The 5 Best Brake Pads [Ranked] | Product Reviews and Ratings

The 5 Best Brake Pads [Ranked]

In addition to your brake rotors, brake pads are essential for bringing your car to a stop.

Because brake pads do most of the work, they need frequent replacement to keep your vehicle’s ability to stop effectively (Source).

One quick note– if you visit the Amazon brake pads section, you’ll see that can input your Car Year/Make/Model to ensure that any automotive accessory you purchase will be compatible with your vehicle. 

How do they work?

Brake pads provide friction to bring your vehicle to a stop. When you press the brake pedal, the pads squeeze against the rotors. Because of the constant friction, brake pads need to be replaced regularly to ensure you can stop your vehicle on a dime if you have to (Source).

While most people don’t think about it, brakes are one of the most critical mechanisms in your vehicle.

Experts say to regularly check the wear of your brake pads and not to wait until you hear them squealing or grinding. Also, be aware of ‘fading’ brakes, which means brakes that aren’t as responsive as they once were.

When you notice this, it could be a leak in the brake line or could be time to replace the pads. (Source).

Comparing The Options

How Do They Compare


In this article, we look at five brands of brake pads.

  • The TRW TPC0918 are premium front disc ceramic pads that are easy to install thanks to the included hardware. These pads feature noise-dampening construction, which should keep them quiet without reducing their effectiveness. Users noted these pads were excellent at stopping power and had the added benefit of reduced brake dust.

  • Bosch BC1650 Quiet Cast set are designed for maximum stopping power using ceramic materials. Also, like the previous pads, these, too, are quiet. Molde shim technology protects the shim attachment throughout the life of the pad, which makes these very stable over their lifetime. Lastly, users rated these brakes high for their stopping power and their price.

  • AC Delco Advantage pads utilize ceramic, semi-metallic, and organic ingredients to make a very capable and stable brake pad that stops your vehicle quickly without any jittering. Basic shims assist with noise reduction and vibration. Users said these pads are ready to install right out of the box and are equal to, if not better, than the OEM pads that came with the vehicle.

  • Wagner QuickStop ceramic brake set provides optimal stopping performance in a quiet pad that doesn’t produce excess brake dust. Also, unlike cheaper pads, these are designed to reduce vibration making for a smooth stop every time.

  • Last up is the Bosch QuietCast BC905 premium brake set. Like the previous Bosch model, these pads utilize ceramic materials that provide reliable stopping power, while also being quiet and relatively vibration free. The OE style multi-layer shim construction makes these pads stronger than similar products. Also, the slots and chamfers help give them the ideal fit for your vehicle. Users said these pads are easy to install and provided ample stopping power in most normal driving situations.

Best Brake Pads For 2018

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Effectiveness

Price

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Ease Of Use

This premium disc pads offered by Bosch are well-made, high-quality, durable, and suitable for Asian, European, and American vehicles. Users love that the product is manufactured in North America, but some do note that they screech.

The Bosch QuietCast brake pads feature molded shim technology for protection and maximum stability, an OE style multi-layered shim for strength and noise-free performance, and advanced ceramic friction formulation. Another great thing about this product is that the OE slots and chambers are redesigned for optimum fit. What’s more, the package includes a hardware kit and a synthetic lubricant.

As a whole, users are impressed by the quality, design, and performance of Bosch disc brakes, and they highly recommend them as one of the best brake pads available.

A reviewer comments that the package includes everything you could need to do the replacement and that he always chooses Bosch because of the high-quality of their products. Another purchaser states that he was surprised by the quiet operation and the great stopping power when you combine them with Bosch QuietCast rotors. A user also shares that the pads are easy to install and that they are perfect for his Altima.

However, a couple of customers have noted that only one pad has a wear indicator and that they were unpleasantly surprised by that. Some also point out that they squeak a lot. 

Pros

  • ​High quality
  • Durable
  • Molded
  • Multi-layered shims
  • Ceramic friction formula
  • Synthetic lubricant

Cons

  • ​Wear indicator only on one pad
  • Squealing too much according to some
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Price

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If you are looking for high-quality disc brake pad set for your automobile, you can take a look at this one offered by Wagner. Users love the price and the design, but some do note that it’s not as quiet as they would have liked.

The Wagner QuickStop pad features application-specific design to reduce noise and vibration, a compliant ceramic formulation with low copper content, and it’s designed for optimal stopping performance. Another excellent thing about this product is that it’s 100% OE-post cured to ensure consistent braking. What’s more, the package contains an OE-style lubricant.

In general, purchasers have a high opinion of the Wager pads, and they don’t have any major complaints regarding their performance.

