Auto Brake Wear for 2003 Forester Subaru

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I guess there's no NG for auto repair, so ..
I bought my Forester in Sept. 2002, and apparently drove 42K without getting new brakes. I then drove 22K before getting new breaks, and finally another 22K, when I now need new front brakes. I live in a foothill area of Calif., and drive up and down at least one 5-600' hill each day. I talked to a mechanic today and he said that brake life is usually quite good at the start.
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Wayne Watson (Watson Adventures, Prop., Nevada City, CA)

(121.015 Deg. W, 39.262 Deg. N) GMT-8 hr std. time)
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you might want tosearch your newsserver for 'subaru'. there are many.
s

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Steve Barker DLT wrote:

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Wayne Watson (Watson Adventures, Prop., Nevada City, CA)

(121.015 Deg. W, 39.262 Deg. N) GMT-8 hr std. time)
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yeah, you're right. I just subscribed to all 7 subaru groups on giga, and none of them are overly busy.
s

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W. eWatson wrote:

That 5 or 600 hill didn't get any higher since you bought the car. The replacement pads that are being installed on the car might be an inferior grade than the originals were or the rotors might be either too thin causing excess heat and wear or the rotors might be slightly warped causing premature wear. Most likely its the grade of pads being installed though.
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W. eWatson wrote:

That 5 or 600 hill didn't get any higher since you bought the car. The replacement pads that are being installed on the car might be an inferior grade than the originals were or the rotors might be either too thin causing excess heat and wear or the rotors might be slightly warped causing premature wear. Most likely its the grade of pads being installed though.
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sounds like he's a left foot braker to me.
s

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So what is your question? Are you complaining about the short life of the replacements? Replacement pads usually only last about half as long as the originals, even with new rotors.
It's more important that your vehicle stops safely than how long your pads last. I would rather have to replace pads and rotors every 15K miles than have brakes that last 60K and don't stop the vehicle.
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snipped-for-privacy@rochester.rr.com wrote:

Not true. If he were to buy the OEM pads directly from the dealer or bought the ceramic pads he would still get good life assuming rotors and calipers were in good shape. I owned a brake shop for 30 years and have done a 'few' brake jobs in my time. Most of the pads installed by repair shops are inferior to the OEM. When you quote a price with the better pads people look at you like your crazy. A good set of ceramic pads alone could cost up to 90 dollars for two wheels. Then the labor to install. I installed these ceramics in my own 2002 Forester Turbo and I have 63000 miles on them with about 10 percent wear still left.
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Sanity wrote:

think I may let them do it again. However, I think the local mechanic I now use is pretty good. BTW, it's down hill to the dealer. :-)
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Wayne Watson (Watson Adventures, Prop., Nevada City, CA)

(121.015 Deg. W, 39.262 Deg. N) GMT-8 hr std. time)
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Driving *up* that hill is irrelevant. How you drive *down* it makes all the difference: do you slow down only by stepping on the brakes? Or do you shift the transmission to a lower gear too?
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Doug Miller wrote:

He drove that same hill with the original pads so that doesn't enter the picture.
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Sure it does -- he didn't get the life out of the original pads that he should have, either. The shorter life of the replacements is no mystery at all; they're usually lower quality than the original equipment. My point is that his pad life is way too short, period -- probably because he's riding the brakes all the way down that hill instead of downshifting like he should.
Fix the driving habits that are shortening the pad life, and the difference between the originals and the replacements will cease to be significant.
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Doug Miller wrote:

the only hill around here. I'd probably wear out my hand down shifting.
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Wayne Watson (Watson Adventures, Prop., Nevada City, CA)

(121.015 Deg. W, 39.262 Deg. N) GMT-8 hr std. time)
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downgrades to save the brakes. The wear on the transmission is negligible, and, in any event, safety is the prime concern here.
Good rule of thumb: if the hill is so long, or so steep, that you can't stay under the posted speed limit (or posted advisory speeds for curves), plus about 5mph, without using the brakes, you should downshift. Failing to do so can result in complete brake failure.
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W. eWatson wrote:

Some, sure, but not a concern of noticeably shortening transmission life.
As others noted, however, the difference between recent performance and original would appear to be mostly related to difference between the OEM and replacement pads rather than driving habits.
Over the length of a 600-ft hill unless it is very steep indeed (which, of course, it _could_ be, particularly if it's inside a development or a private drive as opposed to maintained public road) I'd not expect to be able to attribute that much difference in wear to simply a tendency to not downshift. Of course, it would be a reasonable practice as noted elsewhere (altho the limitations outlined in at least one response are far in excess of reason on the side of reality, however, imo).
In particular, of course, if one has an automatic that has an overdrive or similar "mileage" gear, simply shifting down to the fixed gearing ratio below it will cause engine braking that wouldn't get otherwise.
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Doug Miller wrote:

the only hill around here. I'd probably wear out my hand down shifting.
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Wayne Watson (Watson Adventures, Prop., Nevada City, CA)

(121.015 Deg. W, 39.262 Deg. N) GMT-8 hr std. time)
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Doug Miller wrote:

Automatic.
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Wayne Watson (Watson Adventures, Prop., Nevada City, CA)

(121.015 Deg. W, 39.262 Deg. N) GMT-8 hr std. time)
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brakes? Or do you shift the transmission to a lower gear too?
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Doug Miller wrote:

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Wayne Watson (Watson Adventures, Prop., Nevada City, CA)

(121.015 Deg. W, 39.262 Deg. N) GMT-8 hr std. time)
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