If you are wondering whether there is a difference between a cheap and high-quality disc brake rotor, then let us assure you that the differences happen to exist all right. Let’s put it down to how you would feel buying a Porsche and just buying one of those many cars out there. With quality, comes a price.
There’s a slight difference between the example we gave and the brake pads or brake rotors you need to choose. When it comes to having quality safety equipment, you do know that you cannot compromise on it. You can choose another car if you are low on budget, but you simply cannot afford to buy a brake rotor that’s cheap and compromises on quality.
It’s not only about the choices
When ordering for brake pads and disc rotors from online stores or local auto parts store, one comes across unlimited choices and often gets confused which one would be right for his or her car? Choosing the appropriate disc rotors with the right choice of brake ensures that they effectively work together and also last for years to come.
The basic types of rotors can be classified into the following categories:
- Economy rotor
- Premium rotor
- Cross-drilled rotor
- Slotted unit rotor
- Top-of-the-line rotor which is both slotted and cross drilled.
Recycled steel is used to manufacture basic rotors and meet OE specifications as far as rotor thickness diameter and run out are concerned. When we talk about cheap grade rotors which have fins in between a pair of brake surfaces, one will see that the fins are less plentiful and quite thick as compared to the original unit. The manufacturer can produce a cheap rotor with thicker fins because the stopping is done by the surface and the machine surfaces can be made thinner. Even though, the life expectancy can be reduced the replacement will still have to bear the same thickness as the OE rotor does.
The rotor heats rapidly and remains hot for a long time as thick fins do not allow quick cooling through the rotor. This is where the calipers, rotor’s and pad’s life expectancy reduces and this is why it is not advisable to use a premium quality disc pad with a basic rotor. The brake pads may get cracked or glazed as the life of the pads gets shortened with the economy rotor which passes on excess heat. Such glazed or cracked pads may lose their effectiveness in bad weather.So only if you have DIY brake pads of a garage grade one which is organic or semi-metallic, only then you should use a basic disc brake rotor.
Using premium OE specification disc rotors are always the right choice as they are made from good quality new steel and have a lot of tolerance power. They maintain the apt spacing between surfaces and make sure there is a right amount of cooling too. They are also easy to install. A thick braking surface and electro-plated hubs are added features.