake pads and clean rotor again. I only had to wash the rotor and it did work.

  8. #8
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    Thanks for the replies!!
    ESW116: Thanks for the advice!! I will make sure to try that tomorrow. It has been storming outside straight for about 2 days. Looks like tomorrow it clears up!!

    socialbiker44: Did you try and put it in the dish washer? I am thinking that the heat might warp the disc? It might not be all that hot to deform the disc, but thanks for the advice!

    I tried to make the squeal go away by going down hills with the brakes on lightly. I made the squeal go away temporarily, but it didn't go away for that long. I am assuming that I am just wearing out my brakes by doing this, but I figured it was worth a shot.

    Thanks for all the input thus far!!

  9. #9
    Squeaky Wheel woodway's Avatar
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    Most disc brakes will squeal at some point, usually when they are wet. Some you can hardly notice the noise, some squeal very loud. One thing you can do to lessen the squeal is switch to organic compound brake pads. They wear faster then metallic pads, but tend to ride quieter.

  10. #10
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    Quote Originally Posted by newCyclerJD View Post
    Thanks for the replies!!
    ESW116: Thanks for the advice!! I will make sure to try that tomorrow. It has been storming outside straight for about 2 days. Looks like tomorrow it clears up!!

    socialbiker44: Did you try and put it in the dish washer? I am thinking that the heat might warp the disc? It might not be all that hot to deform the disc, but thanks for the advice!

    I tried to make the squeal go away by going down hills with the brakes on lightly. I made the squeal go away temporarily, but it didn't go away for that long. I am assuming that I am just wearing out my brakes by doing this, but I figured it was worth a shot.

    Thanks for all the input thus far!!
    That won't wear out the brakes. Well, I should say, it will, but the wear will be very minute. What you were actually doing was bedding in the discs, which is the process, basically, of breaking them in.

    Whenever you get new rotors or calipers or both, you want to bed them. This is done first by cleaning them, and then basically sprinting up to 15-20 mph or so and then applying soft, consistent pressure to the brakes to slow you down (not quite do a dead stop). Don't do it abruptly with hard pressure. Repeat about 5-10 times.

  11. #11
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    Lol at rubbing dirt on them. If the ground is wet or muddy when you are riding than that is probably the source of your squeal. If they are consistently squealing when it is dry then something is up. Tektro novela aren't high end, and I would imagine the quality control is not great. Another possibility is that the pads may have been contaminated at some point. Since this is a new bike I would have the LBS clean your rotors and then replace the brake pads if they keep squealing when it is dry (if you start trying to clean your pads the LBS may try to blame the mistake on you).

  12. #12
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    Woodway: Thanks for the advice! I will certainly keep that in mind. I am not so sure I am ready to just go buy new rotors. I think that I can make these work. As I have been riding for the past few days, the squeaking has become less and less loud. I was told at the LBS that there is a break-in period for these brakes (and from what I can assume and heard from here, break-in periods are required for all new disc brakes) and that I am just going through it now.

    ESW: I have been hearing more and more what you just said about 'bedding' the brake pads and the rotors in. When you say to clean them, would I do this with rubbing alcohol and a clean rag?

    ShimmerFade: I have been to the LBS on 3 different occasions and I have gotten 3 different answers on this issue. 1) rub dirt on it. 2) rotor is dirty (tech at the LBS cleaned the rotors with soapy water and wiped it off). 3) Told me that there was a break-in period (this was today).

    Honesly, I don't mean to ask 'dumb' questions, but as I said earlier, I have little experience with these type of brakes.

    I appreciate all of everybody's input thus far and I will most certainly keep updating this!

    Thanks again,

    JD

  13. #13
    Senior Member iforgotmename's Avatar
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    If they are squealing while dry you may want to re align the calipers.

    What I do is loosen the bolts that align the calipers and then tighten the inboard pad all the way in.
    After that tighten the outboard pad and then tighten the caliper bolts.
    After that back off the pads until they clear the rotor...hope I didn't add to the confusion.

  14. #14
    RHETT TILL DEATH Virgle's Avatar
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    I have the over sized rotors on my Trek fuel, They squeek pretty good once or twice a week mostly when wet. I guess I just never worried about them. I would allign your calipers. I think you'll find that they will just always make some kind of noise depending on riding condition.

  15. #15
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    yeah i put them in the dishwasher and it worked. i just had a lot of oils on them from the store when i bought them. The store owner said this happens from people looking and touching them. This is all i had to do.

  16. #16
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    i have also been told and know its can be the material the brake pads are made out of. Some will squeal more than the other

  17. #17
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    lol yeah, most people wandering around a LBS have no idea that you shouldn't be touching the rotors.

  18. #18
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    Quote Originally Posted by newCyclerJD View Post
    Woodway: Thanks for the advice! I will certainly keep that in mind. I am not so sure I am ready to just go buy new rotors. I think that I can make these work. As I have been riding for the past few days, the squeaking has become less and less loud. I was told at the LBS that there is a break-in period for these brakes (and from what I can assume and heard from here, break-in periods are required for all new disc brakes) and that I am just going through it now.

    ESW: I have been hearing more and more what you just said about 'bedding' the brake pads and the rotors in. When you say to clean them, would I do this with rubbing alcohol and a clean rag?

    ShimmerFade: I have been to the LBS on 3 different occasions and I have gotten 3 different answers on this issue. 1) rub dirt on it. 2) rotor is dirty (tech at the LBS cleaned the rotors with soapy water and wiped it off). 3) Told me that there was a break-in period (this was today).

    Honesly, I don't mean to ask 'dumb' questions, but as I said earlier, I have little experience with these type of brakes.

    I appreciate all of everybody's input thus far and I will most certainly keep updating this!

    Thanks again,

    JD
    well, definitely don't take advice from the first guy. the 2nd and 3rd guys are right though. just a clean rag and rubbing alchohol to the rotors (and calipers if you're comfy removing them), and then you can break them in.

  19. #19
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    Thanks for all the input!!

    I believe the solution to my squeaky brakes was actually the newness of the brakes themselves. It seems as though the temperature increases, the less noisy they get (and with time it gets better as well).

    Thanks again for all the input I got on this issue!!

    Best wishes,
    JD

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