Join Date: Jan 2011
Location: Twain Harte, CA
Car: 2011 Subaru Outback Premium 2.5i w/CVT
Feedback Score: 0 reviews
First, check your rotors for any cracks (heat checking), grooving, or as previously mentioned, any sign of warpage (sometimes there will be areas which are slightly discolored where the rotor has gotten hot, but there is no contact with the pad). You will also, as mentioned, feel vibrations on brake application with warped rotors.
Second, inspect the pads. You can wait until you hear the wear indicators, but I'd suggest you don't. If you're on a long trip, need to have the brakes done, and can't do the work yourself, you are at the mercy of an unknown shop for the repairs. Also, you don't have a lot of miles between the first audible noise from the wear indicators before the pad backing plate(s) can start wearing against a rotor.
If everything looks good, replace the pads, but don't turn the rotors. Again, as previously mentioned, rotors with normal, even wear patterns can last 100K miles or more.
Use silicon grease on the caliper guide pins and check the rubber boots to ensure they are not cracked or torn. Also, be certain that the pistons are free to move in and out without any binding. Then, be sure when you install new pads, that you clean off the surfaces of the rotors with Brakeclean or alcohol. The same with the surfaces of the brake pads. Then, be certain to "seat" the pads against the rotors with several, low speed (under 30) HARD brake applications.