Last post on Jun 03, 2013 at 12:37 PM
You are in the Honda Civic
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Honda Civic, Brakes, Engine, Oil, Steering, Suspension, Transmission, Coupe, Sedan
#1019 of 1261 Warped rotors at 27,000 miles
Oct 04, 2008 (2:54 pm)
My 2007 Civic EX coupe is less than 2 years old. This summer, the steering wheel began vibrating when I applied the brakes at highway speeds. I took it to the dealer and the diagnosis was warped rotors.
I couldn't believe this could happen to a virtually brand-new car at only 27,000 miles. (My last Honda didn't have ANY braking issues until 80,000 miles or so. Same commute, same driving style.)
The service rep told me this was "normal wear and tear" and rotor resurfacing wouldn't be covered by warranty. They finally paid for it after I requested to talk with the manager (the service rep did everything possible to stall me and used every excuse in the book not to have me talk with him -- so disappointing.)
I like the Civic, but I just don't trust this car the way I trusted my previous Honda. This is yet another problem that has popped up in two years of ownership. Not happy at all.
#1020 of 1261 Re: Warped rotors at 27,000 miles [bellagio]
Oct 04, 2008 (3:58 pm)
I have owned 14 Hondas from civics, integras, EL, accords, to crv's. Maybe 2 of them had no problem with rotors before 30.000. Basically, when your rotors were hot, you must have driven in a cold water puddle or did hard braking which can result in warping when rotor overheats. To me Honda rotors are one of their weakness. But this is the only thing that carrie's over as a problem from one Honda to another almost like a virus. As long as you can get them replaced under warranty, it's fine. The minute they won't cover this as warranty, go buy a good set of aftermarket performance rotors. To me worth every penny as these are easier on brake pads and give you better braking. If you get them on sale, they will cost you about the same as original honda crapy rotors.
#1021 of 1261 Re: Warped rotors at 27,000 miles [jonesbb630]
Oct 05, 2008 (4:01 pm)
Thanks for that info. Can you recommend a specific aftermarket product? I have 45 K with no problems but expect to need brake work for my '06 Civic soon.
#1022 of 1261 Re: Warped rotors at 27,000 miles [nealm]
Oct 05, 2008 (6:47 pm)
I live in Canada. So, i went and bought Canadian Tire performance rotors. They are cheap when on sale, and are twice the original honda crapy rotor. Sale usually says buy one and get the second half price. One thing about them, if they ever warp, you can't turn them. I have yet to see one warp. Then again, I don't keep my cars long enough to seeit I guess.
If I lived in USA, I would most likely try Walmart.
#1023 of 1261 Re: Warped rotors at 27,000 miles [bellagio]
Oct 06, 2008 (8:51 am)
The reason that Honda has ignored you is because it's a known problem and they don't want to acknowledge that they went cheaper on the rotors. Who would admit that kind of liability? They did admit it in the 90's on the Civic. TSB (technical service bulletin was issued) It said that the rotors weren't manufactured "true" and even and had to be turned right out of the box, brand new! But your problem is over time not in the beginning. Just mentioning that's the only time Honda admitted to having a problem.
To point out the issue with your car, bellagio, it's typical for the Honda rotors under more than gentle usage to warp. Sure, it could be because you were braking hard and drove through a puddle which caused the warpage, but do you really want to have to be that careful with your brakes? It's a car, not fine dishware!
When I had this problem on my Civic, I was a little slow in learning. Turning after turning and even replacing the rotors with another pair from Honda I slowly learned that the quality was to blame. They weren't engineered to last past 30,000 miles. What did I do? I went to www.tirerack.com and bought the Brembo branded OEM replacement rotor/disc. Never had another problem with warpage, for 6 years until the rotors were used up and had to be replaced.
I also replaced the Honda pads with Porterfield's R4-S pad as well. Finally more bite, no more squeaking, and much faster stopping. But that's another post in itself.
