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Discussion Starter #1
Sorry to bother you with my question , but I did not find an proper answer using the search engine.
I checked the front brake pads on my bike , but I can't decide if they are ok, or worn out. It wouldn't be a big problem , because I'm not a mechanin.
The big problem is that I was in the Honda service the other days , I asked the mechanic what he thought about changing the pads , and he looked at them for five second and said : "I think...maybe we should change them, but you decide. " After that I don't really trust them ...

I have only ridden 21,000miles (34,000kms) since I bought my bike new.
How can I check the brake pads? I checked them , but hey can not be seen for sure.
I have the sevice manuel and it doesn't say/show wheel removal o the "Front brake pad replacement" page ,on the other hand I saw pictures on Fred's galleries and it bigins with a removed wheel picture:oops:Is it neccessarry to remove the front wheel?
Now I only want to decide if they are ok or worn out. Please help me how can I check them properly? I don't want to remove the wheel if it is not absolutely necessary. I don't have a hoist, and you can see I'm not a born mechanic

Thank you in advance.
Bruxi
 

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First off, you don't need to remove the wheel to check for pad wear! Your pads have a groove that is milled through a section of the actual pad for braking, the groove extends all the way to within maybe 1/16th of the backing plate. Check the wear groove, if gone, the pad needs changing. If you cant find the groove just go by pad thickness. The left front pads will wear sooner than the right side also. If I were giving advice, let the dealer do the work for you. Mechanically challenged should let a professional do the repairs. Good luck.
 

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The outer pads are pretty easy to see. Lie down beside the front wheel and shine a light up into the area.

The inner pad will require you to use a small mirror to see.

There is a groove in the edge of the pad that is the wear indicator. If you see a groove, the pad has enough material left.

If you can see the pads this way, there is no need to remove the wheel to inspect them.
 

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Grumpy Fart
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I'll bet at 24k, that front left inside pad is getting thin. I'd have a brake person take a look.

The front left wears out 2 to 1 compared to the right.

If you've got a buddy that is capable of brakes, its not a big job and $30? in parts.
 

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i have run over 55000 miles on brake pads, on two wings already

at your mileage, i cant think they need to be replaced yet
 

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two up riding and just "some" small trailer towing
... and mine were thin to the wear bars at 24,000 miles.

They're like tires in that the last half seems to wear
quicker than the first half.
Mine looked "ok" at 18,000 miles but were shot by 24,000 miles.

a small mirror and flashlight with new batteries
... shine from the bottom and look for those wear bar "groves"
.... if you don't see an obvious "grove", they need to be changed.

If you have no idea what to look for,
get them changed and "no worries" for the coming riding season.

Dennis
 

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My first set were totally shot (almost down to the metal) at 40k, second set of OEMs were replaced 35k later.. It all depends on how you ride and the roads you ride.. 25k is early but not unusual.. From what the tech said, it would appear they are not too bad.. Have them SHOW you how to check and what they are looking at...

Brakes are nothing to mess with if you really aren't sure of what you're doing.. If you do have the dealer replace the brakes make certain to save the old ones for inspection or re-use if you do find yourself more mechanically inclined later!!
 

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I would take it in and have the mechanic pull the left set of pads and show them to me beside a new set, then deside. It's not that big a deal to remove the wheel.
 

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I just walked out to the garage and took a couple photos of my front brake pads (they have 5K miles on them) with the front wheel installed and fender on the bike.

You will need a flashlight and you will also have to lay on the floor and look up, but you can see the pads and even the wear indicators built into them. The top side of them is a bit harder to see, but it also can be seen with a light.

This first photo is from laying on the floor looking up into the back side of the caliper.


The second photo is from looking down in through the fender next to the rotor.



Here you can see the wear indicator in the pad is at the 1mm point. You definetly don't want to run them any lower than that, and they don't always wear evenly across the surface of the pads, so I typically don't let them go all the way to the indicator. The nature of the linked braking system sometimes will cause one part of the pad to wear faster. There also can be differences in the way the inboard and outboard pad wear, so you need to check both pads at both top and bottom locations and on both sides of the wheels (all four pads). One pad may look fine while another is just about to wear indicator.




The rear pads can be checked in a similar manner. The rear brake pads are thicker than the fronts, and typically will last quite a bit longer. On my 2002, I changed the front pads at about 23K miles. They maybe could have gone another 3K miles or so, but I wanted to change them before they got any thinner as I was getting ready for a long trip. The first time I replaced the rear pads was at around 41K miles.
 

