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2003 natural aspirated 3.3
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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I'm not sure if they're completely bad but I get a slippage or grinding when I brake hard. Anyways, it might just be weak brakes too. Anyone recommend a brake upgrade that is reasonable? I can't see spending $300 for brakes
 

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2000 Xterra XE 4x4 3.3L AT
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Good pads and when was the last time the fluid was flushed? Break fluid is hygroscopic, it easily absorbs moisture from the atmosphere, and every so often needs to be changed out. The absorbed moisture lowers the boiling point of the fluid and you start to get mushy brakes.

As for pads do some research and pick your poison. Lots of people like pads that last a very long time. The compound they鈥檙e made of is very very hard which is why they last but the trade-off for that longevity is that they don鈥檛 bite as hard i.e. they don鈥檛 stop really well. I use carbon based PF and Brembo pads They bite really hard but the trade-off is they don鈥檛 last as long as other brands and I have to change pad say every 16,000 miles. There is an added benefit to that as well that they don鈥檛 tear up rotors so I don鈥檛 have to go through the much longer break job where I鈥檓 pulling the rotors as well.

Stainless steel break lines help as well replacing the rubber lines that go from the hard lines to the calipers. Much better break feel and more power at the pedal.
 

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2003 natural aspirated 3.3
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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
I've never flushed it..

What do y'all think about the colored pads.. yellow stuff etc
 

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2000 Xterra XE 4x4 3.3L AT
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I've never flushed it..

What do y'all think about the colored pads.. yellow stuff etc
I may not be the best person for this opinion. Almost 35 years working in motorsports leaves you with opinions that are set in stone and hard to change. I have done R&D testing, developing pads/rotors/calipers, with many companies and there engineers and been sponsored by nearly every big name brake manufacturer. Vesrah, Brembo, AP Racing, Performance Friction, Galfer, SBS, and EBC.

Of all of those you couldn鈥檛 put a gun to my head and get me to use anything EBC manufacturers. I have seen catastrophic failures of there pads at least a dozen times and heard from racers and street guys of dozens more. We had a set of EBC pads strip off all the friction material in 2 laps and leave the rider with only the steel backing plates to slow him from 200+ MPH at Daytona going into turn one. It could have easily cost him or another rider their life. The EBC rep and engineers blew it off and came up with some mumbo jumbo answer and that it was an isolated incident then our second rider had the same issue. No thanks I pass.

That being said I know plenty of people who run their product and love them but I鈥檝e never heard of or seen any of those others I listed above have that problem.
 

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2000 Xterra XE 4x4 3.3L AT
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Can you get an Xterra to stop like a sports car? No it鈥檚 a 5500 pound SUV with an ok sort of brake system. Can you improve it a lot with good pads and solid maintenance? Yes.
 

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2004 Xterra XE 4WD Auto 3.3L NA V6
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I've never flushed it..

What do y'all think about the colored pads.. yellow stuff etc
From what little I've learned from the University of Interwebs, those colors are more related to their purpose than to one's affinity for certain colors.

I appreciate what @RacerXXL shared about brake pad suppliers, too. I had never heard of any issues, but then again, I don't race, either. That said, I've never used EBC and now I likely never will.

I've noticed that the brakes on both my 2001 and 2004 seem to grab so well that it nose dives and wants to stop pretty well. I'm not sure what brands of pads are on either one, but I'm starting to believe that nose-diving is a standard condition of the Gen 1 due to soft torsion bars. However, I'm not at all unhappy with their stopping performance. They seem to stop better than my 2011 car does!

So, going along with what he commented, get brake material that'll do the job well, and then decide if you want less brake dust or not. The biggest tell for brake dust is yellowed or browned front wheels that folks never wash and/or never rotate.
 

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I may not be the best person for this opinion. Almost 35 years working in motorsports leaves you with opinions that are set in stone and hard to change. I have done R&D testing, developing pads/rotors/calipers, with many companies and there engineers and been sponsored by nearly every big name brake manufacturer. Vesrah, Brembo, AP Racing, Performance Friction, Galfer, SBS, and EBC.

