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Are OEM Land Rover Brake Pads Better Than Aftermarket?

Your brake pads will need to be changed several times over your Land Rover's lifetime. That's why it really pays to know the differences between OEM and aftermarket brake pads and decide on one type to stick with.

This comparison guide covers the main differences between OEM and aftermarket brake pads for Land Rovers. This should help you decide which option is best for your car. We're going to cover all the important aspects of a brake pad and see how both options stack up against each other.

Materials

OEM pad material

The friction material is arguably the most important part of a brake pad because it's the part that comes in contact with the rotors to stop the vehicle. OEM brake pads are made with a certain combination of friction materials that lasts a long time and works optimally with the rotors.

Aftermarket manufacturers rarely use the exact same friction material as OEM brake pads. This results in friction material that's not as efficient. It may be too soft or too hard, or it may just not work well with the rotors on your Land Rover. It's not uncommon for car owners to notice strange noises or a significant reduction in braking performance after installing aftermarket brake pads on their cars.

A few Amazon reviewers have said that their aftermarket brake pads started making noises only a month after being installed. "About 5 weeks after installing my aftermarket brake pads, I noticed a horrible sound coming from the driver's side," an Amazon reviewer named Lisa wrote. "I decided to return the brake pads and they sent me a new pair. Of course, I got the same problem once again. Since I'm past my return window, I ended up having to go to a local auto store to purchase new brakes."

Dimensions

Change land rover pads

The dimensions of the replacement brake pads have to be just right in order to function correctly. The friction material has to be the right thickness and the pads have to be the right length and width in order to fit the calipers well.

Since Land Rover designed its OEM brake pads, you know that the dimensions are just right. In other words, OEM brake pads will fit every time. They also come with the correct parts like clips, the retaining spring, etc.

Aftermarket manufacturers design their brake pads to their discretion. That means the dimensions may not always be exactly the same as OEM. If you try to install aftermarket brake pads that have the wrong dimensions, you may not be able to use the pads at all. A Land Rover Discovery 2 owner wrote on Amazon that they had to return their aftermarket brake pads -- which were advertised for his car specifically -- because the pads didn't fit his car.

You may save a few bucks on aftermarket brake pads, but chances are you might have to return them due to poor fitment. That's a waste of time, which can be dangerous if your brake pads need to be replaced right away.

Dust Production

You want brake pads that don't produce a lot of dust. Brake pads that produce tons of dust will blacken your wheels. And, the dust is also detrimental to human lungs. Brake pad dust contains harmful metals and other materials, and when there's a lot of dust, somebody will breathe in some of it. Brake pads that produce a lot of dust also can wear out your rotors faster.

Generally, OEM brake pads are designed to produce a minimal amount of dust. Some aftermarket brake pads also don't make much dust. But it's pretty hard to tell which ones they are without actually buying them and testing them out. Aftermarket brake pads commonly produce a lot more dust than OEM brake pads do.

Guarantee of Quality

When shopping for aftermarket brake pads, it's easy to get overwhelmed by all the brands available. You would have to do tons of research on aftermarket brake pads in order to select the right ones for your Land Rover. Even if a set of aftermarket brake pads sounds perfect on paper, it might not turn out to be as advertised. This happened to an Amazon user named Jon V. He was disappointed to find out that his aftermarket brake pads didn't match the description online. "[My aftermarket brake pads] are not slotted, and the silencing shims are not glued/welded on," he wrote.

With OEM brake pads, there's only one kind for your Land Rover model, and you have the peace of mind that it's designed correctly and made with the correct friction materials in order to work optimally on your car.

What if You Want to Save Money?

A big reason people decide to install aftermarket brake pads on their cars is so they can save some money. OEM Land Rover brake pads can be pretty pricey at a dealership. However, a lot of people don't realize that you can get genuine OEM brake pads at very competitive prices online. At Land Rover Virginia Beach, we offer some of the best prices you could find for OEM Land Rover parts, including brake pads. With our prices, you'll save about 20%-30% on brake pads.

Got any questions about brake pads or finding the right OEM brake pads for your Land Rover? Contact us today!