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2010 2011 BMW 5 Series Forum F10 F10 Technical Topics Wheels / Tires / Suspension / Brakes Break Dust and rim pitting?
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      11-20-2012, 01:42 AM   #1
f10inSD
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Break Dust and rim pitting?

Hey guys.. I just installed some new rims on my car that are cast alum alloy with a machined face. I noticed today that there are tiny pits on the face of the rim. When I called the wheel company they said it could be from break dust.

I was told to ship them the rims for inspection and possible replacement. Can break dust actually cause pits? All the other aftermarket rims I've owned never did this...
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      11-20-2012, 05:22 AM   #2
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Quote:
Originally Posted by f10inSD View Post
Hey guys.. I just installed some new rims on my car that are cast alum alloy with a machined face. I noticed today that there are tiny pits on the face of the rim. When I called the wheel company they said it could be from break dust.

I was told to ship them the rims for inspection and possible replacement. Can break dust actually cause pits? All the other aftermarket rims I've owned never did this...
It may not be the brake dust that is corrosive, maybe it is the wheel cleaner you use..? I have always used the BMW wheel cleaner in fear that others are to strong and may damage the wheel surface.

Lets hope the problem is a manufacturing one and the wheels are replaced..good luck.
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      11-20-2012, 05:28 AM   #3
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Brake dust varies depending on the type of brakes, but usually includes carbon dust, iron particles, and adhesive residue. At high temps iron carbide can form, and it is an extremely abrasive material (it is used to surface cutting and grinding tools). The carbide can erode the clear coat protection on alloy wheels, allowing the iron particles to galvanicly corrode the alloy - resulting in pitting.
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      11-21-2012, 03:36 PM   #4
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Brake dust varies depending on the type of brakes, but usually includes carbon dust, iron particles, and adhesive residue. At high temps iron carbide can form, and it is an extremely abrasive material (it is used to surface cutting and grinding tools). The carbide can erode the clear coat protection on alloy wheels, allowing the iron particles to galvanicly corrode the alloy - resulting in pitting.
I never had this happen to any other rims. Anyone else have pitting on aftermarket rims? I would think that these wheel companies make the rims to resist this pitting.
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      11-23-2012, 12:34 AM   #5
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I've had this occur on my DPE's (forged, 2 piece) wheels and cheaper wheels (axis, racinghart, etc.).

On the DPE's it was on the lip, DPE said they were clearcoated but they eventually got these pits. I ended up stripping the clearcoat down and had to religiously polish the lips to make them look good. In the end these expensive wheels caused me more grief and maintenance than regular wheels.

On the cheaper wheels it was also always on the lip, never on the spokes of the wheels. I noticed it more when it rained, I figured the sand/dirt/brake dust would swirl around and when parked would stay in that particular spot and start eating away at the finish.

On my Schnitzers, MVRs, and Forgestars I never had this issue and they didn't have lips just full face wheels with spokes going to the edge of the wheels.

BMW's are known for their excessive brake dust, I eventually got low dust pads but they didn't have the same "bite" as the oem pads.
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      11-23-2012, 02:12 AM   #6
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Try using wheel wax on your next set to protect them, and why would anyone use anything but Dawn to clean their wheels, really how dirty do they get that you have to use one of those strong cleaners sold at auto stores....
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      11-28-2012, 07:25 PM   #7
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UPDATE:

So I passed by the wheel shop where I purchased my rims and a tech looked at the wheel pitting. To my dismay he said it was from normal driving. I dont think my rims should look this way after 3 weeks of driving ESP since I dont live in an area with bad roads or on the east coast with snow and salt.

I had to again contact the wheel company and ask them to help me out. I even offered to drive to the factory which is two hours away from my home here in California. I honestly feel like I shouldnt have to worry about the material being so soft that it won't be able to withstand normal driving conditions.. maybe im worng? The brand of rims are spoken of very highly and many vendors here sell them.
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      11-28-2012, 07:57 PM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by f10inSD View Post
UPDATE:

So I passed by the wheel shop where I purchased my rims and a tech looked at the wheel pitting. To my dismay he said it was from normal driving. I dont think my rims should look this way after 3 weeks of driving ESP since I dont live in an area with bad roads or on the east coast with snow and salt.

