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competitive benchmarks

Test n° 2


Brake noise can be unnerving. It disrupts your driving and makes it sound like something is wrong with your brakes – as a minimum it is plain irritating. If you have just replaced a set of brake pads on a customer’s car, the last thing you want is them experiencing brake squeal and having to return to the workshop. You want to give your customers the assurance of brakes that will keep noise within reasonable limits. But what is reasonable?

70 dB (decibels) is the standard sound of a car driving – it is not particularly irritating or loud, but is noticeable. 85 dB is already disturbingly loud. If consistent, noise at this volume can cause damage to your eardrums. 105 dB can be compared to a really loud, piercing warning horn suddenly going off in your car without warning.


For safety reasons, and to ensure the general comfort of the driver, all vehicle manufacturers set certain limitations for noise. Essentially these limitations determine the number of times that brakes of acceptable quality are allowed to squeal at a certain volume.

Let’s have a look at both graphs. The columns represent the percentage of times the brakes made a 70 dB (graph 1) or 85 dB (graph 2) squeal. The red line indicates the limits set by the vehicle manufacturers (OE noise tolerance). So, at the 70 dB volume, brakes are of an acceptable quality only if they don’t make a noise that equals or exceeds 70 dB more than 10 times out of every 100. At the 85 dB volume, brakes can only make an 85 dB squeal 1.4% of the times you brake.


Take a look at the graphs again and compare Ferodo to the competition. It’s clear that when we say we make quiet brakes, we mean it. We stay consistently below the vehicle manufacturers’ specifications.

Test Parameters
  • Test conducted: SAE J2521: Disc and Drum Brake, Dynamometer Squeal Noise Matrix
  • World-wide standard for passenger cars
  • Contains noise critical drag brake applications and realistic stop brake applications
  • Test rig used: Ford Focus with the FN3-57 brake caliper

Competitor testing conducted in Europe between 2010 and 2014 following European industry standards by Federal-Mogul at its European Research and Development test facilities.

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