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Acura TSX Brakes

gordonwdgordonwd Member Posts: 337
edited July 2014 in Acura
Quoting from above:
"4. The alloy wheels get filthy the same day after you wash the car. Too much black brake dust."

Acura must be getting serious about competing with the A4 and 3-series :-). The German cars are notorious for black brake dust accumulating especially on the front wheels. This isn't from "cheap" pads, but rather high-perf pads that are intended for stopping quickly from Autobahn speeds.

Actually, considering how much wheel cleaner I go through on my A4, I'm surprised at 45K miles to still be on the first set of pads! I guess I will be used to it if I end up with a TSX.


  • kapsikapsi Member Posts: 3
    My TSX is 4000 miles old, about 3 months that is. I can see some red rust on the brake disc. Also, in the morning when i brake for the first few times, it makes a weird noise. My fuel consumption is high too. I get around 250 miles in a full tank. My windshield- dashoard creaks too. Has anybody experienced similar problems? Has the dealer resolved the problems?
  • subhanandasubhananda Member Posts: 2
    HI guys
    I have been owning a tsx for a couple of months now. I am a total novice with regards to cars except to drive it. I have rust on the rotor(or whatever that is called)that is inside the wheels. Why does this happen. Is there something like a anti rust spray and how do i clean the rust that has already build up. appreciate ur advice.

  • robr2robr2 Member Posts: 8,805
    Rust on the rotors is a fact on just about all vehicles. The rust is caused by moisture in the air or from when you wash your car. I don't think there is anything out there to stop it.

    When you apply your brakes, the rust is removed by the brake pads.
  • automophileautomophile Member Posts: 780
    ALL Rotors develop a light rust layer as they are scraped raw every day in use. As robr says they moisture in the air causes the oxidation to develop when the car sits. Any coating would be quickly rubbed off (like the rust is)and would probably interfere with braking action. Don't worry!

    The TSX has a very open wheel design, so you are just noticing this for the first time.
  • xplorx4xplorx4 Member Posts: 621
    As others have said, rust on the brake rotors (those are the shiny discs behind your wheels) is perfectly normal if the car has been sitting for a day or two in a humid/wet environment. The first time you drive the car and apply the brakes, that thin layer of rust spots gets scraped off.

    If you drop by a dealer, walk around the lot and look at some of the new cars sitting there. They have "rusty" brakes too, until they go out for a test drive!

    DO NOT under any circumstances apply any kind of coating on the surface of your brake rotors. You will reduce your car's braking ability.
  • uncledaviduncledavid Member Posts: 548
    I have a little more than 5,000 miles on mine. Zero oil consumption.
  • automophileautomophile Member Posts: 780
    ALL brake discs rust - they are naked steel. Now that it is winter and there is more moisture in the air, you just see it faster. It is ground off the first time you use the brakes (the noise you hear?)and is perfectly normal.
  • uncledaviduncledavid Member Posts: 548
    You should also hear a clunk in the brakeline when you first start the car. That is normal as well. I don't understand why - but it has something to do with the antilock system.

    If you are getting lousy MPG after 4,000 miles the likely culprits are 1) underinflated tires, 2) bad gas (i.e., less than 91 octane). If neither of those issues are involved, they you should see you dealer for diagnostic work. There is no way your mileage should be anywhere near that poor.
  • jkobty2jkobty2 Member Posts: 210
    The brakes in the TSX already need replacement at only 23K miles. There is also evidence of uneven wear between the passenger side and drives side brakes (one grabs more than the other). Also the rotors are already grooved. Is this normal? Can brakes be fixed under warranty?
  • jkobty2jkobty2 Member Posts: 210
    I am not sure if this is related to the brakes problem, but my mechanic has noticed that the rear bearings are damaged. There is a weird sound coming from the rear when the car is in motion.
    BTW, I am no longer servicing the Acura at the dealership. I have been complaining about this to them for months and they did nothing.
    Someone referred me to a very famous mechanic here in Canada. He is Bill Gardiner who stars as well on the Motoring 2004 show on the Speed channel here in Canada.
    After working on the brakes he told me that he needed to replace the rear brakes only. The front brakes still have 40% left. I found it weird that the rear brakes would go first on a front wheel sedan, Bill told me that Acura tries to save money this way and makes the rear pads thinner than in other cars. It is a real shame.
  • jkobty2jkobty2 Member Posts: 210
    Ok, now the front brakes are gone, need new pads at just 30K miles, rear pads went at 24K miles.

