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Eckie

Squealing brake pads

Question

Eckie

So a couple of weekends ago, I installed new brake pads and rotors on my F150. I bought and used ceramic pads as I liked the idea of eliminating brake dust once and for all. (Plus, they were more expensive and I figured - price = quality) Recently, I've noticed that the pads are really squealing when light pressure is applied (very noticeable as I lightly touch the brake pedal as I exit the garage, for example). Once they seem to get warmed up (or used several times), it's not noticeable.

Is this a common problem with new pads? Do they need a period of time before they start "getting along" with the new rotors? Or...I'm wondering if it's the type of pads I bought (never used ceramic before). FWIW, the truck is an 04 (5.4L).

Any suggestions on how to alleviate this issue?

Thanks guys..!

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Scott K

Most likely the noise you are hearing is from moisture build up on the rotors and pads in the mornings. Moisture will cause a small amount of rust build up between pads and rotors. After a couple stops it wears the rust off and all is ok.

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Jeremy airjer W

Which brakes for truck?

Here is a good article that we had a few months back. Macgyver55 has some really good information in this post on the bottom of the first page.

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Eckie

Thanks Airjer~

After reading Macgyver's post, I'm thinking I shouldn't have used ceramic pads. In your opinion, what's my best recourse of action? Replace the ceramics with semi-metallic's (to avoid rotor issues)? I don't tow that often, but I do have a newer 19ft glass runabout I/O (25-2700 pounds) that I pull with the truck in the summer months.

OR -- should I first try your method of "bedding the brakes"?

Also, am I correct in assuming the noise I'm hearing is created by the quality of the rotor used or is it a combination of both factors (materials and components used in the making of the ceramic pads)?

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Jeremy airjer W

I don't think its the quality of the rotor. We use the cheapest rotors money can buy at the shop. Rarely if ever is there a problem with the rotor as far as integrity. However every once and a while we will use the high end rotors for certain application. The difference can be noticed as soon as you take them out of the box! literally they feel better.

There is a lot of problems with "glazed" rotors/pads, cheap pads, incorrect installation of components, mismatched components, poor finish after resurfacing, debris on the pads, and rotors rusting, to name a few.

I would give it a couple hundred miles before I made any decision. If it continues to be a problem after that than I would consider going with an O.E. replacement type pad. Preferable not a less expensive brand that nobody has heard of. We have been using the Safety Stops that NAPA offers for quite some time now and are pleased for the most part.

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18 inch Crappie

Use good old Ray's Best money can buy.

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blakjack23

Do you hear it on both sides? I put new ceramics on my '04 F150 a few months ago. Right away I noticed a screeching noise. I thought maybe it needed some break in time. A few days later it was still just as bad so I had my roommate drive slowly so I coud listen to it from the outside. It was only on one side and since this was the first time I replaced brakes on this truck I decided to take the pads off on that side and make sure I did it right. While taking them off I noticed one of the small metal 'clips' that the pads slide on was slightly bent and hitting the rotor. I bent it back and since then its been perfect. I went ceramic because the stock pads created wayyyy too much brake dust. Now my rims are always nice and shiny!

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Macgyver55

If dust is your only complaint, they do make sheilds that install behind your wheel that do very well eliminating, or at least greatly reducing brake dust.

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Eckie

Blackjack ~

Good question...I'm not sure. I know I can hear it on the driver's side while I'm driving (or braking), but I haven't checked the other. My question then is, if in your case the clip was the culprit, did you hear the screeching all the time?

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blakjack23

I think it was there all the time, but I can't say for sure. If you find that its only the drivers side then its probably worth taking the wheel off to look at it.

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chickeywing

Squealing can be caused by the pads vibrating in the caliper. Not sure about Fords but for GM, the pads need to be siliconed to the caliper. A couple of dabs between the outboard pads and the caliper and a bead down the center of the backside of the inboard pad works on GM vehicles. I've run almost 200,000 miles between a '98 and a '05 Ford. Not a fan of the brakes!! Dust, noise, pulsing. Not sure ceramic is the way to go. If anyone has any tips, let me/us know!

TC

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blakjack23

Eckie, did you get this figured out? I'm just curious what it was.

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Eckie

Blackjack ~

Truck still does it....I tried a few different methods of "breaking them in" (no pun intended), but the pads still squeal, especially when cold, and using light to moderate pressure. Firm pressure = no squeal.

I've got two "upnort" trips on them, so I know they've seen 4-500 miles already, so by Airjer's brake bedding standards, this should've subsided by now.

I'm starting to believe that I should've done better homework (hence Macgyver55's earlier post) and used "application specific" pads, instead of the ceramics.

What type of pads did you end up going with (since we have the same truck)?

Thanks!

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blakjack23

I ended going with the Ceramix brand from Napa. They weren't cheap, like $80-90/set I think, but I'm really happy with them. I did have some trouble finding the right ones at first cause two stores gave me the wrong ones when I asked for pads for a 2004. One guy finally found out that my truck uses 2005 pads because the manufactured date was the end of 2004 so it uses 2005 parts I guess ??? I would guess if you got the wrong pads they wouldn't even fit right, cause the first ones I had were much smaller and not the same shape, but I thought I would throw that out there anyway. Did you take the tire off to see if anything was bent?

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Eckie

I haven't taken the tire off. I will try that...the only reason I didn't was because I only heard screeching when the brake pedal was depressed. If one of the clips was bent, or out of place, I figured I'd hear the noise all the time.

No issue on the pad size here...my truck must be a younger brother of yours...the pads I bought were the same size, exact fit -- 04 pads fit perfect.

I assume you changed out the rotors too?

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blakjack23

No, I didn't replace the rotors. One of them looked like it was close to needing replacing but I figured it was good to go for a little longer.

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