I know I need to keep the disks clean on my bike, but if I've got them covered in grease, what should I clean them with?

  • I'm afraid the grease has already ruined your pads.
    – dee-see
    Commented Oct 16, 2010 at 13:28
  • 1
    @meagar - Will do. May I also suggest you work on your questioning/answering rate - you haven't yet asked or answered anything :) Commented Oct 17, 2010 at 15:57
  • Um... sheer volume isn't a good metric by which to judge somebody. Otherwise you get accounts like this :p
    – user229044
    Commented Oct 17, 2010 at 16:01
  • @meagar - That's not bad though is it. Only a very small percentage of that person's questions got down-voted, many q's got lots of upvotes, so I think they've made a valuable contribution. Good luck with the charity cycle ride by the way! Commented Oct 17, 2010 at 16:48

2 Answers 2


the pads are likely trash, but you can use isopropyl alcohol to clean the disk rotors (say, to remove grease BEFORE it gets into the pads).

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    The Hayes service manual says: "The brake disc and pads should only be cleaned with isopropyl alcohol (not disc brake cleaner)."
    – csadam
    Commented Oct 16, 2010 at 20:11
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    @csadam; do you know why? Commented Oct 17, 2010 at 10:49
  • I'm not sure. Maybe because it does not leave any film residue on the surface.
    – csadam
    Commented Oct 17, 2010 at 11:04

I've heard that boiling the disk brake pads in water can help remove the oil from them if they've become contaminated. It wouldn't be the first thing I'd try, but if you're trying to restore an otherwise trashed pair of pads, it might be worth a go.

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