I had to again contact the wheel company and ask them to help me out. I even offered to drive to the factory which is two hours away from my home here in California. I honestly feel like I shouldnt have to worry about the material being so soft that it won't be able to withstand normal driving conditions.. maybe im worng? The brand of rims are spoken of very highly and many vendors here sell them.
maybe you should state the brand...it would help us out, and you might get more help once word got out...you tried to fix it the right professional way, it didnt work, so the least you could do is keep the rest of us from making a mistake
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      11-28-2012, 08:00 PM   #9
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maybe you should state the brand...it would help us out, and you might get more help once word got out...you tried to fix it the right professional way, it didnt work, so the least you could do is keep the rest of us from making a mistake

I don't mean to talk bad about the brand (Avant Garde) since they have been very helpful with me. The customer service is top notch probably the best I ever had with a aftermarket company.

I'm confident it will be resloved. Im just confused beacuse I've never really seen pitting like this on my other rims.
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      11-28-2012, 08:02 PM   #10
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Originally Posted by f10inSD View Post
I don't mean to talk bad about the brand (Avant Garde) since they have been very helpful with me. The customer service is top notch probably the best I ever had with a aftermarket company.

I'm confident it will be resloved. Im just confused beacuse I've never really seen pitting like this on my other rims.
Thanks, just a thought though, if brake dust pitted, wouldnt it also do it to stock rims also? I considered Avante garde but was scared because I heard they are made in China, and wanted to feel safer with an aftermarket wheel, so I went BBS, wish I could of afforded HRE's but couldt justify going in debt for wheels.
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      11-28-2012, 08:12 PM   #11
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you should not get pitting in a few weeks. Possibly when the face was machined it never got clear coated? I recently had a set of AluFelgen machined face wheels with no issues. Keep checking with AG they are a reputable company.
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      11-29-2012, 09:39 PM   #12
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The manger from Avant Garde called the wheel shop and spoke to the tech who looked at my rims. The tech called it pitting from road debris and the Avant Garde took his word for it. To be fair Avant Garde offered me two new rims at cost... but not worth it for me at this time.

Again I've had other rims in the past and never had pitting no matter where I drove. I guess im out of options.
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      11-29-2012, 10:08 PM   #13
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The manger from Avant Garde called the wheel shop and spoke to the tech who looked at my rims. The tech called it pitting from road debris and the Avant Garde took his word for it. To be fair Avant Garde offered me two new rims at cost... but not worth it for me at this time.

Again I've had other rims in the past and never had pitting no matter where I drove. I guess im out of options.
Glad I decided against those Avante garde 355's, unless you went 4 wheeling with your BMW, I've never seen any rims pit from regular road debris.
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      11-29-2012, 10:08 PM   #14
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post some close up shots if you can. Is the pitting the same on all 4 wheels?
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      12-05-2012, 07:57 PM   #15
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Try using wheel wax on your next set to protect them, and why would anyone use anything but Dawn to clean their wheels, really how dirty do they get that you have to use one of those strong cleaners sold at auto stores....
The dawn will strip that wax right off. Use car wash to clean your wheels nothing else period!
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      12-05-2012, 08:54 PM   #16
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The dawn will strip that wax right off. Use car wash to clean your wheels nothing else period!
Thats what I meant, if your wheels are really dirty, clean your wheels with dawn, nothing stronger...Then apply wheel wax and then use only your car wash soap after, I never understood why people needed industrial strength wheel cleaner till today when I had seen this girl in a 330i coupe with M style rims, she has probably never washed these wheels or the car ever, they were so bad, didnt say anything to her, but I really wanted to...lol
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