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Old 07-06-2011, 09:12 AM   #1
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Brake Caliper Finish Degradation or Staining

Service Information
Document ID: 2668469

#PI0244A: Brake Caliper Finish Removal, Degradation or Staining from Wheel Cleaning Chemicals - (Jun 3, 2011)


Subject:Brake Caliper Finish Removal, Brake Caliper Finish from Wheel Cleaning Chemicals

Models:2010-2012 Chevrolet Camaro SS



This PI is being revised to add the 2012 model year. Please discard PI0244.

Condition/Concern

Some customers may comment on a degradation of the finish on Brembo® brake calipers standard on Camaro SS models.
Frequent application of harsh wheel cleaning chemicals may have attacked the finish on the brake caliper. Most wheel cleaning chemicals advise not to let the product come in contact with painted or finished surfaces but customers may not have thought to protect the decorative brake calipers.

Recommendations/Instructions

Important: Acidic wheel cleaners may craze, crack, discolor or remove the finish on the brake calipers. Damage from wheel cleaners is not covered under the vehicle new car warranty. Soap and water applied with a soft brush is usually all that is required to clean the calipers.
The brake calipers on the Camaro SS are black anodized aluminum. This coating provides a durable and attractive, chip resistant finish. Acid based products and harsh detergents should be avoided (see vehicle owners manual). If non-recommended cleaners are used, every attempt should be made to follow the instructions on the label and to assure the calipers are shielded from these cleaners.
The picture below is an example in which wheel cleaner has removed the majority of the finish on the front side of the caliper.

Finish Removed by Wheel Cleaner




Notice: Do not use cleaning solutions that contain hydrofluoric, oxalic and most other acids on any General Motors wheels or brake calipers. These cleaning agents are destructive to various automotive finishes.
In the second photo below, you can see how contact with the wheel cleaner is limited to the face of the caliper. The original finish remains present as you look toward the back side of the caliper.

Brake Caliper With Partial Finish Removal




Further Assistance

Damage from wheel cleaners is not covered under the vehicle new car warranty, and no attempt should be made to correct this condition.
If the customer wishes to apply some type of decorative finish on the brake caliper, most retail auto parts stores sell high temperature automotive brake caliper paint. Caliper paint products by *Dupli-Color are available nationwide. The customer may refer to www.duplicolor.com for additional information and local dealers for these products.

*We believe these sources and their products to be reliable. There may be additional manufacturers of such material. General Motors does not endorse, indicate any preference for or assume any responsibility for the products from these firms or for any such items which may be available from other sources.
GM bulletins are intended for use by professional technicians, NOT a "do-it-yourselfer". They are written to inform these technicians of conditions that may occur on some vehicles, or to provide information that could assist in the proper service of a vehicle. Properly trained technicians have the equipment, tools, safety instructions, and know-how to do a job properly and safely. If a condition is described, DO NOT assume that the bulletin applies to your vehicle, or that your vehicle will have that condition. See your GM dealer for information on whether your vehicle may benefit from the information.

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© 2011 General Motors. All rights reserved.
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Old 07-06-2011, 09:23 AM   #2
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Man, what kind of wheel cleaner are people using to do that kind of damage to the caliper. Stinks that it's not covered under warranty, but on the upside it does give people an excuse to get them painted.
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Old 07-06-2011, 09:58 AM   #3
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I don't know,but I know our detail guys here have wheel acid that they use sometimes to clean off stubborn stains and brake dust buildup,I have made sure to tell them not to use it on Camaro's or Corvette's with painted calipers.
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Old 07-06-2011, 02:06 PM   #4
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Quote:
Originally Posted by stieger View Post
Man, what kind of wheel cleaner are people using to do that kind of damage to the caliper. Stinks that it's not covered under warranty, but on the upside it does give people an excuse to get them painted.

Most commonly it's the acids from touchless car washes. The way they are able to clean cars and wheels without even touching them is with acids. Get that acid concentration a hair too high and finishes are damaged. The same stuff eats clear coat right off wheels. If you ever see the clear coat missing from around where wheel weights were - it's from the acids sitting under the wheel weights where the blowers didn't blow it out from.
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