Top 10 Best Car Brakes In 2020 Review & Buying Guide

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Over time your brakes will start to wear out. This can dramatically affect how safe your car is to drive. You may start to notice your car vibrating as you hit the brakes, or you may encounter less overall braking power in wet conditions, for example. This all indicates it is time to upgrade your brakes!

There are a few ways to do this on your vehicle. You could choose to replace the brake pads or even the rotors as well.

Having some of the Best Car Brakes fitted on your vehicle will make sure you stop safely every time. So, let’s take a look at the best currently available and find the perfect ones for you…

10 Best Car Brakes

Top 10 Best Car Brakes On The Market Reviews

ProductsMakeRotors
Pads
Price
Rating

Make
Toyota/Lexus
Rotors
Front/Rear Slotted and Drilled
Pads
Ceramic
Price
400
4.8 out of 5 stars (4.8 / 5)

Make
Infiniti/Nissan
Rotors
Front/Rear Slotted and Drilled
Pads
Ceramic
Price
225
4.1 out of 5 stars (4.1 / 5)

Make
Jeep
Rotors
Front/Rear Slotted and Drilled
Pads
Ceramic
Price
210
4.3 out of 5 stars (4.3 / 5)

Make
Ford
Rotors
Front/Rear Slotted and Drilled
Pads
Ceramic
Price
464
4.6 out of 5 stars (4.6 / 5)

Make
Lexus/Toyota
Rotors
Rear Solid
Pads
Ceramic
Price
42
5 out of 5 stars (5 / 5)

Make
Honda/Acura
Rotors
Front Solid
Pads
Not Included
Price
44
4.1 out of 5 stars (4.1 / 5)

Make
Subaru
Rotors
Front/Rear Slotted and Drilled
Pads
Ceramic
Price
309
4.1 out of 5 stars (4.1 / 5)

Make
Dodge
Rotors
Front/Rear Slotted and Drilled
Pads
Ceramic
Price
100
4.2 out of 5 stars (4.2 / 5)

Make
Toyota
Rotors
Front/Rear Slotted and Drilled
Pads
Ceramic
Price
165
4.6 out of 5 stars (4.6 / 5)

Make
Nissan/Infinity
Rotors
Front/Rear Slotted and Drilled
Pads
Ceramic
Price
143
4.2 out of 5 stars (4.2 / 5)

1 Power Stop K5828 Front & Rear Brake Kit – Best Lexus Brakes

The Power Stop K5828 starts us off on the quest. This brake kit comes with both front and rear pads and rotors.

The company calls this the Z23 Evolution Sport Brake Upgrade Kit. It is compatible with Lexus RX model vehicles from 2010 to 2015, as well as Toyota Sienna’s and Highlanders from 2011 to 2019.

You get front and rear carbon-ceramic pads that all but eliminate noise as well as dust while braking. In coordination with the drilled and slotted rotors, you can use this set on small and larger vehicles.

Cool as a cucumber…

The rotors feature beveled holes and tapered slots that help in keeping your brakes cooler over time. They also excel at removing water off the rotor and making the zinc-plated rotors easier to clean.

All of the necessary hardware for installation is included. You will have stainless steel rods and pins along with high-temperature brake lubricant on hand, which further aids in this brake kit’s performance and durability.

Power Stop K5828 Front & Rear Brake Kit
Our rating:4.6 out of 5 stars (4.6 / 5)

Pros

  • They come with dual-layered rubber shims.
  • The rotors are both slotted and drilled for better performance.
  • Easy to install.

Cons

  • Expensive.

2 Full Kit Cross-Drilled Slotted Brake Rotors Kit – Easiest To Install Car Brakes

Power Sports BLCC.42089.02 full brake kit is an excellent option for 2008 to 2013 Infiniti G35 and G37 owners. You can use these on newer models as well that do not come with the sport brake package and have 307mm rear rotors and 320mm front rotors.

The four zinc-plated rotors are slotted as well as cross-drilled. They do an exceptional job of dissipating heat while providing quick and responsive stopping power.

But there is a catch…

You will have eight ceramic brake pads that are shimmed to decrease vibration and noise included as well. These pads work well, but they do need to be broken in properly.

