BrakeBest Select and Duralast are two aftermarket brake pad brands. Both of these brands produce similar equipment and neither brand has a clear advantage over the other.
Brakebest Select vs. Duralast Overview and Comparison
BrakeBest Select and Duralast are the private label brake pad brands for O’Reilly Auto Parts and Autozone, respectively. Despite the fact that these brands are sold by different retailers and that they’re priced slightly differently, both BrakeBest Select and Duralast brake pads are actually made by Bosch.
In general, both of these brands are marketed as budget-friendly brake pad brands, although BrakeBest Select pads are slightly less expensive than Duralast pads. Both BrakeBest Select and Duralast brake pads come in semi-metallic and ceramic varieties, so you have the same choices from both brands when it comes to the materials available for their pads.
Both of these brake pads are intended to offer OEM-like performance at a lower cost, so you shouldn’t consider either one of these brands if you’re planning on doing a lot of hard driving. In addition, both brands offer a lifetime warranty on their products.
So, which one of these brands is actually better? The answer, unfortunately, is not very clear. BrakeBest Select pads are slightly cheaper, but not by that much. In terms of their quality and durability, it seems to depend on who you ask.
Some people swear by BrakeBest Select, while others claim that Duralast offers the best products. Others claim that both brands are junk and should be avoided, while there are also claims that both brands are fine as long as you don’t drive your vehicle too hard.
Our opinion is that both of these brands are of acceptable quality and both are viable options if you’re looking for a cheap replacement for some of your OEM parts. There are certainly better aftermarket parts out there, but for most people, both BrakeBest Select and Duralast parts will get the job done.
Regardless of what brand you decide to go with, we’d recommend that you buy a set of ceramic brake pads, unless you plan on towing stuff or driving hard. Compared to organic and semi-metallic pads, ceramic pads don’t wear down brake rotors as quickly and don’t generate nearly as much brake dust.
How to Change Your Brake Pads
It’s good to know what brake pads are right for your car, but ideally, you should also have a full understanding of how to change your brake pads correctly if you plan on doing so yourself.
Changing your brake pads is pretty easy if you know what you’re doing; if all goes well, the process should take you about an hour, and you’ll be able to save at least a couple hundred dollars in labor. Here are the steps you need to follow in order to change your brake pads:
- Jack up your car and install a jack stand underneath to keep it elevated.
- Loosen the lug nuts on your wheel and remove the wheel.
- Locate the two slider bolts (also called slider pins) on the back of the brake caliper. There should be an upper one and a lower one. If you’re only swapping out your brake pads, you only need to remove the lower bolt, but if you’re replacing your pads and calipers, then you’ll need to remove both.
- Assuming you’ve only removed the bottom bolt, you can now pivot the caliper upwards to expose the brake pads.
- The brake pads will be loosely held in place with two retaining clips. With the caliper out of the way, you can simply slide the pads out from the clips. Once the pads have been removed, you can remove the clips as well.
- Your new brake pads probably came with new clips, which you should install now. No screws are required; just snap the clips into place. Clips come in left-and right-handed varieties, so make sure you install the right clips depending on which side of the car you’re working on.
- Slide your new brake pads into the clips.
- Before reinstalling the caliper, you need to retract the pistons that actuate the brake pads. You can use a c-clamp to do this, or you can use something like a 2×4 to lever the pistons back into their default position.
- Retracting the pistons sends brake fluid back into the master cylinder, so you should keep an eye on the master cylinder to ensure that it isn’t overflowing. If it looks like it’s going to overflow, remove some of the brake fluid with a turkey baster.
- Once you have the pistons fully retracted, you should be able to replace the caliper. Reinstall the slider bolts, reattach your wheel, and you should be all finished!
When talking about BrakeBest Select vs. Duralast, there’s no option that is clearly the better one. BrakeBest products cost a bit less, but the difference in price isn’t significant. These two brands don’t differ much in overall quality either.
We’d recommend just going with whatever brand you can find more easily. In either case, as long as you aren’t pushing your car to its limits and driving hard on a regular basis, you shouldn’t have much trouble with either of these brands.