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Give your 4x4 the EBC treatment

Posted in How To: Transmission Drivetrain on December 1, 2011
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When your rig’s brakes don’t function as intended, you have a problem. We recently had this problem with our Midwest-based ’99 Lincoln Navigator. Over the years, the rotors had corroded (ah, the joys of living in the Rust Belt), which culminated with sub-par function as well as fascinating brake pedal pulsations. Something had to be done.

That something was to call EBC Brakes. EBC manufactures the world’s largest range of brakes so we knew EBC would have a solution for our dilemma. EBC recommended swapping our nasty factory rotors for a set of slotted and drilled 3GD rotors and our worn pads for a set of Yellowstuff pads. Our four-wheel-disc Navigator uses vented rotors up front and solid rotors in the rear, which is typical. EBC’s 3GD rotors utilize blind-drilled holes to eliminate the chance of rotor cracking which is common with through-drilled rotors. They also utilize wide-aperture slots that actually draw cool air under the pads during heavy braking to help reduce brake temperature. This design also helps remove dust, dirt, debris, and gases created by heavy braking from the pad contact area. Further, they also improve braking in off-highway conditions of wet, mud, and sand, so they’re a great choice for four-wheel-drive vehicles. The ultra-high friction Yellowstuff pads are made of aramid fiber, they’re totally resistant to brake rotor vibration, and they’re easy on rotors.

In the foreground are the front vented EBC 3GD rotors and Yellowstuff brake pads and behind them are the solid 3GD rotors and Yellowstuff pads. The black anodized finish is applied to most domestic vehicle rotors, while a gold anodized finish is applied to most import vehicle rotors.

Installing the new rotors and pads was easy. We wheeled out our floor jack and four jackstands and completed the install in our garage in a little over an hour. We say “relatively easy” because we had to deal with corrosion, which is typical in the Rust Belt, but may not be a problem where you live. Here’s how we did it, and the results.

We started up front on the passenger-side. With the wheel removed, the damage to the rotor was clearly visible. Both front rotors bore damage like this on the outboard side.
PhotosView Slideshow

Bottom Line
Before we installed the EBC pads and rotors, our Navigator averaged 129 feet 6 inches to decelerate from 50-0 mph. After the install, that distance decreased to an average of 85 feet 5 inches. This is an impressive improvement of 44 feet 11 inches or 52 percent. We were utterly stunned at how well the new EBC pads and rotors stopped our big Nav. Even if you factor out that the old rotors were shot, 85 feet 5 inches is a very respectable 50-0 stopping distance for a vehicle this heavy. And even at the end of three hard decelerations with only a two-minute cool-down between each, the EBC pads and rotors showed no signs of fade. Day-to-day driving with the new EBC brakes has been awesome and their performance is superior. EBC offers brakes for nearly all 4x4s and not only would we recommend them for replacement of worn out brakes, we’d highly recommend them for rigs equipped with larger-than-stock tires and/or heavy aftermarket bolt-ons. Quite simply, they work great.


EBC Brakes
Sylmar, CA 91342

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