We noticed that even when following the manufacturer’s recommended break-in instructions, they still transferred a noticeable amount of material onto the rotor.

No modification necessary…

This upgrade kt should fit without any modification to your vehicle, though. You will be using your existing rotor mounting bolts and hardware to complete the installation.

Full Kit Cross-Drilled Slotted Brake Rotors Kit
Our rating:4.1 out of 5 stars (4.1 / 5)

Pros

  • Also compatible with Nissan 350 or 370Z model cars.
  • No modifications are needed during installation.
  • The zinc-plated rotors will not rust over time.

Cons

  • You need to break these in gently to avoid excessive pad material transfer onto the rotors.

3 R1 Concepts eLine Front Rear Brake Rotors Kit + Ceramic Pads – Best Jeep Brakes

Next up in this roundup is an offering from R1 Concepts. This brake kit is suitable for Jeep Wranglers from 2007 to 2018.

Are these the Best Values for the Money Jeep Brakes?

R1 Concepts eLine series of rotors are quite exceptional given their mid-range price. They are zinc plated like other rotors we have seen while also having double ground discs.

You also have precision drilled holes as well as diamond slots throughout the rotor. With all of these features working together, you end up with a rotor that is resistant to cracking, and that provides a smooth and quiet braking experience.

Take note…

As you break in these rotors with the included ceramic pads, you will notice that some of the zinc-plating will wear off. When broken in properly, only the vanes and inner hub of the rotor will be coated.

The ceramic pads come with rubber-coated steel shims. You will have plenty of braking power on hand with these installed on your Jeep.

R1 Concepts eLine Front Rear Brake Rotors Kit
Our rating:4.3 out of 5 stars (4.3 / 5)

Pros

  • The diamond slotted rotors have integrated wear indicators.
  • Precision drilled holes prevent the rotors from cracking.
  • They fit perfectly on to 2007 to 2018 Jeep Wranglers.

Cons

  • Brake pad life could be better.

4 Power Stop K6268-36 Z36 Truck and Tow Front and Rear Brake Kit – Best Ford F150 Brakes

This next product from Power Stop is their Z36 Truck and Tow brake kit. It is compatible with Ford F150 models from 2012 to 2018. No matter if your F150 is a 6-lug model or a Raptor, this kit provides some serious braking power.

Since this is another four-wheel brake kit, you will find four rotors as well as eight brake pads included.

Carbon ceramic pads…

Like the other Power Stop kit we looked at, the pads included in the Z36 package are also carbon-ceramic. The rotors on hand are also drilled and slotted as well.

Starting with the pads, you will notice each feature stainless steel shims. These should help cut back on braking noise.

A heavy load can make them hot…

On the other hand, the rotors have rounded edging on the slots to promote debris from sticking. You will also have beveled drill holes that are meant to keep the rotors from heating up too much as well.

During our testing, we found that if you have a heavy load in your F150, these rotors will get rather hot. The high-quality materials they are made from do prevent warping and will bring you to a dead stop quite quickly nonetheless.

Installation…

The Z36 kit comes with new stainless-steel mounting hardware included. You also have a pin bushing kit you can use if need be on hand.

This bolt-on kit is straightforward to install and even includes high-temperature lubricant.

Power Stop K6268-36 Z36 Truck and Tow Front and Rear Brake Kit
Our rating:4.6 out of 5 stars (4.6 / 5)

Pros

  • High-temperature lubricant included.
  • It comes with stainless steel hardware and a pin bushing kit.
  • You can use this on any F150 model from 2012- 2018.

Cons

  • The rotors heat up quickly.

5 CRK14715 REAR 259 mm Premium OE 5 Lug [2] Brake Disc Rotors + [4] Ceramic Brake Pads + Hardware – Best Prius Brakes

Callahan Brake Parts is throwing their hat into the ring with this low-cost rear brake upgrade kit. This is the first kit to feature solid rotors in this Best Car Brakes roundup.

Dynamically balanced…

The 259mm rotors on offer are compatible with the Lexus CT200H, and Toyota Prius’s from 2011 to 2014. They are solid rotors that have been dynamically balanced and perform well even under hard braking.

Since they are not drilled or slotted, you may notice a tad bit of difference when breaking in rainy conditions, though.

