Smart Car of America Forum banner

1 - 20 of 22 Posts

·
Registered
Joined
·
533 Posts
Discussion Starter #1
Why do I have such an abundant deposit of brake dust on my front wheels?

The kids want to know.

They also wanted to know why they had to wipe off the brake dust but I told them it was because their fingers were small enough to get in the little space between the spoke and rim.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
383 Posts
Why do I have such an abundant deposit of brake dust on my front wheels?
The kids want to know.
They also wanted to know why they had to wipe off the brake dust but I told them it was because their fingers were small enough to get in the little space between the spoke and rim.
totally normal. most of the braking takes place up front IMO, and you'll always have that. was the same for my GTI and Audi S4. big brakes make big dust. :smartje:
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
467 Posts
If they are available now you might want to change it out to EBC green stuff. They work great and brake dust is almost nil...
 

·
Banned
Joined
·
4,888 Posts
Snake...Remember too that the front brakes are doing 85% of the work. And my beetle sport, following the brake upgrade to 12" disks up front; produced lots of brake dust.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,860 Posts
Some of you guys are new to Snake's Wit and charm...he is being sarchastic... excessive brake dust = crappy pads = cheap pads = not true Mercedes quality = junk = nothing to be proud of etc etc yada yada yada... and I suspect he is not real keen on the factory rims either

Of course, someone will instantly jump in a state/claim;

"What do you expect? It is an economy car. "

Yep it is that... so is my $14,000 2001 Ford Escort, and it's front brakes are still serviceable with plenty of pad after 7 years of daily driving here in Texas... Sure...it leaves some brake dust but no where near the build up of sooty black crap I see on several of the new smart cars....

I did a lot of reading the Brit sites and it seems the green EBC pads are real good but at the cost of increased rotor wear.... I am still searching options that do not include real expensive rotors also...
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
25 Posts
Welcome to world of Mercedes-Benz. Brake dust has been an issue since the early 80's. I have several M-B's, old and new and have just learned to live with it. I bought one of those small California Dusters that I use between washings....and then during washings use the three finger sponges from Griots to get between the spokes.
Hope this helps....
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
307 Posts
Brake dust is a problem on every car. Some vehicles do something with covers, and different wheels to minimize the amount that makes it out, but it is not one manufacturer over another, it is simply a function of braking.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,860 Posts
tivoboy...been driving cars and motorcycles for 35 years now...I can assure you that you are partly correct... but you minimize the point....

There are brands and materials that produce excessive dust and their braking coefficient is not any better then brands and materials that produce MUCH less dust, brake equally well or better, last a long time etc etc....

In fact the makers of brake pads have a lot invested in designing better materials to enhance all the desires: Fade, Braking power, Longevity, Temp control, Dusting, Out gassing etc...
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
300 Posts
Wow, major flashback to my old forum here. Man, this really seems to be almost nothing as far a brake dust goes. We had a major brake dust issue with the SRT-8s. It was so bad that your wheels would be almost completely black again, 1 - 2 days after having it washed :eek: .

It took about a year for ceramic brake pads to be developed for our car and that did the trick. As one of the last posts indicated, there could be a loss in braking quality with the new pads and a lot of guys who ran there cars on the track opted for the original pads because of fade.

For daily use the ceramics were a dream, with almost no dust to speak of and minimal difference in braking quality or feel.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
3,588 Posts
Some of you guys are new to Snake's Wit and charm...he is being sarchastic... excessive brake dust = crappy pads = cheap pads = not true Mercedes quality = junk = nothing to be proud of etc etc yada yada yada... and I suspect he is not real keen on the factory rims either

Of course, someone will instantly jump in a state/claim;

"What do you expect? It is an economy car. "

Yep it is that... so is my $14,000 2001 Ford Escort, and it's front brakes are still serviceable with plenty of pad after 7 years of daily driving here in Texas... Sure...it leaves some brake dust but no where near the build up of sooty black crap I see on several of the new smart cars....

I did a lot of reading the Brit sites and it seems the green EBC pads are real good but at the cost of increased rotor wear.... I am still searching options that do not include real expensive rotors also...
Yes, and you notice ole' Snake is smart enough not get that stuff on HIS hands. :) A2Jack.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
548 Posts
I know that brake dust is a VERY common problem, especially with German cars. The next time you are at a stop light next to a BMW, Audi, VW, or Benz, take a look at the front wheel. It's always darker than the back. My brother has an A4 and it's really bad on his

WARNING!!! Although brake dust is relatively harmless, you NEED to clean it. If you leave it on to long, it will stick on there permanently and will ruin the look of your nice wheels. You can buy some wheel cleaner at Walmart, spray it on, leave it for a few minutes, then spray it off. Do it weekly.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
163 Posts
The Benz folks really like them soft and dusty brake pads. The pads wear fairly quickly and make lots of dust.... On the other hand they work very well with a nice pedal feel and tend to cause very light rotor wear in a relatively even pattern. The rotors tend to hold up through several front pads on an M-class for instance.

