Brakes rubbing

Brake pads where rubbing on multiple spots, back and front of rotor. I replace pads and rotor. About a month latter I was driving the car (wife’s car) and found out the the pads were rubbing at a single spot, enough to stop the wheel when spun. What could cause this?

did you grease the caliper pins. one can be hanging up. also you should replace and grease the brake pad guides that are on top and bottom of where the pads go onto the caliper.

I believe you are describing rotor run-out, the side to side movement of the rotor while rotating.
Remove the rotors and clean the rust from the hubs, see if this reduces the run-out.

Thanks Nevada, I am usually good at grinding of the hub, but I will look at that.

Thanks Weekend Warrior, I always grease the guides when doing a brake job but I will double check.

Grinding? Do you mean cleaning, with something like a wire brush? You don’t want to grind it.

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Yes, with a wire brush using a drill, to remove the rust.

You may just have warped rotors. What year of Escape? Have the rotors ever been resurfaced?

2009 Escape. replace rotor and pads about a few months ago.

So the rotor and pads are fairly new then? hmm … you may have bad luck and got a warped new rotor. the idea above that the rotor isn’t mating w/ the hub correctly is good possibility as well. A good mechanic can easily measure the rotor’s run-out, and figure out if the problem is the rotor itself, or the mating surfaces. No need to guess. Problems w/new after market rotors are not unheard of here. It’s possible to manufacture something that looks like a rotor, but uses inferior materials and/or manufacturing processes, done to save a buck. Less common in dealership sourced rotors.

I will get the rotor checked out. if it is warped I will send it back. It has a 90 day warranty.

Thanks for the help.

Years ago I had a warped brake drum producing similar symptoms, and the only thing that fixed it was a new one.

I had a chance to look at the car. (my wife does not have to work this weekend) I cleaned and reapplied grease to the pins, cleaned all mating suffuses of the hub and the rotor and the pad guide with wire brush. I really don’t think that did anything. I blead the brake fluid when I pushed piston back. It seam to not rub anymore, but it did not rub after I did the brake job a few months ago. Now the interesting thing. I took the car for a ride where I can safely brake heavily. When stopping with a normal hard stop it seam ok, but when I slam on the brakes it sound like the anti-lock kick on and the car pulls to the right. The wheel that I am dealing with is the driver side front. With that new information any idea what is going on.

I have no idea what is wrong but I do know if this was my wifes vehicle it would be in a real brake shop yesterday .


The piston may be sticking in that caliper, or the brake hose on that side might be collapsing internally, holding a little pressure on that caliper. I guess that would make it want to pull to that side pretty much any time you hit the brakes, though. Might not be sticking bad enough yet that you can notice it until you brake hard. Just a guess. You might check the temp on that rotor and compare it to the temp of the other rotor after a drive. They should be pretty close in temp. If one’s hotter than the other, that would indicate that the caliper on the hotter side isn’t fully releasing. If it is a master cylinder issue, it’ll hold pressure on both sides.

Or you can do the brake shop thing. I’ve only paid for brake work once in my entire life. And regretted it. The rear ABS would come on during a normal stop in my Dodge truck if I hit an expansion joint while braking or braked even semi hard. I took it to the dealership, they scanned it for codes, told me the rear drums were out of round, and charged me 100 bucks. I bought new drums and shoes, and as I installed the shoes, I noticed the cylinders wanted to push out. My first guess was that the master cylinder was bad, holding pressure on the rear brakes, as both rear cylinders wanted to push out. I took it back to the dealer and explained what I’d observed. They bled the brakes, charged me another $200, and sent me on my way. The symptoms remained…so I took it to a local independent shop that is no longer in business and explained the symptoms. “You’ve got a bad master cylinder. Do you want us to replace it?” Well, nice! I wish I’d listened to myself and changed the master cylinder myself or taken it to these guys first instead of the dealership. I called the dealership to (semi-politely) explain that they’d basically wasted my $300, but the service writer was always to busy to talk to me. Oh well. On the third call, the lady answering the phone asked if I wanted to leave a message for the service writer. Why, yes, yes I do! Ehhh, not worth it. Just tell him I won’t be back or buy another vehicle there.

I’ve tested brake rotors (in an approximate way, wheel removed) for flatness by figuring out a way to position the tip of a pencil very close but not touching the rotor surface, held onto a fixed point by a clamp or something, then watching if the distance from the tip of the pencil to the disc changes as I rotate the wheel (disc) .