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My rear brake never locks the rear wheel even with full pull on the lever, especially going down hill or fast. I can even pedal a bit with the brake depressed.

This is a recent issue and sometime in a ride the full braking force returns for a couple of minutes.

My pads are in a very bad condition and I've have new ones on order. My question is if they can be the reason for my problem? The bike was bought used so I don't know its history.

Rear pads: enter image description here

Front pads: front

Front, no flash: front pads

And the disc, which looks ok: rotor

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    They looked more glazed than contaminated. Give them a sand with fine sand paper to remove the shiny bits to see if it makes any difference. Bed the new pads in as per the instructions. – DWGKNZ May 29 '15 at 19:16
  • I cleaned them with alcohol as i found no sand paper lying around. Now they do have the shiny metal bits and i think this is how it should look (even though you said to remove just that) - but no change whatsoever to stopping power unfortunately... – PIXP May 29 '15 at 20:16
  • Shiny metal bits yes, but the glassy black stuff needs to be made dull. – DWGKNZ May 29 '15 at 20:22
  • That was taken off indeed. I couldn't heat them on open fire or in an oven right? because they're resin based. – PIXP May 29 '15 at 20:28
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    If you fell the lever tight, and if it has the same feeling as the front one, air bobbles should not be the problem. Those pads look in fairly bad condition, I would replace them anyway and I am pretty sure you will have a much better feel on the brakes. And if with new pads you have the same problem, at least you're sure the problem is not from there :) (P.S.: Make sure to clean the disc with a degreaser or with alcohol before installing the new ones.) – super May 29 '15 at 22:19
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These look pretty far gone, as suggested. Lucky the rotor isn't scored, or that would cost more than a set of pads.

  • Can it be the reason for the poor stopping action? – PIXP May 30 '15 at 4:57
  • @PIXP: of course. – John Zwinck Sep 27 '15 at 6:35
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    Replaced. Works great now as expected – PIXP Sep 27 '15 at 6:43
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    @pixp Good work - thank you for posting an update. – Criggie Sep 27 '15 at 8:37

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