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  1. #1
    Expert Noob
    Reputation: LandoCommando's Avatar
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    Brake/carb cleaner to clean fouled pads?

    I managed to get some brake fluid onto the pads last night.
    Can I clean them with some brake parts cleaner or am I buying new pads today?

  2. #2
    mtbr member
    Reputation: ScottW's Avatar
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    Try heating them with a torch to burn the brake fluid off. Don't use brake cleaner on them (at least I wouldn't).

  3. #3
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    My lbs used Fenwicks disc brake cleaner on my brakes. Since then I have been using it to clean the disc occasionally.
    Putting contaminated pads in the oven at 200c for 20 minutes works really well for me. What's the worst that could happen? You end up buying new pads?

    Brad

  4. #4
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    Ive got a mapp torch I could use instead of the oven
    Thanks for the input

  5. #5
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    After I torch... I usually sand off the top layer because the pads have some layer or grim that tends to not wear off a quickly. Rough them up a little and they will have lots of bite. They may also be squeeky, so you need to wear them into the rotor once again.

    Oh!!! Don't forget to clean the rotor good again, or you will just recontaminate them again.
    Bikeless Rider

  6. #6
    trail addict
    Reputation: Uncle Six Pack's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by LandoCommando
    I managed to get some brake fluid onto the pads last night.
    Can I clean them with some brake parts cleaner or am I buying new pads today?
    If I was you.... I'd try some sandpaper (120-180 or so) and freshen up the pads' surfaces. Then clean the pads AND ROTORS with rubbing alcohol. Don't put fresh pads back on until you are sure the rotors aren't contaminated.
    You better just go ahead and drop that seatpost down to the reflector... the trail gets pretty rough down there.

  7. #7
    ~Disc~Golf~
    Reputation: highdelll's Avatar
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    *** just a side note for anyone seeing the title of the thread...
    Carb cleaner is excellent for rehabbing old/glazed rim-brake pads. It will remove the very fist layer of rubber - good stuff (for that - also your rims)
    Honestly... ahh I give up

  8. #8
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    That happened to me about a year ago and since there were no new pads available locally I tried sanding, alcohol and brake cleaner. None of those methods gave me back my braking so I torched them until they stopped smoking and had little glowing spots. I have ridden them ever since. Since they smoked when I torched them, I can only assume that they were still contaminated with fluid. So, I question the other method effectiveness. BTW, I have maguras which run mineral oil. I have no experience with DOT.

  9. #9
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    I often clean my rotors down on my wheels with brake clean after ive had the wheels out the change tires etc, incase ive touched them with greasy hands.

    On the first application they will squeel and then they are fine.

  10. #10
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    Pads contaminated with brake fluid are ruined beyond repair. The fluid is absorbed into the pores of the pads, seeps below the surface and can not be cleaned.

    Time for a new set....

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