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Old 10-25-2020, 04:17 AM   #1
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Default Metallic or metal?

On my '96 Nissan Quest....One of the sets of pads went away.* I am changing them*out.*

What sort of pads do you use, Ceramic, or Metallic?* Why?

When compressing the caliper, I noticed that the piston was chipped, and that it is not metal.* I looked at them on rockauto, Napa, and Oreilly.* Oreilly, and Napa only carry a caliper w/a Phenolic piston.* Rockauto carrys about 10 dif calipers, and several come w/a metal piston.* BTW, Oreilly is the only one that has em*in stock, and everybody else is an order proposition.* A lot of "smoke" there (obscuring the issue)....what sort of caliper piston is best, Phenolic or metal?* Why?

As a side point, the calipers were not the same.* One seemed like it had a metal piston, and a 10mm sized nut on the bleeder, the other (the bad one) phenolic, and a 3/8" bleeder.
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Old 10-25-2020, 04:35 AM   #2
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I use ceramic pads on my D21 but semi metallic pads are better for a daily driver. The ceramics perform better under load but are sketchier/feel less powerful when cold. They bite great when hot but are kinda numb when cold. Good for race track use or heavy towing but not daily duty. Semi metallic are more predicable but done handle the heat of intense loads as well.

I'd go metal piston. I'd bet that one was swapped out in the past and the replacement had a phenolic piston. Phenolic just doesn't seem like the material is use. As far as composites got it's kinda weak.
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Old 10-25-2020, 04:47 AM   #3
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I've always used ceramic pads on my vehicles. Centric is a good brand, but I've also had good luck with NAPA pads. I recently did a full brake job on my daily driver (a 1999 camry) and it had been about 4 years since the last brake job. The pads themselves still had about 50% of the material left, but I replaced them as part of the job since the rotors were starting to warp and a couple of the calipers were beginning to stick.

Phenolic is a fancy word for plastic as far as the caliper pistons go. I'd go for ones with metal pistons if you can get them. The quest/villager is kind of a weird automotive bastard child since it was built as a joint venture between Ford and Nissan. I wonder if the brakes were borrowed from one of Ford's existing vehicles. The domestics also continued to use SAE flare nut fittings after everything else had gone metric, so if the brake line fittings themselves are SAE they are almost certainly ford parts.
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Old 10-25-2020, 06:32 AM   #4
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I got 7 years out of my ceramic pads. It might have been another year, but one of the calipers was dragging and that caused the inboard pad to wear much faster. I could only find semi metallic pads locally. I should have paid attention to product availability when i ordered the rebuilt calipers.

This is where i have to give my local oreillys a shout-out. Since i had to wait a day for the calipers to ship, they knocked off 20 bucks each. Hey i wont complain about saving 40 bucks. The store manager went to high school with my sister, so that may have been a help.
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Old 10-26-2020, 02:36 PM   #5
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I'm a big fan of EBC brake pads. I run them on my cars and motorcycles. Haven't tried them in the D21, but I don't drive it as much as the others.
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Old 10-29-2020, 04:41 PM   #6
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^^ youre literally the ONLY person ive ever heard of running their stuff. I want to try it but ive had such bad luck with pad choices lately that im afraid to use anything other than OEM.
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Old 10-29-2020, 06:47 PM   #7
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I went w.metallic pads. Gonna get a metallic caliper off rockauto.

I changed out one of the rear wheel cylinders last night. Was gonna do the other, shady side, by flashlight, I looked down, and the lug nugs (sitting in the hubcap) were in ice. Today it is 50, warmest it has been, since it snowed, like crazy, Sunday night.

Sbj, I did a search on rockauto, the rotors, pads and caliper dont cross reference to anything. But, the shoes also go to a Windstar....same years.
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