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Discussion Starter #1
Everyone knows my situation, high HP. My rear brakes are shot with 58k mi. I'll be doing rear pads and rotors, I don't want to spend alot, so no big brake kit.

I do want to run racing pads but I don't need a huge increase in friction, I'd like to get a reasonable amount of mileage out of them. I'm toying with getting some drilled and or slotted rotors but It looks like long wait times ie. 4 wks. I don't think I have 4 weeks worth of pads left.

Any suggestions???
 

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Why do you want to run race pads on your E? Unless your E only sees track use race pads just might kill you or destroy your E. Race pads need heat to work. Daily driving usually doesn't generate enough heat ie driving down the interstate 20 miles until your exit. And boy will you have fun trying to slow down for the exit unless those pads are good and warm.

Find a carbon pad that works well in everyday driving yet does well in performance apps. Performance Friction and others should have a compound for you. there are other pad manufacturers i can't remember right now that have suitable compounds try Hawk and Satisfied

Metalmasters used to fun at the first stop sign in my neighborhood in my 3 series if I didn't drag the brake pedal down the driveway to build up heat in the winter.

You dont want a race pad unless you road race and know how to break in the pad and heat them up.

Fred
 

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Discussion Starter #3
I had the stock ones smoking a week or two ago after coming down the mountain quickly. I'm not necessarily looking for a full race pad, but I need better fade resistance and a little more stopping power.
 

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Front and rear pads need to be the same brand and type. Keeping friction coefficients the same is a good thing for ABS and other electronic nannies.

Change your fluid to ATE Gold. If you run down the mountain a lot change fluid
every 6mos.

Take a look at the backing plates front and rear and see if a little creative bending will allow in more air. Removal may work too.

Remember most cross drilled rotors will crack etc. Porsche rotors and some others have the holes cast in not drilled. Your rotors are heat sinks the more mass you have the better for cooling etc. Cross drilling and slots allow the pads to off gas and reduce brake fade that is caused by the compounds in the pad getting hot enough to form a gas.

You need to brake in the pads correctly. i like to find an empty school parking lot. A big one and accelerate to about 80mph and then brake hard down to about ten mph and repeat until I can smell the brakes. I then drive around and let the brakes cool. i do not use the brakes. I repeat 80 to 10mph until I can smell the brakes and then let them cool off. And repeat and repeat to the brakes no longer smell and the pedal doesn't get hard from off gassing brake fade. Remember to let the brakes cool off before using them. Do not engage the parking brake until you have driven for about 20 minutes to allow things to cool off. You do not ever want to come to a complete stop.

Check the caliper seals in the front and rear to make sure they weren't damaged by the heat.

Your wheels may have an effect on brake cooling. The more open the design the better. You want air flow. I could get my front rotors glowing red at Summit Point in my E30M3 when it was stock with better pads, stainless steel lines and better fluid. ATe Gold is good enough. Ford heavy Duty is another decent fluid for performance use.

Always remember when changing brake pads to pump or use the brakes while car is standing still to seat everything. If you don't you may not be able to stop. And that is fun.

Fred
 

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Discussion Starter #5
Front and rear pads need to be the same brand and type. Keeping friction coefficients the same is a good thing for ABS and other electronic nannies.

Change your fluid to ATE Gold. If you run down the mountain a lot change fluid
every 6mos.

Take a look at the backing plates front and rear and see if a little creative bending will allow in more air. Removal may work too.

Remember most cross drilled rotors will crack etc. Porsche rotors and some others have the holes cast in not drilled. Your rotors are heat sinks the more mass you have the better for cooling etc. Cross drilling and slots allow the pads to off gas and reduce brake fade that is caused by the compounds in the pad getting hot enough to form a gas.

You need to brake in the pads correctly. i like to find an empty school parking lot. A big one and accelerate to about 80mph and then brake hard down to about ten mph and repeat until I can smell the brakes. I then drive around and let the brakes cool. i do not use the brakes. I repeat 80 to 10mph until I can smell the brakes and then let them cool off. And repeat and repeat to the brakes no longer smell and the pedal doesn't get hard from off gassing brake fade. Remember to let the brakes cool off before using them. Do not engage the parking brake until you have driven for about 20 minutes to allow things to cool off. You do not ever want to come to a complete stop.

Check the caliper seals in the front and rear to make sure they weren't damaged by the heat.

Your wheels may have an effect on brake cooling. The more open the design the better. You want air flow. I could get my front rotors glowing red at Summit Point in my E30M3 when it was stock with better pads, stainless steel lines and better fluid. ATe Gold is good enough. Ford heavy Duty is another decent fluid for performance use.

Always remember when changing brake pads to pump or use the brakes while car is standing still to seat everything. If you don't you may not be able to stop. And that is fun.

Fred
Thanks Fred,

I'm a BMW tech so I'm familiar with most of this. I wasn't aware of cracking rotors, some of the M cars use them but I've never heard of them cracking. I'll just go with stock rotors upgraded pads and maybe some braided lines. I'm already using Dot4 fluid, but it's time for a flush, maybe I'll go to 5.1.
 

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Although I don't have any experience with them on my Element I have Hawk HPS pads on my autocross Mazda Miata and when it comes time for pads on the Element that is what it is going to get. They are Hawk's High Performance Street pad and at least two BSP BMW M3's at the Solo Nationals were using them. Hawk's next step up is the HP+ which is more of a race pad but is said to eat rotors. Of course in autocross brakes are not too important but when you need them you need them right now.:) It's the same on the street.
 

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Discussion Starter #7
I went with a set of Brembo OEM style rotors and Hawk hps street pads. I'm doing front and rear all in one shot. I got an amazing deal on rotors through my work. $125 for all 4!!!!!
 

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My Element has all stock parts but on my Civic I have the following:

  • Brembo blank rotors
  • Axxis Ultimate pads
  • Brembo drums
  • OEM Honda shoes
  • ATE Super Blue fluid (same as the gold coloured ATE TYP 200)
  • OEM lines

The difference between the stock brakes and the Brembo/Axxis combo was amazing when I made the upgrade. Took my Civic to Dunnville Autodrome last August for it's first ever lapping day and had a full and firm pedal every single lap all day long.

I think you're going to like the HPS pads. Maybe when your next set come due, give the Axxis Ultimates a try. Lots of guys on the Honda performance forums run them for street and track use and love them. I know I sure do.
 

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Ditch the backing plates

If you can. Or cut away what you don't need. They prevent water from getting on the brakes. Brake cooling is the most important thing.

You may also want to try using brake temp paint to check temps.

Except for pads, brake fluid, lines I use the stock brakes on my E30M3.
The most important upgrade for the brakes was a brake cooling system.
Same on my 02 which is faster than my M3.

When searching for a pad remember to use pad shape since a manufacture may care the same pad for an Accord or whatever and not the Element.

Fred
 

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Discussion Starter #10
thanks guys. I'll look into modding the backing plates, but I most likely will not remove them. My car is a daily driver so I really don't want to leave the backing plates off for fear something may happen. I go on a LOT of roadtrips in the summer so I really don't want to get stranded somewhere far away.

I'll most likely upgrade the lines soon and replace the fluid with 5.1.

for now I'll just flush it again with dot 4 when I do the brakes.
 
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