I've gone to ceramic replacement pads on my Benz cars and had real good luck with them. They hold up longer and make very little dust in comparison, and still don't tend to cause excessive wear on the rotor disks. The pedal pressure required is sometimes just a hint more than with the OEM pads, at least on my vehicles. I would probably use ceramic pads on the Smart when they need replacement.

YMMV
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
533 Posts
Discussion Starter #14
I think I will get ceramics at change time or sooner if the kids complain too much. :) IMHO the brakes are EXCELLENT if not little grabbish so ceramics might even improve the feel some. I'm sure there will be a refined consenses by the time I get around to it.

I got the chepoes on my XL7 and after a week the front rims look solid black.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
52 Posts
All Mercedes are that bad, as evidenced by the excessive dust on my slk 350. Bimmers are even worse. Just a note, break dust is actually somewhat toxic, so make sure the kids thoroughly wash their hands and make sure they don't get it in their mouths (or better yet use a sponge to clean the wheels). (If the part about the kids was a joke than sorry for taking it too literally..) Anyways, if you clean the wheels real well, then let them dry, then, using typical car wax, wax the wheels, they will repel the dust. I know, sounds weird but after waxing, you can spray them with the hose every now and then and most of the dirt will come off. Also mothers and turtle etc. make spray on wheel cleaner that works pretty well. I generally spend the weekend obsessing over my cars (I spend an embarrassing amount of time washing them, the neighbors and family think I'm insane). Sorry about the wordy post!
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
533 Posts
Discussion Starter #17
All Mercedes are that bad, as evidenced by the excessive dust on my slk 350. Bimmers are even worse. Just a note, break dust is actually somewhat toxic, so make sure the kids thoroughly wash their hands and make sure they don't get it in their mouths (or better yet use a sponge to clean the wheels). (If the part about the kids was a joke than sorry for taking it too literally..) Anyways, if you clean the wheels real well, then let them dry, then, using typical car wax, wax the wheels, they will repel the dust. I know, sounds weird but after waxing, you can spray them with the hose every now and then and most of the dirt will come off. Also mothers and turtle etc. make spray on wheel cleaner that works pretty well. I generally spend the weekend obsessing over my cars (I spend an embarrassing amount of time washing them, the neighbors and family think I'm insane). Sorry about the wordy post!
np. I think I will try out the wax advice. I do use my children as cheap labor but I take good care of them so I also appriciate the advice about the brake dust. Anytime you grind something that fine, it must be bad for you. What are they anyway? Asbestos?
 

·
Ex Admin/mod.
Joined
·
9,491 Posts
brake pads contamination

What are they anyway? Asbestos?
In recent years the formulation of brake pads have changed from asbestos material to metal or metallic material.* Actually, these new "metallic" brake pads are tiny particles of bare metal compressed into the mold of a brake pad.* During braking the brake pad is compressed against the rotor.* Since both of these materials are made of metal, brake dust is now in the form of metal shavings that adhere and embed into the paint finish.* Since all vehicles have metallic brake pads, there is no vehicle that can escape brake dust contamination.

from: http://www.brianbernard.com/Contamination.htm
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
52 Posts
In recent years the formulation of brake pads have changed from asbestos material to metal or metallic material.* Actually, these new "metallic" brake pads are tiny particles of bare metal compressed into the mold of a brake pad.* During braking the brake pad is compressed against the rotor.* Since both of these materials are made of metal, brake dust is now in the form of metal shavings that adhere and embed into the paint finish.* Since all vehicles have metallic brake pads, there is no vehicle that can escape brake dust contamination.

from: http://www.brianbernard.com/Contamination.htm
Good find JPaul, I was not aware of that. I guess anything is better than asbestos, so It's somewhat comforting to know that the dust is now essentially metal shavings. Interesting... I hear these new carbon ceramic rotors on the Lamborghini's and Ferrari's produce little to no dirt. I think when my Smart comes that could be the first modification:D:smartje.bl.zw:
 
1 - 20 of 22 Posts
Top