I'm going to add a few comments to this, as I think there's good info here....but needs a bit of clarity:Choosing the wrong brake pads can be dangerous!
I don’t want Grandpa Joe who reads this thread to get the wrong idea about what brake pads he should get.
A few have recommended the Hawk HPS. My opinion is yes and no. Yes, the Hawk HPS is a great pad, but keep in mind that the HPS stands for High Performance Street. When I was 18, I would have loved to had a brake pad like this. They do offer better stopping power, dust a bit more and tend to wear out the rotors faster too. They will also give you slightly different feel when hot or cold. They will grab more when hot.
Before we can say what is better than stock, we have to know what stock is first. According to Motor Trend the CT can stop from 60 mph in 131 feet. That is not bad in comparison with other 4 wheel disk cars with ABS (Anti Lock Braking).
Should you put on Hawk HPS? Yes, if you are an aggressive driver or hit the race track once in a while. No, if you just drive to work and do normal duties with your CT.
Hawk also makes a HP+ (High Performance Plus) pad that is a Ferro Carbon material and a step further than the HPS. I would NEVER advise these pads for the street, as they are basically race track only and can actually be UNSAFE and DANGEROUS for street driving.
Ceramics (in general) are mainly designed for long life, minimal to low dust, little to no noise and will return to you stock or slightly better than stock stopping power.
Semi Metallic’s are the manufacturers choice for most cars. They are relatively cheap, good stopping, will dust up your front wheels, and will only occasionally squeak.
I only mention this as stock or perhaps a grade above is enough for me. My CT rarely gets driven hard and will never see the race track. Brake technology is always changing and what was the best yesterday is now different today. Just remember when you get into a high performance brake pad, it can really affect the feel of your brakes. There are great stock, or slightly better than stock brake pads that can be purchased at Advance, Auto Zone, Car Quest, NAPA, and other parts stores. Most come with a lifetime warranty and are reasonably priced. Buy the HPS only if you really need it.
I was curious about this too after reading this thread, so I went to the Brembo site - one place I don't think will throw out too much BS on the subject.I don’t accept the theory of the gas layer between the pad and rotor. I’ve heard this before, and it still makes no sense because:
What gas is there in the brake pads? How much gas do you think is in a solid brake pad? Likewise, what amount of gas would be required to fade your brakes? How does more gas get back into the pads for the next time the brakes fade? How come drilled rotors and non-drilled rotors have virtually equal brake fade? Wouldn’t you expect the gas to escape from the drilled rotor surfaces?
Only because I had this poster over my toilet for 10 years and have gazed at it. . .well, you do the math. . .My feeling (similar to many others) is that brake pad fade is caused by overheating of the friction material
i tried HAWK HPS and hated them, a new set of OEM offered better bite. I used HAWKs on my previous non-Honda vehicles and was equally unimpressed so I fail to see why many rave about them. My next adventure will be to see how EBC pads will fair out.Has anyone switched out the front brake pads for a better stopping pad?