Brake dust…

This rear brake kit comes with ceramic pads. When these pads make contact with the rotor, you will inevitably get brake dust. The materials the pads are coated in do make the dust light in color and less easily noticed, though.

For solid rotors, they do dissipate heat reasonably quickly. Since they are available at such a low price, these are definitely a worthy option when it comes to upgrading your rear brakes.

CRK14715 REAR 259 mm Premium OE 5 Lug
Our rating:5 out of 5 stars (5 / 5)

Pros

  • They sit at a lovely price point.
  • The solid rear rotors do an excellent job of reducing heat.
  • Stainless steel mounting parts are included.

Cons

  • You may notice vibrations under heavy braking.

6 Centric 120.40046 Premium Brake Rotor Front – Best Honda Brakes

You do not necessarily need to buy a kit that includes both rotors and pads. Depending on how new your current brake pads are, you might just find yourself needing some new front rotors.

Works well with Honda and Acura…

Centric’s Premium 120.40046 model front rotors are a great option that won’t break the bank. These will fit numerous Acura models like the TSX, CL, MDX, and TL, for example. You can also install these on the Honda Pilot, Accord, or Odyssey as well. Double-check your model year and make sure it is compatible to be on the safe hand.

This rotor features double grinding and has electro-coated protection that leaves the rotor with a smooth taper free finish.

Break-in…

Centric has made this rotor very easy to break-in. You will notice that the finish of each rotor is non-directional. This means that the rotors are not explicitly made for a particular side of the vehicle. Just unpackage the rotors and place one either side, and you are all set.

They break in quickly, and from our testing, they are made to last. We have read other reports of them warping over time, though. Fortunately, Centric does provide a 90-day warranty in case the unfortunate may occur.

Centric 120.40046 Premium Brake Rotor Front
Our rating:4.1 out of 5 stars (4.1 / 5)

Pros

  • The non-directional design of the rotors makes installation easy.
  • It includes two solid front rotors.
  • Well priced.

Cons

  • Brake pads are not included.

7 Power Stop K6083 Front & Rear Brake Kit – Best Subaru Brakes

Power Stop is sure making itself well known in this roundup. This time they are providing a full brake kit for all Subaru Impreza, Legacy, or Outback owners out there.

Smooth running in the rain…

This kit comes with 292 mm front and 286mm rear rotors. The rotors are vented through drill holes and slots, allowing for adequate heat dissipation.

The brake pads are of similar quality to the other Power Stop pads we have reviewed. They are ceramic and include double-layered shims that have been rubberized.

No vibrations…

You will have more than enough braking power on hand even in rainy conditions with this kit installed. We also never experienced any vibrations, even while braking extremely hard.

According to Power Stop, the Z23 Evolution brake kit should fit without any modifications needed. However, we noticed that while installing this brake kit on our 2012 WRX, some of the mounting pins included with this kit were just a bit too short.

We ended up using the original mounting components the car came with and had no further problems.

Power Stop K6083 Front & Rear Brake Kit
Our rating:4.1 out of 5 stars (4.1 / 5)

Pros

  • You can use this kit with 2010 to 2014 Legacy, Impreza, or Highlander models.
  • The braking performance is superb, no matter how hard it is raining.
  • Brake noise and vibration are at a minimum.

Cons

  • Some of the included mounting pins may not fit accurately.

8 Fit DODGE CHARGER Front Rear Sport Drill Slot Brake Rotors Kit – Best Dodge Charger Brakes

This Hart Brakes Platinum model brake kit is made for Dodge Chargers from 2006 to 2008. Other makes and model years are also compatible, but make sure to check your vehicle specifications before trying to install them.

On each of the zinc covered rotors, you will notice cross-drilled holes that will provide ventilation to keep them nice and fresh even under heavy braking.

Take time to check for debris…

The slots that have been carved into the rotor are similar to others we have seen. While they aid in removing water away from the rotor, we noticed that they would occasionally collect debris.

This was not a huge concern and never affected the performance of the brakes. You will want to wipe them off occasionally, though.

Noise…

The ceramic brake pads included have been pre-scorched to allow for a quicker break-in period. They have also been shimmed and molded in a way to allow for less noise and a more even wear with use.

