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Discussion Starter #1
How many of you have submitted your expenses to Chrysler for reimbursement?

Our van is less than 2 years old, about 40,000km and the rear brakes are done. I was hoping that we had gotten the "fixed" rear brakes, considering our June 2011 build date, but it appears not.
The fronts have an "estimated" 50% left. It was around 3 years and 50,000km when we had to do front brakes on our last van, so I don't have a problem with them. They are a wear item unfortunately after all. The issue here is that these vans seem to be rear-biased for braking, so the rear brakes do most of the braking. However, there is obviously something wrong as they are willing to replace the calipers under warranty on the rear...

I got a call back yesterday from a very nice rep at Chrysler Canada. The rep said that they discussed it with the service manager at my dealer, and we should get close to 10,000km out of the rear brakes still. Apparently the average life for rear brakes is less than 38,000km. But she said to keep them posted. She also said that a lot of dealers in this area recommend the brake services every 1-1.5 years because of the salt and junk on the roads here.

38k for brakes is ridiculous IMO, and WAY TOO SHORT. These vans do most of their braking with the rear brakes, so I understand that they will go before the fronts will, but the fronts are at an estimated 40-50% as well. The front brake usage is normal to me (but that is with a front biased braking setup). The front brakes on my Caliber lasted me close to 5 years and 55,000km and that is mostly city driving. The rear brakes are drums, and so I've only cleaned them as they were squeaking. Our last van (an '07 with rear drums) had the front brakes last about 3 years and 50,000km.

It seems the front brakes on this van are going to be about the same, 3 years and 50-60,000km. But the rears are just garbage. Also, I guess that's why all the 2013+ vans have 17" wheels and bigger brakes now. (A Neighbour got a 2013 base model and I went and snuck a look at the tires this morning. They have 17" steel wheels and wheel covers now)

I still go back to the fact that there must be a problem back there for them to offer to warranty the rear calipers...
 

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UN4GTBL said:
How many of you have submitted your expenses to Chrysler for reimbursement?
Back when we had our 2009 Journey SXT (have a 2010 now - long story), the front brakes wore out by 22K miles. I had them replaced. Not long after Chrysler issued a warranty adjustment of sorts with a "deductible" for replacement depending on mileage for the minivans. Just before they extended this warranty coverage to the Journey's I submitted a good will claim to Chrysler. They reimbursed me the full amount for the brake service. Shortly after the warranty coverage was extended on the Journey's.

I think the front brakes are still doing most of the work, but if you drive somewhat aggressively, the rear brakes can wear fast too due to the traction control. Coworker of mine has a Pontiac G8 and his rear brakes are wearing just as fast as the fronts due to the traction control - he admits he is somewhat of an aggressive driver.

I've noticed my rear wheels tend to get coated with brake dust faster than the fronts. Not sure if they are wearing faster - I think the pads on the front have been improved. Just had our 2010 front brakes serviced 6 months ago. The rears just passed the annual safety inspection - not sure how much they are worn - vehicle has 55K miles and we bought it used with 30K on it.

Even after our 2009 had the front brakes serviced, I noticed far less brake dust on the front wheels.

To file a claim you need to contact Chrysler, get a claim # and then submit your repair bill and manner in which you paid (check, credit card, cash). I received a check about 2-3 weeks later.
 

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Discussion Starter #3
Doug D said:
Back when we had our 2009 Journey SXT (have a 2010 now - long story), the front brakes wore out by 22K miles. I had them replaced. Not long after Chrysler issued a warranty adjustment of sorts with a "deductible" for replacement depending on mileage for the minivans. Just before they extended this warranty coverage to the Journey's I submitted a good will claim to Chrysler. They reimbursed me the full amount for the brake service. Shortly after the warranty coverage was extended on the Journey's.

I think the front brakes are still doing most of the work, but if you drive somewhat aggressively, the rear brakes can wear fast too due to the traction control. Coworker of mine has a Pontiac G8 and his rear brakes are wearing just as fast as the fronts due to the traction control - he admits he is somewhat of an aggressive driver.

I've noticed my rear wheels tend to get coated with brake dust faster than the fronts. Not sure if they are wearing faster - I think the pads on the front have been improved. Just had our 2010 front brakes serviced 6 months ago. The rears just passed the annual safety inspection - not sure how much they are worn - vehicle has 55K miles and we bought it used with 30K on it.

Even after our 2009 had the front brakes serviced, I noticed far less brake dust on the front wheels.

