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  #1  
Old 08-12-2001, 09:43 AM
TJS
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'95 SL500: Brake Powder Dust Everywhere

At the end of each day, I have brake pad powder/dust all over my rims and, after a few days without cleaning, the rims are completely black with brake pad soot.

My dealer says that my only option is to replace the brake pads with after-market brake pads, which will allegedly result in loudly squealing brakes.

My dealer can't explain why most other SL500s that I see don't appear to have a brake dust problem.

My dealer also acknowledges the existence of after-market screens that can be installed in the wheels to insulate the exterior rims from the brake dust, but the dealer does "not recommend them" for some apparently inexplicable reason.

1. Have you heard of this problem?
2. Do you have a theory as to the cause?
3. Do you have a proposed solutions?

Thanks,

TJS
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  #2  
Old 08-12-2001, 10:38 AM
Southern_Son
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The dust shields that fit on the back side of the wheel are called 'rotor-eaters' because they cut down too much on the cooling air for the rotors and thus you end up with warped rotors.

As far as the black dust, the Performance Friction pads from auto zone also release quite a bit of dust. My original pads from GM on my vette did not dust the wheels as badly. However, the car does stop ASAP. I just have to clean my wheels every week. (EVERY week).

No, aftermarket pads, by their nature, do not contribute to loud, squealy brakes. The dealer has given you a bum steer on that point.
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  #3  
Old 08-12-2001, 12:01 PM
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Our MBs have that much dust too and it irritates me sometimes, more when I've just clean the cars and take it out for a spin to come back looking all grime and black at the rims.

Apparently, or so I was told, its because of the new pads MB has introduced which is softer as tkarniya noted primarily due to the fact that MB brake pads have ceased using the asbestos compound (which is hazardous to health).
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  #4  
Old 08-12-2001, 02:11 PM
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Be aware that if you install a pair of "Kleen Wheels" shields, you will no longer have the "cool look" of seeing your brake discs and calipers from the outside. Instead you'll see the ugly black shield, which is an eyesore IMO.

I would suggest the PBR "metal master" brake pads. They are aftermarket and are known for their little to no release of brake dust, keeping your wheels significantly more clean than using OEM pads.

Good luck

~~Paul
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  #5  
Old 08-12-2001, 06:26 PM
Mark Elrod
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Brake Dust

The brake ps is "PBR" but I have found that the "delux" rather than the "metal master" is far better unless you do a lot of VERY heavy braking. The delux dusts as will any pad however the dust is a light gray, very similar to the original wheel gray so it is virtually invisible. If you fail to clean the wheels reguarly, the tire will start to take on a gray appearance.

Hope this helps.
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  #6  
Old 08-12-2001, 06:57 PM
Southern_Son
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(someone please direct pmizell to the restroom)
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  #7  
Old 08-12-2001, 11:12 PM
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TJS:

I put some Axxis (formerly Repco) "Metalmaster" pads on my wife's 300E and there is no dust (compared with OEM) and no squeal. I haven't had them on long enough to assess their influence on rotor wear, but the feel and the performance are great. I have EBC "green stuff" kevlar pads on the front wheels of my wagon and they work pretty good too, but they give off more dust than the "Metalmasters." A lot less dust than the original OEMs though. The EBC dust is lighter than OEM dust so now I can go a full week before having to wipe down my (wagon) wheels.

You might also want to look into Porterfield's kevlar pads. Expensive but most users like them a lot.

Bill
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  #8  
Old 08-13-2001, 10:38 AM
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A big part of my evenings is going to all of the MBs in the garage and putting on gloves and my "brake dust cleaning rags" and cleaning the brake dust off. All of the cars have chrome wheels, so they wipe off easily, but it's at least a 30 minute job every night! Gosh danged OEM pads!
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  #9  
Old 08-13-2001, 12:59 PM
Tangee
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I know the feeling. I spend so much time cleaning brake dust. I am looking now at either the axxis metalmaster, porterfields or even the ebc green stuff. I found a shop that will install the ebc's for 89.00 is that high or low?
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  #10  
Old 08-13-2001, 01:47 PM
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A very good price...especially compared to a dealer install...is that for all four?

Do you get the sensors with those?
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  #11  
Old 08-13-2001, 06:27 PM
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I HATE BRAKE PAD DUST! I clean it off every other day!

And check out my post titled CAR WASHING in the OPEN DISCUSSION! Take the poll!
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  #12  
Old 08-14-2001, 02:31 PM
Tangee
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Hey G-Benz...that price is for front pads only, what sensors are you talking about?
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  #13  
Old 08-14-2001, 03:44 PM
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The OEM pad kit comes with two sensors (one for each wheel). The sensor is a little electrical device that plugs in a socket somewhere on the brake caliper.

It's only function is to light up your brake indicator on the dashboard to let you know when your brakes are approaching the end of the safe wear limit (much more sophisticated than hearing that god-awful scraping sound that the metal indicators on other makes have).

The sensors probably don't need to be replaced every time the pads do, but the sensors do seem fragile considering what they're exposed to, so if you get a lot of life out of your brake pads, it wouldn't hurt to get those replaced too.

The dealer here charges me about $120 for the kit...even comes with that ointment stuff that you apply to the pads before assembly, so your brakes don't make a bunch of noise when you press the pedal...
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