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Discussion Starter · #1 · (Edited)
It's ASTONISHING that a company which markets itself as a safety conscious manufacturer has such poor record in the MOST IMPORTANT safety feature of any vehicle, be it combustion engine or not. With all the data out there collected by Volvo itself or 3rd parties, its impossible for people INSIDE Volvo not knowing about the premature replacement of the brake components on its NEW cars. Yes, the warranty covers it but what happens when the warranty runs out?

Choosing inferior products to be installed on the brake systems??!! How can they not know about this repetitive issue?? HOW IS THAT POSSIBLE?? Just the information on this website alone should be enough for Volvo to DO SOMETHING.

If I was the competition I would hammer Volvo for this!! A smaller car manufacturer will lose market share on issues like this. Why is Volvo management/engineering ignoring an ongoing issue for so long across so many trims?!

I invite all Volvo fans/owners, whether affected or not, to get loud about this and contact Volvo.
 

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The last time I looked, the best braking materials for pads do indeed wear out sooner than more brittle materials. Safety conscious designs use softer brake pads. Add in the weight of Volvo's, routinely 30% heavier than non-Volvo's, and you get a situation where brake pads do indeed wear out. He He, just google: "bmw premature brake wear" and see that the guys swilling beer at Oktoberfest also get complaints.
 

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I'm good with the pads wearing due to the weight of a Volvo and the great stopping power. However, what's up with the rotors warping???? That is something that engineering or manufacturing is ignoring in my opinion. I have read way too much about rotors going wonky on SPA V-90's and the rest at very low miles. Is it less expense to change parts under warranty than to design out rotor issues?
 

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There are different reasons for brake replacement. Wear, vibration or squeaking. Which are you complaining about? Without clarifying, this thread will go three different directions.
 

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I think it is clear that he is most likely referring to premature warping of the brake rotors; which definitely seems to be common among Volvo's.

We have a 2017 S90 T6 Inscription, have gone through 3 sets of rotors under warranty; 27k Miles

Previously had a 2013 S80 T6 Dynamic (factory order), I can't even count how many times the rotors were replaced under warranty; Traded in at 42k miles

Same story for our 2010 S80 T6; traded in at 35k miles

I can go on... we have had quite a few. Though in my opinion it seems a little outrageous that rotors are warping before having 10k miles on them, I take it as a quark of Volvo ownership and am thankful to typically trade in our cars before the warranty period is up. I am friendly with a few of the Techs at a local Volvo dealer chain with two locations (I worked there previously) and they all concur that it's been a common theme on Volvo's for quite a while now. A kink they either don't care to work out, or maybe from a safety standpoint these rotors are better than a set which holds up better and longer against warping? Who knows.
 

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Warping of the rotors isn't even the real problem. The pads transfer material to the rotor and it changes the surface from super smooth to wavy if there is a build up of material that is higher in some places than others.

https://alconkits.com/support/brake-pad-info/110-the-real-truth-about-warped-brake-rotors

It's probably not a manufacturing issue, but rather the way the cars are driven when they are being prepped for delivery. If the brakes get hot then sit pressed to the rotors in place for a bit, pad material starts to build up. If there's build up right off the bat, it just gets worse and worse with time. You might not notice it at delivery, but once that buildup is enough to be measured it's going to be something you feel quite strongly.
 

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Way back, when I was a beginning Volvo dealership mechanic, my hero and role model was the Volvo Service Representative. The man had a way of cutting to the chase on many an issue when he dealt with customers. The two favorites were how he dealt with brake wear and fuel economy. When there was a premature brake pad wear complaint, the first thing he would do was to look at the brake pad on the brake pedal of the customer's car. Customers would protest that it wasn't THAT pad, thinking he'd misunderstood. He would turn on them and ask how the hell the brake pads were supposed to last anytime at all with the driver's left foot resting on the brake pedal? The customer always claimed that they never did that, but the rubber brake pedal pad worn on the bottom left corner told the story. As I drive on the roads today, I frequently see cars driving along with the brake lights on or flickering on and off at steady speeds. That's the left foot doing it's thing to both pad wear and fuel economy.
On fuel economy. he was known to blurt out "J****S C****T, Lady! You gotta drive like there's an egg under your foot!" after having the owner take him for a drive.
Things were different in 1969 :nono:
When I finally became a Rep and dealt with Product Engineers, their mantra was always the same, "Design is a trade off" for virtually any product issue. Those of us dealing with customers didn't much like getting the Swedish Shrug :rolleyes:
If you want the best stopping brake pads, expect high wear. If you want pad longevity, expect to use both feet on the brake pedal (at the same time).
 