To file a claim you need to contact Chrysler, get a claim # and then submit your repair bill and manner in which you paid (check, credit card, cash). I received a check about 2-3 weeks later.
Thanks!

The fronts on our '11 seem to be par for the course. Dealer estimates they are at 40-50% left.

But, yeah the rear wheels on our van get dirty first (like the front wheels on our '07) so it leads me to believe that these vans are rear-biased in their braking. The ABS/TCS is a good point. I don't drive the van much, as my mom drives it most of the time, but it's split between city and highway probably 40/60

When we do get the rears replaced we will be submitting the expense to Chrysler
 

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My mom n laws 2012 Caravan has a ton of brake dust on back and has about 30k miles. I suspect I will have to due rear brakes in the future. She has the 16' wheels.

I won't even talk about my 09' Journey.....

However the one reason I got the Touring-L over the base Touring was because of the 17' wheels and big brakes. I have 7k miles and no signs of any wear. Very happy.
 

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Ceramic pads cut down on black dust considerably and do last for awhile. Some parts stores offer house-brand 'lifetime' pads and that helps to keep you as a customer. It is a good value.
If there concern about dragging rear brakes, it needs to be addressed. With the rear of the vehicle safely jacked off the ground, both rear wheels should turn fairly easily. Usually a caliper or slider binding issue won't affect both rear wheels equally. If one spins easier the the other, the tight one should come apart for inspection. The parking brake may be part of the caliper mechanism and these can be troublesome with dragging pads. The ESP will apply any brake briefly in order to counter a detected slip or slide condition, but shouldn't be a factor in normal driving on dry roads.
Pads can bind on the their mounts due to rust. They should be able to 'float' on the caliper adapter bracket and not be 'stuck', but they must not be loose enough to rattle either. Stuck pads are the ones that either wear or make the other pad do the stopping work and therefore that pad will wear faster.
Rust can build up underneath the mounting (anti-squeal) shim plates that fit between the pad and adapter bracket that the pads ride on and restrict free pad movement (if equipped, some pads ride directly on the bracket).
High-temp brake grease where the mounting points meet will keep them free, quiet and prevent the formation of rust. Typically this would be performed in a 'brake service' that doesn't entail pad and rotor replacement.
I would have hoped that after 2010, the Journey and minivan brake pad and rotor issues would be under control. The Chrysler Quality Guru Team certainly saw brake issues as one of the major complaints. Brakes should give acceptable service life free of noise, pulsation and rapid wear. Soft pads make dust and wear rapidly, but are usually quiet and easy on the rotors. Hard pads last longer, make less dust but are prone to squeal and eat rotors. Brake dust is an emission. Asbestos is out.
It is a balance in the pad lining material mixture that is apparently difficult to attain. I know that the blame was originally placed on a non-conforming vendor's manufacturing process, but that should have been solved awhile ago.
All the auto manufacturers have varying degrees of brake issues but when one offer an extended pad/rotor warranty on them, it shows that there is a problem.
 

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I would suspect a rear caliper problem more than an excessive rear brake bias as the cause for the excessive rear wheel dust, especially if they are going to replace the rear calipers.
 

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Discussion Starter #7
valiant67 said:
I would suspect a rear caliper problem more than an excessive rear brake bias as the cause for the excessive rear wheel dust, especially if they are going to replace the rear calipers.
This is my concern. Why are they offering the caliper replacement?
 

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Never heard of the rear caliper replacement being offered. Noticed my 2011 Caravan with 37000k on it has started to squeel, called dealer after talking to a couple people and he agreed that the sliders are probably sticking. So I asked if I just needed a brake servicing, but he says at that many K I should be replacing both my rotors and pads! At 37k? He said that they are known for it. Was thiking if I should get dealer to put some on after looking @them or replacing them myself with, say, something from Wagner, thermoquiet?
 

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Also, just had front brakes and rotors replaced under the extension to 2 years or 40k notice that they sent me just after I purchased.
And, is there a TSB on the rear brakes or mentioned calipers? Thanks,
 

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The parking brake may be part of the caliper mechanism and these can be troublesome with dragging pads.
This was the issue I had on my Journey, was no fun to have rear brake's smoking....

In this case one brake was sticking and the other was fine.
 

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There is a DealerConnect Tech Tip (TT9001840) about replacing the rear pad mounting brackets on both rear brakes (not the calipers) in cases of accelerated pad wear, off-brake noise and other issues (except where the caliper piston doesn't screw in or adjust out that would only be inside the caliper).
Bracket part #68029886AA. A special grease is required under the pad mounts (#4796269).
 

