Rotor & Resurfacing Response: The Industry Responds to the Midas/Glad Controversy

Rotor & Resurfacing Response: The Industry Responds to the Midas/Glad Controversy

The response to last month's article on the settlement of the Midas and Mike Glad lawsuit in California was overwhelming, and the conversation went in some unexpected directions.

What was even more amazing was the scores of people downloading the 100-page complaint against Glad and Midas. It soon became the aftermarket’s version of the Oprah Book Club. 

The number one controversy the story generated was on rotor resurfacing when new brake pads are installed. Some readers said that they do not machine rotors if they are within specification, while others said they always machine rotors. Even some dealership technicians chimed in to say they always machine rotors when replacing pads. Overall, I would say the response was 50/50. Rotor resurfacing is going to be a hot topic many brake pad and rotor manufacturers are trying to quantify if dissimilar friction materials lead to longer braking distances and noise.

While many people responded to “dance on the grave” of Midas and Glad, some came to defend him and his long career in the automotive repair business.

But, what really surprised me was the anger expressed towards the California Bureau of Automotive Repair (BAR) and how they conducted the investigation. The most common comment was about how long it took to conduct the investigation and how they did not inform Glad and Midas they were under investigation or even help to correct the problem for more than three years.

Many readers said the media attention was motivated by California’s Attorney General, Jerry Brown, using the case to make a name for himself as the state’s gubernatorial race shapes up.

But what was most glaring to many readers of the 100-page complaint was the ignorance of the BAR to procedures, equipment and product used by non-dealer shops. They clearly missed the mark with on-the-car brake lathes and brake fluid testing. The documents also exposed the BAR’s high regard for OEM service information and how they interpret it as the final word in auto repair.

Even with the bad press shops have received from this incident, many shops and franchises are learning and examining their own internal processes.

The web page with the story at is one of the most viewed articles for the last six-months. It also received a record number of comments that can be found with the original article here.

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Let’s start  with the bad news – get right into it, Band-Aid style.

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Of course, that not really “news,” at least not of the breaking variety. We’ve been wrestling with numbers like these for decades – the information that fewer students are coming out of school trained to be or at least excited about being part of this industry has been on a lot of minds for a very long time.

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