New pads & rotors dragging on my Oldsmobile
I put front brakes on my wife's Olds yesterday. I bottomed out the pistons in the calipers, installed the new pads, and installed new rotors. Putting the calipers on, they were a bit tight (sliding the pads over the rotors). I had to tap them into place with a hammer. I recall that they're always a bit snug with new pads & rotors. I pumped the brakes to center the pads, then I test-drove it one mile down the freeway and one mile back. On the way down, it seemed like it was dragging. After the return run, at the top of the off-ramp, both front wheels were smokin'!
I did everything the way I've always done it. I put on new rubber sleeves and lubed them well with silicone lube. I put hi-temp caliper grease on the caliper-to-steering knuckle contact points. I cleaned the new rotors with brake cleaner.
Maybe Murray's sold me the wrong pads and/or rotors, and they're too thick?
Whatever the problem is, I've probably warped the rotors and glazed the pads, right?
I called Murray's to see if maybe I got the wrong parts. Their "brake expert" said it's possible, but according to my receipt, the part #s are correct. So I have to check the cartons to see if maybe they pulled part numbers different from what's on the receipt.
What blew me away was what he said about "seating" new pads:
I told him about the smoke and heat, and said I wanted new stuff because I probably glazed the pads and warped the rotors.
He said that with new pads, you need to heat them up real good to "seat" them.
I've always heard that you should go easy on new pads for the first few hundred miles. In fact, the Textar pads I buy for my Mercedes come with instructions that say to make a few gradual stops from highway speeds, in increments as follows: from 50 mph down gradually to 25, then lift off and let them cool, then gradually from like 25 to a complete stop. They say you should then go very easy on them for the next 100-200 miles.
Is it possible that frying my new pads to the point where they smoke is actually good for them?
Also, should I insist on new parts or will the pads & rotors be OK?
Now you're suckin' Diesel!
'92 300D 2.5 Turbo
'96 Lincoln Town Car. The Jazzmobile.