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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
With over 43k in mileage I’m planning on the need to replace my brakes in the near future. With this being my first Subaru, I have a few questions.
1. Do the discs need to be replaced or can they be cut? I know that the discs in most cars these days are disposable due to warpage and must be replaced when new pads are installed.
2. I would like to improve the stopping power and would like some ideas about aftermarket pads - and discs if it’s better to change together. Nothing crazy since this is an Outback but having more braking power and quicker bite would be nice.
With the OEM pads throwing off little brake dust onto the wheels, I would like the aftermarket pads to be similarly clean.

Thanks.
 

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2007 2.5 L Obsidian Black Outback XTL
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I believe that the rotors are 30 mm thick when new and have a minimum thickness of 28 mm. Usually as long as the rotors are not warped, scored or worn down below the minimum thickness they can be re-surfaced and new pads put on.

I have installed ceramic pads before. It reduces the brake dust (somewhat) and minimizes brake fade (from heating) but it will wear the rotors out quicker. If you go from composite to ceramic pads it is very likely that the next time you do the brakes you will also be replacing the rotors (you might of needed to anyway).

Rotors are not "that" expensive. ($250-300 an axle)

Check all of my numbers to verify, I am sure that a real mechanic can provide much more insight.

I have changed rotors and pads on all four wheels on my own driveway on a weekend day. Just craftsman wrenches and sockets, no impact tools. Someone else could do the job in an hour.
 

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just did my rear brakes yesterday. i replaced with r1 rotors and pads, i got the cross cut and drilled rotors. the pads and rotors cost $ 105 with shipping. i got them from amazon. as cheap as they were ive read alot of positive reviews on the rotors. i went with evolution z23 rotors and pads for the front but im going to wait until after summer to replace the fronts, they are in good shape still. i think the eyesight and adaptive cruise control is what wore my rear brakes down considerably faster than the fronts
 

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Discussion Starter · #4 ·
Thanks to you both.

Have anyone heard of brake pads from a UK based company called EBC? They're more costly than Power Stop (Z23's) but am told they're better quality and generate significantly more stopping power.
For my Subaru, I'm looking at the Green, Red and Yellow models - listed in order of performance.

Thanks again.
 

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Thanks to you both.

Have anyone heard of brake pads from a UK based company called EBC? They're more costly than Power Stop (Z23's) but am told they're better quality and generate significantly more stopping power.
For my Subaru, I'm looking at the Green, Red and Yellow models - listed in order of performance.

Thanks again.
Interested to see if these have more initial bite than the OEM.
 

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(formerly) 03 H6 OBW , (presently) 06 WRX Sportwagon & 2021 Honda CR-V
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ebc is well respected.

Don't cut or replace the stock rotors if within spec. OEM is good quality. The new pads will wear-in after a few stops , just like the present ones are 'mated' to the rotors.

how worn are your tires? stickier tires are a great braking upgrade.

I run Stoptech street performance pads on my WRX, not pricey and they stop as well on the first use at 15* F as they do at 100*F . Higher MOT than Hawk too. But, 99% of the time I'd probably not notice the difference from name brand ceramic pads.(my tires however really do help)

The Centric PosiQuiet ceramic on my Outback are as good or very slightly better than the stock Akebono were - and afforcadble, long-lasting and quiet.
 

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ive heard great things about ebc, ive also heard that the rotor blanks they use are the same as the r1 and the power stops( i can not confirm if this true). ive read that most of the more well known companies use the same steel blanks for the rotors, its what they do to them when they get them at their factory, cut & drill and/or coat them, that makes them unique to to the brand.
 

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The OEM Subaru pads are CERAMIC. As mentioned above, ceramic pads make less dust and have less tendency to make noise. They also last longer than other pad materials.

HOWEVER: Using METAL based pads have MUCH more braking-power. They are also less expensive than ceramic. The downside is that they create more black dust on your wheels.

BOTTOM LINE: An easy way to 'upgrade' your braking power is to install METAL based pads...but you may need to clean your wheels more frequently.
 

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Even with lots of towing I get 60,000 miles out of stock pads. 45k I would expect you have decent meat left on the current pads. The stock rotors are high quality. Heck my 2001 still had the stock rotors still in spec at 180,000 miles they were turned once at 140,000 to scrub some build up off them.

My 2010 has been pretty much identical in brake life a durability.
 

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2007 2.5 L Obsidian Black Outback XTL
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I don't think you really need more braking force for the pads/rotors. That would just mean that the braking system could lock up the wheel. You really need something that is very consistent in how the braking force is applied, without the effects of high temperature where braking can fade. You do not want brakes that are "grabby" or you will lose control or the ABS system will just totally freak out and be going in to the pulsation mode much more often (when one wheel starts turning at a slower rotation during braking and it thinks you are in a skid, you can end up increasing your stopping distance).

Going with ceramic, metallic, etc... pads will change the balance of what wears; the pads or the rotor and in some combination thereof. With really hard pads the wear is going to come at the expense of the rotors but at a significantly less effect on rotor thickness when compared to pad thickness (think of the total surface area of the pads, vs. the total thickness of both sides of the rotor).

I went with metallics on slotted-vented rotors with new, two pot calipers and noticed a slight difference. But it is hard to tell, whenever you replace a worn out braking system then just about anything is going to feel better.

Better tires made a much more significant improvement.
 
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