Squeaky Breaks anyone?

Squeaky Breaks anyone?

I just picked up my Model S 2.5 weeks ago (and am loving it, gets more head turns than anything on the road) and the breaks are squeaking! Granted, it has been raining non-stop in Chicago but wouldn't assume that would matter on such a sophisticated vehicle. I called the service center and they said "the breaks need to just warm up (!?)and from what I have heard from other Model S owners, it should go away. You could bring it in but likely we won't be able to fix it (?!?)"

First, is this break issue other new owners have experienced and
second, is this something that REALLY can't be fixed by the service center?

nickjhowe | May 29, 2013

Check out this thread:

If you don't want squeaky brakes, turn off regen so you use them all the time. If you use regen so you hardly touch the brakes, they will squeak. Your choice.

noshird | May 29, 2013

I have Regen on. Took about 2 months of use and my brakes no longer squeak.
A friend of mine's new Porsche squeaks too, just stopped sooner. Its a new brake thing.

lolachampcar | May 29, 2013

I brake hard and frequently. I also know how to bed pads.

MS has Brembo brakes. Another owner simply suggested you do a search on Brembo and squeak. You'll get the picture.

I finally put Potterfield brake pads on my Maranello to get it to stop squealing. I've found that I really do not use my MS brakes much at all and have (so far - 5K miles) been willing to live with that little bit of squeak just at the end sometimes.

If this really bothers you and it does not go away as others have suggested it will just PM me on TMC and I'll get you the Potterfield part numbers for the MS pads.


Derek Mclay | May 29, 2013

I wrote the thread referenced above. I'm in month 5 now with 4200 mlles on the car. I've tried everything and they still squeak. Hot, cold, regen, no regen, doesn't make a difference, they squeak. Get used to it. So many positive things about the car it's just a minor annoyance.

Sudre_ | June 10, 2013

My brakes no longer make any noise. 4000+ miles and a few months later.

ramtaz | June 10, 2013

12 days old, 700 miles, light squeaky brakes.

GeekEV | June 10, 2013

Mine seem like they've been getting better, but not quite gone though. 3,200 miles and 3 months.

drp | June 10, 2013

8700 miles and squeak only after a wash or after sitting in the garage after rain driving, but rarely now. Used to squeak a lot only at the end of a stop, every stop.

billbaggy | June 10, 2013

I have been driving my MS for 6 months and over 11,000 miles, still squeaks on slow rolling stops. It's the only annoying thing that remains, now that Slacker works again.

Maybe I will take the advice and go to regen low in order to use my brakes more. But it has been so nice not having to really use them, especially in stop and go LA traffic.


TikiMan | June 10, 2013

Yup, it's a Brembo thing. I had the same issue on my last sports-car with six-piston Brembo's on the fronts... stopped on a dime, but noisy as hell. Still, an occasional squeal is a small price to pay for incredible stopping power.

CAdreamin | June 11, 2013

When I sell Porterfield brake pads, I include a noise prevention kit. This kit treats the rotor surface, glides and slides etc.

Such squeaky noise is usually created under light pedal effort. The vibration travels through the brake pads to the metal backing plate. When the piston makes contact with the backing plate you get the noise.

So the solution is to reduce the vibration. Over time the vibration may change and the noise goes away

I guess brake dust is not a problem with MS due to regen. It is true that the Porterfield R4S compound does not accumulate brake dust as is the case with all European cars and many others. The R4S dust simply blows away. R4S is the fastest stopping street compound. Temp before fade 1,100F. Rotor friendly.

Danny Deaver | June 11, 2013

Has anyone had break pedal leaking down at a traffic lights . My car just started this.

lolachampcar | June 11, 2013

Porterfields fixed the noise on another Brembo equipped car. The other car was much worse than my MS thus the lack of doing MS' brakes.

john | June 11, 2013

After you get used to your car you will find you seldom use the brakes and yes they will squeak. Eventually Tesla will come out with a minor mod to fix this, all other companies have also solved this.

lolachampcar | June 11, 2013

Nope, Ferrari never did (well, they went to Carbon/Ceramic which I guess you could call a fix).

zero mpg | June 11, 2013

I've been driving for 8 months and 11K miles, not a squeak until the heavy rains as mentioned in Chicago and 10K miles. For me, the variable that changed was the rain and I know many may challenge correlation (myself included) but those are the facts. Only squeaking when applying brakes to physically stop the car after full regen stop and for me, it's not that noticeable.

