How long should my brake pads and rotors last?

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Brake pads wearing out at 40,000km isn’t uncommon but rotors should last longer. Varying driving conditions and speeds make it hard to determine how long they should last

My wife’s Mercedes GLA 250 has just had its front pads and rotors replaced at 40,000km. The dealer service manager says this is normal but I find it unacceptable. The pads were just about worn back to metal and rotors worn beyond tolerances.

Anthony Butt, email

Brake pad wear after this distance isn’t uncommon, but the rotors should last longer. Matthew Pasiopoulos from Mercedes Australia says: “It’s difficult to give an accurate lifespan for pads and rotors as driving conditions and speeds can vary so much. Our dealers will always make an assessment on replacement using safety as the prime reference point.” If you’re unhappy with the lifespan of the Benz brakes you could try some good quality aftermarket items, perhaps harder compound. Heavy braking and downhill braking are obvious causes. Avoid resting a foot on the brake pedal when driving, even lightly, as this can contribute.

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