I have Tektro Aquila disc brakes, and I have recently noticed that the brakes need tightening every time it rains. I don't see mention of this model in Are there any major outstanding recalls of bicycle parts?, nor does there appear to be a recall for Tektro brakes.

The brakes are about four months old, and have about two thousand kilometers on them, plus the barrel adjuster on one of them is most of the way out, so I suspect brake pad wear is a factor. I'm going to swap out the brake pads, but is there something else I should be looking for?

EDIT: I got done changing those pads and one of the worse offending pair was literally worn to the backing plate.

  • Pad wear is accelerated in wet conditions. Grit gets picked up in the water by the tire, and flung to the side where it gets on the rotor and pad. The grit acts as sandpaper when braking.
    – Rider_X
    Oct 27, 2018 at 15:09
  • @Rider_X is certainly right, on my promax cable discs (sintered pads) I find this noticeable for one or two hundred km in the wet, and my limited experience of tektro cable disc brakes is that they need more frequent tweaking than other brands.
    – Chris H
    Oct 27, 2018 at 16:23
  • 1
    @ChrisH also if there is not enough pad/rotor clearance the grit on the rotor will wear away the pad while riding without braking
    – Rider_X
    Oct 27, 2018 at 19:22
  • @Rider_X good point. I run my front quite close but it doesn't get too dirty (expect when my forks disappear into muddy water -- not a good look on a tourer), but keep the back a little looser. Not sure why but it's a habit I've had for years
    – Chris H
    Oct 27, 2018 at 19:54

1 Answer 1


It's difficult to know for sure, but my guess is that the rotor is getting wet and it and/or the pads end up contaminated, preventing them from gripping as well. You've been solving this problem by tightening the brakes, which works, but it's a sledgehammer fix at best.

Try sanding the pads with a file or some sandpaper. Alternatively, try using sintered pads if you aren't already. This will wear the rotor out faster though.

  • 2
    You can lightly sand the pads with a medium grit paper, but don't use a file. Oct 27, 2018 at 15:14
  • 1
    @ArgentiApparatus to each their own.
    – Chris Olin
    Oct 27, 2018 at 16:29
  • Sand paper backed with a file :D... Oct 28, 2018 at 5:41

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