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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I'm going to be replacing the brake pads this summer on a 2010 T&C and I was looking at replacement rotors. The rotors I have may or may not be too worn to turn (don't know for sure, haven't gotten them measured, and didn't see too much point in doing so until the brakes needed replacing). My plan is to purchase a new complete set of rotors (with some careful planning, I will end up with two $50 coupons from Advance Auto Parts for $100 online purchases, and buying a front and rear rotor at the same time results in a $6 rear rotor, so the full set will only cost me about $120) and install them, then get the original rotors turned at some point (soon) after replacing the rotors and pads.

Question 1: Long term storage - will a bit of oil on the (now turned) old rotors prevent any kind of rust damage sufficiently assuming I leave the rotors in a zip lock bag? Is that much work even necessary?

Question 2: Does this sound like it's even worth the hassle of having the second set of rotors? I only have 2 stands, want to get the entire brake job done in one afternoon, and don't feel like driving back and forth to a shop to turn rotors throughout the day.

Question 3: What is a ballpark estimate for having a full set of rotors turned? Obviously I'll call around to a few shops in the area to get a bidding war going, but I wanted to see if anyone had a starting point I could work with. Usual labor costs for mechanics in my area are between $100 (independent) and $125 (dealer).

The obvious advantage to this is time, and having a complete separate set of rotors that are ready to go at any time (assuming the first set can be turned anyway). If they can't, it's a non-issue.
 

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If you use heavy weight oil and make sure to coat them really well all over, then wrap them in plastic bags (doesn't have to be zipper close, style but the bags should be contacting as much of the steel as possible.) they should hold up a while- check on theme very couple months to see how they're doing. Long term metal storage is generally done with cosmolene. I'd use gear oil over motor oil for the viscosity, or get some Fluid Film- it's specifically designed to prevent rusting in severe conditions and it's lanolin based. (I know a lot of snowplow drivers who use FF as undercoating with annual applications among tons of other things)

The question of it being necessary to protect the rotors depends on your environment. Storing them in a damp basement? If they're turned and smooth, and not left to rot outside, the light surface rust over the next couple years could likely be handled with scotch brite pads by hand... or why not just pull and store then have them turned when you need them so the turning will be fresh?

The other questions I have is do you actually need to turn the rotors? I know what mechanics and dealers say - they're looking to provide services and make money, which is not always in the best interest of the customer. I have only turned 2 rotors on any vehicle in my family in my life- and that was just a couple years ago when my Ram sat for extended time on mud and the front rotors looked horrible and had some pock marking... I have never turned rotors in a normal brake job- if they warp replace them, if they're grooved badly replace them. Unless you contaminate the pads or burninsh them from dragging there is little reason IMHO to fuss with a rotor. Light wear to the rotor will be compensated for by the pads wearing in quickly, and any damage requiring replacement requires replacement. That said, I also drove the Ram with the OEM rotors until they literally collapsed and cracked when I stepped on the brakes at the repair shop when I was delivering it for the brake job (pull the unit hubs and drive out the studs- didn't want to DIY that one).
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
I can see a slight groove on the outside of the rear driver's side rotor, so that one definitely needs to be turned. The replacement pads I'm getting at a decent discount (15-20% off depending on timing). But they come with a $50 off coupon for a future $100+ order. The price for after-market rotors (Wearever brand through Advance) is about $65 for front and $55 for back. I already have one of those coupons from the tie rods (don't ask, the vehicle was formerly a rental, so who knows what kind of harsh driving it was put through) and getting the back pads early. Now I need to get the front pads and some tail/turn lights for my other car, and wouldn't you know, they're running practically the same deal. So, for buying a bunch of stuff I needed anyway, I can work it to buy front rotors and get back rotors for about $6 each.

I figure, the rotors will warp one day, one way or another. Having an extra set makes the job go more smoothly (I would already know that the rotors that I'm about to put on are good, instead of needing to check everything under a microscope while I've got the van on stands), and I can get a pretty good deal on them now. I just wanted to make sure the logic was sound before I put down the money on rotors (hey, it is still another $130 out of my pocket).

Actually, as I'm thinking about this, my wife might have some of those space bags (the as seen on TV vacuum sealed bags) lying around. I could probably just put them in that, put the shop vac on, and guarantee no moisture gets in. Though that might be a little bit of overkill for the problem at hand.
 

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store them any way you want, as long as humidity is low and they're wrapped up in plastic. Don't use heavy oil, use corrosion inhibitor product (or ATF in a pinch - you'll have to wash that oil off prior to next use..) and don't turn them until you plan to use them...
(no sense to shell out $80-$160 for turning now and find out in a year that the job wasn't done right - you won't get any refund/satisfaction)

as for having only two jack stands, there are always cinder blocks/RR ties or some such piece of sturdy matter to rest the vehicle on...
 