A purchaser mentions that it took him 20 minutes to install them on his Nissan Versa and that he didn’t need to use any special tools. He adds that he did an emergency stop and they performed better than he expected. Another user shares that the disc pads work exceptionally well and that they are quiet and well-made.

A reviewer also says that you can count on Wagner to produce high-quality products and that they fit his car perfectly. However, one customer has pointed out it didn’t fit his 2014 Nissan Versa.

Video Overview

Pros

  • ​A ceramic formula with low coppers content
  • Post-cured
  • OE-style lubricant
  • Great braking power

Cons

  • ​Some noise complaints
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This front disc brake pads offered by ACDelco are well-made, reliable, durable, and available for all models.

Users love the price and the easy installation process, but some do note that they don’t fit their car. The ACDelco pad set features a ceramic, semi-metallic formula for safety and better braking power in addition to basic shims, chamfers, and slots to decrease noise, braking harshness, and vibration. Another great thing about this product is that you don’t have to worry about curing or machining because they are ready to install.

A purchaser shares that he had doubts about the quality of the ACDelco products, but he was genuinely surprised by the performances of the pad set. He adds that installation is not difficult and that the braking power is sufficient.

Another user comments that there is no break noise and that they fit his Cherokee XJ well. He highly recommends them to anyone looking for a cheap brake pad set.

A buyer also says that he had been driving with the pads for more than 1000 miles and that there are no problems or squeaking. The reviewer states that he is going to buy the ACDelco pads again. However, a couple of customers have noted these are one of the noisiest brake pads that they have ever used. A buyer even states that the squeaking is unbearable and that he is doing to order new ones.

Video Overview

Pros

  • ​Affordable
  • Reliable
  • Easy to install
  • Ceramic formulas
  • No curing or machining required

Cons

  • ​Noisy

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Price

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If you need to change your front disc brake pad, you might take a look at this set offered by TRW.

Users love that the dust-reduction design, but some do note that they don’t fit their car model and they had to modify them.

The TRW front disk pads feature an optimum friction material/formula, bonded nitrile rubber-coated steel shims for superior noise damping and all the hardware accessories needed for safe installation. Another great thing about this product is that the pads are slotted and chamfered to ensure maximum braking performance.

A purchaser says that the TRW ceramic pads work far better than he expected and that brake dust is no longer an issue thanks to the dust-reduction design. He adds that he highly recommends them as one of the best brake pad sets for BMW 6. Another buyer observes that he is happy with the braking power and that there is no squeaking or scratching. A user also shares that the set fits his BMW 530xi perfectly and that installation is straightforward.

However, a couple of customers have warned that the set didn’t fit their car models – a BMW 328i Sedan and BMW Z4 and that they had to return the kit. One user also complains that the brakes are too noisy for his liking.

Pros

  • ​Well-made
  • Dust-reduction design
  • Rubber-coated steel shims
  • Slotted and chamfered

Cons

  • ​Might not fit all BMW models

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Price

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This front brake kit for trucks offered by Power Stop is well-made, high-quality, and an excellent choice for off-road enthusiasts.

Users love the superior braking power, but some do note that it’s expensive. The Power Stop front pads features specifically matched components to produce the necessary torque, drilled rotors to reduce heat, and rounded slots to keep debris away. Another great thing about this kit is that it includes a high-temperature lubricant, premium hardware, and pin bushings. What’s more, the exclusive carbon-fiber ceramic formulas guarantee supreme braking power and no dust.

As a whole, buyers have a high opinion of the Power Stop pads, and they are impressed with their functionality, performance, and design.

A reviewer comments that the brakes and the rotors work better than he expected and that it the perfect brake pad kit for his 2013 Ford Raptor. Another user shares that you don’t have to worry about noise or dust and that the brakes are easy to install. A purchaser also mentions that they look as good as new even after months of use and that he highly recommends them.

However, a couple of customers have complained that the kit arrived damaged and that it didn’t fit their vehicles. Some also point out that they expected more in terms of quality.

Video Overview

Pros

  • ​High-quality
  • Superior braking power
  • Specifically matched components
  • Drilled/rounded slots
  • Carbon-fiber ceramic formulas
  • Installation hardware

Cons

  • ​Some quality complaints
  • Not the cheapest option

Most Popular Car Brands

According to the Telegraph, these are the most popular car brands: 

  • Alfa Romeo
  • Alpina
  • Aston Martin
  • Audi
  • Bentley
  • BMW
  • Citroen
  • Dacia
  • DS
  • Ferrari
  • Fiat
  • Ford
  • Honda
  • Hyundai
  • Infiniti
  • Jaguar
  • Jeep
  • Kia
  • Lamborghini
  • Land Rover
  • Lexus
  • Lotus
  • Maserati
  • Mazda
  • McLaren
  • Mercedes
  • MG
  • Mini
  • Mitsubishi
  • Nissan
  • Peugeot
  • Porsche
  • Renault
  • Rolls-Royce
  • Seat
  • Skoda
  • Smart
  • SsangYong
  • Subaru
  • Suzuki
  • Tesla
  • Toyota
  • Vauxhall
  • Volkswagen
  • Volvo

