Should You Get Akebono Brake Pad’s? – Review, Pros, Cons, and More
Cars are complicated machines. After all, they have thousands of different moving parts that need to work in perfect unison for the vehicle to function reliably. So you need to keep a watchful eye and carry out constant maintenance on your vehicle.
This is especially true when it comes to crucial components like the braking system, which is extremely important for the safety of the driver and the passengers in the vehicle. After all, in case there is ever a dangerous situation on the road, your first line of defense is putting your foot down on the brakes.
If your car isn’t slowing down or stopping as quickly as you would like it to, you may consider purchasing a pad. And this Akebono brake pad review will tell you everything you need to know before buying one for your car.
What Does A Brake Pad Do?
The overall braking system has a number of components, most of which will require some form of maintenance over the lifetime of the vehicle. However, the component that requires the most frequent maintenance is the brake pads.
These pads form the surface which comes into contact with the wheel of your car and slows it down. During this process, a large amount of friction and heat are generated. The rubbing motion erodes the surface of the pads, and they become worn down over time, losing their effectiveness.
Once you notice that the braking response of your car has gotten worse, it may be time to take a look at the brake pads and get them replaced. Since faulty brake pads are a serious safety hazard, you should do this as soon as possible.
What are Akebono Brake Pads?
If you visit a car repair shop or your mechanic to look for brake pads, you may be overwhelmed by the different options available on the market. Fortunately, we are here to help you with the process. A brand of brake pads you may have seen or heard about is Akebono.
Akebono is an American manufacturer of brake pads. This company began its existence in the 1980s in Chicago and then spread production facilities to other parts of the US over the years. They are a well-reputed company and sell durable car parts.
Nowadays, it has expanded into an international brand due to its early success in the American market. This speaks to the quality of the products they manufacture.
Moreover, Akebono is also the OEM supplier of many popular car brands throughout the world. Whether it be American ones like Chrystler or GM or international ones like Honda or Audi, it is likely that you have driven a car with an Akebono brake pad already in it.
Should You Choose Akebono Brake Pads?
Before you can make an informed decision about whether or not to go ahead and buy Akebono brake pads, it is important to first understand the options available to you.
Akebono makes 3 different types of brake pads, each geared towards a slightly different use case and type of user. Thus, it is important to be familiar with all three types and then decide whether any one of them fits your particular use case and needs.
1. Akebono Pro-Act Ultra-Premium Ceramic Brake Pads
The Akebono Pro-Act Ceramic brake pads are the entry-level option designed to meet the needs of most consumers without too many bells and whistles. That does not, however, mean that these pads lack in quality.
Specifically, they are a good fit to replace your aging OEM-installed brake pads. These will deliver similar, if not, better performance in most metrics. This enhanced function comes down to a few reasons.
Firstly, the Pro-Act brake pads are designed specifically to reduce the amount of brake dust produced while in use. This is a key feature for a few reasons. Firstly, brake dust has the tendency to build up and cause more maintenance issues within your vehicle. Secondly, a higher amount of brake dust generally means that the pads themselves will wear out sooner.
Secondly, the Pro-Act brake pads are also designed to deliver smooth deceleration irrespective of the speed you are going at and the force you apply. This helps avoid any jolts or vibrations that would feel uncomfortable and also lead to increased wear and tear on your vehicle.
Another thing to note is that these brake pads are designed to be rotary-friendly. In fact, Akebono has done this so well that their pads have even been found in some cases to increase rotor life for your wheels as well as the overall braking system.
This, once more, leads to reduced wear and tear and thus to reduced need for maintenance, significantly reducing the time, money, and energy you spend on upkeep for your car.
Finally, owing to their consumer-grade nature, the Pro-Act brake pads can work with almost any sort of consumer vehicle. These brakes are versatile and will work with most make and models. However, it is still best practice to talk to your mechanic once and confirm.
2. Akebono Euro Ultra-Premium Ceramic Brake Pads
The Akebono Euro-Ultra Premium brake pads were designed from the ground up specifically for the European market. This is owing to the differing nature of car designs and regulations in Europe when compared to America.
For those looking to add some extra performance to their vehicles, however, these brake pads are also a step-up when compared to the previously discussed model. For starters, they produce much less brake dust than the Pro-Act brake pads.
This is down to the innovative ceramics used in the pad itself that are different from the previous model. This helps cut back on maintenance costs and provides a smoother and more pristine driving experience for the end-user.
However, one thing to note is that since these brake pads are designed to European specifications, they are not compatible with most American-origin cars. If, however, you drive a European vehicle within the states, the Akebono Euro brake pads are a very good option.
Moreover, these pads are designed to be used with a wide variety of vehicles, including not just cars but also SUVs and most light trucks.
Thus, due to their superior performance and versatility, these brake pads are not just a replacement for your worn-out OEM components but, in fact, may even be considered a bit of an upgrade over the standard parts.
3. Akebono Performance Ultra-Premium Ceramic Brake Pads
Finally, in case you feel like going all out and getting the highest performance brake pads possible, Akebono has you covered. Their Performance Ultra-Premium pads are geared towards heavy-duty use.
The usual customers, in fact, are law enforcement, military, and industrial fleets. This tells you all you need to know about the nature and performance of these brake pads. However, for the sake of thoroughness, we shall go over the details once as well.
Like the previously discussed options, the performance brake pads offer the standard Akebono features such as very little dust production. What differentiates these from the other options discussed so far, however, is their extreme stopping power.
The performance brake pads are suitable not just for cars but for SUVs and even full-sized trucks. This makes them the ultimate solution for essentially any use case. Moreover, their toughness gives them a much longer service life than standard brake pads owing to the tough nature of the ceramics used.
A Few Cons to Consider
At the end of the day, no product is perfect. The story is similar when it comes to Akebono’s brake pads. Despite all their strengths, these do have a few weaknesses you should be aware of before deciding to make your purchase.
The first thing to note is that these brake pads are not optimal for very cold or icy conditions. This means that if you expect to encounter below-freezing temperatures frequently, you may want to reconsider Akebono brake pads and look towards something else.
Another limitation is heat dispersion. This basically means that under severe and harsh use, the Akebono brake pads may tend to end up overheating when compared to other brake pads, especially those that are partially metal.
To be fair, however, this is not the fault of the company. Ceramics as a material are not as good as metals at conducting and dispersing heat. Due to this, ceramic brake pads such as the ones made by Akebono are more prone to overheating.
Before you can make a final decision about whether or not Akebono brake pads are the right ones for you, you should consider your requirements and your vehicle.
These may indeed be excellent models for most people, especially if you are looking for long-term durability or dust-free use.
However, in specific cases, especially cold climates, you may want to consider a few other alternatives before making your decision.