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Warping of the rotors isn't even the real problem. The pads transfer material to the rotor and it changes the surface from super smooth to wavy if there is a build up of material that is higher in some places than others.

https://alconkits.com/support/brake-pad-info/110-the-real-truth-about-warped-brake-rotors

It's probably not a manufacturing issue, but rather the way the cars are driven when they are being prepped for delivery. If the brakes get hot then sit pressed to the rotors in place for a bit, pad material starts to build up. If there's build up right off the bat, it just gets worse and worse with time. You might not notice it at delivery, but once that buildup is enough to be measured it's going to be something you feel quite strongly.
I suspect it is how the cars are driven even after delivery. Explaining how some people need their rotors replaced 3 times and many others not at all.
 

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Discussion Starter · #11 ·
I suspect it is how the cars are driven even after delivery. Explaining how some people need their rotors replaced 3 times and many others not at all.
But its not happening on something like a Lexus or an Infinity regardless of driving habits ....
 

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I suspect it is how the cars are driven even after delivery. Explaining how some people need their rotors replaced 3 times and many others not at all.
But its not happening on something like a Lexus or an Infinity regardless of driving habits ....
So you are claiming that no Lexus or Infiniti has experienced pulsating brakes? What is your source for this?
 

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Well I can only speak from personal experience. I drive very defensively and don't bother with dynamic mode. My rotors were just replaced, though I had to fight them to get it done at only 20k miles (pretty sure they were warped well before that).

I suspect mine may have warped driving down from a mountain. Nothing crazy mind you, and I was going slow, but that's the only time I can recall putting any heat into them for an extended period (though really it was only 10 miles or so). When I got to the bottom I stopped for a hike and I could smell my brakes. If that was the cause of the warp, I think there is a real issue. I should have no problem taking my SUV up and down a slight mountain road.

Another possible cause could be the adaptive cruise control. I swear it brakes harder than I ever would trying to keep it's distance.
 

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Discussion Starter · #14 ·
So you are claiming that no Lexus or Infiniti has experienced pulsating brakes? What is your source for this?
no no no that's not what I am saying and i am not claiming anything .... what I am saying is that there seems to be a pattern of brake rotors warping at early stages (low miles) that other luxury cars don't experience. I have never seen so many complaints about the same thing on any forum. There are cars like the BMW that have a similar complaint but that's for one or two model years , NOT all across their whole brand.
You can find this issue popping up on the XC60, XC90 and so on on this forum.
 

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I suspect it is how the cars are driven even after delivery. Explaining how some people need their rotors replaced 3 times and many others not at all.
I agree.
We have 20K on our 2018 V90CC and still have lots of pad and no problem with rotors.
Look at the drivers. I would guess a lot of people don't realize how they "really" drive.
 

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So you are claiming that no Lexus or Infiniti has experienced pulsating brakes? What is your source for this?
no no no that's not what I am saying and i am not claiming anything .... what I am saying is that there seems to be a pattern of brake rotors warping at early stages (low miles) that other luxury cars don't experience. I have never seen so many complaints about the same thing on any forum. There are cars like the BMW that have a similar complaint but that's for one or two model years , NOT all across their whole brand.
You can find this issue popping up on the XC60, XC90 and so on on this forum.
Because a lot of these cars share the same parts.
 

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Had my 32,000km service yesterday; mentioned pulsating brake sensation and, sure enough, warping issue to be covered by warranty. Service guy said that this is a present issue, unless I'm drag racing my xc-40, lol. I am very mindful of how I drive/brake. Hope this isn't the case again at my 64,000km service.
 

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One doesn’t need to be a rocket scientist to know that very hot metal warps itself after being quenched quickly by cold water (ie; puddle in a rain storm). That’s why a new pair of rotors can develop unevenness and warpage after recently being purchased. It used to happen all the time with my Audi. I used just live with it. It eventually corrects itself after continued usage by wearing it down.
 

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Discussion Starter · #20 ·
One doesn’t need to be a rocket scientist to know that very hot metal warps itself after being quenched quickly by cold water (ie; puddle in a rain storm). That’s why a new pair of rotors can develop unevenness and warpage after recently being purchased. It used to happen all the time with my Audi. I used just live with it. It eventually corrects itself after continued usage by wearing it down.
With your analogy driving in the winter would be impossible.

When the service dept notifies the customer that the rotors need to be replaced due to warping, there is a little more involved than the expansion and contraction of metallic material due to thermal variants.
 
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