Of all of those you couldn鈥檛 put a gun to my head and get me to use anything EBC manufacturers. I have seen catastrophic failures of there pads at least a dozen times and heard from racers and street guys of dozens more. We had a set of EBC pads strip off all the friction material in 2 laps and leave the rider with only the steel backing plates to slow him from 200+ MPH at Daytona going into turn one. It could have easily cost him or another rider their life. The EBC rep and engineers blew it off and came up with some mumbo jumbo answer and that it was an isolated incident then our second rider had the same issue. No thanks I pass.

That being said I know plenty of people who run their product and love them but I鈥檝e never heard of or seen any of those others I listed above have that problem.
Appreciate the heads up on the EBC experience. I have some experience with stock car and go kart racing and have taken some "hot" laps on the Watkins Glen Road track with my 87 5.0 Mustang so I understand the seriousness of your described brake failure at speed. I currently have EBC yellow pads all around on my 2009 Mustang GT and will have to consider moving those in to retirement. I have driven them aggressively without failure but failure has no prediction.
 

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Good pads and when was the last time the fluid was flushed? Break fluid is hygroscopic, it easily absorbs moisture from the atmosphere, and every so often needs to be changed out. The absorbed moisture lowers the boiling point of the fluid and you start to get mushy brakes.

As for pads do some research and pick your poison. Lots of people like pads that last a very long time. The compound they鈥檙e made of is very very hard which is why they last but the trade-off for that longevity is that they don鈥檛 bite as hard i.e. they don鈥檛 stop really well. I use carbon based PF and Brembo pads They bite really hard but the trade-off is they don鈥檛 last as long as other brands and I have to change pad say every 16,000 miles. There is an added benefit to that as well that they don鈥檛 tear up rotors so I don鈥檛 have to go through the much longer break job where I鈥檓 pulling the rotors as well.

Stainless steel break lines help as well replacing the rubber lines that go from the hard lines to the calipers. Much better break feel and more power at the pedal.
Understand the Brembo brand pads but what's the detail on the "carbon based PF pads"? Please and thank you.
 

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2003 natural aspirated 3.3
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Discussion Starter · #10 ·
Have any of you tried pads from this site? I'm wondering about the graph..

 

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2003 natural aspirated 3.3
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Discussion Starter · #12 ·
Well dad got me some pads/ rotors without me knowing, so I guess I'll be doing that next weekend..
 
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Well dad got me some pads/ rotors without me knowing, so I guess I'll be doing that next weekend..
Thanks dad! Bleed all of the lines when you do the brake job. Furthest away from master cylinder first and left front [shortest] last. Pump fluid until fluid is clear and has no air bubbles. Keep refilling master cylinder as you bleed so as to not run low in the master. Just in case you are not knowing.
 

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Discussion Starter · #14 ·
Thanks , XT
 

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I've noticed that the brakes on both my 2001 and 2004 seem to grab so well that it nose dives and wants to stop pretty well. I'm not sure what brands of pads are on either one, but I'm starting to believe that nose-diving is a standard condition of the Gen 1 due to soft torsion bars. However, I'm not at all unhappy with their stopping performance. They seem to stop better than my 2011 car does!
Have you done any work to your drum brakes? I've been having this issue too and always thought it was the soft tbars. I adjusted my rear drums and that helped the nosedive tremendously. They have gone out of adjustment again so I'm going to clean them up, change the hardware/ shoes, and adjust the parking brake now that it isn't so hot outside. Eventually, I am going to swap all the springs so we'll see how that goes. My x squats when I accelerate 馃槀
 

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Well dad got me some pads/ rotors without me knowing, so I guess I'll be doing that next weekend..
It is really not to hard I have done my toters twice and pads more than I can count. I tow a small trailer from time to time and haul a lot of "stuff". Last time used ceramic pads and I pleased. Rotors and pads very reasonable from Rock Auto. Rotors $35 pads always less than $20. I keep extra pads just in case.
 

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2003 natural aspirated 3.3
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Discussion Starter · #18 ·
We're putting in Bendix fleet,..doing it tomorrow so I'll let y'all know how that goes
 
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