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Rear rotor Damage again

Recoil Rob

Well-Known Member
April 5, 2008
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Year, Model & Trim Level
2002 XLT
I purchased my 2002 Explorer new but since my 1991 was still running well it sat for quite a while at one point it was in a garage for 6 months. This caused the rotors to get rusty and prematurely wear out the brakes, my fault.

September of 2012 the truck was 10 years old with 23,500 miles and I redid all the brakes. The front rotors were salvageable so they were just cut. I had to replace the rears and got a set of Wearever's from Advance Auto. Also used Advance Auto DP Wearever Gold Pads all around.

Right now the truck is at 31,000 and the rear rotors are beginning to develop some serious glazing and pits again, the recut OEM fronts are fine. If it was just one rear I would imagine a stuck caliper piston but both are in the same condition.

Cheap rotors? Return them to Advance? I not feel like going through the entire job again but if I have to I have to.

Some pics of the damage and the final pic is one of the fronts which are doing fine.

Any advice appreciated.





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If was mine, I would sand the glazing down some & put on a fresh set of ceramic pads. The lower grade steel in rotors will rust & pit. No real harm to the brakes, will self cleanup with use.

Cheap rotors? Return them to Advance? I not feel like going through the entire job again but if I have to I have to.


I have the same Wearever rear rotors as you from Advance Auto and they are made in China or cheaply made. If all you have is some surface pitting on them from rusting due to non use of vehicle, that should clean up (wear off) as you drive the vehicle daily. The brake pads will rub off the rust pits in a short period of time. The rear brakes don't give you much stopping power as it is, I would say 10% stopping power or less from the rear brakes. The bulk of your stopping power is in the front brakes. Even if you exchanged the rotors for new ones, the new ones would probably get pitted the same way if you don't drive the vehicle that often.

Those don't look too terrible. At worst the rear pads will be eaten up a little quicker and/or have an unusual wear pattern. Based on that, if you were to replace the rotors now you should replace the pads too. IMO it's not worth the money as they are still functional (no rust).

I've had luck with the Advance rotors on the front of 2 cars now, and I'm usually of the mind that quality rotors are money well spent. Pretty much any rotor you get these days will be made in China.

put another couple hundred miles on them, see what it looks like after that,,

those are not bad,,

Just an update, the truck now has 36K, gets driven small distances weekly.

The original front rotors are fine but the rears are so badly rusted and pitted that the pedal is pulsing. I called Advance and was told I can get a refund for the rear rotors and pads since they are less than 2 years old.

At this point saving money is not a priority, I do not want to have to do this job every 18 months or so.

Recommendations for a quality replacement rear rotor and pads? All Advance sells is Wearever and Wagner.

this has happened to my friends honda accord, he let the car sit for a month (vacation) and when came back, the rears pulsated badly that the rotors were resurfaced again. It has nothing to to with the rotors (or if they came from china), you just have to used them often to prevent rust build-up.


You'll find quality rotors at NAPA and O'Reilly. I believe they are the same. The premium line at least. They'll cost you more though. Don't know enough about the O'Reilly ones, but I've seen the same sales material. I know the NAPA premium line is high quality. All the shops complain about them because they cost more, but that's because they are higher quality.
Also, the NAPA AE (Application Engineer'd) pads come with the friction material from the OE provider. Though NAPA now sells another premium line ADO. I've always used the AE line of Pads.
NAPA's value line rotors are still better than most. Though I've only used them a few times. (88 Marquis of all things.) I bought my 04 used last March. Previous owner had just had a brake shop put on pads and rotors. First thing I did was yank that crap and put premium pads and rotors on.

Listen, parts stores will all tell your their product is the best. Look at third party industry reviews and you'll see who's selling crap with a warranty and who's selling the good stuff. But I always pay more for premium and when I don't it always comes back to get me.

What do the pads look like? Is one wore more than the other?

my 02 rears do the same if sitting for a week or so. then I drive it and all is good. I am not so sure even if you put big $$ rotor's on, it will do anything different. in my oppion drive it more often. I can almost bet if you was to buy new front's and change out them OEM's they will do the same as the rear.

