Dealer says it's time for new brakes

Joined
Oct 9, 2004
Messages
11,546
Location
Cincinnati, OH, USA
Kia dealer did the exact same thing to my mom recently, but they charged her $200+ for a brake inspection! She had brought it in for her regular free oil change. I've told her many times not to agree to other things they want to do to the car without talking to me first, but she still ignored it/me, so she has a $200+ bill now to pay... :( Drives me bonkers that she doesn't say 'no thanks I'll wait for now', and let me double check stuff first. Her brakes are just like yours OP, totally full and fine (the car has <18 000 kms on it!)...
Looks like even Canadian "free" oil changes aren't so free after all? Stealerships are unfortunately not limited to the USA.
 
Joined
May 30, 2010
Messages
14,035
Location
North Carolina
I'd send the dealer owner the pics, and tell, this is why people don't trust the dealership and don't come back. Not everyone is uneducated about cars.

They probably won't care though, as they scam other customers.

I have had, very honest experiences at a dealership, so those at the top may not know whats going on, without someone informing them.
 
Joined
Jun 15, 2010
Messages
2,091
Brake fluid level does go down as brake linings wear. It’s possible the vehicle didn’t have the proper amount of fluid from the factory and the brakes have now worn down to a point where the fluid is now too low. The dealer is supposed to check for brake fluid level during the PDI process but in my experience it’s often missed. Likely this vehicle just needed a slight top off, brake pads look fine.

Also, I applaud the dealer for taking the wheels off for a brake fluid flush. That is the safest way to prevent brake fluid from getting on the wheels, which will strip the paint off.
 
Joined
Jan 1, 2003
Messages
1,352
Location
Daytona Beach
In all fairness to the dealership, we are only seeing one set of pads, which look fine. What about the other 3 sets?
Fluid levels drop for a reason, and it's usually from brake wear.
How many miles on the car?
 
Joined
Aug 13, 2004
Messages
1,782
Location
VA
Pads have to be above 2/32 to pass a Virginia safety inspection. Those pads probably won't be there until the groove wears away.

At one inspection, a shop said my front pads were at 4/32. They were due, but there was still plenty of material left when I changed them about 8 months later.
 
Joined
Jan 20, 2013
Messages
2,092
Location
Ontario, Canada
Check the operation of the parking brake system (cable slack, pedal swtich etc). People often assume that warnings are caused by the service brake when in fact the warning light can also be associated with the parking brake.
 
Joined
Apr 25, 2017
Messages
6,296
Location
Ohio
Did you take pictures of all (4) pad sets ?

I'd send the dealer owner the pics, and tell, this is why people don't trust the dealership and don't come back. Not everyone is uneducated about cars.
Ding, new email, (reads email), [delete]. Moves on....
 

Nick1994

$50 Site Donor
Thread starter
Joined
Feb 19, 2013
Messages
14,120
Location
Phoenix, AZ
Here’s the service ticket. “Minimum spec”

05B0165A-ED1F-4808-B853-9A18A5B56582.jpeg
 
Joined
Dec 19, 2004
Messages
311
Location
New Orleans La
Is it possible the emergency brake is at a position it trips the switch and not have a drag or maybe she didn't completely release the brake?
 
Joined
Nov 14, 2008
Messages
12,268
Location
Phoenix
The dealers in Phoenix are the absolute worst I've ever encountered. AutoNation and Earnhardt are the only two I've had good experiences with. Chapman, Bill Luke, Airpark and Camelback VW all suck.

After seeing that ticket I have to scratch AutoNation from my list! To be fair all my experiences are buying, I do maintenance on my own and have had only one warranty repair in the last ten years and that was for a strut that was obviously leaking that Bill Luke took care of it.

I'd call corporate on this, AutoNation is a publicly held nationwide dealership.
 
