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Old 26th May 2013, 02:39   #1
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Default About Disk Brake "Dust Shield" replacement

Maruti Swift that I own was due for a 5K tyre rotation, something that I undertake religiously. So, I took the car to a decent looking road side workshop near Kondapur, Hyderabad. I had a pleasant experience with them few months back, when they did a splendid job rotating the tyres and doing wheel balancing, alignment etc.

While removing one the tyres for rotation, the mechanic found that one of the hub lug bolt had worn down, and advised me to get that lug bolt replaced, to which I agreed. Although only one lug was stripped, I asked him to replace all 4 lug bolts, just in case.

After opening the disc brake assembly, he reached the phase where the disc brake was properly unbolted and was out of the way, disc rotors were taken out, and wheel hub was out in the open, unconcealed. So, now what remained to be done was to just hammer out the 4 lug bolts (as I later saw on YouTube was a popular of accomplishing this task).

However, the mechanic insisted that the wheel hub be be taken out completely (by uncoupling it from the axle) so that it frees the hub and he then gets enough room to operate on the hub and pull out the lug nuts. Expecting him to know what he's doing and trusting his "expertise", I nodded and allowed him go ahead and do his job. But when trying to remove the hub, he got to the point where the hub was dangling half way out and was being obstructed with the Disc Brake Dust Shield in preventing it from being completely extracted out. Sample photo of dust shield here (not my car)

At this point, he insisted that he can't proceed further without either damaging the hub or the disc brake shield. Now, he was clearly neither able to put the hub back to its original place, nor was was he in a position to extract out the hub, without twisting and damaging the dust shield.

I had never taken this car to any place other than MASS for anything other than minor maintenance like tyre rotation, oil change etc, and didn't know what to do. Being in a fix, I told him to try his best to do as little damage as possible and get the hub out. He apprised that he'll need to yank out the dust shield for that, but warned me that it would render the shield useless.

At this point I had no other choice but to let him proceed so gave him a go. He used pliers to twist and shear the shield, and finally yanked it out. After his operation was over, it had made enough room for him to maneuver and he was able to extract the hub out of the axle, and put new lugs and finally put everything back in place. So far so good.

Now I told him to put a new shield back. BUT to my surprise, he told me that not only did he not have a spare shield to put back in place of the one he yanked out, but also that there is no MGP Maruti spare part for the shield and that I'll have to live without one for that particular wheel for rest of the car's life! He insisted that the shield serves no purpose and having worked as a mechanic at Maruti authorized center (GEM Motors, Hyderabad), he knows this for a fact that it is a useless part in Maruti cars.

Here is what the shield looks like (after he twisted and yanked it out from behind the wheel hub):
About Disk Brake "Dust Shield" replacement-shield.jpg

Not buying his bull-cr@p, I have a few questions:
  1. I'm sure that Disc Brake Dust Shields (also called Splash Guards) are there for a purpose. Probably, as the name suggests, it prevents water from splashing into the disc brake/rotor and perhaps also prevent road grit from hitting the moving rotor which probably might be dangerous thing if it happens. Otherwise why would a manufacture put the shield in the first place? Or is it to comply with some CMVR rule? On searching the net, I found conflicting/incongruous articles, with some experts saying that its OK to let go of the shield, while many others also indicating that it is necessary part for wheel's long term health and safety.

    What do the experts here suggest?

  2. Has anyone gotten this shield replaced, say, due to it rusting out etc. That would at least give me some comfort that there is infact an OEM/MGP spare for it, and then I can go to the nearest MASS and get it replaced.

    Or is there any truth to the mechanics assertion that the shield only comes factory fitted and once removed there is no way or means to put a spare one back? Personally, I find it a bit hard to believe.

    How worried should I be due to shield not being present on one of the front wheels? I hope it doesn't compromise the safety of the brakes.


I'd appreciate if an expert BHPian experienced in this could chime in. Otherwise I was thinking of going to MASS to inquire myself.
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Old 26th May 2013, 10:36   #2
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Default re: About Disk Brake "Dust Shield" replacement

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Originally Posted by gsbhatia View Post
I'd appreciate if an expert BHPian experienced in this could chime in. Otherwise I was thinking of going to MASS to inquire myself.
Hi gsbhatia,

Dont be too tensed about driving around without the shield. When its a fact that it helps prevent wedging in pad/discs and somewhat protects from splashes and dust, there is no immediate harm in driving without them.

