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Resident Coffee Addict
2012 X Premium 5 Speeds of AWESOMENESS
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Discussion Starter #1
2012 Foz, 5MT

I’m at a loss as to what to do. My forester is eating pads and rotors for brekkies, second brekkies, elevensies, lunch, afternoon tea, dinner, etc (essentially, it’s a damn hobbit when it comes to brakes.) My mechanic says the calipers aren’t bad, but it sounds like they are grabbing the rotors and not letting go. I’ve replaced the rears twice, now going on a third time, and the fronts once, fixing to be twice. All the calipers were replaced around 30k miles ago. Rears were done less than 5k ago, fronts around 15.

Ideas? I’m using NAPA’s premium coated rotors, the mid-grade semi-metallic pad, and their Eclipse brand rotors (I’d love to have name brand stuff, but my beer budget doesn’t allow for such champagne quality.)

Thanks in advance guys!
 

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Sometimes you just have to go with champagne! ;-)

I've never had to replace the calipers. I've used DBA slotted rotors and TRW Lucas pads for many years and have had no issues at all.
 

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2012 X Premium 5 Speeds of AWESOMENESS
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Sometimes you just have to go with champagne! 😉

I've never had to replace the calipers. I've used DBA slotted rotors and TRW Lucas pads for many years and have had no issues at all.
What’s the price point on those
 

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(2013-2020) 2011 2.5x (2020-?) 2018 2.5i pkg #2
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I replaced the pads on my '11 base and was suprised at how finicky the 2 pot caliper pistons were to compress. Slapping a old pad in and prying away left me with overheating pads due to misaligned piston to seal.
After compressing each piston completely, individually, the (original OEM) seals resumed correct function, releasing the piston after braking.
 

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open the bleeder valves and flush the brake lines and system, including master cylinder, if pads are not being withdrawn, then it is usually carbon in the caliper or pistons galling up due to carbon and heat , flushing is the cheapest route to start on
 

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2003 Forester X 5 MT
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522 Posts
open the bleeder valves and flush the brake lines and system, including master cylinder, if pads are not being withdrawn, then it is usually carbon in the caliper or pistons galling up due to carbon and heat , flushing is the cheapest route to start on
If that doesn't work (a good place to start) consider replacing the brake hoses, there have been reports of bad hoses causing brake fluid to not return to the reservoir causing the brakes to stay engaged.

Also I expect that you are purchasing calipers with new mounting brackets, if not make sure the caliper pins slide easily and lube them with some SilGlyde silicone brake grease.
 

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2012 X Premium 5 Speeds of AWESOMENESS
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562 Posts
Discussion Starter #8
Well, just had the back rotors and pads replaced today. I had a thought: could Hill Holder be responsible? As in there is an issue with it? My next thought is, how can I check, and save a $95 trip to the dealership?
 

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2009 Forester 2.5 Premium Crappy 4EAT
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259 Posts
I realize that this post is a bit silent lately, but I want to keep it going. We've owned our 2009 since new. It's a 2.5 4EAT Premium. It too has been eating brakes like mad, nearly since new. Just last week it was in the shop for new pads, rotors, calipers, hoses. I had the system flushed / refilled / bled back in Nov after having to replace the rear pads in less than a year. As for the fronts, they lasted about 1.5 years I believe.

I do know that in the past, we had an issue where the calipers were not releasing. As a result, we were eating pads like mad. It became routine to have to pump the brakes like crazy when first starting a drive. I had really thought that doing the flush would have resolved that, but perhaps it was the hoses after all. That being said, now with the fronts done, the mechanic did say that the rears are not too far behind, sadly, they were just replaced back in June of last year.
 

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2012 X Premium 5 Speeds of AWESOMENESS
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Discussion Starter #11
I haven’t seen one yet, but to be fair, I Only just came back, lol
 

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2015 Forester 2.5i Limited CVT
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850 Posts
When I change my brake pads and rotors, I do a thorough cleaning of caliper clip seats and clean/re lubricate the
guide pins. If the pistons are very rusted, a complete R&R may be in order. I use only Subaru OEM parts and recommended grease. I also flush brake fluid every 30k miles.This, is what Works for me. YMMV.
 

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2011 Subaru Forester
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841 Posts
Sounds to me like people are experiencing problems with caliper slide pins. It's a good practice when replacing brake parts to use new hardware and to get a new boot kit. If ordered online from someplace rockauto it adds less than $15 to the part costs. Good quality high temp brake lube for the pins and slides, and making sure the carrier bore holes are clean makes a big difference. Semi-metallic pads tend to wear and eat rotors more quickly. Reputable brand ceramic pads are a better bet unless you are doing lots of towing and need the extra bite. Personally I find Bosh QuietCast ceramic pads which include the clips are very good and mid range in terms of price.
 

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2012 SH Manual Diesel
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464 Posts
Brake assembly lube!!!
i.e. it’s not a grease or oil. Doesn’t swell rubbers; doesn’t cake, like some ‘brake’ greases; doesn’t dry and crystallise, like brake fluid; doesn’t melt as 80 deg C, like rubber grease.

I’ve only come across one mechanic and one brake shop who knew about it, and use it.

Used obviously on rebuilds, but also whenever the brakes are cleaned, serviced etc. A few drops behind the dust boot, squish it around to coat the piston, push piston in to lube the seal. When used, pistons move in and out freely (by hand), and travel squarely (less uneven pad ware).

I’ve been happy with Carlson hardware and rubbers. They fit and last well. The new hardware I’ve got, has some sort of coating, supposedly to stop noise. Could be Teflon, so it might also stop brake dust clinging to them.

Have used Sil-Glyde brake lube before. It did it’s job ok, however can cake if exposed to air and dirt. (I like it a lot for other stuff). Now using Permatex Silicone Ceramic Extreme brake lube. Has a low viscosity, and is a bit runny. However time will tell, if it’s any good.
Also have Sta-Lube brake grease to try, which has Moly, PTFE, and Graphite. So should be slippery’er than a squashed banana.

Also scrubbed clean, calliper’s and mounting brackets. Then coated in VHT Clear Brake Paint. It boasts high temp, but also chemical resistance (if baked). So hopefully, it will help reduce brake dust build up, but also handle any harsh brake cleaners.
 

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2011 Subaru Forester
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841 Posts
I use the Permatex red silicone ceramic brake lube, which in Canada is orange. I find that pad type and quality makes a big difference in terms of brake dust. The thing I learned the most having done brakes now a number of times on some different cars, is that fast and done is not the way to go. Cleaning and replacing parts like boots and caliper pins, and making sure that the caliper slides smoothly is really key. And yet most garages in my past experiences using them only quote pads and rotors.
 
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