A bit of a hit or miss…

When we were driving in the rain, the rotors and pads made hardly any noise when in use. If you go out and drive on a scorching day, though, the same could not be said. You will definitely notice some noise coming from the brakes, especially if you have been using them quite hard. This was intermittent, but during stop and go traffic, it did become a tad bit annoying.

One thing that was great about this brake kit from Hart is how precisely it fits on your vehicle. Installation was a breeze.

Fit DODGE CHARGER Front Rear
Our rating:4.2 out of 5 stars (4.2 / 5)

Pros

  • Suitable for numerous makes and models of Dodge vehicles.
  • They fit like a glove when installed with no modifications needed.
  • The brake pads are pre-scorched, allowing for a quicker break-in period.

Cons

  • They are rather noisy.

9 Power Stop K137 Front Brake Kit – Best Toyota Truck Brakes

Power Stop is making one final appearance in this Best Car Brakes roundup. This Power Stop kit comes with K137 rotors and Z23 Evolution pads.

Intended for Toyota trucks…

The main difference between this kit is the vehicle for which it fits. These rotors are intended for Toyota’s mid-size SUV, the FJ Cruiser, and also their pickup truck, the Tacoma.

You still get the same high-quality ceramic brakes that have been shimmed for less noise and vibration that we have seen with other Power Stop kits.

The rotors are guaranteed to meet OEM specs. Therefore, they slide right on and can be attached with either the included stainless-steel mounting hardware or your stock hardware.

Performs well under pressure…

Since these are meant for larger, heavier vehicles, you might be concerned about pad transfer under hard braking. We never had an issue with this, and they performed well no matter the weather conditions.

Bushings…

One thing we did notice is that the including bushings were not as durable as we would have liked. They do a good job, but you need to make sure they are aligned correctly; otherwise, the brake pads might wear more quickly.

Power Stop K137 Front Brake Kit
Our rating:4.6 out of 5 stars (4.6 / 5)

Pros

  • They are compatible with all 2003 to 2020 Tacoma’s or FJ Cruisers.
  • Rotors are guaranteed to meet OEM specs.

Cons

  • The bushing’s provided could be more robust.

10 [Front + Rear] Max Brakes Elite XDS Rotors with Carbon Ceramic Pads KT079383 – Most Versatile Car Brakes

This last car brake kit we want you to take a look at is from Max Advanced Brakes. This kit is rather unique in fact since the rotors included are black in color.

Works on most vehicles…

You can use this brake kit on numerous make and model vehicles. We tested them out on both a Nissan 350Z and also an Infiniti G35 both from 2003.

The performance was exceptional compared to the OEM brakes the cars came with. The ceramic brake pads are made from a copper-free material that extremally reduces brake noise and leaves behind hardly any brake dust.

Free from debris…

Each of the rotors is made from G3500 grey iron and has been made to the same specifications of your stock rotors. Like other slotted and drilled rotors, they excel at removing debris and rain away from them.

We mentioned that the rotors are black in color. Depending on your vehicle’s color, these might not look at home with your car when installed, so keep that in mind.

Single Piston Calipers?

Another thing that you should take note of is that these are only compatible with single-piston brake calipers.

If you have Brembo calipers on your vehicle, these will not work correctly. This will rule out any Nissan 370Z owners that have the Sport Package installed, for example.

Max Brakes Elite XDS Rotors
Our rating:4.2 out of 5 stars (4.2 / 5)

Pros

  • Sporty looking and are black in color.
  • The copper-free brake pads do not leave much brake dust.
  • You can use them on both Infinity and Nissan model vehicles.

Cons

  • They are only compatible with single-piston brake calipers.

Best Car Brakes Buying Guide

 

Top Best Car Brakes Reviews

To get the best brakes for your vehicle, you have numerous options. You could buy a complete kit, including new rotors, pads, and even shims. While this provides a complete upgrade over your stock brakes, you may decide that you only need to upgrade the brake pads, for example.

In the following buying guide, we will point out some key things to consider before and after upgrading your vehicle brakes.

Pads

You know it is time to get new pads if your brakes start to squeal or if your car tends to pull to one side while driving.

You will typically find brake pads that are ceramic or semi-metallic. Semi-metallic brake pads are often cheaper than ceramic and work well on heavier vehicles.

