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How to fix squeaky disk brakes?

Original Post
Mickey Sensenbach · · San luis obispo CA · Joined Dec 2012 · Points: 0

So like many riders have it my front disk brake is squeaky and it vibrates. It is an hydrolick brake and works good just innoying as hell! Does anyone have any suggestions or ideas? Anything would help!

John Duke · · Unknown Hometown · Joined Apr 2013 · Points: 28

Brakes usually squeak because they are dirty, you can rinse them with water, or shoot them with a little brake cleaner. 9 times out of 10 this does the trick. If they are super squeaky or this doesn't help, you can take your pads out and rough them up with some sandpaper (I like 220 grit) this will remove any glaze that might have built up on the pads, but you will have to break the pads in again. If you do take them out, putting a little anti squeal grease on the pads/calipers (you can get a little packet of it at the auto parts store for a dollar) will help with the squealing as well.

Adam Holmes · · Unknown Hometown · Joined Feb 2001 · Points: 0

I have the same squeaky brake problem from the fine dust in Central Oregon. My local shop gave me the same great information that John Duke posted regarding the sandpaper and the glaze.

Kai Troester · · Pepperell, MA · Joined Jun 2011 · Points: 1,638

You may also try a different brand of brake pads. That made a difference for me. My brakes did not squeak, but they would stutter under load. That stopped happening after I replaced the brake pads.


John Duke · · Unknown Hometown · Joined Apr 2013 · Points: 28

Also a tip if you do decide to use the sandpaper, is put the paper on something flat and solid, and then rub the bad on the paper, that way you will keep the pad flat.

Kevin Prufer · · Unknown Hometown · Joined Nov 2013 · Points: 0

Wiping the disc down with alcohol worked for me

calitradclimber · · Unknown Hometown · Joined Aug 2001 · Points: 0

And remember not to ever get lube or even fingerprints on the rotors. Brakes are very sensitive to any kind of oils. If you get lube or oil on the pads themselves, they often become saturated and need to be replaced.

What type of brakes do you have? I've also heard that some brands just squeak and there's not much you can do about it.

Ross Leonard · · Unknown Hometown · Joined Jun 2013 · Points: 0

My Blur is equipped with Avid Elixir which I found to be rather vocal. Did the same concept, emery cloth on both pad and rotor with somewhat favorable results. Much better with the organic pads although they wear much faster I also feel they are not quite as prone to overheating. I believe Shimano in general is a better brake and the ice gear is nothing short of amazing.

Taylor J · · new mexico, new england · Joined Nov 2010 · Points: 0

i second using organic pads, as they are much quieter although they do wear faster...

Peter Carse · · Unknown Hometown · Joined Dec 2013 · Points: 1,182

For me the solution was shimano "resin" pads rather than "metal"... Maybe that's the same as the 'organic' ones previously mentioned.

cheryl anderson · · Unknown Hometown · Joined Jan 2015 · Points: 0

Nobody told me the brakes on my Giant were known for this. I cleaned with alcohol, sanded and did everything I was told, then I replaced the ones that came on my bike - nice and quiet now! Totally worth it!

Nate Klefsaas · · Unknown Hometown · Joined Jun 2015 · Points: 0

Use a spray bottle and isopropel alcohol that you can buy in the health section anywhere and spray the rotors and then clean them with a paper towel. Also as already said get organic brake pads.

amyy cooper · · Unknown Hometown · Joined Apr 2016 · Points: 0

Work the lube into the chain slowly and then wipe is squeaky clean before you ride. If you use an aerosol bike polish, then you are guaranteed to get some of the spray on the rotors. Wipe them with automotive brake cleaner on a fresh towel before you spin the wheels.

Nate Klefsaas · · Unknown Hometown · Joined Jun 2015 · Points: 0

Do not use automotive brake cleaner on bike disc brakes ever! Use isopropel alcohol/rubbing alcohol mixed with a little water and a rag to clean your rotors.

aenna martin · · Unknown Hometown · Joined May 2019 · Points: 0

You will need some tools to fix squeaky disk brakes so i have found some articles which may help you.
I have read this guide which tells you about tools which is required to fix those squeaky brakes and here is the article which will tell you about  how to fix squeaky disc brakes . I hope it might help you.

John Styrnol · · Grand Junction, CO · Joined Oct 2017 · Points: 115

90% Iso is what I use.

Dick Stone · · Boulder · Joined Mar 2006 · Points: 0

I had a very squeaky rear could hear me coming down the trail a mile away!   I tried all the above techniques to no avail.
I was told by a shop my brake disc probably no longer had a perfectly flat surface, and was likely worn at a angle due to the pads wearing on it.
I replaced by brake disc (and of course new pads) and problem solved !!!

Guideline #1: Don't be a jerk.

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