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  1. #1
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    Yes | No

    BMW 528i front Balo rotors warped after only 18K

    My saga of steering wheel shaking when braking is finally over. It's as almost I refused to believe that Balo could warp, that's how much I trusted them. Sure enough after checking again, they were warped pretty badly.

    Instead of trying to resurface them, I've got set of Zimmerman Coat Z rotors and Pagid pads and that solved the problem. I know that plenty here advocating Balo and I was one of them, but I'm done with them. On the other hand, I've done several brake jobs using Zimm. Coat Z and nobody complained yet.

    We'll see what happens.



    1998 BMW 540i 6 speed
    Arctic silver, M sport suspension (euro delivery), prod. date 05/98, non VANOS
    Staggered 18" style 32 OEM wheels
    3.15 open differential
    Remus exhaust
    AFE CAI with improved heat shield
    Z3 shifter
    VDO oil pressure and temperature gauges in place of headlight/fog switches
    Powder coated valve covers-satin black
    CDV delete
    Debadged
    AEA DRL module (aftermarket daytime running lights)

    1997 BMW 528iA
    Alpine white, premium package, prod. date 04/97, single VANOS
    Staggered 17" style 32 OEM wheels
    Debadged
    AEA DRL module
    Custom made sun blinds for rear seating area

    2000 Nissan Frontier Desert Runner, AKA "The Work Horse"

    Garage aids:
    Direct Lift Pro Park 8
    Campbell Hausfeld 28 gallon oil lubricated air compressor
    Newair ACP-1400H portable air conditioner and heater
    Auto Enginuity scan tool with BMW enhanced option
    Actron 9135 scan tool-for quick readouts




  2. #2
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    Member No: 4328 jimlev will become famous soon enough jimlev will become famous soon enough jimlev's Avatar
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    Yes | No

    I've never used Balo, but think any rotor can warp






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  3. #3
    Craig in Canada
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    Yes | No

    I usually use Balo....(m)

    ...and I haven't had a problem yet I can attribute to the Balo. I will say that when they arrive they scream quality - TUV stamps, made in Germany, individual serial #s, good balancing etc...

    On the other hand, I'm not a defender who believes nothing can go wrong. I believe that I'll be getting a runout gauge before buying a master cylinder to see if my coated Balo rears do, in fact, have runout that I can't feel when braking that might be causing my "double press/micro bubbles" saga from last fall. We'll see what the results are, I suppose.

    Like Jim said, anything can warp. Can you be absolutely positive that you don't have a dragging caliper on the front? Also, what are you torquing the little hex hold down screw too? It's supposed to be very light or it can cause the rotor to sit crooked. It's really there just to keep the rotor from separating from the hub when the tires are removed.

    Glad you're on to something, at least. It can be so frustrating...


  4. #4
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    Yes | No

    Re: I usually use Balo....(m)

    It's hard to say right now. I'm going to be watching it closely for caliper drag as I haven't rebuildem last night when I did brakes. I've just cleaned all the surfaces, retorque rotor allen bolt to 16NM and caliper bolts to 30NM etc. Maybe I blamed Balo prematurely, it could be something else. I was just frustrated last night and somebody had to be blamed. I'll see if I can resurface Balo and have it as backup rotor if Iencounter the problen again.



    1998 BMW 540i 6 speed
    Arctic silver, M sport suspension (euro delivery), prod. date 05/98, non VANOS
    Staggered 18" style 32 OEM wheels
    3.15 open differential
    Remus exhaust
    AFE CAI with improved heat shield
    Z3 shifter
    VDO oil pressure and temperature gauges in place of headlight/fog switches
    Powder coated valve covers-satin black
    CDV delete
    Debadged
    AEA DRL module (aftermarket daytime running lights)

    1997 BMW 528iA
    Alpine white, premium package, prod. date 04/97, single VANOS
    Staggered 17" style 32 OEM wheels
    Debadged
    AEA DRL module
    Custom made sun blinds for rear seating area

    2000 Nissan Frontier Desert Runner, AKA "The Work Horse"

    Garage aids:
    Direct Lift Pro Park 8
    Campbell Hausfeld 28 gallon oil lubricated air compressor
    Newair ACP-1400H portable air conditioner and heater
    Auto Enginuity scan tool with BMW enhanced option
    Actron 9135 scan tool-for quick readouts



  5. #5
    Registered Member
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    Yes | No

    Re: I've never used Balo, but think any rotor can warp

    You're right. I just had to blame somebody out of frustration. I'll be watching it closely for possible caliper problems that may have caused the warp.



    1998 BMW 540i 6 speed
    Arctic silver, M sport suspension (euro delivery), prod. date 05/98, non VANOS
    Staggered 18" style 32 OEM wheels
    3.15 open differential
    Remus exhaust
    AFE CAI with improved heat shield
    Z3 shifter
    VDO oil pressure and temperature gauges in place of headlight/fog switches
    Powder coated valve covers-satin black
    CDV delete
    Debadged
    AEA DRL module (aftermarket daytime running lights)

    1997 BMW 528iA
    Alpine white, premium package, prod. date 04/97, single VANOS
    Staggered 17" style 32 OEM wheels
    Debadged
    AEA DRL module
    Custom made sun blinds for rear seating area

    2000 Nissan Frontier Desert Runner, AKA "The Work Horse"

    Garage aids:
    Direct Lift Pro Park 8
    Campbell Hausfeld 28 gallon oil lubricated air compressor
    Newair ACP-1400H portable air conditioner and heater
    Auto Enginuity scan tool with BMW enhanced option
    Actron 9135 scan tool-for quick readouts



  6. #6
    Craig in Canada
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    Yes | No

    Re: I usually use Balo....(m)

    ...I'm not trying to defend Balo or talk you out of your observations. I may opt for Zimmerman CoatZ next time - who knows. Your hex bolt torque sounds on the money - frustrating!