Low quality rotors will have less metal and a higher iron content. The higher the iron content, the more it will rust and be affected by rust. My 94 sits outside under the deck in Georgia all year long. It can go months without being driven. I've never had this issue.
The Advance rotors almost weigh half as much less as NAPAs non premium line. I've also seen the two cut in half and compared side by side.

Just an update for anyone interested. The pitting on the rears continued to get worse and the pads were wearing badly so I decided to change everything again

I called Advance and to their credit they said I was still within the 2 year warranty period and they would replace the rotors and pads but I declined to put the same product back on so they said they would give me a refund. I haven't gotten to the store yet, I'll do that tomorrow, but I did the swap yesterday. Here are the rear rotors when I removed them, the pads had worn and were torn up. Again, the front rotors and pads seem fine.


The Wearever pads and rotors from Advance had cost me about $100 but for $180, shipped, I was able to go with an EBC S3KR1045 Big Brake Stage 3 Kits with rotors and Green 6000 pads. Nice stuff, came with easily installed self adhesive shims to prevent squeal and slide pin and boot lube. Also plenty of info and advice. Their tech support answered my emails promptly.


BTW, these rotors are directional, there is a right and a left, each marked in it's own box. There is also a directional arrow on each rotor showing proper rotation.



My surprise came when I removed the old rotors. Contrary to most reports of having to wield a BFH, mine just came right off. That was because the actual pad material had detached from the metal parking brake shoes on both sides.

This meant a quick trip to the computer to find a set of parking brake pads, luckily a NAPA within 5 miles had a set in stock. I also got a hardware kit but didn't need to use it. I cleaned the old hardware and lubed it all with some litho grease.

Replacing the parking brakes was the toughest part, the old ones came off easily enough except for the large top spring. To do that required moving a pad out from center and "folding" it over the center of the hub and then I was able to remove the spring.

I cleaned everything out and started reassembly. I have always had a hard time keeping shoes clean from contamination when reassembling brakes and seeing as these were parking brakes it probably didn't make that much difference but this time I had the idea to use masking tape to protect the shoe surface. Worked great.



The first side took about 35 minutes and lots of swearing to reassemble. I attached both pads with the pins and clips (helpful to hold the pins forward from the rear with a drift pin or magnetic pickup tool) and then tried to pull the thick top spring across fro one to the other. A real *****. Finally was able to hold the shoe in place with my foot while using a needle nose vise grip to just catch the spring on the edge of the hole and then popped it in with a drift pin. Then I put in the adjustment wheel and bottom spring.

As is usual with these things the second one took 10 minutes with some swearing. I attached one shoe with the pin and clip, hooked in the top spring, then moved the second shoe over the center of the hub, close enough to engage the spring and "folded" it back into place and then secured it with the pin and clip. Again, adjustment wheel and bottom spring.

I saw the hole for the adjustment wheel in the backplate but it seemed to be plugged from the inside and I didn't see how I could adjust it so I started with them turn in and turned them out gradually, taking the rotor on and off until I could no longer slip the rotor on. I then backed it of a click or two until the rotor slipped back on. Worked fine.

Put calipers back on, a little anti seize on the lugs and I should be good for long while. When the fronts wear out I'm going with an EBC kit (assuming they hold up) for the front with 7000 pads. I'd rather pay the extra money and not have to do the job twice.


I think you're going to have similar issues regardless of what you put on your truck. Its the low use thats allowing the rotor to rust up.

Hope you have better results with the new gear.

I think you're going to have similar issues regardless of what you put on your truck. Its the low use thats allowing the rotor to rust up.

Hope you have better results with the new gear.

I agree that was the reason they rusted up the first time but I have put about 12K miles on in the year and a half since I put the Wearever's on, not a lot but certainly enough to keep them clean. Add to that the front rotors are the original ones from the factory and they are still fine.

To Advances credit they gave me a full refund today for the old parts.