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Miles ridden is not really a good indicator. Each rider uses his brakes differently. If you do a lot of in town stop and go, brakes will go faster than those that do a lot of highway miles. If you pull a trailer, they go faster that if not. If you use your transmission to assist stopping, they last longer. The only way to be sure is visual inspection as described by Fred H. and others here.
If you're the least bit mechanically inclined, consider Freds videos which he does a great job of demonstrating brake replacement (as well as a plethora of other tasks).
 

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Discussion Starter #12
Thank you for every reply and photo. :thumbup:
Your are great people , this is one of the reasons why I like this forum so much.

Bruxi
 

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I just walked out to the garage and took a couple photos of my front brake pads (they have 5K miles on them) with the front wheel installed and fender on the bike.

You will need a flashlight and you will also have to lay on the floor and look up, but you can see the pads and even the wear indicators built into them. The top side of them is a bit harder to see, but it also can be seen with a light.

This first photo is from laying on the floor looking up into the back side of the caliper.


The second photo is from looking down in through the fender next to the rotor.



Here you can see the wear indicator in the pad is at the 1mm point. You definetly don't want to run them any lower than that, and they don't always wear evenly across the surface of the pads, so I typically don't let them go all the way to the indicator. The nature of the linked braking system sometimes will cause one part of the pad to wear faster. There also can be differences in the way the inboard and outboard pad wear, so you need to check both pads at both top and bottom locations and on both sides of the wheels (all four pads). One pad may look fine while another is just about to wear indicator.




The rear pads can be checked in a similar manner. The rear brake pads are thicker than the fronts, and typically will last quite a bit longer. On my 2002, I changed the front pads at about 23K miles. They maybe could have gone another 3K miles or so, but I wanted to change them before they got any thinner as I was getting ready for a long trip. The first time I replaced the rear pads was at around 41K miles.
Fred,

Great pics (as usual). Thanks!

Assuming the wear indicators are at the 1mm (~0.04 in), perhaps one could easily check wear by feel using a piece of cheap plastic shim stock.

Then, you would not have to lie on the floor to check brake pad wear. You'd just have to run the shim stock up along the rotor and see if it would fit in between the brake pad backing plate and the rotor.

Quick, easy, and your clothes stay clean!

Maybe I'll try this out myself!
 

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Fred,

Great pics (as usual). Thanks!

Assuming the wear indicators are at the 1mm (~0.04 in), perhaps one could easily check wear by feel using a piece of cheap plastic shim stock.

Then, you would not have to lie on the floor to check brake pad wear. You'd just have to run the shim stock up along the rotor and see if it would fit in between the brake pad backing plate and the rotor.

Quick, easy, and your clothes stay clean!

Maybe I'll try this out myself!
Well, I bought some 0.04" plastic shim stock and cut a section out to use as an aid for checking brake pad wear.

It was moderately helpful at best. Not a total waste of time, and I'll continue to use it, I just would not recommend it to anyone else.

IHTH!
 

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I'll bet at 24k, that front left inside pad is getting thin. I'd have a brake person take a look.

The front left wears out 2 to 1 compared to the right.

If you've got a buddy that is capable of brakes, its not a big job and $30? in parts.
Two pair of OEM pads about a hundred bucks at Hal's.
 

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Miles ridden is not really a good indicator.
I'll say!

I am lucky if my brake pads last as long as my tires, I get 8-12K on tires to the wear marks. I am on my 5th set of pads installed at 50K, and YES I have replaced all sets 'cept the first as I hear them scraping metal, no steenking wear marks for me!!!

Usually it is the left front, but I rotate the left and right sides now at 6K. The last set actually wore out the rears first. This is the first time I have had that happen on half a century of brake work on dozens of owner maintained vehicles.

Tip: Once a disk is worn in, the scraping metal is the natural unworn shelf of the disk against the pad's backing plate, so as the disk wears we have effectively created a wear indicator that makes grindy noises before any real damage can occur. Your mileage will vary, your sensitivity will vary, but this phenomenon occurs roughly after the second set of pads for me ...

ObligatoryDisclaimer: I play a mechanic on the Internet, I have no formal training.
 

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5 sets in 50,000 miles? Wow! To me, that is not normal wear.
It is entirely normal wear given my driving habits.

(on the fifth set actually means four sets have worn out, one of the sets was a cheap non-OEM that wore out in half the time)

Year round principal vehicle, 95% Commuting and jackrabbit starts and stops, along with at least a few hard parts hitting the ground in turns every day. I make no bones about hitting the brakes if someone in front of me is doing something ballistic (or accelerating if someone behind me doing the same). Takes its toll. But the net result is 35 years without going down (save for the curb that darted out in front of me last year).

Reminds me of the puritan that once complained about a lady burping and [email protected] Said it was not lady-like. Response was, everything a 'lady' does is lady-like...

Define Normal :shrug:
 
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