Nearly a fright ... - Darcy Kitchin
The AX was due an oil & filter service today, so I asked Madame if anything needed looking at. She said the brakes were making a strange noise. Sure enough the nearside front was making a whoosh whoosh noise as the car came to a standstill. Ever since we sold her Citroen CX, she has criticised the brakes on any car we have ever had; she got on well with the on/off hydraulics of the CX.

Anyway, resisting the temptation to say yeah, yeah and ignore her, I took the wheel off. Half an inch of pad material either side of the disk. On dismantling there was a clearly visible crack in the pad material from the anti-squeal cut to the edge of the pad, parallel to the back plate. On trying to get a better look, half the pad detached itself and fell on the floor! Yuk!

Obviously the car is now "grounded" awaiting new pads, but has anyone else come across the friction material disintegrating like this? The pads have done approx 35K miles.

Me, ignore the missus? Never!
Re: Nearly a fright ... - Mike Harvey
Darcy, my wife moans too about the car, and there is usually nothing wrong with it. Though on a rare occasion I took her shopping in it and the back box fell off. Told you the exhaust was noisy, why dont you listen? You always think I'm nausium. Yes, I have come across a pad falling apart, but I cannot remember which make. These modern service techniques where the wheels do not come off would not find it though. Dangerous if you ask me.
Re: Nearly a fright ... - Phil Garner
Ayyeee. I can sympathise with this. My girlfriend was moaning about the exhaust and I thought I'd sort it out when I got round to it because the noise wasn't bad...

Later that day.... girlfriend returns from aerobics class, stuck in one way system with an old golf with its back box trailing along the road! Oops.
Re: Nearly a fright ... - Brian
About a year ago I came up behind a lady whose exhaust was trailing on the ground at the back in a shower of sparks ( I was on the m'cycle) and after half a mile of me flashing and hooting she did stop.
She had wonderered what strange noise was but had decided it could wait until she got home.
Basically the rear end had come off and was held on by one rubber.
I got it off by laying in the road in my motorcyle gear (of course it was raining at the time), put it in her boot and told her to drive gently home with the windows open.
She didn't seem at all grateful, but never mind, at least it did not fall off whilst I was behind me and have me off.
Re: Nearly a fright ... - andy sampson
Men are pleased when someone helps them, women expect it!!!!!
Re: Nearly a fright ... - afm
If the manufacturer's details can still be read on the backing plate, I think you should let them know. If they're big name manufacturers, they may want to establish the cause. They may also use this as a reason to get hold of the evidence. Trading standards may/should be interested, but I suspect you'll find they're too busy chasing manufacturers of pirate CDs and T shirts, on behalf of the very affluent copyright holders, rather than protecting the consumers who pay their salaries. It could have been fatal.

From previous experience, if you let them have the goods, they will suddenly go very quiet about it. You should get the cost of replacement & fitting from them, I'd think.

I've heard a story similar to this where a fitter noticed the brake pads on a bus had disintegrated. The story was that a large order for commercial vehicle pads had been supplied, but the pads had later been returned for credit and had been put back into stock by the suppliers. Later deliveries revealed that the pads had been substituted for cheap copies which had been returned in the original boxes. This one might otherwise have been a scare story to put us off buying cheap brake pads.
I've seen this a fair bit. - David Woollard

Had almost the same reports and fault on my cousin's ZX last year. Those pads too had covered about 35,000 miles. I fitted them with new discs for the previous owner.

My theory was that the first 30,000 miles were covered by a driver who was very hard on the brakes and so heated them frequently. My cousin hardly touches them in comparison and covers a low mileage. So they were on another year before this friction material detached (in her case the whole of the friction material on one pad detached completely and put her straight to the metal). I think the pads had been cooked, then age failure finished the bonding off.

I have seen partial cracks on many occasions with all types of cars and all makes of pad material.

Re: I've seen this a fair bit. - Cockle
Darcy, Mike, Phil
Don't knock your partners, at least they tell you when something is up.
My wife never tells me when anything is wrong with her car, it waits until the rare occasions when I drive it, by then it is normally either very expensive or on one occasion terminal.
I have now invested in one of those Halfords Crystal Balls mentioned in an earlier thread :-)

Re: Nearly a fright ... - Andy
Last year, the pad wear indicator on my ex-Cavalier (a '95 SRi 16V hatch) came on. On first inspection, the pads appeared to be fine, still plenty of friction material.

It was onlt when I took one of the calipers off to replace the sensor that I discovered the reason. On one pad, the entire lump of friction material had come apart from the backing plate.


Value my car