Are OEM Volvo Brake Pads Better Than Aftermarket?

Are you trying to decide between OEM and aftermarket brake pads for your Volvo?

You came to the right place.

We put together this comparison guide to help you reach an educated decision. Let’s start by discussing the first concern most Volvo owners have: cost.

How You’ll Save More Money With OEM Brake Pads

brake pads

There’s a common misconception that OEM brake pads cost more than aftermarket ones. Often times, you have to pay more upfront for OEM brake pads, but they end up costing less in the long run.

Side note: You don’t always have to pay a hefty markup for OEM replacement brake pads at a Volvo dealership, by the way. You can order genuine OEM brake pads from us at wholesale pricing. We’re an authorized seller of OEM Volvo parts.

Aftermarket brake pads can come with rock-bottom prices. But they’ll likely end up costing you more money in the long run because:

  • Aftermarket brake pads tend to wear out quickly
  • Most aftermarket brake pads don’t come with a warranty
  • Aftermarket brake pads don’t work well with OEM rotors

We’ll discuss these points later. First, let’s talk about why OEM brake pads are a smart investment.

Why OEM Brake Pads Are A Smart Investment

OEM brake pads are a better investment because they're compatible with OEM rotors.

We cannot stress enough how important compatibility is when it comes to brake pads. Volvo designed its OEM brake pads with a certain friction material composition. It's so OEM brake pads will work well with the OEM rotors in your Volvo. This leads to optimal performance. More specifically:

  • Quieter and smoother braking
  • More stopping power
  • Less dust compared to incompatible brake pads
  • Less wear on the rotors
  • Reliability in cold weather

Each Volvo model has its own set of brake pads with a certain design and material composition. The same goes for OEM rotors. Volvo made sure that the brake pads designed for your model match up with the rotors for your model.

With a set of OEM brake pads on your Volvo, you have the peace of mind that your car's braking performance will always remain optimal.

The Dangers Of Using Aftermarket Brake Pads

Pads rotors

The low upfront cost of aftermarket brake pads can be attractive. But the truth is that aftermarket brake pads are often unsafe and expensive in the long run. Here’s why:

Incompatibility With OEM Rotors

Aftermarket manufacturers design their brake pads to their own discretion. That means aftermarket brake pads come with different friction material than that found in OEM pads. This usually results in a less than optimal braking performance.

There's also the issue of poor fitment. Not all aftermarket brake pads come with exactly the right dimensions. It's dangerous to have brake pads that don't fit perfectly into the caliper. This compromises your car's braking performance and your safety.

Reviews Of Aftermarket Brake Pads

Amazon is loaded with negative reviews from disgruntled Volvo owners who used aftermarket brake pads. An Amazon customer wrote, "[My aftermarket brake pads] should be called SquealCast as they are not close to being quiet. Installed these over a year ago and after two months they started to squeal like a banshee. Replaced them with Volvo pads and now as quiet as a mouse and more responsive."

Another disappointed Amazon customer wrote that their aftermarket brake pads were advertised to fit their 2012 Volvo XC90. But the pads turned out to not fit at all.

The scariest Amazon review came from a user who lost their braking power in cold and wet weather. "If you want less stopping power, then buy these [aftermarket brake pads]," the reviewer wrote. "At first, these pads seemed the closest thing to an original pad, but with less dust. Then I drove when it was cold and wet and I lost all braking power. I had to remember to keep tapping on the brakes before stopping to be safe."

Summing Up

OEM brake pads are a much smarter investment than aftermarket brake pads when it comes to quality and safety. You can get the best of both worlds by ordering OEM brake pads from us at wholesale pricing. Look up your Volvo model in our catalog to see if we have a set of brake pads for your car!