    I think wind noise and creaks are the least of the problems with this car. For any of you who actually bought this car and are thinking of keeping it past its warranty period, you are in for some really nasty surprises. Get your wallet ready.
  • uncledaviduncledavid Member Posts: 548
    Every car needs new brake pads in time. And, if wind noise and creaks are your only serious problems, you are not going to be spending much on upkeep for your car.


    BTW, have 25 K on my car without a single problem. There are posters at the TSX enthusiast site who have upwards of 50K on their cars with no serious problems.


    Consumer Reports also rated the TSX as one of the most reliable cars in the segment. Only the IS300 got a higher score.
  • kyfdxkyfdx Moderator Posts: 236,527
    I have to say.. 24K on the rear pads is pretty pitiful.. 30K on the front is less out of the normal range..


    I must say.. you might have one of the worst Acuras ever... I wouldn't say it is representative of normal, though...




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  • robr2robr2 Member Posts: 8,805
    Brake pad life is very subjective. Just for kicks and giggles - my 98 Accord auto


    15K - front pads and new rotors OEM


    30K - rear pads and reface rotors OEM


    44K - front pads and reface rotors aftermarket


    60K - rear pads and new rotors aftermarket


    Now almost 90K - no brake work done or needed.


    My 91 Accord stick


    112K replace front pads OEM


    That's it. Same driving style - same conditions.
  • kyfdxkyfdx Moderator Posts: 236,527
    I posit that there was something wrong with your '98.. I got similar mileage out of brakes on other cars, as you did.. '82 Accord.. 130K on original brakes..


    But, my '99 Accord.. 39K in two years, and still had 50% when I traded it..


    Not saying you could find anything wrong with your '98... but, that kind of wear is just not normal.. especially, since you've demonstrated that you are not tough on brakes...


    Didn't you think it was unusual?




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  • uncledaviduncledavid Member Posts: 548
    The durability of brake pads is determined more by driving conditions and driving style than anything else. It is seriously unlikely that the above posters brake pads wore down early because of something that Acura did.


    Now, if his brake pads were getting warped frequently, that would be another isssue...
  • kyfdxkyfdx Moderator Posts: 236,527
    If your rear brakes go before the front ones, especially on a front-driver.... something is not right..


    Now..if it were a 911.....

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  • indydriverindydriver Member Posts: 620
    What aftermarket brake parts did you get such good performance from?
  • robr2robr2 Member Posts: 8,805
    No I don't think there is anything wrong with the brakes. I think I'm harder on the 98 with the automatic than the 91 with the stick. There's that inherent engine braking that occurs with release of the throttle with a stick that you just don't get with an automatic.


    What I was trying to show was that my expectation for my 98 was wildly overboard based on my 91 and that the person who was crying end of the world based on brake wear is off the mark.


    Now our 00 Odyssey went 42K on the fronts and that's mostly city driving.
  • robr2robr2 Member Posts: 8,805
    What aftermarket brake parts did you get such good performance from?


    On the 98? I havn't a clue. Whatever the local mechanic my SIL recommended put on the fronts and whatever NTB put on the rears. Although I will say the breke dust is horrid with the aftermarkets. The OEM pads never dusted like this.
  • uncledaviduncledavid Member Posts: 548
    Again, that depends on a lot of factors. It typically is not the case in FWD cars, true. But, unusual brake wear is rarely the product of a QC problem with the vehicle.
  • kyfdxkyfdx Moderator Posts: 236,527
    Well.. I agree somewhat.. Especially on a forum like this.. it is hard to know how someone drives... kind of like comparing gas mileage..


    But, I think caliper problems cause a lot more premature brake wear than they are given credit for...


    Each model car is different... But, when the rear brakes go early on a front driver, and you've usually had long life from your brake pads... I still say something is wrong.. (If your teenager just got his license, that may be it..lol).