However, please get it replaced from MASS. I'm sure you will get the part, unlike what the mechanic told.
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Old 26th May 2013, 12:26   #3
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Default re: About Disk Brake "Dust Shield" replacement

Looks like you've had a similar experience (as myself) with another hyderabadi 'mechanic' as anyone with a screw driver and a 'paana' calls himself.

One thing I realized (and I'm sure you have as well) is to let the vehicle be serviced by someone who has been trained to work on your model (like a mechanic at an authorized service centre) instead of one that picks up 'knowledge' as he works on (and damages) several vehicles, you being the guinea pig.

And, in case of shoddy work, you can atleast write to someone higher up in authority (whether it is resolved or not is different) and not have to get down to a verbal show down as would be the only choice with a local mechanic.

Lessons learnt the hard way.
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Old 26th May 2013, 12:32   #4
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Default re: About Disk Brake "Dust Shield" replacement

Dont worry too much, this shield stops stone hits from damaging your disc. At the next service ask the MASS to replace it. I am sure this would not be in their items of inventory, so it would be a good idea to ask them to order it a few day before you land up for service.
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Old 26th May 2013, 15:04   #5
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Default re: About Disk Brake "Dust Shield" replacement

If not available as a spare, I am sure It would be available from any other accidental car or at the place where you get 2nd hand goods (kabaadi shops selling automotive parts).
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Old 29th May 2013, 18:01   #6
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Default Re: About Disk Brake "Dust Shield" replacement

I went to MASS (Gem Motors), and to my surprise, my mechanic was correct.

MASS service adviser informed me that they don't replace the disk brake dust shield once it is taken out. He claimed to have taken several hundreds of them in his lifetime but not once put a replacement back. He also mentioned that once fitted at factory, it is nearly impossible to refit it back to factory standards in a workshop (even authorized ones). If they try refitting a replacement lying around in their workshop, it just won't fit snugly and will produce squealing noise whenever it inadvertently touches the brake rotor (which I guess it shouldn't if it is installed properly in the first place)

I am not able to digest this since there are several websites on ebay.com selling OEM/replacement part for US and UK cars. Maruti should be no different.

But, oh well.
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Old 30th May 2013, 17:31   #7
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Default Re: About Disk Brake "Dust Shield" replacement

Hi,
You can buy it as a spare part from Maruti dealer. Part no. is 55321M62J00 ( cover brake disk dust ) Price should be approx. Rs. 60.00. Any good service station can replace this. But
You will have to remove hub again. I suggest replace wheel bearing also.
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Old 30th May 2013, 18:53   #8
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Default Re: About Disk Brake "Dust Shield" replacement

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Originally Posted by abhijitl View Post
Part no. is 55321M62J00 ( cover brake disk dust )
Thanks for the info. Is this part no. specific to any particular model (I need for Swift G13BB), or is it same across all Maruti models?
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Old 31st May 2013, 21:03   #9
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Default Re: About Disk Brake "Dust Shield" replacement

this for swift. Its car specific. Not common for all cars.
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Old 31st May 2013, 23:35   #10
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Default Re: About Disk Brake "Dust Shield" replacement

Quote:
Originally Posted by abhijitl View Post
I suggest replace wheel bearing also.
If I may ask... Why so sir?
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Old 1st June 2013, 14:26   #11
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Default Re: About Disk Brake "Dust Shield" replacement

I furiously called up the Gem Motors SA, and informed him about the general availability of dust shield and the MGP Part Number mentioned earlier by abhijitl.

He was left red faced and out of words. Sorry saaar, I'll source the part for you in 3 days. Gawd Promise - came the reply . Hope to get the shield back in place.

I'm surprised that the even the so called authorized service center personnel go to a great extent to shirk their responsibility although they charge for hours of work. The service center themselves acknowledged it as a fact that they don't replace this part once taken out as they don't consider it important enough to put a spare back. I think that's clearly a case of gross self diagnosis and intentional negligence, which might put customer's life and vehicle's long term health at risk (however little that might be). Here, I followed up, thanks for the suggestions from fellow BHPians, but I think I'm probably the first one to insist on it, and I'm sure there are several hundreds who don't even know that they are missing a part of their braking system, or may been have been short changed.

BTW, SA is saying that putting it back will cost me another 3-4 hours of labor, which should have cost me none had he fixed it earlier in the first place
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