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Old 08-11-2010, 11:49 AM   #1 (permalink)
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Default Brake Rotor Screws - done.

Alright kids.
I've read so many posts about the dreaded rotor screws that even I started thinking they were made out of some uber-indestructo-type material.

BAH & puh-lease.

Here's the deal on rotor screws. They are soft metal and not worth your concern. Not even a little bit. As in under five minutes per corner to rotor on the ground.

I approached mine knowing they were going to be stucker than shit. They didn't let me down either, laughing at my impact driver even (you can see indexing marks in the photos below, testament to that epic failure). I had classic screw removal bits, or drill bits that I could escalate to....

Well, no sense in screwing (chuckle...) around- directly to the 1/2 in drill bit, not new, but not abused either, and the ever classic battery drill.

As it turns out, this method is so quick I didn't apply more than a few token taps with the impact driver on the other three corners. From first picking up the drill bit to the fourth rotor being removed was about fifteen minutes. Including the time spent taking the pictures seen below.

Oh, and for the record, no, I didn't replace the screws.



1/2" drill bit > pot metal screws (lost one of them, darn it...)




Bit on screw- ya know, in case there was some confusion on this part...




Started- light touch on the drill till some of the head is removed. now that you have some meat to drill on you should lean into it a bit




In just a moment you'll find the top of the screw head on your bit
good sign, means your 75-80% done with that screw.










In the above pic you can see the ring in a new rotor, showing us there is just a bit of screw left to remove. Back to the drill we go...

"But..." you ask, "how do I know when to stop? How deep should I drill??"

Trust me, you'll know. The rotor is a significantly different material. When the drill gets there it will sound different, feel different and the shavings will change from silver to dark gray. You will notice the difference. On the first one, about the time you start thinking "Hmmmm... That's different" you should stop drilling. Your removing the screw, not shaving weight from the hub.


After a quick love tap from your favorite heavy, blunt object you end up with a freed rotor, easy peasy





Nifty thing about math, and rotor screws, is that when you remove thescrew head & the rotor, there is no more tension on the threads so they just spin right out into your hand... Kinda neat considering...






There ya have it-
Brake Rotor Screws - done.

No more mystery or confusion for all the folks who were dreading the prospect of replacing their rotors.

In short-
Try the screw driver
even try the impact driver if you have one
but don't hesitate to break out the drill.
- so easy to do I'd spend the money on a new drill bit before I bought an impact driver.
Drilling these eight screws takes only a few minutes
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Last edited by TiGraySpeed6; 09-05-2010 at 10:52 AM.
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Old 08-11-2010, 03:36 PM   #2 (permalink)
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Thanks for the detailed pics and instructions. This will be very useful when I have to replace my rotors...
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Old 08-11-2010, 03:49 PM   #3 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by TiGraySpeed6 View Post
...







OH!!!

A quick glance made it look like you had drilled a huge hole in your fender. LOL!
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Old 08-12-2010, 10:54 AM   #4 (permalink)
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Is it even necessary to have these screws? I just ran into this problem, but my screws won't come out after drill off the head probably because of all the salt on MN roads. Once the wheel is holding the rotor on, I don't see why they're needed.
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Old 08-12-2010, 11:44 AM   #5 (permalink)
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My understanding is that the screws were used to hold the rotors during manufacturing while the car was on the assembly line.

While they are a nice touch and do hold the rotor secure whenever the wheel is removed, they are not at all needed. Many, myself included, have elected to not replace them.
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Old 08-12-2010, 08:48 PM   #6 (permalink)
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they drill out like swiss cheese. its not a hardened metal. dunno why anyone is worried about drilling them out.
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Old 08-13-2010, 11:14 PM   #7 (permalink)
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Useful post, THX.. After the first time I had to drill these suckers out about 20+ years ago, I got in the practice of putting anti seize on these screws whenever I got a new car. Never had a bit of trouble since then.

No, these screws are not necessary, but they do keep the rotors from moving while you do pad or caliper changes.

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Old 08-14-2010, 04:02 PM   #8 (permalink)
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i just did this with the impact driver no trouble... need to use as big a hammer as you have and beat it like you hate it, but they came right out... less than 20 min new front rotors and brake pads.

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Old 08-16-2010, 01:44 PM   #9 (permalink)
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I went through this exact thing while getting my brakes replaced. We tried taking them off the proper way, using screwdrivers and impact drivers. After a while, we said fuck it and got out the drill.
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Old 08-17-2010, 07:55 AM   #10 (permalink)
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+1 same here
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