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Stands are cheap- cinder blocks and wood blocks are deadly!
FWIW Steve white motors has OEM fronts for $60 on eBay. Not sure I trust wearever, but I don't know who makes them. CAP lifetime stuff is junk - pads often have hard spots.
I bought Brembo rotors for the Ram from Rock Auto.

Fluid Film is a corrosion inhibitor, and heavy oil will work fine, why waste expensive ATF?

As long as you're not storing them in the dirt, or mud, or in high humidity they'll be fine in several years when you're ready to turn and use them. My boss has drums and rotors from decades ago that are just fine, and believe me they are not stored well, or coated with anything more then they were when they were made - some of which we're talking the 1930's!
 
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Discussion Starter · #6 ·
My other option for rotors is Wagner (made by Federal Mogul, same as Moog, Fel-Pro, and over a dozen others). The front rotors for them are about $20 more, back are the same price.

As far as storing them, they will be in a garage in Baltimore - humidity is often pretty bad around here in the summer, usually averages around 85%. I'm going to take some of those vacuum bags my wife has and put them in there. They work well to keep clothes dry in the garage, so brake parts should be just as good.
 

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Don't even oil them if you have an air tight bag. Or just a light coat of WD-40. If you use heavy oil, may be difficult to clean out of everywhere and you will just have a smoky mess next time you go to use them. Notice how new rotors themselves use a light oil but an airtight bag?
 

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The Pep Boys here prints out coupons for rotor resurfacing on checkout...I think it was $8/rotor. You can also call your local Napa and ask if they will do it, I'm sure it's cheap there too.
 

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Discussion Starter · #9 ·
The Pep Boys here prints out coupons for rotor resurfacing on checkout...I think it was $8/rotor. You can also call your local Napa and ask if they will do it, I'm sure it's cheap there too.
It can't be a worse price than what the dealer wants - $125, PER ROTOR!
 

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as for having only two jack stands, there are always cinder blocks/RR ties or some such piece of sturdy matter to rest the vehicle on...
For the love of God don't ever use nor recommend cinder blocks!!! Unless, of course, you want someone to die. Seriously, there's a time and place to be cheap and supporting a car for routine work isn't one of them.
 

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I would knock the rust off the wear surface/edges and coat them with Fluid Film (great stuff) as already suggested. Don't turn them until you need them as aleady suggested. You can wrap them in plastic and store in the boxes your new rotors come in.
Fluid Film: http://www.fluid-film.com/

Cost to resurface: $20 to $30 I would guess. Maybe less expensive if getting 4 done at a small shop. At a Dealership: $35.00 each for front; $35.00 each for rear plus another $35.00 each if rear has drum as well as disk (ie rear disk brakes).

Warped Rotors (Post #3): Haven't had one of those for decades using white box rotors and semi-metallic pads.
 

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For the love of God don't ever use nor recommend cinder blocks!!! Unless, of course, you want someone to die. Seriously, there's a time and place to be cheap and supporting a car for routine work isn't one of them.
For the record NEVER did I recommend or encourage the use of any type of blocks (cinder or wood) for "routine work" or ANY work for that matter!!!
storing a car on blocks and working on a car on blocks are completely different matters! DON'T ever get under a vehicle on anything but good quality stands/ramps or better yet rotary lift!
As for cheap china stands suggestion, it's your life to live who am I to judge... (IMO, in most cases they're junk)

Edit: in fact when you take the calipers and rotors off nothing should prevent you from putting the wheels on the front hub studs and snugging the lug nuts if threads reach far enough.. (just don't tighten the lugs too much)
 

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For the record NEVER did I recommend or encourage the use of any type of blocks (cinder or wood) for "routine work" or ANY work for that matter!!!
storing a car on blocks and working on a car on blocks are completely different matters! ...
First, though you weren't SPECIFIC the wording was AMBIGUOUS and most newbs wouldn't have the wherewithal to understand the difference.
Second, cinder blocks and bricks should never be used to even support a vehicle for storage or for ANY work for that matter. Think about it, if they're good enough to support a vehicle for <ahem> storage then why can't they be just as good when working on the car, especially since with brakes one is not under the car?
 

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It's all about redundancy.

I always make sure that when I am under the vehicle that the failure of any one supporting component won't result in me getting squashed. So, I often have the jack, jack stands and removed wheels strategically placed so they all can offer support if any one thing fails. I don't care where it is made. Just because it was made in the US doesn't mean it can't fail. Also, my jacks and stands have load ratings much, much higher than any load they will ever see.

This all being said, I don't have a problem using cinder blocks (in good condition) as one part of a redundant support system. However, everyone has to decide what is right for themselves because it is your own life that is at stake.
 

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May not want to put the wheels back on without brakes unless you make an obvious indication to any inadvertant operator that there is no brakes. It's happened where someone was working on a vehicle and another unknowing person has gotten in to drive it somewhere...
 

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It's all about redundancy.