Last edited:
Joined
Jun 6, 2013
Messages
967
Location
sw ohio
I just went out to my garage (I have 4 boxes of new front pads for my car and a brake wear gauge). My NEW unused pads are 10 mm thick, but I'm sure some new pads are 12mm else why would the gauge set include that number? The wear gauge is green for 8mm, 10mm & 12mm. It is yellow for 4, 5, & 6mm and red for 2 & 3 mm (replace).
The wear gauge set is only $12 on Amazon and takes all the guesswork out of "eyeballing" and the fact that not all pads have that wear slot in the middle https://www.amazon.com/dp/B003QHSHM...=xh1lX&ref_=sbx_be_s_sparkle_mcd_asin_1_title

My two cents to you is that those pads are obviously fine and the stealership was being dishonest to your aunt, but that doesn't solve the issue of the BRAKE light coming on or the low fluid level. I think you know the answer to the fluid being low and it is not good. What I find most shocking about your story is that brake fluid level DOESN'T "naturally" go down at all, there is a leak somewhere; unless the brake fluid level sensor is going bad. I would THINK that a diligent dealership would look for/at all these possibilities, since repairs would be $$$$ in their pocket. My parting shot is I wouldn't take my kids little red wagon to a known dishonest dealer.
Brake fluid level does go down "naturally" due to pad wear.
 
Joined
Jan 24, 2008
Messages
12,669
Location
OH
Make sure the rear wheels spin freely. Many times on that car the rear calipers start to stick. Cleaning and lubing them regularly will help prevent this from occurring. Due to their design dirt can easily get to the caliper.
 
Joined
Oct 28, 2014
Messages
972
Location
On the road Midwest
Brake fluid level does go down "naturally" due to pad wear.
I knew that. Got so #### #### mad at the stealership for what I saw posted I wasn't thinking clearly and it's not even my car. Still, the OP posted that he measured the remaining pad thickness at 8mm. New pads being at 10mm, 2mm wear (on all 4 corners (I assume-yes, that's a dangerous word) shouldn't make the BRAKE light come on. My SWAG is that I agree with other posters; the fluid level may not have been quite full leaving the factory. I guess (for myself) since I am a snob and use Bosch Esi6 brake fluid, perhaps I should take one of my unsealed quarts from the garage and keep it in my trunk.
 

Nick1994

$50 Site Donor
Thread starter
Joined
Feb 19, 2013
Messages
14,120
Location
Phoenix, AZ
Is it possible the emergency brake is at a position it trips the switch and not have a drag or maybe she didn't completely release the brake?
She never uses the parking brake, and each time it has come on she tries to put the parking brake on and then off to check, the light stays on.
The dealers in Phoenix are the absolute worst I've ever encountered. AutoNation and Earnhardt are the only two I've had good experiences with. Chapman, Bill Luke, Airpark and Camelback VW all suck.

After seeing that ticket I have to scratch AutoNation from my list! To be fair all my experiences are buying, I do maintenance on my own and have had only one warranty repair in the last ten years and that was for a strut that was obviously leaking that Bill Luke took care of it.

I'd call corporate on this, AutoNation is a publicly held nationwide dealership.
Yeah I'm gonna look up the email addresses for the manager of the dealer.

I don't expect the service manager to care, last time I took it in for the nasty rotten egg catalytic converters smell he rode with my while I drove it like a Ferrari and he couldn't smell anything. No wonder, because the moment he got in the car he reeked of cigarettes.
 
Joined
Dec 23, 2013
Messages
2,287
Location
socal
An Indy shop did the same thing to my buddy w a 05 Dodge Ram. He was getting leaking exhaust manifolds replaced and the mech told him brake pads are done. Buddy declined, bought new pads for DIY. I went to help him and the pads looked just Ike the OPs pads, plenty of meat on that bone
 
Joined
Oct 10, 2021
Messages
141
Location
Wisconsin
My neighbor was going to do front brakes for his co worker. Toyota dealer in wisconsin said brakes are very very bad. So my neighbor bought parts and took off the wheels. Pads and rotors looked thick and brand new... tired of dealership scum
 
Top