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Lifespan of disc brake pads

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Lifespan of disc brake pads

Old 01-16-14, 08:42 PM
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dvald001
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Lifespan of disc brake pads

Hey all,

I've been using some Avid BB7s on my Soma DC for about 2600 miles now and was wondering, at what point are pads generally replaced? I checked them and they look fine to me (still plenty of pad left). 90% of the time I ride on flat roads and there's very little rain that I have to deal with so I doubt I'm very hard on them compared to a lot of other commuters. Can anyone else tell me how miles they generally chalk up before they need a new set of pads?
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Old 01-16-14, 09:15 PM
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There's an official "replace now" thickness, I think it's 1mm of pad left, or something. You can google for it.

My original pads that came with the BB7s lasted about 3000 miles. I replaced them with cheap Chinese imports from eBay and those last about 5000 miles and cost about 1/3 as much.
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Old 01-16-14, 09:29 PM
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I've got just over 3000 miles on my original BB7 pads, plus some trail time. They are just getting to the thickness where they could stand to be replaced.

Last edited by awfulwaffle; 01-16-14 at 09:35 PM.
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Old 01-17-14, 09:21 AM
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Sintered or organic pads?
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Old 01-17-14, 10:41 AM
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still plenty thick? take them out and resurface a bit , then .. carborundum grit 'sand'paper..

clean the disc too..

I didn't mount an odometer ..

Pretty much YMMV..

Last edited by fietsbob; 01-17-14 at 11:57 AM.
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Old 01-17-14, 11:01 AM
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Mine went 9,000 miles on a Spez hybrid with not a lot of mucky use. I also changed 1 rotor. It was thinning and wearing on the edge because the inside pad kept moving out of adjustment, causing the housing to scrape the rotor.
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Old 01-17-14, 11:46 AM
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I would think that disc pads would last a lot longer than rim brake pads since they stay a lot cleaner. For a comparison, my rim brake pads last about 1200 miles.
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Old 01-17-14, 11:59 AM
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organic pads simply do not work well for me. they are rapidly eroded by the huge amount of wet grit i encounter on my daily descents. in fact, one of the reasons i upgraded to XTs was that they are designed to work with metallic and/or sintered pads. i switched to cheap taiwanese pads over a decade ago and i currentlly have half a dozen semi-metallic serfas pads i bought for $8 each.

note: using metallic pads with some disc brakes can result in failure.
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Old 01-17-14, 12:32 PM
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My 30 mile RT commute involves very little braking, so I get lots of miles out of my pads. There is no set lifespan, as wear depends entirely on use.
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Old 01-17-14, 02:41 PM
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Originally Posted by spivonious View Post
I would think that disc pads would last a lot longer than rim brake pads since they stay a lot cleaner. For a comparison, my rim brake pads last about 1200 miles.

i use up a lot of disc pads...but i've saved lots on wheel rims.
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Old 01-17-14, 03:57 PM
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Originally Posted by alan s View Post
My 30 mile RT commute involves very little braking, so I get lots of miles out of my pads. There is no set lifespan, as wear depends entirely on use.
x2. They could last a month or they could last 10 years depending on how they are used.
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Old 01-17-14, 04:08 PM
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Just like with cars, bicycle brake wear depends on how and where you ride.

While these are caliper brakes, my experience with 2 bikes is a good example. On my road bikes, I've never replaced brake shoes for wear. That's NEVER in tens of thousands of miles, and I end up replacing good condition but old and harder shoes every few years.

OTOH, on my commuter ridden daily in stop and go urban traffic, I rarely get a year or 4,000 miles form a set of shoes.

Brake shoes last forever if you rarely use the brakes.
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