Excessive Brake Fade When Fully Loaded

V
2014 CX-5
I have seen a few "brake upgrade" threads for the CX-5, but none of them were focused on fade, which is the primary concern in my case. When we load up the 5 for extended camping trips, stock brakes are not able to handle long or repeating down-hills. Fade is pronounced and the steering wheel can start to shake quite badly. Performance returns to normal once the brakes are given a chance to cool. The pads have plenty of life left on them.

Before people go down this road, I am fully aware of the "manual mode" in the transmission and do use it to add some engine braking to the equation. However, in my experience, the engine does not provide enough resistance to make a meaningful difference for a fully loaded CX-5 on a long down-hill.

Has anyone else experienced a fade issue with their CX-5? If so, what have you done about it? Has anyone tried installing CX-9 components on the 5? Are there any options other than spending $1K and up on a big brake kit?

If not, the aftermarket solutions that I have found, fronts only:

  • CorkSport: $1,000
  • CEIKA: $1,500
  • PB: $1,200
  • KSport at CarID: $2,000+
  • Yellow at CarID: 1,400 for 13" rotors
  • Willwood: do not list an off-the-shelf kit for the CX-5
  • Brembo: can only find OEM replacement pads and rotors -- same size as stock
Folks have any opinions on the above options?

Thank you.

Threads that I have read before posting:

 
What year cx5? Cant help much other than Id start with fresh brake fluid that can handle higher temps, and maybe some higher temp street pads
 
L
GA prior 16 CX5 GT
V
20 CX5 GT + Prem
If it is used you may have weak pads on it -try new quality pads on front first to see effect...
 
V
2019 CX-5 Touring
My 2014 did shake a couple times over my ownership on long descents even though I frequently downshift for engine braking. I haven't experienced that even a single time in my 2019 but I've only put 10,000 miles on it.
 
V
13' CX-5 and 16' Mazda6 both Touring w/Tech/Bose
Ahh brake fade. A mere memory now :)

Upon my research in towing/hauling forums with trucks going up/down mountains as well as Corvette and BMW forums...and then eventually real life usage.

Brake Motive's cross drilled/slotted Kit from ebay (Identical as Powerstops but cheaper). Comes with Powerstop's instructions and labeling :). Essentially Powerstop's top of the line rotors with their cheapest ceramic pads = $108 - $120 range!!!

+

Raybestos Element 3 Pads. = $40 aprox. on Rock Auto

+ Allstar Performance ALL11019 Brake Bleeder Bottle and Supertech Dot4 brake fluid = $25


= my thumbs up. I could not get the brakes to fade in 115 degree temps here in Arizona during the summer.

my 2 cents.
 

Avoidin Deer

Central Virginia
Contributor
V
2019 CX-5 Reserve
Ahh brake fade. A mere memory now :)

Upon my research in towing/hauling forums with trucks going up/down mountains as well as Corvette and BMW forums...and then eventually real life usage.

Brake Motive's cross drilled/slotted Kit from ebay (Identical as Powerstops but cheaper). Comes with Powerstop's instructions and labeling :). Essentially Powerstop's top of the line rotors with their cheapest ceramic pads = $108 - $120 range!!!

+

Raybestos Element 3 Pads. = $40 aprox. on Rock Auto

+ Allstar Performance ALL11019 Brake Bleeder Bottle and Supertech Dot4 brake fluid = $25


= my thumbs up. I could not get the brakes to fade in 115 degree temps here in Arizona during the summer.

my 2 cents.
I know one of the specs where the CX-5 lags the competition is stopping distance.

Would this mod fix that?
 
V
2017 Mazda 6 Sport
Has the brake fluid ever been changed? With a car that old, it's likely that the fluid has absorbed enough water over the years to affect braking performance
 

mazdadude

ZOOOOOOOOOM ZOOOOOOOOOOOM
V
'16.5 Mazda CX-5 Touring
Has the brake fluid ever been changed? With a car that old, it's likely that the fluid has absorbed enough water over the years to affect braking performance
I would verify with fresh pads, surfaced rotors and bleed brake fluid. Who knows what pads are on there or how old fluid is?

How much weight you are loading the vehicle with during the camping cargo loads?(rockon) I believe the max payload is 1006lbs.
 
Last edited:

shadonoz

SkyActiv Member
Contributor
L
State of Jefferson
V
2017 CX-5 GT AWD+
If your steering wheel is shaking, that indicates that the rotors are warping when hot as well. I'd give it a whole new brake job, pads and rotors. It's not something to take chances with.
 
V
13' CX-5 and 16' Mazda6 both Touring w/Tech/Bose
I know one of the specs where the CX-5 lags the competition is stopping distance.

Would this mod fix that?
I have those "mods" in both my Mazda6 and CX-5.

Mazda6: I cannot determine how much these brakes minimized stopping distance...this is because I have aftermarket lighter and wider wheels now which already made a noticeable difference in shorter braking distances. That said brake fade will result in longer stopping distances as time progresses. I could not get it to fade while driving more aggressively than normal.

CX-5: I merely installed these brakes to the fronts (my wife's car). I warned her to be careful when applying brakes as it would take time to adjust. She called me the next morning asking what the hell was up with the brakes. They were noticeable stronger during her morning commute. The CX-5 is all stock. I will apply the rears shortly. I cannot verify accurately as I have not measured before/after but the braking distance feels like its improved...as per my butt dyno. That said its compared to pads with plenty of pads left and original rotors. Rotors were not warped.
 

Avoidin Deer

Central Virginia
Contributor
V
2019 CX-5 Reserve
I have those "mods" in both my Mazda6 and CX-5.

Mazda6: I cannot determine how much these brakes minimized stopping distance...this is because I have aftermarket lighter and wider wheels now which already made a noticeable difference in shorter braking distances. That said brake fade will result in longer stopping distances as time progresses. I could not get it to fade while driving more aggressively than normal.

CX-5: I merely installed these brakes to the fronts (my wife's car). I warned her to be careful when applying brakes as it would take time to adjust. She called me the next morning asking what the hell was up with the brakes. They were noticeable stronger during her morning commute. The CX-5 is all stock. I will apply the rears shortly. I cannot verify accurately as I have not measured before/after but the braking distance feels like its improved...as per my butt dyno. That said its compared to pads with plenty of pads left and original rotors. Rotors were not warped.
Interesting.

Thanks for the observations.

Just something else to add to the "When my warranty expires" list.
 
V
Mazda CX-5
$129 for front pads? Ouch. Hey they are carbon!!!
Good brakes aren't cheap. I first used these pads on my '87 Mustang GT that I ocassionally autocrossed. I run R4-1 pads on my Miata. Takes 1/2 the pedal pressure at normal speeds and they are "waaaaHoooooo" at 80+. Common brake pads are about u = .35.
 
V
2019 CX-5 GT 184 2.2 twin turbodiesel auto - Sonic Silver
After 17 years of testing and developing brake pads I*ve learned something in this thread - marketing guff works.
 

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