In 2019, Elon Musk made a claim that Tesla Owners will never need to replace their brake pads because most of the stopping is performed using regenerative braking.
This is incorrect. Vast majority of vehicle motion is returned to the battery, as the electric motors act like a generator in reverse. Brake pads on a Tesla literally never need to be replaced for lifetime of the car.— Elon Musk (@elonmusk) December 26, 2018
Most Tesla owners will agree brake pad wear rates are lower compared to an internal combustion vehicle, but they also know the brake pads are more likely to fail due to corrosion before they wear out.
In a recent video by the YouTube channel Rich Rebuilds, this corrosion problem was discussed, and a solution was given. You can watch the entire video, or skip to 11:16 mark to see the condition of the brakes.
The video explains that the pads will likely be on the car for an extended period. Corrosion can destroy the bond between the backing plate and friction material. Brake pads for EVs need advanced corrosion treatments like galvanization, according to the video. In addition, the brake pads should use mechanical attachment methods to secure the friction material to the backing plates to prevent rust jacking and delamination. The pads installed in the video are manufactured by NRS Brakes specifically for EV vehicles.
Rich Benoit is the owner of the popular YouTube channel Rich Rebuilds. The channel was started as a way for Benoit to document the rebuild of a flood damage Tesla. Over the past four years, the channel has rebuilt many cars and has taken on Tesla’s monopoly for service and charging. Benoit also opened his shop called Electrified Garage. The channel currently has more than 700,000 subscribers.