Most Popular Car Models

According to Edmunds, these are the ‘most researched’ car models:

  • Honda Accord
  • Honda Civic
  • Toyota Highlander
  • Dodge Challenger
  • Jeep Wrangler
  • Ford F-150
  • Toyota Camry
  • Toyota Tacoma
  • Jeep Grand Cherokee
  • Mazda CX-5
  • Honda Pilot
  • Toyota RAV4
  • Subaru Outback
  • Ram 1500
  • Nissan Rogue
  • Subaru Forester
  • Ford Mustang
  • Subaru Crosstrek
  • Honda Odyssey
  • Chevrolet Traverse
  • Jeep Cherokee
  • Ford Explorer
  • Volkswagen Tiguan
  • Honda HR-V
  • Chevrolet Silverado 1500
  • Ford Escape
  • Chevrolet Camaro
  • Jeep Compass
  • Nissan Murano
  • Toyota 4Runner
  • Hyundai Tucson
  • Chrysler Pacifica
  • Hyundai Sonata
  • Toyota Corolla
  • Dodge Charger
  • Volkswagen Atlas
  • Toyota Tundra
  • Hyundai Elantra
  • Honda Ridgeline
  • Mazda 3
  • Acura MDX
  • Ford Edge
  • Chevrolet Equinox
  • BMW X3
  • Lexus RX 350
  • Chevrolet Colorado
  • Audi Q5
  • Kia Sorento

Reddit Feedback

In our effort to provide high-quality information, we took to Reddit to examine a variety of different topics related to selecting the best performing and most cost-effective brake pads. In particular, we examined things like Napa Auto Parts, Hawk brake pads, rotors, calipers, the quality of Advanced Auto Care, ceramic options, organic styles, the Akebono, Murray’s, Bosch, StopTech brand, Carquest auto parts.

Difference Between Cheap & Expensive

One of the best posts we saw on Reddit was questioning the distinction between the more expensive and popular brake pads like Brembos And cheaper quality options. The car enthusiast was boning up on automotive maintenance and had just learned how to change engine oil as well as replace headlights, but now that he was looking to undertake a brake change he was wondering what the best options were.

One of the top responses came from an auto expert who said that while some car parts it’s okay to go cheap on – you don’t want to skimp when it comes to braking mechanics in your car. One of the more important points he made was that when it comes to premium pads, you may not need them unless you have a specific requirement.

Performance Criteria

In the example he provided, if you’re performing autocross or have really steep hills in your neighborhood that mandates more powerful and sensitive breaking capabilities, that might be a case when you need to pay more to get higher-quality.

He recommends searching for the OEM model required by your car, determining the average price which will give you a competitive baseline, and then searching out online to find price drops on sites like eBay.

Another poster provided some detailed information, it’s saying that if you purchase Street pads and they won’t last as long if you’re performing on a race track or doing autocross. In contrast, more aggressive pads provide enhanced fade resistance – especially when used in combination with higher-quality fluid.

Don’t Go Cheap

Another poster advised avoiding inexpensive, non-brand pads from eBay. He says that if they really cheap, it’s likely that they’re going to wear out soon because of the cheap compound used in their Construction. It’s best to go with Big Brand options iPhone known quantities are less likely to result in a catastrophic failure from cheap, poor Construction.

He recommends the following brands in particular: Pagid, Textar, Jurid, ATE, and Brembo.

Another poster recommended avoiding semi-metallic pads because they have a tendency to generate a huge amount of brake dust which is hard to remove from your wheels. On the other hand, a Fiat driver with white wheels on his car says that the semi-metallic pads provide amazing stopping ability, but do discolor his wheels.

Other posters concur saying that for sticky tires performing on autocross and race tracks and even Mountain trips, the high-performance options are worth it, but if you’re just a city driver you don’t need something that high performance.

Auto Mechanic Advice

Over in the mechanic advice subreddit, one user was looking for brake pad and automotive accessories recommendations for his Kia Optima.

A mechanic recommended ceramic options because they are low noise and low dust But they don’t provide the same level of performance you’ll find with a semi-metallic pad. By contrast, the semi-metallic options supply enhance performance but generate a greater degree of noise and dust.

Another option is the Centric Posi-Quiet ceramic pads. It really comes down to your performance criteria – whether you want the best stopping power, the lowest amount of dust creation, the longest lasting or the least noisy.

Top 5 Staff
 

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