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Thanks ImperialCrown, true info as usual. Took my van to dealer today, no replacement of calipers, but $415 later new rotors and pads. 2 hours labour @ 109.95 per...ouch!
 

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Still you can submit a claim that you are not satisfied with and hope for a 'Good Will' adjustment from Chrysler. It may be full, partial (parts only) or not at all, but at least you would have tried.
If you have a dealer service history, that works in your favor for Good Will consideration. Gather your documents and correspondence about the vehicle.
 

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Discussion Starter #14
I forgot to update this.

The front shudder got worse, so after ignoring it briefly because of time constraints, we took it to a friend who is a Service Manager at a different dealer than we usually use. He was willing to work with us on the cost a bit, despite us never using his dealership. The other dealer we've been using since 1990...

Anyways, the rear pads were at 0%, the front pads were at ~50%. The front rotors were done, and the rear rotors weren't much better. We paid for brake pads and labour, and Chrysler paid for all new rotors. They didn't see anything wrong with the rear calipers, so they didn't replace anything there.

The most interesting thing about this, is that the rear wheels stay clean now. It's been a few weeks and I haven't had to apply product to them to keep them clean, whereas with the original rear pads, the rear wheels would be black in a matter of days if I didn't apply the armor all rim protector to them. The new fronts are about the same as they were before.

This was at about 43,000km with mixed driving at about 50/50 city/highway
 

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Maybe they were using cheaper pads on the build and you got upgraded ones?
 

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The most interesting thing about this, is that the rear wheels stay clean now. It's been a few weeks and I haven't had to apply product to them to keep them clean, whereas with the original rear pads, the rear wheels would be black in a matter of days if I didn't apply the armor all rim protector to them. The new fronts are about the same as they were before.
I experienced the same thing with my Journey, the replacemnt pads, left almost no dust! was so nice!
 

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I forgot to update this.

The front shudder got worse, so after ignoring it briefly because of time constraints, we took it to a friend who is a Service Manager at a different dealer than we usually use. He was willing to work with us on the cost a bit, despite us never using his dealership. The other dealer we've been using since 1990...

Anyways, the rear pads were at 0%, the front pads were at ~50%. The front rotors were done, and the rear rotors weren't much better. We paid for brake pads and labour, and Chrysler paid for all new rotors. They didn't see anything wrong with the rear calipers, so they didn't replace anything there.

The most interesting thing about this, is that the rear wheels stay clean now. It's been a few weeks and I haven't had to apply product to them to keep them clean, whereas with the original rear pads, the rear wheels would be black in a matter of days if I didn't apply the armor all rim protector to them. The new fronts are about the same as they were before.

This was at about 43,000km with mixed driving at about 50/50 city/highway
Hey, UN4GTBL. I just found this thread, Lol, only 2 years old sure.
How have your brakes been holding up?
When I first got my 2011, shortly after I received "The notice" in the mail about the two year brake warranty. After about 12 months and approximately 24,000Kms, my front brakes were shot and needed new rotors and pads, all covered under warranty. The second year my drivers rear caliper seized needing replacement and all that was done under warranty free of charge. Since the warranty, I've put a set of rotors and pads on the rear and rotors and pads on the front. (Myself of course) and have been using ceramic pads. The Mopar branded pads didn't seem to be lasting any more than a year at a time on the front, so I decided to try aftermarket premium ceramics and they only ever got me 12 months/25,000Kms. So, not much of a difference. Like clockwork, my front pads need to be changed yearly. Rears last about 2 - 2.5 years. The fronts on my 2001 DGC had to be changed yearly as well. I would expect to get at least double that, as my yearly Kms is only about 25,000Kms anyway and 1/2 city, 1/2 highway. Glad to hear they have it fixed on 2013-up. Pads yearly, I don't really mind, but anyone who has to pay to have them done is gonna be "Ouch" and I can see how people would be upset.
 

