You go in for brake service, and the technician says you need your rotors resurfaced or replaced. And you think: What the heck is a rotor? What is resurfacing? Why is this needed? How much will this brake service cost?
Here's a quick overview.
The rotor is attached to the wheel. It's what the brake presses on to stop your car, so it's a pretty important item.
When the brake presses on the rotor, it causes friction, which slowly wears away at the rotor. Over time, your rotor can become too thin. It can also warp from heat, or become pitted. All of these things will cause problems with braking. The brake may pulse or squeal.
One way to fix a lot of rotor problems is to grind down the surface of the rotor to make it perfectly flat again. This is a good option in a lot of cases. The rotor needs to be a certain thickness to do this, and it should be in overall good shape, not warped or cracked.
The other choice in brake rotor service is to replace the rotors. Sometimes you need a new rotor because the old rotor is just too far gone.
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