Brakes

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Question on brakes on new bird. On all of my last five birds I've had a problem with the front disc brake rotors. On each car the rotors have warped after 10 to 15,000 miles. They were covered under warranty but where an inconvince to leave the car to have them replaced. Each dealer said that Ford was using a hard lining and this was what caused the overheating problem and caused the rotors to warp. Does anyone know if Ford has changed anything on their breaking system to correct this problem. I'm sure none of you have this milage on your cars yet but maybe the LS people might know something about this.

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Blue on Blue Prem. STILL WAITING Ordered in Jan. 7of12
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Gobird says "Question on brakes on new bird. On all of my last five birds I've had a problem with the front disc brake rotors. On each car the rotors have warped after 10 to 15,000 miles. "

The new Thunderbird is so over equipped, the engineers must not want to hear about warped rotors again in their careers. The 17" rims barely clear the calipers and the rotor is massive to prevent warpage from poor driving habits.

You may not want to hear this but drivers warped their rotors by heating them up and holding the pads againts the rotors without letting the heat dissapate evenly.

For all of you interested, the correct way to cool the rotors down after a hard stop, or series of stops, is to:

1. stop short of your final resting place by 8 to 10 feet.

2. let the vehicle move slightly forward with light off/on brake pressure.

3. If the stop is prolonged, put the vehicle in Park and let off on the brake so the pads do not not sit against the rotors at 1400 degrees F.

It's the unbalanced cooling that warps the rotors. The worse case is hot rotors and pads held in one spot just after the rotor took a splash of water or snow/slush.

Most drivers don't have warpage problems, but the fastdriving/hard stopping ones can if they don't dissapate the heat evenly.
 
Actually the Birds brakes are the same as on the LS. We have some reported issues of rotor warpage. Once the rotors were turned or replaced that seemed to go away.

One other option that we've been exploring on the club's project car is going to different brake pads made by Porterfield Brakes in Costa Mesa, CA. These pads are their RS4 street/race pads and they are made from carbon/kevlar compound. We've had them on the project car for 6 months and used them pretty hard, including autocrossing, and they are very rotor-friendly. No squealing, hardly any dust, and good wear characteristics. The rotors look like they were just turned.

Brian Gowing
President/Founder
Lincoln LS Owners Club www.llsoc.com
 
I have a 94 T Bird with 120,000 miles and have never had to turn the rotors. I used to get front wheel vibration especially after changing the brake pads or rotating the wheels, but I just always ignored it thinking that the pads just had to reseat. One day I had a flat tire out of town and had it changed at a small tire shop. The mechanic used a torque wrench to put the wheel back on at aroung 90-100 ft lbs. He said that it is the wheel being torqued unevenly which causes the rotor to warp. I have not had a problem since. Many tire shops tend to severely overtighten the lugs for fear of having the wheels fall off and potential lawsuits.
 
I heard and felt soemthing odd at times with the braking on my bird in the last month. Not sure if it's just me or something else.

I am monitoring it but it seems like I have times while driving where my brakes are pretty weak and other times when I barely notice them because they are exceptional.

RT2ESQ
#1049
 
Both statements are true. Wheels must be torqued to 100 ft. lbs. In fact the owners manual on all Fords says that the wheels should be re-torqued after the initial 300-500 miles when new and when wheel has been removed & re-installed. Also as mentioned before you should stop about 8 - 10 feet short and roll about 1 -2 feet every 10 seconds to place the pads on a different section of the hot rotor for even cooling.

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Yellow/Yellow Prem. 02 Bird w/full accent
1999 F150 Super Cab 4x4 Off Road
1998 Taurus SE Sport 24V
 
Sorry that this is not a reply to your post but I though you could shed some light on my question. I have a 2002 Bird and am wondering if you or if you heard of anyone having problems stopping their car as I am? This does not occur everytime only intermittingly. It feels like the car switches into another gear or that some other force tries to overpower the braking. I have actually rolled through a stop sign and could not stop going down a ramp which I threw it into park but actually should have used my emergcy brake. However "park" was my first reaction. This has happened at stop signals on other occasions. Anyway, I brought the car in last week and of course the service department could not find a thing wrong with it. He gave me the story of searching Ford's web site and help desk, etc. THis happened again to me yesterday and I immediately called thte service advisor to request this be documented in my file and posted to Ford's service web site. Please let me know if you have heard anything like this on these new models. Thanks, Julie G. in New Orleans
 
julieg, This may sound strange, but there have been a few people over the past year and a half that have had the same complaint as you have. One person figured it out and posted findings. It seems all of the others cured their problems from this post as the complaint has not been seen in several months except for yours. What he found was that the brake pedal and the throttle pedal were so close together that when he applied the brakes, the edge of his shoe was catching the throttle making it hard to stop and actually powering through a couple of stop signs. Most of the other people said that this was not their problem and then came back admitting that this did cure the problem. No problem with the car, just foot position.
 
Lon,
Thank you so much for your prompt reply to my brake question. That is very interesting about the brake and throttle being so close. I will be more aware of my foot position and hope that this solves my problem. I will post you back after I have had some time thinking about where my foot is! It was a scary feeling not being able to stop. Do you happen to know where you saw the posts about this problem - in this web site?
Thanks again.
Julie G.
 
Julie it has been over a year ago and I'm sorry I just don't remember where it was without doing an intensive search. Its hard to believe it has been that long already. Five more months and we will have had our car for two years. Hope this solves your problem.

Lon
 
Julie,
Look at a thread called Need your collective help. After the first two or three posts the conversation is about the brake pedal.
 
Brake position

Julie,
I think that may have been my original reply that Lon referred you to in "Need your collective help." I've had the problem very briefly on two occasions since that post. Once you know what it is, it's just an annoyance--so far, at least. The problem is that the brake and accelerator pedals are not only very close to each other, but they are almost the same height. When you hit the brake hard with your foot just a bit off center, you hit the accelerator too. It has happened to me only when I was wearing hiking boots or heavy, ankle-length shoes.

The potential danger is that the solution is counter-intuitive. Your normal impulse when you are trying to stop and your car motor revs up is to hit the brakes even harder--which of course makes you hit the accelerator even harder if your foot is on both pedals.

As to the other discussions in this topic on the Tbird's brakes, I can only say that so far I have found them to be superb. They have the best "feel" to them of the brakes on any vehicle I have ever driven. If you are driving this particular "boulevard cruiser" hard enough to be seriously overheating these brakes, you probably bought the wrong car to begin with!

Happy driving....

Tom (txktom)
 
Thanks everyone. I have become more aware of my foot positon over the weekend and so far so good. I have not had any other type of brake problems such as the overheating that was referred to. Have a good week.
 
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