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Old 07-08-2014, 07:23 PM   #1
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Brake pads

How many KM's (Mileage) before replacing brake pads on a 2004 Ford Chassis Damon Daybreak 20,000.00 lbs + or -. Can these be check without removing wheels?

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Old 07-09-2014, 06:43 PM   #2
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There's probably no one set number of miles on pads. It really depends on the terrain you typically travel. How much you use engine braking and taking your foot of the gas on in town driving and coasting to the lights etc. I'm fairly easy on brakes because I do try not to use them excessively. I've watched some drivers who drive with two feet, one on the brake and one on the gas.

If your unit is fairly new you will have OEM (Original Equipment Manufacturer) brake pads. They will last the longest. If the unit has had the brakes done it depends on the quality of pads that were installed. One can buy OEM spec pads and they will be the most expensive. Many shops will cut corners by buying less than OEM spec pads to make the brake job cheaper. They will not last as long.

Yes you can usually see inside next to the rotor to check pad thickness. Getting into the back brakes might be harder because of the reversed wheel. That might require removing the rear tires. Make sure you check the inside and outside thickness. It's common for the inside pads to wear sooner than the outside. You also want to inspect the rotor surface. Many time there will be a piece of thin spring steel metal on the pad. It's job is to alert the driver when the pads get to thin. The metal strip will rub against the rotor and set up an annoying vibration type of scraping screeching noise.

I always had good luck with NAPA brakes. They made quality brake replacement parts that met OEM specs. The just seemed to be on top of the technology. They may not deal with heavy truck parts as much as cars. I'll know when I have to do my brakes.

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Old 07-09-2014, 07:33 PM   #3
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As Tejay said but you really need to inspect the pads thoroughly. You are not only looking for wear but also for cracks in the pads and delamination from the metal backing. I just replaced my pads in my 2000 motorhome this spring. 50K on them and still in pretty good shape. However I could see some spots where the friction material was starting to chip. On one of our ambulances (medium duty trucks) the pads had good life left after about a year of service but the friction on one pad was starting to delaminate. And these were Meritor pads (OEM). I for one am a huge believer for OEM pads. I bought my Ford OEM pads for my motorhome for $55 a set. So it was really a good price. However Autozone gave me a set of their new black rotors and premium pads to try in my personal car and they seem to really work well. However in our ambulance fleet I will not use anything other than OEM. When it comes down to it no company will say what parts of the part are not OEM spec or better. So because of lack of documentation we cannot put lives in danger to save $10 or even $1000.00.
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Old 07-09-2014, 07:39 PM   #4
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I think there was an upgrade to the OEM pad for the '99 up 16K to 22K F53 around 2006. James, is that right? Do you have the latest part number?
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Old 07-09-2014, 07:47 PM   #5
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Originally Posted by tderonne View Post
I think there was an upgrade to the OEM pad for the '99 up 16K to 22K F53 around 2006. James, is that right? Do you have the latest part number?
I wish I could answer that but I do not know the answer to that. I thought the pads are all the same for the 99 and newer F53 chassis up to 22K and the 24 and 26K chassis had bigger brakes. But again that is what I thought and could be wrong on that. I am surprised Ford never used the Meritor brake calipers on the F53's because the 650/750 hydraulic brake trucks do. In fact I get the Meritor brakes the cheapest at the Ford dealer I used to work for.
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Old 07-10-2014, 05:00 AM   #6
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I had the friction material separate from the backing on the OEM pads even though they were not really worn down so you do need to inspect them and not just give them a casual glance. I had to deal with that stuck out on an abandoned airfield however the local Napa had all the parts, pads, calipers and rotors for the Kelsey Hayes (if I remember correctly) brake system on my 2001. Their house brand Gold pads and parts all came with a Lifetime Warranty to.
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Old 07-10-2014, 10:37 AM   #7
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What I've learned about brakes on these things:
As they tend not to be driven much, you'll need to worry about fresh fluid and general exercise of the calipers before you need to worry about pads.

Ford apparently used two types of pistons across the years - a composite piston and a metal piston. The composite pistons transfer less heat, so this is better if you're going to be braking in the mountains or towing. However, these pistons tend to swell and cause problems with dragging and sticking more often...

Rear calipers on my RV (04/05) tend to ride on these odd pin things, so watch for corrosion...
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