Rear Drum or Convert to Rear Disc??

Discussion in 'General Chevy & GM Tech Questions' started by Bowtie69, Sep 18, 2013.

  1. Bowtie69

    Bowtie69 New Member

    I am throwing around the idea of swapping out my stock rear drum brakes for a disc conversion on my 2010 Silverado 1500 LT. Is it worth it? How much and how hard is it to complete? I have talked with friends, repair shops and I end up more confused each time. Looking for a little help and guidance. Thanks guys!

    Bill
  2. stchman

    stchman New Member

    I would not do it, the braking system on that truck was designed for rear drum brakes. You would be just wasting your money. Remember, on pickups the rear brakes do very little work. Drum brakes on trucks last a really long time and do their job.

    Everything I've read is that when people swap rear drums for a rear disc setup, braking gets worse. About the only thing you would accomplish by changing to rear discs is to make the rear brakes look better through the rims.
  3. ridick_bowen

    ridick_bowen New Member

    da faq? 2010 with drum brakes?
  4. stchman

    stchman New Member

    The Silverado had rear disc from 2000 to 2004. Apparently people complained about the braking on the Silverado and GM went back to rear drums. For the 2014 model, GM has rear discs again.

    A lot of people balk at rear drums, but they work well and last a long time.
  5. Bowtie69

    Bowtie69 New Member

    Thanks stchman! I really appreciate the info. I think I will take your advice and save my money. Nice ride you have!

    Bill
  6. stchman

    stchman New Member

    Thanks, I don't know how much it would cost for someone to convert the rear drum to disc, but I bet it would be on the order of $3K.

    Many have said that if you want better feeling brakes, install braided brake lines.
  7. reggiecab2000

    reggiecab2000 Member

    actually i thought the reason they went back to drums was to cut production costs????

    BTW I looked on summitracing.com

    and the kits run right at $1000.00
  8. rileyjr16

    rileyjr16 New Member

    That they do last a long time. But when it does come time, I find they are a pain in the behind. But that's ok. It's once in a while... A long while.
  9. Psyc0

    Psyc0 New Member

    For what it's worth: If You live in the northern latitudes where snow, ice, and ROAD SALT are predominent, stay with Your drum & shoe rear brakes.
    That type of system generally holds up superbly to Winter's worst, where rear disc brakes are rather quickly decimated by the corrosive road salt.
    I lived in the Northeast for 51.7 years, hence, I have first hand experience with the weather related road chemicals, plus the vehicle chassis deterioration.
    Hope this helps!
  10. Bowtie69

    Bowtie69 New Member

    I may do that in the future. I am going to switch the front rotors to drilled/slotted to give me better stopping power. I like to tow my boat a lot on weekends and I have read that this type of rotor and a good pad combination will give me better stopping power under load/towing conditions.

    I am also going to put a front leveling kit in. How hard is this to do?
  11. reggiecab2000

    reggiecab2000 Member

    for starters i would say, stay with just slotted rotors...
    also as far as leveling kits, ive used spring spacers, strut spacers. and flat out replaced struts....
    ill tell you the best deal if you have the strut suspension system, because i recently convinced a friend on the same thing, is buy the rancho quick lift struts, its a complete replacement strut and spring assembly for a VERY good price. also it has 9 adjustable positions for shock sensitivity. my friend loves the ride... search around for the type of leveling kit you would like, but from my experience with all types of leveling kits (well never done torsion bars), the rancho strut is by far the best one
  12. CKNSLS

    CKNSLS New Member

    After towing a 5,500 pound travel trailer 8,000 miles in 8 months around this beautiful country of ours, someone needs to tell how these things don't stop well, because I traveled over every type of highway imaginable and had zero issues. I towed with a 2011-5.3 Crew Cab Silverado.

    Please enlighten me...please!

    On Edit-the truck was 100% stock.
    Last edited: Sep 19, 2013
  13. stchman

    stchman New Member

    The OP won't get any benefit of changing rear drums to discs, except a lighter wallet.
  14. ChevyFan

    ChevyFan Administrator Staff Member

    Need to move this to the tech area.
  15. MrShorty

    MrShorty Moderator

    Moved to General Tech
  16. tbplus10

    tbplus10 Moderator

    I used to have the opinion that to get a great set of rear brakes I had to have disc's.
    after years of spending money on swaps, including bigger wheels, different master cylinders, BVP's and a long list of other parts I realized my brakes were only getting marginally better on each vehicle.
    I had a discussion once with an engineer for a major brake parts mfgr, he volunteered a saturday afternoon to look at the truck I was building at the time (99 Tacoma long term project I still own) and showed me the mistakes I was making with the brake system.
    Whens the last time you flushed and changed brake fluid? Brake fluid should be changed about every 3 years for max effectiveness.
    What type shoes and pads are being used? An effective brake system is gonna see wear on rotors, drums, shoes, and pads, heat/friction is a product of stopping.
    How is the brake bias set-up? Most factory bias systems are ok for a moderately loaded truck but dont compensate as well when heavily loaded, why, compensation would compromise braking on an unloaded truck the way the system limits and design are, most trucks spend 80-90% of their time unloaded, the average pick up driver will never use his vehicle at or near its limits. Lets face it society has turned trucks into a family sedan with an open trunk.
    Big wheels and tires, larger wheels and tires, unsprung weight affects stopping power a lot, if your gonna go larger wheels and tires you really need to stuff all that newfound space with larger brakes.
    When towing braking becomes an issue mainly due to the fact so many drivers have no clue how to correctly balance their tow and set it up for the truck. Many drivers have a mistaken belief tongue load is the only worry.
    The truck and trailer must be flat when connected, but you also need to ensure the load is distributed evenly over the trailer.
    To much weight one side or the other from the balance point and you get nose up or down which changes brake bias instantly but this change isnt reacted to by the truck brake system as fast.

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