I always make sure that when I am under the vehicle that the failure of any one supporting component won't result in me getting squashed. So, I often have the jack, jack stands and removed wheels strategically placed so they all can offer support if any one thing fails. I don't care where it is made. Just because it was made in the US doesn't mean it can't fail. Also, my jacks and stands have load ratings much, much higher than any load they will ever see.

This all being said, I don't have a problem using cinder blocks (in good condition) as one part of a redundant support system. However, everyone has to decide what is right for themselves because it is your own life that is at stake.
Redundancy is good! I do that as well. But let's make it perfectly clear that bricks of any type -- including cinder blocks -- are NOT a viable solution for redundancy. Period. When suddenly stressed they will shatter/crack through. Though big, bulky, heavy, and stinky, rail road ties are a better alternative for those who are too cheap to care about their lives.
 

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May not want to put the wheels back on without brakes unless you make an obvious indication to any inadvertant operator that there is no brakes. It's happened where someone was working on a vehicle and another unknowing person has gotten in to drive it somewhere...
good point, one should never put all 4 wheels back on with no brakes (in the given case you'd have the rear on jack stands anyway, so why put wheels on in the back?)

First, though you weren't SPECIFIC the wording was AMBIGUOUS and most newbs wouldn't have the wherewithal to understand the difference.
Second, cinder blocks and bricks should never be used to even support a vehicle for storage or for ANY work for that matter. Think about it, if they're good enough to support a vehicle for <ahem> storage then why can't they be just as good when working on the car, especially since with brakes one is not under the car?
No bricks of any type may ever be used to support a vehicle (or any significant mass) - they are not compression rated. Structural cinder blocks (not the light weight fire code ones) can be used with careful planning and consideration for storage only.

I'll take the last part as a rhetoric question that needs no answer. But I'll point out that if a person doesn't understand the difference between static and dynamic forces, they should not be working on an automobile period.

Though big, bulky, heavy, and stinky, rail road ties are a better alternative for those who are too cheap to care about their lives.
I take it you haven't been to a saw mill but you can easily get (cut offs) 12x12 or sometimes even up to 16x16 timber (aka RR tie) in lengths of 16-24" for not much money. They won't be treated or stinky and can support good loads without fear of tipping or slipping (esp. if you add a high friction surface to the top side of the block)

but this thread is drifting way :eek:fftopic:
 

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Oh yes, the rotors. Use them under the jack stands to distribute the load. :)

Using concrete block .... probably no more dangerous than texting while driving and texting endangers the lives of others as well.

Structural concrete block has a compressive strength of around 2900 psi (20 MPa). For a 6" concrete block: http://www.shawbrick.ca/prod-subt/?page.id=7&product-subtype.id=15
Wood on top of the block helps distribute the load. I have used concrete block in the distant past but now have a couple sets of jack stands. One set of jack stands I don't use, except for a light utility trailer, because they don't impress me as looking that srrong, although they are suppose to be. The concern with jack stands is what they are supported by. How thick and strong is the asphalt in a driveway on a hot day or on a day when frost is coming out of the ground. So, care has to be taken with jack stands as well. Wood blocking works, but some have concerns with that. Take a look at this Thompson Rivers University site: http://www.tru.ca/hsafety/workinglearningsafely/work/blocking.html An excerpt follows:
Jack Stands (Vehicle Support Stands)
1.Loads placed on jack stands shall not exceed 50% of the manufacturer's rated capacity of the jack stand (i.e. if jack stand rating is 6 tons, maximum permitted load is limited to 3 tons).
2.Jack stands shall always be used in pairs.
3.All jack stands shall be provided with labels indicating the proper procedure to be followed (generally provided by the manufacturer).
4.Secondary supports shall always be used with jack stands. This may be in the form of an additional set of jack stands, wooden blocking, or other suitable means of support capable of holding the load.
5.Jack stands shall be placed on a hard level surface capable of sustaining the load.

Wooden Blocking
1.Wooden blocking shall be made from Douglas fir species of a suitable size to ensure strength (min. nominal dimensions 4" x 4"). Certain hardwood species may also be used if suitable (i.e. oak).
2.Softwood species such as pine, spruce or cedar shall not be used. None of the hardwood species which occur naturally in BC are suitable for use as blocking.
3.Wooden blocking shall be free from rounded edges, visible rot, cracks, checks or splits.
4.Oil soaked wooden blocking shall be inspected for suitability prior to use.
They don't even like the Wilmar Brand jack stands (which I have ones similar to).

I tend to use ramps wherever I can. When the vehicle is jacked up, I will use jack stands as backup support but won't be under the vehicle if I can avoid it. If I were going to be under the vehicle, then suitable concrete block, with wood on top, will be backing up the jack stands.

Back to rotors ..... I have seen them used as wheel blocking (at a shop). So, old rotors can come in handy, even if you don't get them resurfaced.
 
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