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Hey, UN4GTBL. I just found this thread, Lol, only 2 years old sure.
How have your brakes been holding up?
When I first got my 2011, shortly after I received "The notice" in the mail about the two year brake warranty. After about 12 months and approximately 24,000Kms, my front brakes were shot and needed new rotors and pads, all covered under warranty. The second year my drivers rear caliper seized needing replacement and all that was done under warranty free of charge. Since the warranty, I've put a set of rotors and pads on the rear and rotors and pads on the front. (Myself of course) and have been using ceramic pads. The Mopar branded pads didn't seem to be lasting any more than a year at a time on the front, so I decided to try aftermarket premium ceramics and they only ever got me 12 months/25,000Kms. So, not much of a difference. Like clockwork, my front pads need to be changed yearly. Rears last about 2 - 2.5 years. The fronts on my 2001 DGC had to be changed yearly as well. I would expect to get at least double that, as my yearly Kms is only about 25,000Kms anyway and 1/2 city, 1/2 highway. Glad to hear they have it fixed on 2013-up. Pads yearly, I don't really mind, but anyone who has to pay to have them done is gonna be "Ouch" and I can see how people would be upset.
I don't know that it is settled yet...

We've had new rear calipers installed as they seized, and there were parking brake troubles, where it wouldn't release, etc. Our pads and rotors were all replaced before 40,000km under warranty. We'll see what happens. I think that there might be more rear brake problems actually to come.

I'm debating going to the "HD brakes" if I can find a good set of rims.

The brakes, transmission, and TIPM don't fill me with confidence. Otherwise, the van has been great.
 

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Do you have rear disc or drum brakes? Compare the pad and rotor size of front and rear? In other recent 4 wheel disc brake vehicles I have owned, they seemed to be matched so the front/rear wear at the same rate. The front does most of the braking, true, but the rear being much smaller is wearing at rate to match the front.

I'm not saying you've done this, but folks that ride brakes down mountain sides/long hills instead of downshifting, can have these results with brakes. For all I know, you live in Florida and never once overheated your brakes. Its just as likely you got a bad set of rotors/pads during assembly. One or the other can ruing the other, bad pads or poorly finished rotors could ruin the good rotor/pads and wear very quickly.

Keep in mind the stability control will activate the rear brakes individually to keep directional control. But, unless you've done all 40k kilometers of your driving in heavy snow or aggressive driving in heavy rain, I can't see how stability control could wear out the rear brakes prematurely.

No I highly doubt the mini-vans are rear brake biased, and you could tell if your was if it somehow it was the result of error in assembly or a malfunction. I suspect its a combination of what I spoke about before, later vehicles having brakes matched so they wear at the same rate and some problem with the brakes off the assembly line floor to make the rears wear faster then they should.

The mini-vans have traditionally been tough on brakes, but front brakes, its the geometry of the configuration, you're going to get a lot of weight transfer on the front wheels and they are going to do all the braking. So they are going to wear faster than other vehicles. Again, you particular van the rears wearing so much faster is puzzling and likely is the result of some sort of problem. Lets hope it was the rotors and/or pads that came from the assembly line, now that you have new ones, these will wear better.

Front shudder sounds like warped rotors, BUT, it could be several things, you need to troubleshoot and narrow down the cause.
 

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Do you have rear disc or drum brakes? Compare the pad and rotor size of front and rear? In other recent 4 wheel disc brake vehicles I have owned, they seemed to be matched so the front/rear wear at the same rate. The front does most of the braking, true, but the rear being much smaller is wearing at rate to match the front.
Rick - one reason the rear pads may appear to wear about the same as the front is simply the rear pad material is not as thick as it has been in previous models.

On my '06 Ram 1500, the front pads are usually worn done to 2 mm by the time I've logged 60K-65K miles. The first time I had the rears serviced (dealer) they were worn out at 90K - I was sort of expecting to get 110K-120K out of them. Still not bad. I recently replaced the front and rear pads at 215K so the fronts had 52K (down to 2.5mm - probably could have gone another 5K miles), but the rears were down to 1 mm - last serviced at 90K - should have serviced them earlier. Went with Car Quest ceramic pads from Advance Auto - far less dust than the MoPar Valueline pads.

If the fronts are only shuddering when the brakes are applied, it more than likely is warped rotors. It could be sticky calipers, but usually there are other symptoms as well such as very hot rotors and/or smoke and smell.

I agree minvan's seem to be hard on brakes. Our '00 T&C Ltd seem to need new pads (front) every 25K-30K miles. The last set though (installed at Firestone) had at least 40K on them. The rears usually needed replacement around 60K.

The '09 Journey SXT we bought new needed the front pads replaced at only 22K miles. I later filed a claim for reimbursement as Chrysler had issued a recall on the minivan brakes for that MY followed by the extended coverage on the Journey's since they used the same brake set up. Chrysler reimbursed me in full - no deductible.
 
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