Brake "chatter", Only on Rough Surfaces

Discussion in 'General chat' started by Peter, Jun 18, 2017.

  1. Peter
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    Peter WARLORD Site Supporter

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    I thought I'd post this as a general topic, as it is not particularly car/model specific.

    I've changed my front brakes and they are bedding in fine, no issues at all... except...

    On very rough surfaces, (not bumpy roads) there is some low frequency 'chatter' which comes and goes, coming into the cabin from the N/S front. Disappears immediately on lightly touching the brakes. Almost certainly brake related.

    I know everything is fitted correctly and according to BMW TIS, (brake paste application positions, etc.). I'll need to sort it, if it doesn't disappear as the brakes bed in.

    I'm minded it is the anti-rattle retaining clip, has lost some of its tension. Now that everything is clean and free running, the calliper body is hitting a frequency on a particular type of rough hardtop, it vibrates and chatters.

    I did note this on TIS. "Retaining pins and expanding spring: for vehicles older than 48 months it is recommended to replace the retaining spring!"

    I'll take the wheel off and remove the retaining spring and bend it, add some more tension, to prove it is the problem. Will report back.

    Just to emphasis, no issues with braking whatsoever. No knocking or rattles when the suspension is working over bad roads. Just the light intermittent chatter on a particular type of surface, in the 20 - 50mph range.

    Anyone else had to renew the brake calliper anti-rattle retaining spring/clips, to get rid of brake vibration, rattle or chatter?

    Peter
     
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  2. JasonH
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    JasonH

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    I had to replace mine to get rid of a "clank" when applying the brakes after going over a rough surface. The calipers on the E61 535d are large and heavy. After some shaking by driving over rough surfaces the pads tended to move away from disc. On first application they clamped the disc like symbols giving a noticeable "clank". Changing the spring clips solved it.
     
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  3. Peter
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    Peter WARLORD Site Supporter

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    I agree, the caliper assembly is a very heavy unit. There appears to be decent tension due to the spring element, but I do suspect it is not enough. Particularly applicable as BMW suggest renewal over time.

    On the brake weight issue, even the composite discs are 12.2kgs each. Doesn't help us with unsprung weight.:rolleyes:

    I had a strange clunking from the N/S on many first starts with the rusty discs. Would have to apply the brakes a few times to get rid of it. Even taking the caliper off and cleaning most of muck out, it never really stopped the problem. I wouldn't be surprised if the retaining spring has had to work harder, due to that issue.

    Peter
     
    Last edited: Jun 18, 2017
  4. markyboyt
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    markyboyt Site Supporter

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    It could also be the brake pads if there is a little bit of movement within the caliper carrier. Sometimes if you clean them up well they can rattle until a bit of brake dust builds up on them.
     
  5. JasonH
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    JasonH

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    The old spring clips looked fine to me but they were one of possible causes, I'd already changed the pins. As best I could tell the new ones were more springy.
     
  6. Peter
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    Peter WARLORD Site Supporter

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    I've also considered the clearance issue a possibility, hence the "seeing how they bed in" comment. N/S has suffered a lot of surface corrosion, the carrier needed cleaning up, so may have added a bit more clearance.

    Inner pad does appear snug, with plenty of tension from the pad mounting clip/spring against the carrier. Outer pad is held tight in the static state. Slide pins, again appear snug with no discernible radial movement.

    I'm tempted to simply add a simple wedge (half a clothes peg) under the retaining spring fingers, (add to the tension), and go for a run.

    PS: It is raining or I'd do it now.

    Peter
     
  7. snrbrtsn
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    snrbrtsn WARLORD Site Supporter

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    I'd favour a combination of both - cleaned carriers and loss of tensions in the retaining spring
    Knowing how much muck is pulled from the carriers, it's not be beyond reason.
    Does the Brembo brakes have the cushioned back pad on the rear of the pad? Another possibility.