    I agree with your premise, though... If someone tells you his brakes wear out early, don't assume the brakes are faulty..




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  • johnny420johnny420 Member Posts: 473
    I'd be very interested in learning how jkobty2 drives his car. If he drives it like he's qualifying for an SCCA event, then he has no room to squawk about premature brake wear.


    I suspect he does drive it hard. Nothing wrong with that. The TSX kind of demands it from it's owners :-). Given "normal" driving style, though, the numbers he posted seem pretty low.


    Of all car components, I'd guess brake pads would rank low on the list of things with QC issues.


  • jkobty2jkobty2 Member Posts: 210
    The rear brakes go out sooner on the TSX for a very simple reason. The rear pads are very thin to start with. I guess Acura figured they could save some money there.

    The TSX is driven by my wife most of the time. While she is a spirited driver, that is no excuse for needing brake jobs after such short mileage. And I am not bench marking the TSX against a Luxury car or an expensive car. Her previous car was a Korean Daewoo Nubira which lasted for her entire lease period with ZERO problems. Being a daily work car(real estate agent) you would expect more wear and tear. But if a Korean car can outlast an Acura, then Acura is really cutting back on quality.
  • uncledaviduncledavid Member Posts: 548
    Acura is not cutting back on quality and the notion that there brake pads are especially thin to save money is more than a little bit of a stretch.


    I have 25,000 miles on my TSX and not a peep of problems with the brakes, and I check the wear fairly regularly. This is my third Honda product, and none of them had unusal brake wear. In fact, according to Consumer Reports, the reliablity of the TSX brakes is "much better than average."


    You experience not withstanding, the brakes on the TSX are very reliable as is the rest of the car. there is nothing wrong with the OEM pads and they are not especially thin or especially cheap.


    I'm not making light of your frustration with the vehicle. But, if the brake pads were somehow extra thin (as you are suggesting) why aren't other TSX drivers having trouble with premature wear?
  • jkobty2jkobty2 Member Posts: 210
    I am not the one who made up the comment about the rear brake pads being almost have as thin as other cars. My Mechanic who is probably the most famous mechanic in Canada who appears regularly on the Canadian show 'Motoring 200x' is the one who did my brake job on the TSX and being part of an auto show program he is quite familiar with the shortcomings of this vehicle. He is the one who also noticed that my Acura dealer did not change the oil filter on the last oil change.

    Acura Quality! just read the posts above mate. It is hilarious to even mention the word quality anymore with Acura in the same sentence. Bad transmissions and clutches on brand new cars! Give me a break.
  • c_hunterc_hunter Member Posts: 4,487
    Did your world famous mechanic know that the oil filter only gets replaced at every other oil change??


  • uncledaviduncledavid Member Posts: 548
    Your dealer may not have changed your filter but that has nothing to do with "Acura quality." Acura builts a quality product, and you just happened to take your car to a shop that didn't do a good job. I'm not going to defend Acura dealer support (which, at least in the states, is quite poor). That is a whole different issue from quality control on the product line though.


    Not that it is even relevant to the discussion, but I have my oil changed every 3,000 miles. The filter has been changed by the Acura dealer each time.



    Your mechanic may be "the most famous in all of Canada" but the notion that Honda is buying especially thin brake pads to save a few dollars is still without merit. If that is the case, why aren't other drivers having trouble with premature wear? I have 25,000 miles on my TSX and I personally check the pads for wear every 5,000 or so mile. They are pretty far from needing to be replaced, and I live in heavy stop and go traffic.


    What "bad transmissions and clutches" are you discussing? So, you saw one or two posts on a chat board, and that tells you there is a problem in the entire car line? Consumer Reports has survey data from thousands of drivers, and rates the transmission reliablity on the TSX "much better than average." JD Power basically reaches a similar conclusion.


    Through the enthusiast TSX site, I probably know about 30 6MT TSX drivers. No one has reported a single problem with their transmission. No clutch problems. No gearing problems. No problems at all.


    You're being pretty unfair to Acura here. You are making sweeping conclusions about the car based on your own brake pads needing to be replaced and a few posts you've seen here. That isn't a very solid foundation for conclusion.