  7. #7
    Bimmer5Michael
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    Yes | No

    I only have 85,000 on my rotors they were BMW

    rotors put on at the dealer, just on my second set of pads.

    I don't know what the dealer put on them before I bought the car. I will need new rotors and brakes this summer.

    This BMW has absolutely been the best BMW owned to date and seems to be very easy on all the parts, well at least one of us is easy on the parts. My son says I drive the stink out of it so I guess it must just be one of the good ones (about time!)

    Glad you have gone through your brakes and suspension so you can advise me this summer.

    I have worked on this 540 so little I have almost lost some skills, the skills I got during E34 ownership.

    Michael
    00 540 sport 6 speed

    I did not go on the drive Saturday.

  8. #8
    Eurodavid
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    Yes | No

    Re: I usually use Balo....(m)

    BMW540san,

    Well, I took off the front wheels yesterday so I could visually check my Balo rotors (about 23k on them now) and attempt to see any imperfections, thickness differences, etc. I couldn't find anything, and the brakes exhibit no shuddering at any speeds, so I am crossing my fingers and hoping all is well.

    Eurodavid

  9. #9
    Registered Member
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    Yes | No

    Re: I only have 85,000 on my rotors they were BMW

    I've heard many times that OEM rotors are one of the best and next time I may pay a little more and go with OEM brakes. Feel free to call me when you need advice, that is if I know it.



    1998 BMW 540i 6 speed
    Arctic silver, M sport suspension (euro delivery), prod. date 05/98, non VANOS
    Staggered 18" style 32 OEM wheels
    3.15 open differential
    Remus exhaust
    AFE CAI with improved heat shield
    Z3 shifter
    VDO oil pressure and temperature gauges in place of headlight/fog switches
    Powder coated valve covers-satin black
    CDV delete
    Debadged
    AEA DRL module (aftermarket daytime running lights)

    1997 BMW 528iA
    Alpine white, premium package, prod. date 04/97, single VANOS
    Staggered 17" style 32 OEM wheels
    Debadged
    AEA DRL module
    Custom made sun blinds for rear seating area

    2000 Nissan Frontier Desert Runner, AKA "The Work Horse"

    Garage aids:
    Direct Lift Pro Park 8
    Campbell Hausfeld 28 gallon oil lubricated air compressor
    Newair ACP-1400H portable air conditioner and heater
    Auto Enginuity scan tool with BMW enhanced option
    Actron 9135 scan tool-for quick readouts



  10. #10
    Registered Member
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    Ooltewah, TN, United States
    Member No: 119706 Bmw540san is on a distinguished road Bmw540san's Avatar
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    Yes | No

    Re: I usually use Balo....(m)

    It's hard to say what happened in my case. I'll definitely check my brakes in about 200 miles. By that time brakes should be set in. I'll also flush the brake fluid and replace brake piston dust seals, caliper bolts and guides since I have them already.



    1998 BMW 540i 6 speed
    Arctic silver, M sport suspension (euro delivery), prod. date 05/98, non VANOS
    Staggered 18" style 32 OEM wheels
    3.15 open differential
    Remus exhaust
    AFE CAI with improved heat shield
    Z3 shifter
    VDO oil pressure and temperature gauges in place of headlight/fog switches
    Powder coated valve covers-satin black
    CDV delete
    Debadged
    AEA DRL module (aftermarket daytime running lights)

    1997 BMW 528iA
    Alpine white, premium package, prod. date 04/97, single VANOS
    Staggered 17" style 32 OEM wheels
    Debadged
    AEA DRL module
    Custom made sun blinds for rear seating area

    2000 Nissan Frontier Desert Runner, AKA "The Work Horse"

    Garage aids:
    Direct Lift Pro Park 8
    Campbell Hausfeld 28 gallon oil lubricated air compressor
    Newair ACP-1400H portable air conditioner and heater
    Auto Enginuity scan tool with BMW enhanced option
    Actron 9135 scan tool-for quick readouts



  11. #11
    Craig in Canada
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    Yes | No

    Re: I only have 85,000 on my rotors they were BMW

    I believe that dealer rotors *ARE* Balo, Zimmerman or ATE. Just like when buying "Lemforder" suspension parts (which show up with the BMW logo ground off) instead of going to the dealer counter, they should be identical. The only difference I found in the rotors from my dealer were that they had primer on the hats. ...and the price. Dealer pads will be Textar, Jurid or Pagid. I confirmed this when removing factory and dealer-sourced replacement pads. My fronts had "Textar" stamped right on them. The rears were Jurid and the p-brake were Pagid. My Porsche dealer brakes were Pagid. These are the major brands you'll find from Euro parts houses in OE spec formulations.

    On my latest brake job I used coated Balo rotors and they're even better. I know that Zimmerman has been doing coated for years. It's fairly new for Balo.


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