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2013 Chevrolet Cruze LT RS
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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I live in Texas where the roads are in pretty poor conditions to begin with, but when I'm slowing down after going 85-90 I get a rumbling in the steering wheel and a grinding sound coming from the front right. I'm not braking hard or anything, just a gradual deceleration. It only does it if I go speeds over 75 MPH. Any ideas? This isn't the first time it happened, and it was on the same highway going the same speed. Thanks!
 

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2014 Cruze Diesel, 2007 Cobalt, 1981 Camaro Z28, 2017 Volt
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6,210 Posts
Have you checked your brakes recently? Our fronts (original brakes) were incredibly loud when one side went metal to metal at around 100k miles.
 

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Your pads have baked to your rotors from hard braking and created high spots on the surfaces of the rotors. It's common with the Gen 1, especially with ones with rear drum brakes.

Replace the brakes/rotors with something better than OEM (I used Centric Premium rotors w/ Akebono ceramic pads), and make sure that the rear drums are adjusted correctly so they're doing braking too.

In the future, if you have to come to an abrupt stop, try not to sit there with your foot on the brake afterwards. Creeping forward a little bit will keep the pads from baking to the hot rotors.

 

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2014 Cruze Diesel, 2007 Cobalt, 1981 Camaro Z28, 2017 Volt
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In the future, if you have to come to an abrupt stop, try not to sit there with your foot on the brake afterwards. Creeping forward a little bit will keep the pads from baking to the hot rotors.
Or, if you're on a level surface, you can put the car in neutral and sit there without being on the brakes at all (or do that and use the parking brake to keep from rolling, without engaging the front pads).
 
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2013 Chevrolet Cruze LT RS
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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
Have you checked your brakes recently? Our fronts (original brakes) were incredibly loud when one side went metal to metal at around 100k miles.
I replaced the brakes around 7k miles ago. I haven't had to perform any hard stops that I can remember. I had the brakes and rotors checked around 3k miles ago.
 

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2014 Cruze Diesel, 2007 Cobalt, 1981 Camaro Z28, 2017 Volt
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Did it do this prior to changing the brakes?
 

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Discussion Starter · #7 ·
Your pads have baked to your rotors from hard braking and created high spots on the surfaces of the rotors. It's common with the Gen 1, especially with ones with rear drum brakes.

Replace the brakes/rotors with something better than OEM (I used Centric Premium rotors w/ Akebono ceramic pads), and make sure that the rear drums are adjusted correctly so they're doing braking too.

In the future, if you have to come to an abrupt stop, try not to sit there with your foot on the brake afterwards. Creeping forward a little bit will keep the pads from baking to the hot rotors.

Are you suggesting to get my rotors looked at? I had them checked around 3k miles ago, and I can't remember any abrupt stops. What do you think I should do?
 

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2013 Chevrolet Cruze LT RS
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Discussion Starter · #9 ·
Did it do this prior to changing the brakes?
It started a few weeks ago. I've only had it happen about 4 times on the same highway when I'm starting to slow down (foot off the throttle)
 

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2016 Cruze Limited
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I had this problem on my wife's car - I replaced the front pads, used anti seize on the contact points, and after bedding in the brakes, they seemed fine. Didn't take long for the vibration to come back. The right side wore much faster than the left for some reason.

What fixed the problem was replacing the rotors and going to ceramic brake pads. I also used a wire brush to clean the caliper carriers, especially where the tabs of the pads fit in. I used the ACDelco parts and haven't had a problem yet.
 

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2014 LT program car, Pull Me Over Red, 1.4T Auto
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I replaced the brakes around 7k miles ago. I haven't had to perform any hard stops that I can remember. I had the brakes and rotors checked around 3k miles ago.
Did you bed the brakes at that time? If this is basically the first time you really needed the brakes, it will be evident that you should have.

Just to be sure, you are not hearing the anti-lock system working?


From Autozones website:
How to Bed Brakes
  1. Pick Your Spot. Find an open stretch of road that will allow you to safely stop your vehicle multiple times.
  2. Speed Up, Then Slow Down. Accelerate to 35 MPH and apply moderate brake pressure to reduce your speed to under 5 MPH.
  3. Repeat as Necessary. Repeat this process 2-3 times, accelerating back to 35 MPH and moderately braking.
  4. Test Again at 55 MPH. Next, increase speed to 50 MPH and strongly brake down to 5 MPH. You don't want to brake strong enough to activate your ABS or lock up the tires. You should be able to come down to 5 MPH within a few seconds.
  5. Repeat as Necessary. Repeat this process 4-5 times, then drive an additional 1-2 miles while very lightly braking to cool down the brakes.
  6. Pro Tip: It's important to avoid coming to a complete stop during the hard-braking stage as it's possible to melt brake pads against hot rotors. Of course, should a deer, pedestrian, or Sasquatch run onto the road, feel free to mash the brake pedal. Safety first!
 

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2016 Cruze Limited
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I followed a similar process as I used on my GTI. 80 down to 10mph, 80-90% braking force (modulate as necessary to stay out of ABS). Repeat at least 5 times, you'll get a lot of smoke and maybe a bit of fire at first, but DO NOT STOP. When smoke fades and brakes are plenty hot, drive at highway speeds for 10+ minutes to cool them down, then do another set of hard stops from 50-60 down to 10, then cool them down again.

I don't know what the issue was with the organic pads; no matter how many times I re-bed them, the shudder in the front brakes would come back. After I replaced the rotors (again) and went to ceramic pads, I've had absolutely no trouble with them.

Ceramic pads seem to provide much better performance, too.
 
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