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updating and upgrading my brakes

721 Views 5 Replies 5 Participants Last post by  David Mackey
Ok so Ill start with my problem, and why I want to upgrade so bad. I have the slotted rotors from power slot front and rear, and I orig. baught the PBR pads for them. Now as many of you have experienced they squealed really bad. Only thing good about that squealing was that it got worse when the pads needed replacing. So I had the dealership go back to stock pads for now. I didnt before and I dont know like the feel of the brakes. I feel like Im applying too much pressure on the pedal to get the car to stop. I know they work good because if I slam them the car will stop. I would like better stopping, but Im just saying they arent horrible now. Now crazy enough I have braided lines from IPD, but I never installed them. I know that will improve the feel alot, and I believe make it so I dont have to apply as much pressure. I would also like to know if there are any adjustments on the brake master cylinder or anything. How do you know if the master cylinder is going, could that be my problem?
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See my comments on the turbo to R conversion thread about Kalmar's brake kit - it's a no hassle bolt-on conversion, designed for the model.

Trying to bodge a later Volvo's brakes will only end in tears.

In our club website on the Performance Section forum, you'll find comments on pads for the AP kit, do a search on www.volvoclub.org.uk
When y'all say the BPR pads squeal, is this all the time, when you're almost stopped, only when cold or what? The reason I ask is... I just ordered a set of metallics from ipd and they happen to be BPRs, so I suppose I should know what to expect.


I recently did a brake upgrade on my Volkswagen Golf. It uses Audi TT components, and is a pretty affordable upgrade and here's why.

The Golf uses the same caliper as the TT. The TT simply uses a different carrier, larger rotors and larger pads. For this reason, it's also an easier install as you don't have to crack open the system.

While at the Volvo Fire & Ice event last week, I looked at the brakes on the V70, the C70 and S80. Eyeballing them, they looked identical, though the S80 appeared to have larger rotors and the carrier design wasn't all that different from the Golf setup I have.

So, if the 850 uses the same caliper, upgrading to an S80 T-6 setup (I'm guessing the largest OEM setup made for FWD Volvos) might be a cake walk.

What we need is someone to go to the dealer, order these parts and try to install them. Unfortunately, I am no longer the current owner of our Project 854R so I am not a candidate.
make my car a project and try, hehe, um, but then again, if you break stuff, I might get pissed. Actually, I talked to some mechanics and race nuts about this topic. They dont know anything about Volvo's, but they know about brakes and said this: I need to properly bleed the brake system. They said the way dealerships do it is a joke, using this machine that doesnt bleed out the master cylinder and all, and so to really get the OEM spec feel back, you have to bleed the whole system. They said this was done by pumping up the brakes with the car off, then having a second person crack the bolt open-I dont mean litteraly, and when the pedal pushes all the way down, he tightens it up again. I keep doing this until its all cleared out. One guy said that with Braided lines the silicone brake fluid might help, that different drivers he works with prefer its feel and it doesnt attract water. I was told the Steel lines will make a big difference, and one guy showed me that all the lines have slight balloons in them, I guess thats the word, so that Im def. losing some pressure there. They also said that pads will make a difference, and that I should find one I like. I still dont want to go with a Big brake upgrade, cuz the 3 grand price and 17" wheels just aint an option. Ill check out that thread on the R thing though for sure.
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Brakes are what you make of them (or your mechanic).

I did PBRs in my Saab and my Volvo and love them. IN my Saab is did not reuse the anti-rattle clips so the first 6K miles I had the loud squeals and my wife went nuts (it finally stopped).

In the Volvo I used copius amount of the "goop" that prevents the pads from vibrating and making the squeal. Make sure you used this when doing the pads and you should be all set.

Hope this helps.

David M
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