    I'm sorry you are having trouble with your car, and hope everything gets resolved. But, the notion that brake wear on your car indicates a poor quality vehcile that is going to cause trouble for all owners is a pretty extreme stretch.
  • prigorecprigorec Member Posts: 1
    I'm from Eastern Europe so excuse me for poor english.

    Last year I bought Honda Accord 2.4 6MT, which is essentially european version of Acura TSX.
    1 (one) day before annually service brakes failed launching me through intersection (empty, thank God).
    In service they told me that air "entered" brake lines (brake fluid did not drop in reservoir) and they solved it. Brakes worked OK.
    A month later brakes again started to fail. In another dealer first they did not believe me (No, it could not happened) but mechanic on test ride almost hit building. Now they changed master brake cylinder, ABS assembly and seals in lines and car is suppose to be fine. BUT, they do not to guaranty me that I have safe car.

    Did any have similar problem? It is supposed to be first problem of that kind in this model.
  • atf22zatf22z Member Posts: 1
    I just bought a Tsx, and noticed that when I go over 40 mph and apply the brakes my steering wheel vibrates. The faster the car is going the move you feel it. any ideas what is causing this to happen.
  • xplorx4xplorx4 Member Posts: 621
    Your front brake rotors are slightly warped. Resurfacing (aka "turning") the rotors, or replacing them, will correct the problem. If your car is still new, it may be covered under warranty. Check with your dealer.
  • jkalenjkalen Member Posts: 1
    I'm not sure if this chat is still going, however, I have 25k on my 04 TSX had had to have the rear brake pads/rotors done. The fronts still have 50%! I have never heard of rear pads going before the fronts. Am I totally out of the ballpark on this?
  • delmar1delmar1 Member Posts: 744
    'jkalen'....That is rather interesting that your rear pads went before your fronts. Typically the fronts wear faster.

    The only thought I have is....could there be a possibility that you had your parking/emergency brake on while you were driving? Or just dragging a bit? The reason is that the parking brake only engages the rear brakes.

    Only other thought is that your mechanic pulled one on you perhaps?

    Anybody else have thoughts?
  • chucko3chucko3 Member Posts: 793
    The rear pads are 1/2 thinner than the front pads. So they wear out sooner than the front.
  • delmar1delmar1 Member Posts: 744
  • delmar1delmar1 Member Posts: 744
    The more I think about it...are you certain the pads are thinner? Or are you thinking of the rotors?
  • chucko3chucko3 Member Posts: 793
    Very sure the pads are thinner. Same thing with the Accord.
  • jccai1jccai1 Member Posts: 113
    I've owned an Accord, an Integra and a TL. On all three, the rear brake pads needed replacements more frequently than the front pads. I think that indicates the rear pads are thinner hence wear out faster. Based on my experience with Honda/Acura cars, brakes is one of their weaknesses.
  • waw40waw40 Member Posts: 39
    Recent thorough evaluation of TSX by vtec.net discusses weak and prone to overheating OEM brake pads. The reviewer claims that replacing them with aftermarket pads, such as Axxis Ultimates,increases braking power substantially and eliminates overheating problems. According to vtec, replacing brake pads is the most beneficial modification one can do to a TSX.
    Questions: (1)has anyone noticed the above shortcomings of OEM brakes? (2)has anyone replaced the OEM pads (with what kind?)and experienced substantial improvement? (3) what will pad replacement do to the original manufacturer's warranty?
  • johnny420johnny420 Member Posts: 473
    My stock brakes have been OK so far (15K miles). I know people who've changed to aftermarket pads, and, yes, they've noticed a substantial improvement in braking performance.

    The only way any aftermarket mod can void or raise issues with your factory warranty is if the dealer can prove said mod led directly to whatever problem you are experiencing. This is unlikely with brake pads.

    BTW, Hawk pads are said to be very good, too. Many TSX enthusiasts love them.

    It's open for debate whether brake pads are the best mod for the TSX. The Hondata ECU reflash and A-Spec suspension are pretty good,too. Or CAI. Or better rubber. Or headers. Or RSB, etc, etc.

