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Curing Volkswagen Brake Pulsation

Applicable Models: 1999-2010 Volkswagens: All models except Routan

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Volkswagen drivers may complain of a pulsating brake pedal when applying the brakes at highway speeds. The pulsation may also be felt as a vibration in the vehicle body. Additionally, the steering wheel may shake. The cause may be improperly machined brakes, and the condition may not be felt until several months after the brakes were machined.

Repair Procedure: Remove wheels and separate brake calipers from carrier using factory and/or industry standard approved practices. A detailed brake disc inspection is needed to determine if the brake disc should be machined or replaced. Inspect brake disc friction surfaces on both sides of the brake disc for severe discoloration (bluing), high heat surface damage (raised hard spots) and visible cracks. Replace brake discs showing any of these conditions.


Disc Thickness Measuring: Each brake disc has the minimum allowed thickness cast, stamped or laser-etched into the disc hub.

Measure the brake disc thickness in four locations using factory and/or industry standard approved practices. Measurements must be taken the same distance from the brake disc outer circumference to ensure consistency.

NOTE: The brake disc must exceed the minimum thickness after the machining process is completed in order for it to be reused.


Brake Disc Machining: Brake discs must be machined in pairs (front axle and/or rear axle).

  • Follow the brake lathe manufacturer’s instructions for setup and machining.
  • Wash the brake disc with a soap and water solution upon completion of resurfacing to remove all machining particles.
  • Re-measure brake disc thickness in four locations to verify that minimum thickness is still exceeded. If recorded brake disc measurement is less than the minimum thickness, the brake disc must be replaced.
  • Measure brake disc lateral runout. Runout must not exceed 0.1 mm.

Courtesy of Mitchell OnDemand

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