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Old 02-21-2008, 05:23 PM   #1
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Smokin' Hot Front Disks

I was driving home today and thought I noticed a weird rubbing sound on my car. It was 5 o'clock so there was rush hour traffic, then on my way home on open roads I found another Focus hatch and started to follow it because it had some after market goodies on it. I turned around in a gas station and came home still hearing the rubbing sound. Suspecting my breaks I let off the gas and the car wasn't slowing down incredibly fast or atleast not fast enough to cause concern. I got out and still suspecting the breaks desided to see how hot my Rotors where. And no sooner that I touched it that it had burned my finger. so I decided to get a little bit of snow and put it on it. Instant steam. So now I'm wondering if its possible my cars front disks could be rubbing. Both of the front disks where this hot. I wasn't doing much hard breaking but I did break a little on the hard side to get into my drive away and then once again before I back into my spot. Any help or advice?


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Old 02-21-2008, 05:36 PM   #2
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under normal breaking with unstuck calipers, your rotors are going to be as hot as you describe. That is normal. However that doesnt rule out rubbing or not.
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Old 02-21-2008, 05:36 PM   #3
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Brake rotors can get hot, very hot easily, here's a link:

http://www.aa1car.com/library/2003/bf10312.htm

It's no surprise the rotor burned your finger.

Focus' do seem to go through brakes rather rapidly. My SVTF has a huge amount of swept area on the brakes and they were shot at 30,000.

One way to find out whether you've got a dragging caliper is to try to avoid any heavy braking after a fairly long drive (a few miles) and toss snow on each of your disks. If one sizzles and the other doesn't , you might have a sticky caliper. If they both sizzle, you probably slowed down too much and heated up the rotors.

The best way is to get an infrared thermometer and check each disk individually. If you've got a hot one, you could have a problem.

Oh yeah and don't touch hot rotors, it's hard on the fingers.
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Old 02-21-2008, 05:41 PM   #4
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Originally Posted by gukin View Post
Oh yeah and don't touch hot rotors, it's hard on the fingers.
I have monster calisus on my fingers so its not a biggy, but thats the last time I do that either way. lol
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Old 02-21-2008, 06:44 PM   #5
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i touched mine once and let me tell you never again will i do that
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Old 02-21-2008, 07:06 PM   #6
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Same problem here a while back. Grease up the caliper slides and it should go away. I did my brake job and thought I could get away without doing it. I had some sounds coming from the wheels that was only audible when the car was up in the air and the wheels were spinning. Lubed up the slides and all metal to metal contacst and it went away.
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Old 02-22-2008, 11:41 AM   #7
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As you learned you never touch the rotor itself. Its designed to operate in the 200* to 500*F and to retain some of that heat. If you must touch anything, touch the rim of the wheel and then slowly work your way to the hub of the wheel. Under "normal" (racing and mountain driving are not normal) operating conditions you should always be able to hold your hand on the wheel. If the wheel is superheated (under normal driving) than yes you have a problem that needs to be investigated. Unlubed or improperly lubed (wrong kind of grease- use only high temp lubes intended for this use) is one of the main culprits. Failing wheel bearings can also cause excess heat in the wheel assembly as well.
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