Ceramic brake pads are often quieter than semi-metallic pads, and they even produce less dust. They also typically last long while being much less abrasive on your rotors. If your brake pads wear too much, they will start grinding into your rotors and damaging them.

Rotors

Your rotors are going to either be drilled, blank, slotted, or a combination of drilled and slotted. Drilled rotors are great for everyday use, especially in wet weather. Slotted rotors work well on heavy-duty trucks or SUVs, but they tend to wear more quickly.

If you have rotors that are both drilled and slotted, they will offer the best of both worlds. These are typically more expensive and are frequently found on higher-end vehicles.

What about the weather?

The last option is blank rotors, which will work well no matter the weather conditions. They also tend to have the most extended lifespan as well.

You can see what type of rotors your vehicle has by just looking behind your wheels. If the performance you get with your current style of rotors is sufficient, you can always stick with that current type.

No matter if you choose to upgrade to different type rotors or pads or not, make sure to notice the changes in your braking performance so you can adjust your driving style accordingly.

Installation

Best Car Brakes Review

Installation can vary depending on the make and model of your vehicle. You start by jacking up your car and removing the wheels. From there, you want to loosen and slide off your brake calipers.

Then you want to remove the outside brake pad. The outer pad will typically be clipped on. On the inside of the rotor, you will then want to remove the caliper mounting bolts.

If your rotor does not have a set screw, then you can simply slide it out. If you are not changing the rotor, make sure to mark its alignment so it can be reattached in the exact same position.

Here’s the tricky part…

Now you will want to slide the new rotor in place and reattach the caliper mounting bracket to hold it into place. You will then want to drain the brake fluid from the caliper while also compressing the caliper piston.

Once your piston is compressed, you can remove the inside brake pad. The reason we leave the inside brake pad on is so you can compress the piston without damaging it.

Almost there…

Finally, attach your new brake pads and any clips or shims that they might come with. Then place the caliper bake into position and tighten it down. Your vehicle manufacturer will give you exact torque requirements for all of the bolts.

This process might seem long, but it is not terribly complicated. It can also save you a few hundred bucks compared to going to a brake specialist.

Break-In

Once you have your new pads or rotors installed, you will notice an immediate change in performance when braking. While you can let your new brakes wear-in gradually over time, you can also choose to break them in immediately. This process is frequently called bedding.

Depending on the brake pad and rotor manufacturer, you might find different bedding procedures.

Burn some rubber…

One sure-fire way to break-in your new brakes, no matter the manufacturer, is to find a long flat stretch of road.

You will want to speed up to 35 to 40 miles per hour and then brake hard to just under 5 miles per hour. Repeat this and gradually speed up to 50mph after a few slower attempts.

Don’t overdo it…

Before attempting more than one hard brake at 50mph, drive your car a mile or two so your brakes can cool off a bit.

This will remove a bit of the new pad material onto the new rotors. Your brakes will wear smoother and last longer down the road because of this.

Looking For Something Else?

Want to keep your vehicle clean? Check out the Best Car Upholstery Cleaners, the Best Wheel and Tire Cleaners, the Best Steam Cleaners, and the Best Car Vacuum Cleaners For Detailing.

Need to upgrade some of your fluids? Take a look at the Best Engine Antifreeze And Coolant, the Best Radiator Cleaner Fluids, the Best Power Steering Fluid, and Best Windshield Washer Fluids.

Don’t get caught on those emissions. Have a gander at the Best Mufflers Reviews and Best Exhaust Resonators.

What Are The Best Car Brakes?

It was not an easy choice, but we have to go with the…

Power Stop K5828 brake kit

Toyota Sienna, Highlander, and Lexus RX model owners will rejoice, knowing this brake kit is on their vehicles. They were some of the easiest rotors and pads to install thanks to the included stainless-steel mounting hardware.

Braking performance is top-notch thanks to excellently crafted cross-drilled and slotted rotors. The included ceramic brake pads offer a tranquil braking experience while keeping vibrations to an absolute minimum.

For such quality, you will be paying a premium. When it comes to your car’s ability to brake safely, we think this kit is more than worth every penny, though!

Happy and safe travels.

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