Captain_Zap | June 11, 2013

Mine stopped squeaking after about 1000 miles. About 1/3 of that was city or stop and go traffic.

Brian H | June 11, 2013

Did you use the brakes before the heavy rain hit you (and the roads)?

hsadler | June 12, 2013

I think the squeaking is caused by lack of use - which gives rust a chance to put on a light coating.
Happens most often in moist climates, or after a car wash, or rain.

If we garage ours overnight (Tesla and others) - no squeak.
If left outdoors - we get squeak on all our cars.
Squeak goes away after a few stops.

RedShift | June 12, 2013

+1 hsadler.

Mine squeaked and mildly alarmed me once in my 2200 miles of ownership.
It happened after 3 days of non-use, and hasn't come back after that.

LeonardV | November 25, 2013

I found my factory pads put out lots of black sticky dust making it a pain to clean my wheels every time i washed my Model S. So I worked with both Carbotech and Porterfield to identify the Model S brake pads as no one seemed to have done this yet. As a result, here are some pad numbers for Carbotech's 1521 and Porterfield's R4-S pads.

Front CT1001-1521
Rear CT592-1521

Front AP1474 R4-S (with counterweights) (my factory pads had counterweights)
Front AP1001 R4-S (without counterweights)
Rear AP 592.15 R4-S

I ended putting on a full set Carbotech 1521 pads this past weekend and love them! They have a great initial bite, nice feel, totally quiet, and no visible dust after a couple days of driving. I did not get a chance to try the Porterfield pads but as I understand, they should be a great option also. In regard to counterweights, in my opinion they were not necessary and Carbotech did not offer them anyway.

BTW - I just took delivery of my Model S in September 2013, #20043 and have driven it about 7.000 miles.

Captain_Zap | November 25, 2013

I thought brake dust was normal for good brakes. The Model S definitely needs substantaial brakes due to its weight.

Educate me.

AmpedRealtor | November 26, 2013

I use regen extensively and try to avoid using my breaks whenever possible. My brakes squeak a little bit just before I stop completely. I'm glad to know it's from lack of use rather than something else. Thanks!

ks-man | November 26, 2013

I also find that if I use mainly regen I get some squeaks from my brakes either when I do a full stop (rare) or if I do a full turn of the steering wheel while braking like when I'm pulling into a parking spot with an extra set of turns to straighten or take it wide (more common squeaks).

I don't quite understand how regen braking doesn't actually use the brakes but it sounds like that is the case so this squeaking doesn't bother me as much as it did at first. If I consciously use the regular brakes more I find the squeaking stops.

I also find that I get more squeaks the colder the weather/car which is now common in Chicago.

JonathanL | November 26, 2013

Mine squeaked for 10k miles (VIN 67xx) until my service center replaced the rotors - no more squeaks.

Jewsh | November 26, 2013

I've always had some limited squeaking. Don't really care as long as the brakes are safe and usable. So far no issues though. | November 26, 2013

I also use regen braking as much as possible and with the exception of quick stops due to the eccentricities of my fellow drivers (and my own screw ups), I only apply the brakes to come to a complete stop or hold the car at a complete stop. (I use the creep function). So my brakes have had very little use. No squeaks so far at 4500 miles. The car is a MS85 and I live in a maritime/temperate climate so the car is not exposed to extreme temperatures or weather conditions.

On previous cars I have owned, when I complained to the dealer regarding squealing brakes they would apply a red gelatinous material between the brake pad clips and the backside of the brake pads. It worked. As I recall the material was also provided with after market brake pad replacement kits.

The parking/rear brakes do "groan" a little when release them on my moderately sloping driveway.

Brian H | November 26, 2013

regen uses motor drag only to slow the wheels. Not much there <5mph.