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Discussion Starter #1
Other than going for a larger swap (rotor, caliper) from a different Toyota vehicle into our Rav4, for now I'm looking into replacing my brake pads and rotors.

I'll go with Centric rotors but I'm unsure if any of you have experience with pads other than OEM that have a really nice repeated initial bite to them. I drive up and down hills and lots of stop and go traffic and I want something where I can use the weight of my foot to slow the vehicle and not have to lean into them. I'm sure stock will be ok in this regard but any other suggestions? I'm thinking about Akebono but without reading anything significant other than "they work like oem" I'd rather just go Toyota since I know they will be good for daily driving.

Specifically I'm looking for "I had x experience with the V6 Rav4 Toyota brakes and switched to x brand and now experience this". I in no way track my Rav other than going up and down steepish hills and stop and go traffic, so I'm not looking to go back to blocks of wood like "performance" or "street sport" pads that need to be preheated to work. I just want a nice daily driving pad from dead cold that effortlessly and confidently grabs and slows to a stop with the weight of my foot. Could care less about brake dust or fade since they've never been an issue to me.

Thanks all!
 

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I have Akebono on both of my Toyotas RAV4 and Camry and love them. Quiet and help the car car stop quickly. Made in Japan. Definitely recommend them to everyone.

Sent from my SM-G955U using Tapatalk
 

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IEDesign - I got a few posts in the linked thread: http://www.rav4world.com/forums/126-4-4-mechanical/264113-front-brake-pads-up-replacement.html
- I'm convinced the top MaxBrakes brake kit work better than OEM
- reduced stopping distance & quiet...no fade on occasional heavy braking
- 4 wheel kit is easy on wallet ($$)...sometimes on sale at 50% off
- brake dust from supplied ceramic pads, is very minimal
- got to reuse your Toyota stainless steel caliper shims / not included in kit

Originally Posted by Beaumont67 View Post

I bought the premium brake kit (G3500 cast iron rotors & ceramic pads).
Did the rear brakes last year...on 2008 RAV4 Limited v6 4x4
- and caliper pins de-rusted good & lubed with a ceramic paste
- this product ships out of the GTA-Toronto area / so Canadians save large / currently 50% off
- rotors are drilled, slotted & coated / I broke the brakes in hard, for 15 minutes
- my garage friend charged me $150 labor, to do the rear axle / include lube calipers, pins & shims
- still using original calipers, that came on the 2008 RAV4 v6 / one was sticking, mechanic fixed it

^^ Probably saved $700-800 per axle avoiding Dealership, and end up with great parts.
- could not be happier / improved stopping distance & zero noise
- brake dust on alloy rims, almost nothing
- will have the front brakes done, this fall
- since I ordered a 4 wheel kit, just a labor charge next time
- rotors are slow to rust, probably the G-3500 cast iron grade is higher in nickel content

MaxBrakes ELITE xDS Series Kits, shipped out of Ontario, Canada:
Brake Kits - ELITE xDS Series Kits
^^ Company also ships to USA customers.

First time I bought a 4 wheel brake kit, saved $500 in parts (for Jimmy), not purchasing from local NAPA/UAP.
 

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The best pad I had was Hawk Performance pads. I think they were LTS (semi-metalic) which was made for towing and trucks. They bite hard and had outstanding braking power. They worked very well with the Centric rotors.
Highly recommended if you want high performance braking. They out brake Akebono, stock, and many other pads. The prices of Hawk pads has gone up higher since I last got them and they are not in the budget range.
 

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Discussion Starter #5
The MaxBrakes are interesting, never heard of them before. On the website it seems to be more informational than buyable I'll see if I can find them around.

The Akebonos are probably great pads but similar to Toyota OEM (not a bad thing, I may still go this route).

With the Hawks I was under the impression they were "sport" pads that resist fading and can take high heat at the expensive of everyday driving where they need to be warmed up a lot before they bite, sounds like you found a pair DL that bite right away?
 

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Ummm . . . . If it's the direct brake feel you're after, have you looked into changing the OEM rubber brake hoses for steel braided ones?

In my old Subaru the aftermarket steel braid brake hoses cut the lag time in the brake activation so you think the grab is immediate. There is no hydraulic pressure loss in the ballooning rubber hoses.

I've used Hawk pads on my old Subaru but they seem harsh on the rotors. I actually liked the relatively dust free characteristic of the Toyota OEM ceramic pads. YMMV on how you used them.
 

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The MaxBrakes are interesting, never heard of them before. On the website it seems to be more informational than buyable I'll see if I can find them around.

The Akebonos are probably great pads but similar to Toyota OEM (not a bad thing, I may still go this route).

With the Hawks I was under the impression they were "sport" pads that resist fading and can take high heat at the expensive of everyday driving where they need to be warmed up a lot before they bite, sounds like you found a pair DL that bite right away?
They bite right away and don't need to warm up. These pads you can feel the difference. They work just as good when outside temperature is very hot and the harder you press the brake pedal the shorter the stop. They do have a bit more brake dust and noise but that is a trade off for better braking power. The Hawk don't make the LTS for the Gen3 just the Gen2 which I got for my 05. You can get the HPS instead which is a ferro compound material designed for sports cars, pickup trucks and SUV. There are some reviews on TireRack.
 

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Seconded on the Centric rotors

The best pad I had was Hawk Performance pads. I think they were LTS (semi-metalic) which was made for towing and trucks. They bite hard and had outstanding braking power. They worked very well with the Centric rotors.
Highly recommended if you want high performance braking. They out brake Akebono, stock, and many other pads. The prices of Hawk pads has gone up higher since I last got them and they are not in the budget range.
2010 RAV4 with 166,000 miles
Installed Centric Cryo-treated rotors and Hawk HPS pads on the fronts. I tow a Sea-Doo (couch) and it is the best combination I ever experienced so far. I drive a little aggressive when not towing, but there is extremely little wear after eight months.
 

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Discussion Starter #11
I researched into Hawks tonight while casually going over brakes again. It looks like they don't make pads for our Rav4s in our generation any longer. I used their pad finder and it shows nothing for different years in different trims. There are some random other trims in that drop down menu after you enter Rav4 and I tried "3.5L" which was another option, but it gave me some other parts. I went to Amazon and confirmed the same thing. No Hawk pads available for the 2012 Limited front brakes. TireRack (which sells Hawk) same thing, only Akebono and a couple others show up after entering our vehicle data. So either they all purchase the same vehicle compatibility data and that information is wrong or Hawk just doesn't make pads for our trim any longer. I'm going to move on from them.
 

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Hawk HPS still at TireRack

Strange - TireRack still has Hawk HPS and Ceramic for the 2.5 still. Glad I got mine earlier this year - they are expensive.:surprise
 
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