  • waw40waw40 Member Posts: 39
    Most of the mods you mention are for appearance or power enhancement. Vtec focused on brake pads because they may offer safety enhancement, which in their book should take priority. I am not going to replace the stock pads with another brand immediately, but probably will do so after they wear out somewhat.
  • johnny420johnny420 Member Posts: 473
    Just throwing it in there for the sake of discussion. I'm very familiar with the ToV article. BTW, Jeff Palmer of ToV has his '04 TSX modded with everything I mentioned. If you haven't already perused them, his write-ups make for good reading.

    You're right, though, the brake pad swap would be an inexpensive, yet substantial, upgrade. :shades:

    Oh, and none of the mods I mentioned are for appearances sake. They either address power or handling. :D
  • jeannjeann Member Posts: 1
    I've only had my 06 TSX for one week. I hear squeaks when I step on the brake pedal every time. The sound is not very loud. But it's always there. The dealer says it's because of the moisture. It's been raining a lot recently in my city. Anybody has any ideas about this? Thanks in advance.
  • drewbadrewba Member Posts: 154
    I don't recall ever hearing the breaks squeak in the year that I've owned the car (and I live in Seattle which went through 30+ straight days of rain this winter).
  • mrgold35mrgold35 Member Posts: 73
    I’ve had my 06 TSX for 3 months and 3,500 miles with no squeaks from day one. Maybe you need to give the car more time to break in to see if it might go away. :confuse: When I changed the breaks on my 97 Accord, it took a few weeks to stop squeaking and the same amount of time to start biting harder during breaking.
  • johnny420johnny420 Member Posts: 473
    If the brakes aren't properly bedded in during the first 500 miles or so, these types of issues can arise. That's why the manual says no hard braking for the first 500 mi. You should do that anytime new pads or rotors are installed, too.

    And it's brakes people, not breaks! :shades:
  • mlkingmlking Member Posts: 1
    We have a 2006 TSX that we bought new in August 2006. We live in the northwest, and since the day we bought this car the brakes squeak/squel when you are in a drive thru at a fast food restaurant or when you are coming to a stop and the car speed is slow. The brake squeak/squel are worse in the winter versus the summer. We made a appointment to have the brakes looked at, and the service manager told us that the brakes on the TSX just do that, and that its normal. He did say he would resurface the rotors and replace the pads on the front this one time only. As soon as we rolled out of the dealership, the brakes squeaked/squeled just like before. The car now has 12k miles on it and the brakes are worse than ever. Sounds like a real POS going down the road. We are getting real frustrated with the brakes, not the car. Our local dealer is 120 miles away, so its not real close to just take it to the dealership all the time. Can anybody help here? thanks
  • fedlawmanfedlawman Member Posts: 3,118
    When a manufacturer decides what type of brake pads to put on a new car, they have to consider stopping power cold and hot, dust characteristics, pad wear life, noise, pedal feel, and numerous other factors.

    When I took my TSX to the track (a demanding 2.25 mile road course that's notoriously hard on brakes) back in 2004, the OE brakes lasted all day long with little sign of fade. In order for your TSX to have outstanding braking capability like this, it requires the use of aggressive compound pads - and a side effect of these compounds is some noise/squealing.

    The noise your brakes make when coming to a stop or slowly rolling through a drive-through is completely normal and in no way indicates a problem with your brakes. You can temporarily quiet your pads by applying some anti-squeal compound or a special adhesive backing to the back of your brake pads, but this material doesn't last forever and the squealing will return.
  • nj2pa2ncnj2pa2nc Member Posts: 811
    i also have a 2006 tsx, bought new in November 06. I do mostly highway driving and my brakes never have made any squealing noise so i would not consider what your brakes do normal. my car has almost 33,000 miles.
  • joan15joan15 Member Posts: 3
    anyone heard of an updated ACURA solution to this? Bought the car 3 months ago and have intermittent noise (not every time I drive the car). Dealer says Acura is aware but has not issued a solution yet - they offered to cut down my rotors a bit and replace the pads - should I do this? Otherwise I like the car a lot.
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