One other thing that about warpage people ignore. They think it is automatically time to turn the rotors. What I have found is that (research google as well, if you don't believe me) most vibration, "warpage" comes from a brake pad that doesn't have enough friction. Small amounts of the pad get left behind on the rotor's surface and this causes the vibration. If a runout dial is used, it would indicate that warpage has occured, but really what they're measuring is the pad debris burned into the rotor's face. Solution? Upgrade to a higher friction pad and it will clean the rotor off. That's how I got 6 years out of that set of Brembo oem rotors and Porterfield's R4-S pad.
Yes I know it's a lengthy explanation but needed to help a fellow Honda owner understand what's happening.
My advice: Don't bother with the Honda rotors/pads again, seriously. You'll waste time and money, not to mention frustration when it this warpage happens again. Just replace with Brembo's rotors (same size as stock, not a big upgrade) and you'll be happy again. For less money too!
#1024 of 1261 Re: Warped rotors at 27,000 miles [mark19]
Oct 06, 2008 (10:59 am)
This is all very interesting and frightening. I'm a woman and know nothing about cars and how they work. How do you know when to replace the rotors, or will you know when you can't stop the car? Also, is it possible to buy better rotors and then have someone else put them on, say at a auto repair shop? How about a tire store that also does maintenance work?
#1025 of 1261 Re: Warped rotors at 27,000 miles [mark19]
Oct 06, 2008 (1:41 pm)
Just wanted to thank you for your comprehensive explanation and specific recommendations for dealing with rotors/pads. Bellagio has started an enlightening thread and you have provided valuable info. At 42K my brakes seem fine (no vibes, clean stops) but will be due for a check this month. If they are near the end, I will follow your advice and go aftermarket. I will try to do some research on the subject and share what I come up with, but so far your recommendation and JonesBB(thanks Jones!) are useful starting points. I rarely get this much out of my brakes except for a 1995 Maxima that had 95K fronts before a pad change (really!).
#1026 of 1261 Re: Warped rotors at 27,000 miles [nealm]
Oct 06, 2008 (3:17 pm)
Haha... the car had a ton of highway miles, so brakes lasted forever. I still have the original rear drums at 184k on my 1996 Accord LX I4.
#1027 of 1261 Re: Warped rotors at 27,000 miles [kathyc1]
Oct 07, 2008 (12:01 am)
don't be afraid. I was NOT saying that the rotors are just going to dissolve under you! You just need to not pay to have the rotors "turned" when the time comes to replace them. When is that? When they start vibrating/pulsating when you try and stop. Usually happens around 30,000 miles. If you're not vibrating then, then don't worry about it.
It is possible to have someone put them on, of course. The Honda dealer put on aftermarket rotors and brake pads on my civic. They don't care since there is no warranty through them. Some dealers will do aftermarket parts work some won't. Since the brakes are a wear/tear item. There isn't much chance of any warranty support anyway at 30,000 miles.
#1028 of 1261 Re: Warped rotors at 27,000 miles [nealm]
Oct 07, 2008 (12:15 am)
You're welcome for the explanation, glad to help share my personal experiences with a couple of Hondas that I've had.
To help you with your research. The pads that I purchased were the R4-S pad from porterfield-brakes.com Just purchased another set after 6 years on the first set. If you do put these pads on your car you will come back here smiling and say thanks! No I know that sounds arrogant, it's just that they ARE THAT GOOD! I was amazed how much more stopping power after putting them on. They broke in over about a 1-2 week period. The bite became stronger and stronger to the point that if you hit the pedal halfway down you might be kissing the dash! Not bad at all.
I guess for me recommending the Brembo OEM replacement rotors/discs from tirerack.com and the porterfield pads was just to help others unsure of questionable quality from other sources. And since I was the guinea pig, makes it easier for others to install them and not have to worry if it's going to work. Frustrating when things don't work out, nice when it's smooth going!
glad to help out