Adventure Cycling Association Forum

Bicycle Travel => General Discussion => Topic started by: Westinghouse on July 31, 2020, 02:26:59 am

 
Title: The Truth about $8.00 Walmart Brake Pads.
Post by: Westinghouse on July 31, 2020, 02:26:59 am
What is the difference between one kind of brake pad and another? One way to measure that is by durability. How long can we use brake pad A compared to pad B? Exhibit A is a set of four pads from Walmart at $8:00. The set was new when I left from FL to cycle the southern tier to San Diego. One set wore all the way down. A new set was badly worn down by the time I wheeled into the city. That was like completely wearing out six break pads.      I did the same route again using only  two pads on the front wheel.  These pads are exhibit B and they were not Walmart. They were more expensive by quite a bit. The two lasted all the way from FL to CA. There was still good braking with them after that, And there you have it. There is a considerable difference in durability between the the least expensive brake pads, and the more expensive ones.
                                               

Title: Re: The Truth about $8.00 Walmart Break Pads.
Post by: Pat Lamb on July 31, 2020, 11:38:14 am
Which wheel was each brake pad on?  IME front brake pads last 2-3 times longer than rear.
Title: Re: The Truth about $8.00 Walmart Break Pads.
Post by: driftlessregion on July 31, 2020, 05:01:09 pm
If your front brake pads last 2-3 times longer than the rear logic says that you are not braking properly, i.e., not using primarily the front brake. See Sheldon Brown's articles on the subject.
There are differences and many experts think that Kool Stop are superior.
Title: Re: The Truth about $8.00 Walmart Break Pads.
Post by: TCS on July 31, 2020, 05:22:58 pm
Hmph.  Okay.  I've never really worried about brake pad durability.  I look for their contribution to smoothly, controllably and powerfully being able to stop the bike in all weathers.
Title: Re: The Truth about $8.00 Walmart Break Pads.
Post by: canalligators on August 02, 2020, 05:59:27 pm
I don't think the suppliers promote long wear as a sales feature.  Generally they preach better braking, perhaps better braking when wet.  That would be my primary concern as well.  So the better pads could be softer, therefore not as long lived.  But the cheap ones probably don't last long either.
Title: Re: The Truth about $8.00 Walmart Break Pads.
Post by: John Nelson on August 02, 2020, 07:21:59 pm
There are so many things we want out of our brake pads in addition to wear. They have to be smooth and not grab, they have to work wet and dry, they have to stop quickly, they have to not excessively wear out your rims, they need to be quiet, they have to shed grit, etc.
Title: Re: The Truth about $8.00 Walmart Break Pads.
Post by: canalligators on August 03, 2020, 12:28:11 am
Agreed.  I find myself keeping grit out of the pads so they don't score the rims.  I use a bit of Scotchbrite (scrubbing pad) for occasional cleaning.  I also keep my ears peeled for that scratchy noise that indicates something like a bit of stone getting embedded in the pads.