How To Prevent Rust On Brake Rotors

BMW e92 M3

Having rust on your brake rotors is no fun and looks terrible. Over time, if you neglect to maintain your rotors, you’ll find yourself having to do more work than you want to keep them rust-free. There are steps you can take to prevent this from happening, so I’ll be sharing with you how to prevent rust on brake rotors.

I used to get super annoyed when I would clean my wheels and then get home or to the office to see brown rust slurried all over them. If there’s one thing that frustrates me is spending hours washing my cars only to have my wheels look like crap because of brake rotor goo oozing down the wheel barrel.

Well, after going into Matty mode and researching what was available to prevent brake rotor rust, I came across Hyde's Serum Rustopper. I had the most challenging time getting this stuff because it was always out of stock. I’m so glad I found the guy who made it. 

What I realized during my search was the guy who was mixing this stuff was doing it out of his garage with the help of his wife - who knew. This explains why they never had any available to sell. So, back in 2017, I prepaid him to make a giant batch for me to meet the demand of our customers. Since then, we’ve done pretty good keeping it in stock.

Preventing Rust On Brake Rotors

You’re going to love this process. I say you’re going to love it because we now have a product (Hyde’s Rustopper) that will aid in the prevention of rusty rotors. When using this stuff, you must remember to apply it regularly. Consistency is key. I’ll show you how I’ve prevented rust on my brake rotors living in central Florida. This process takes a few minutes to do after every car wash:

  1. Clean your wheel and tire with the best wheel cleaner I’ve been using for some time now, P&S Brake Buster. I usually like to use this product in a foam cannon, which does a great job covering the entire wheel, specifically because of how well it foams. Let the brake buster sit on the wheel for about 2-3 minutes, then agitate the wheel with a wheel cleaning brush and the tire with a tire cleaning brush, then rinse off. Brake buster does have some rust-inhibiting capabilities, but not like Hyde’s 
  2. Immediately spray the Hyde’s Rustopper on your entire rotor in a sweeping motion before moving to the next wheel - just a quick side note, Hyde’s is safe on all types of steel and alloy wheels (this includes chrome and polished wheels), and anodized finishes
  3. Finish all four wheels in this fashion and then complete your car washing process
  4. Once the car is finished being washed/rinsed and before you dry, move the vehicle back and forth in the driveway and apply brakes to dry the rotors thoroughly
  5. Blow off the car, wheels, and rotors with a leaf blower

This is not a perfect product; no product is - it does a good job doing what it was designed to do. Like many of the products we sell on our site, everything was curated and vetted to provide better solutions for specific applications. Whether that’s the best car coating for paint, the best garage cabinets, the best pressure washer, or whatever, I spent the time, money, and energy to bring to the world what I believe to be the best of the best.

Hyde’s Rustopper is no different. It works great if you use it right. 

Hyde's Rustopper

Things You Want To Avoid When Using Hyde’s Rustopper:

  • Let your rotor dry, and then spray it on. If you do this, you’re going to have wet rust everywhere. Follow the steps above to apply this correctly
  • Apply in direct sunlight or to a hot wheel
  • Keep in a cold environment. You want to protect this stuff against frost or freezing 

I’ve changed my wheel and tire cleaning procedure several times over the years. I can guarantee you it will continue to progress over time as my team and I chase newer, more efficient solutions. I’d say that I’m probably on version ten by now with this wheel and tire cleaning process, with more improvements and product changes to happen as we continue down this path of functional excellence. 

This rust preventative process was designed to do just that - prevent rust. As long as you clean your wheels and rotors regularly, you won’t experience a ton of brake dust build-up that will lead to rotor rust.