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Warped Rotors

I have a 2007 Toyota Camry I bought brand new in 2007; 4 months ago, maybe longer, I was informed by my mechanic of 20yrs. that I have Warped Rotors. I told him my steering wheel vibrates when I reach 60 or higher and when I decrease speed, whether it be by taking my foot off the accelerator or using the brake. How long can I drive on these Warped Rotors, and how does this happen?? I have been a Camry owner since 1987 and never had this problem. Thanks for your help and your time, and I sure hope the answer is from Tom and Ray.
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Comments

  • edited February 2011
    Tom and Ray never reply to anything on here, so that hope will not be answered.

    Generally, warped rotors will only produce symptoms when the brakes are applied. They will present a shake, pulsation, or shimmy in the steering wheel when braking for front rotors, or in the seat for rear rotors. If you have this vibration whether you are on the brakes or not, it could be something else, like a bad tire or a wheel out of balance. Has your mechanic done a runout test to verify it is rotor warp?
  • edited February 2011
    Many of the people on this discussion board are much better mechanics than Tom & Ray.

    What mark9207 said is correct. You should also know that, even if you want to think there is something special about Toyota it will not apply to basic front end issues or brakes. Toyotas use the same basic stuff as everybody else.
  • edited February 2011
    [quote]Many of the people on this discussion board are much better mechanics than Tom & Ray. [/quote]

    And how could you POSSIBLY know that?? Have they ever worked on your car???
  • edited February 2011
    Sorry - shall I just rephrase to be more specific ?????

    "Based on what I hear come out of the brothers' mouths in comparison to what I read from many of the mechanics on this site, many people here seem to be much smarter about car problems and solutions than Tom and Ray"

    That's my rephrase. Don't you have anything better to do Mike?
  • edited February 2011
    Yes, my Mechanic did take it out on the road, and that's how he analyzed. Is that what you mean by runout test? Thanks so much for your help.
  • edited February 2011
    No, I have never worked on my car - I'm a Senior Citizen and a Greenhorn on Autos. Thanks so much for your time and help.
  • edited February 2011
    No. A runout test is when the wheels are removed, the rotor secured to the hub, and a runout gauge attached to measure the amount of warp in a rotor. If there is very little to no runout, the problem is not warped rotors. A spec book will show maximum allowable runout, and your mechanic should have one if he services brakes. I can usually take a vehicle for a drive and say with confidence what the problem is, but I still use tests like this to verify my instincts. This prevents unnecessary repairs and angry customers.
  • edited February 2011
    No - checking runout is done with a very sensitive little gauge. It measures the tiniest of variations in the rotor's surface - b/c it only takes the tiniest of variations to create a problem.

    Basically the idea is that if your steering wheel is shaking but your foot is not on the brake then its just unlikely that the brake rotors are the problem. The mechanic should be checking wheel balance, wheel bearings, tie rods - things of that nature. But a runout gauge can confirm whether or not the rotors need work.
  • edited February 2011
    I know that what I have heard from CigRoller, OK45 and Shadowfax and CommonSenseAnswer and others far outshine the things Tom and Ray say on the show. I have been working on cars over 20 Years and I know what I am talking about for sure....Its hard for us sometimes bec we are only as affective as the info we are given....if we were in front of the affected auto we would be MUCH more accurate in our responses.

    I can tell from the answers listed on here that these guys know what they are talking about because I for one agree with what they say most of the time and if not we incrementally add to the answers....and all of us together usually OVER cover peoples issues... If we are not individually better than click and clack...we sure are close.....and together we are certainly the better mechanic. Nothing against click or clack...at all

    I also agree with Mark in his comment above.....we arent trying to be Better mechanics than Tom and Ray....we are just being good mechanics.....and like Mark said if we screw up an answer the next guy will set it straight....so we have the advantage of chipping away at an issue where Tom and Ray just blurt out ONE answer and just run with it when several other answers would be more prudent. We on the other hand will beat a question to death and beyond ALL with good answers

    As for this issue...you can drive with warped rotors to your hearts content....I for one cant STAND this... The rotors warp over time due to being heated and cooled soooo many times with the material loss also added in. The brake pads actually wear the iron rotor down over time....this makes them more suseptible to warpage. It is normal....just replace them with OEM rotors or other HIGH QUALITY rotors and this will go away. HOWEVER as others have stated if you are getting a vibration with your foot off the brake, then this may be pointing to wheel balance or suspension issues.... Brake rotor warpage is most evident when you have your foot on the brakes....squeezing the rotor...
  • edited February 2011
    Sorry, Alwaystrue2011, but Mike and cigroller are having a debate which does not involve you and has nothing to do with your questions. The debate started with cigroller's comment that many of the regulars on this forum are better mechanics than Tom and Ray. My opinion of this is that I have listened to their radio show off and on for the last 10-15 years or so and read their newspaper column since it started appearing in my local paper. I have also been contributing to this forum myself for the last four years or so. I have found faulty logic and poor or incorrect advice in Tom and Ray's newspaper column and heard the same on their talk show, but they are mechanically sharp and do own a repair shop. I would guess that they are on par with most other mechanics, knowledge wise, but there is a huge advantage to posting on this board compared with getting an opinion from Tom and Ray. Here, you will get opinions from a lot of different people, some of whom have been turning wrenches longer than the brothers have been, and if someone gives poor advice, another contributor will call them out on it in short order. The brothers generally agree with one another, whether most other mechanics would agree with it or not.
This discussion has been closed.