Its good that you don’t have to deal with snow and road salt. The rest of the country is not so lucky. Recent study over State of Texas, Ohio and province of Ontario by the Global Brake Safety Council showed that almost 60% of brake pads replaced were rusted and discarded before the friction had a chance to wear. They instead had rust related seizures, noise, vibration and friction “chunking” and rust jacking effecting performance and stopping distances which is obviously dangerous. And regardless of snow, as debris from the road chips away the paint on the brake pad steel, even moisture in the air will cause raw steel to rust.Hehehe. We don't get snow here so I have never seen rust on the pad backing - if I did I would make sure the relevant parts were well greased and ignore it, it won't affect performance. Brake rotors are usually cast iron for a very good reason - it stays very rigid and stable with temperature changes and in the case of rotors provides the best friction.
If you are more worried about appearance than anything else I suppose they could help - but what kind of friction material do they use?
I do agree that the surface rust on rotors is not cause for major concern as it usually wipes away after a brake cycle or two, however the real rust issue is on the most venerable part of the brake system, the brake pads and this is something that we usually cannot see, especially for the inboard brake pads.
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