When you look through the wheels of a modern truck and see what appear to be a set of rotors that are comparatively small compared to the wheel and tyre around them, you might wonder ‘why are those rotors so small?”. Sure, they stop the trucks fine in normal situations or the OEMs wouldn’t use them, but they could be a LOT better, plus LOOK a lot better, and below are some ways to upgrade and improve both looks and performance of those stoppers.
The first and most cost-effective way is to upgrade your brake pads by changing to a higher-spec compound with more bite and more fade resistance. We’re not saying OEM pads fade, you can decide that for yourself, but what we can tell you is that EBC Brakes’ pads are rigorously lab tested to not lose performance under heat and load to extremes as used even in closed circuit racing. That means no matter how you generate that extra load, whether it’s from long downhill descents, towing or carrying heavier loads, we know the EBC product delivers.
And the product we are talking about here is the recently upgraded ED Extra Duty-series brake pads. These pads grip, they last, they are silent and totally copper and sulphide free, being a first on reducing chemical bi-product waste on today’s greener world.
Electric Truck Brakes
Loads on truck brakes are going to get higher with the advent of electric-powered trucks which usually carry more than half a ton of extra weight with their battery packs. Whilst EBC welcome the move to a greener world, there will be some hurdles to cross and one of those is this extra weight EVs will carry. You will see from looking at some of the faster, higher-end EV cars that front brakes have gone LARGE – bigger diameter rotors and big four piston calipers clearly signifying that EVs take some stopping. We hope this will be repeated on the new ranges on EV trucks, too.
What this move in engineering to larger rotors and beefy calipers tells you that it’s common knowledge that good stoppers on EVs are definitely needed.
Of course, we need to consider the regeneration effect that happens whilst slowing electric vehicles, recharging their batteries. Whilst this is effective, it only affects battery life and distances possible per charge. What regenerative braking doesn’t do at all, is help you in an emergency.
In a panic stop, you need great brakes.
In the meantime, and back in the land of your fossil fuel truck or SUV, apart from the simple and best value option of better brake pads you can also consider sport slotted or even oversize rotors. EBC has various options for the top-selling trucks and is building more every week.
EBC makes a range of slotted rotors in their UK and Las Vegas plants to help improve braking under load. Popular amongst truck and SUV drivers in more arduous terrain such as encountering dust, wet or even snow are the GD-Series wide slotted rotors which flush the rotor braking area clean as you drive and expel gases generated under hard braking.
Popular for highway only use are the finer slotted USR-Series sport rotors that also dispel gases and help maintain a flat and parallel surface on both pad and rotor as the brakes wear. Contrary to many speculations, slotted rotors do not according to our tests accelerate pad wear in any significant way.
Both the GD- and USR-Series rotors have the added benefit of rust proof coating, which is removed from the pad sweep area after a few miles but leaves the hat and inside faces of the rotor rust protected for a good period.
Oversize rotors can be solid units, which EBC do not sell, or the new two-piece ‘Floating’ units that are far better in smooth braking, resisting warp or distortion when going oversize.
The EBC SG2F series shown above is being made available for numerous popular trucks as we speak for front, and soon after, rear end brakes. When you consider also that many of the new EV trucks with the removal of the gasoline engines will have a ‘frunk’, there will still be plenty vehicle load to even further support the idea of better brakes.
Three ways to improve your truck brakes in order of cost:
1. Lowest cost option is simply better pads such as EBC’s ED-Series pads
2. Next level is better pads AND sport slotted rotors such as the GD- or USR-Series
3. The high-end option, oversize floating rotors and of course those ED pads to complement the setup