    A final check would be old against new pad to ensure the mounting lugs are the same (long shot though it's the basic things we often miss)
     
  8. Peter
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    Peter WARLORD Site Supporter

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    Same thinking, if a bit more tension doesn't solve it, I'll pull the caliper off and check everything again. The Brembo pads look identical to OEM, backing pad and wrap overs are exactly the same. Pads fitted on the carrier fine, but I didn't measure them, 'back to back' looked the same, so didn't bother.

    I'm out in the car tomorrow. With a tap washer under each spring finger, I'll see how 2 - 3mm extra twist on the finger arm changes the chatter.

    Peter
     
  9. Merc? No. BM!
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    Merc? No. BM! WARLORD Site Supporter

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    Ah, now I understand why so many drivers brake seemingly willy nilly all the time... :D
     
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  10. Peter
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    Peter WARLORD Site Supporter

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    Often wondered why... :whistle: Now I've joined them, it's the "be quiet" control.;)

    Peter
     
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  11. slim_boy_fat
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    slim_boy_fat WARLORD Site Supporter

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    The downside of hardly using your brakes under 'normal' driving is that the discs/pads only last 18 months..........:oops:
     
  12. Mieke
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    Mieke WARLORD Site Supporter

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    I had a similar issue with BMW motorcycle (R1200ST) brakes a few years ago. Fitted some new aftermarket EBC brakes pads, which everyone at the time recommended - saying better than standard OEM. The pads rattled on all types of rough road surface and would disappear when slight brake was applied. I tried everything to cure it unsuccessfully. Eventually replaced the EBC pads with genuine BMW and the problem went away. Couldn't see any difference in pad size.
     
  13. Merc? No. BM!
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    Merc? No. BM! WARLORD Site Supporter

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    Didn't know that. Do they sort of dry out?

    I feel I don't use my brakes as much as some people but as far as I know I haven't replaced mine for three years and my car just passed the MOT without even an advisory.
     
  14. slim_boy_fat
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    slim_boy_fat WARLORD Site Supporter

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    My car can sometimes sit for 2 - 3 weeks without turning a wheel, and then I hardly use the brakes when on the move - they used to call it 'anticipating', now it's "you don't use your brakes enough".......but I'm from another era......:oops:
     
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  15. Peter
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    Peter WARLORD Site Supporter

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    My car can sometimes go 3 or 4 days between use. Same problem, made worse as my normal drives don't use much braking either.

    Peter
     
  16. Peter
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    Peter WARLORD Site Supporter

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    Anti-rattle retaining clip 'temporary mod' didn't make any difference.

    Problem is with the inner pad. The spring clip on the back (which sits inside the piston), doesn't exert as much force against the carrier as the OE pads. Tweaked the spring clip, chatter virtually gone. Will mod the other side tomorrow, to ensure there isn't a bit of noise from the O/S. If that doesn't completely cure the chatter, the N/S will get a further tweak. :whistle:

    Peter
     
  17. Mieke
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    Mieke WARLORD Site Supporter

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    On my previous car, the original pads lasted for 96k miles, changed when the car was about 10 years old. Discs were still in good condition. The pads on my 330d won't last that long because the car will automatically apply some braking when the driving stability system is operating.
     
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  18. slim_boy_fat
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    slim_boy_fat WARLORD Site Supporter

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    It was when the manufacturers were forced to remove asbestos from the pad materials that discs became sacrificial.
     
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  19. Adie
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    Adie WARLORD Site Supporter

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    Yes i agree, i know from experience. When i had the Z4 the rear pads needed changing at 15k miles although the fronts still had plenty of life left in them
     
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  20. Postman
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    Postman

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    I won't embarrass myself by disclosing how long my brakes last ( car has 227k miles, fronts got changed at about half that for a warranty on a caliper, rears about 40k ago).

    I don't use the slow pedal that often as you can probably guess but I do exercise them at least once a day as I've found over the years if I don't their effectiveness is greatly diminished. Exercise = motorway speed to stop, max effort just short of activating abs ( I tend not to do this when Mrs Postman is onboard as I've found she doesn't exactly appreciate my attempts at keeping the brakes in tip top condition whilst digging her front teeth out of the dash )
     
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