When it comes to bike brakes, choosing the right brake pads can significantly impact your riding experience. Two popular options are organic and metallic brake pads, each with advantages and disadvantages. Organic brake pads are made of rubber, Kevlar, and resin, while metallic brake pads are composed of sintered metal particles.
Both types of brake pads have unique characteristics that can affect your bike’s performance, durability, and braking power. Understanding the differences between the two can help you make an informed decision about which type of brake pad to choose for your bike.
In this blog post, we will explore the pros and cons of organic and metallic pads to help you determine the best riding needs. We will also discuss costs, noise level, and environmental impact, so you can make a well-informed decision when choosing the right brake pads for your bike.
What are organic brake pads?
Organic brake pads, also known as resin brake pads, are made from organic materials such as rubber, glass, carbon, and Kevlar fibres, bound together by resin. These materials are softer than metallic materials, which makes them less abrasive to the braking surface, reducing wear and tear on both the pads and the rotor.
Organic brake pads are often preferred for their quiet operation, as they produce less noise when braking. They also tend to be lighter in weight and provide better modulation, which means the rider can more easily control the amount of braking force being applied. However, they may not perform as well as metallic pads in extreme conditions such as wet or muddy terrain or high-speed downhill descents.
What are metallic brake pads?
As the name suggests, metallic pads are made of metal fibres like copper, iron, and steel. These fibres are bonded together using resin to form a brake pad. The metal fibres may be combined with other materials like ceramic or Kevlar to improve their performance.
Metallic brake pads are generally more durable and perform better in wet conditions than organic brake pads. However, they can be noisier than organic brake pads and may wear down brake rotors more quickly. Additionally, they generate more heat than organic brake pads, leading to brake fade and reduced braking performance over time.
What is the best brake pad for you?
There are several factors to consider when choosing between organic and metallic pads. Consider the pros and cons of each product type to help you decide.
Organic Brake Pads:
- Quieter than metallic pads
- Generally less expensive than metallic pads
- Provide good stopping power in dry conditions
- Less abrasive than metallic pads, causing less wear on the rotor
- Tend to wear faster than metallic pads
- May not perform well in wet conditions
- It can generate more heat, which can cause fade during long descents
- It can leave more residue on the rotor, requiring more frequent cleaning
Metallic Brake Pads:
- Last longer than organic pads
- Provide consistent stopping power in wet and dry conditions
- Better heat dissipation, which reduces the chance of fade during long descents
- Leave less residue on the rotor, which reduces the need for frequent cleaning
- More expensive than organic pads
- It can be noisier than organic pads
- More abrasive, which can cause more wear on the rotor
- It may require a break-in period to achieve optimal performance
The best brake pad will ultimately depend on your preferences and needs. If you frequently ride in wet conditions or long descents, metallic pads may be the better option. Organic pads may be the way to go if you are on a budget or prioritize a quieter ride.
It’s also essential to consider the type of rotor you have on your bike, as some rotors are only compatible with certain types of brake pads. Consulting with a bike mechanic or researching your specific bike model can also help you make an informed decision.
How to choose the right type of brake pad
Here are the steps to help you choose the right type of brake pad for your bike:
Determine your riding style:
The type of brake pad you choose should depend on the type of riding you do. If you ride primarily in wet and muddy conditions, you may want to consider metallic brake pads. Organic brake pads may be a better choice if you ride on dry roads or do mostly cross-country riding.
Consider your bike type:
Different bike types have different braking needs. For example, mountain bikes and e-bikes require more powerful braking systems, so that metallic brake pads may be more suitable.
Check your rotor compatibility:
Brake pads are designed to work with specific types of rotors. Ensure the brake pad you choose is compatible with your bike’s rotor.
Consider the price:
Organic brake pads tend to be less expensive than metallic ones. Consider your budget when choosing the type of brake pad.
Think about noise:
Metallic pads tend to be noisier than organic ones. Organic brake pads may be a better choice if you’re concerned about noise.
Consult with a professional:
If you’re unsure which brake pad is best for your bike, consult with a professional bike mechanic or the manufacturer. They can provide specific recommendations based on your bike’s make and model.
To Sum Up:
Both organic and metallic brake pads have their advantages and disadvantages. Organic brake pads offer better initial bite, quieter operation, and less wear on the rotor. In contrast, metallic pads provide more consistent performance in varying weather conditions and offer better heat dissipation, which makes them ideal for downhill riding.
Choosing the correct type of brake pad ultimately depends on your riding style, preferences, and needs. Consider weather conditions, terrain, and your riding style when deciding. Ultimately, the best way to find out which type of brake pad is right for you is to try out both and see which one feels more comfortable and suits your needs. You can ensure your bike stops smoothly and safely every time with suitable brake pads.
Don’t let your brakes slow you down! Contact us today to find the best brake pads for your bike and ensure optimal performance on every ride.