How Much Should a Brake Job Cost?

how much should a brake job cost

My Lexus ES 330 has about 21,000 miles. Lexus says all 4 wheels need new brake pads and resurface brake rotors anywhere between $800-$900. Does this sound about right to you?

Hi there

A 2006 model with 21,000 miles????

I think I would get a second opinion from another shop. I would NOT expect your rear brakes (or even your front brakes) to need replacing at this mileage interval unless something was wrong. The rear brakes should last about 50,000 miles…maybe more if you drive mostly highway miles.

Even the front brakes…I am surprised that you need new brake pads in the front (front brakes do all the stopping power so they wear out twice as fast as the rear brakes) at this mileage as well, something does not sound right to me. I am suspicious.

I would expect you to pay about $500-600 for a complete 4 wheel brake job, depending on the labor rates of the shop…this is a very easy repair! I would however suggest you use genuine Lexus pads just to reduce noise issues related to cheap non Lexus pads. I hope the new pads last longer than these did though.

If you truly do need all 4 wheel brakes replaced I would be highly suspect of a two footed driver…resting one foot on the brake while the car is in motion.

You ran though those brakes twice as fast as would be expected. This MIGHT be a warranty issue…..I would definitely push them to look into this if you are certain you are not a two footed driver…something is wrong and will surely happen again.

Brake Job Cost

As to how much a brake job should cost, that is hard to say because of labor rates in different areas and what parts are actually being replaced.

A good rule of thumb is $125 per wheel, so $500 for a standard 4 wheel brake job on MOST cars.

If you are going to replace the brake rotors instead of resurfacing them I would add an additional $75 – $100 for each rotor you replace. There are 4 total brake rotors on your vehicle.

The FRONT brake rotors take more abuse, produce more heat (warped brake rotors) and do more of the stopping power over the rear brakes, so I would replace the FRONT rotors, but probably resurface the rear rotors.

Is the new car dealer the best place to go for general repairs? Watch this….

Posted in: Brakes

2 Comments on "How Much Should a Brake Job Cost?"

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  1. D.Black says:

    I live in NYC and was told that my Mercury Milan 2009 needs new brakes and rotors. The owner said that it would be about $470 before tax. There is only 22000 on the odometer. Almost all of my driving is local. Is this a reasonable price?

    Thank you.

    • Austin Davis says:

      New brakes and rotors at that mileage is pretty premature to me, unless he was a two footed driver and wore out the brakes. I would expect them to last at least 35,000-40,000 miles under normal driving conditions. Now, the front brake rotors might be “warped” meaning when you step on the brake the steering wheel will shake from side to side and the vehicle will shimmy or vibrate, this is worse at freeway speeds. If that is happening, then the brake rotors will need to be replaced or you can have them “trued” machined to make them smooth again…which is probably closer to $200. My front rotors are slightly “warped” and I can feel slight shimmy in the steering wheel on heavy stopping and I have about the same mileage…but will wait until it gets much worse or when I hit 40K miles and the brakes need to be changed, then I will true the front rotors.

      So, you probably don’t need to do this now (have a mechanic inspect the brakes for you and rotate the tires at the same time) but if you do, the price is fair, but you can buy after market brakes and the rotors from your local auto parts and find a mechanic to install them to save some money, probably $150 or more.

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