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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Yesterday when driving in the mountains in cold weather a loud grinding noise started while driving in stop and go traffic. After a while i got out to check. The front left disc was burning hot. The noise continued for a bit and then eventually went away. I have read a bit that it may have something to do with ABS but I cant believe this noise is normal. It was so loud it would get peoples attention as we drove by. Any ideas?
 

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Perform or have a brake system inspection done. Could be frozen sticky calipers with excess pad wear with metal-to metal contact. When was your last brake service?
 

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+1 to aggrex. I had this happen on a different car in the rear... the brake pad froze on one side in the slide channel putting all the pressure on the other brake pad. It, of course, had to be the side without the wear indicator and the pad material wore all the way down to the backing plate. By the time I realized the rotor was destroyed and metal shavings burned into the clear coat of the rims permanently cosmetically damaging them as well.

Edit: It could also be the dust shield making contact with the rotor. It's way too close on the pilot and any little bit of rust expansion or nicking it while taking the wheel on and off could put it in contact.
 
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Discussion Starter · #4 ·
Perform or have a brake system inspection done. Could be frozen sticky calipers with excess pad wear with metal-to metal contact. When was your last brake service?
Car is new to me for 1 year. its a 2009 but only has 40k miles. Brakes were new when purchased.
 

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Sticky caliper or dust shield. Either way, you're going to want to get it looked at.
 

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In order of possible cost of repairs:
a) a rock between a dust shield and a rotor (you said you were driving in the mountains);
b) dust shield itself, grinding on the rotor; or
c) a sticky caliper (as you said, your disk was burning hot compared to the other one) - pins can be removed, regreased and reinstalled, depending on how badly they are seized. Pads/rotor can be reused provided neither are too worn and/or damaged from being stuck.
d) if you actually hear more of a droning noise and vibrations rather than scraping/grinding - it could also be your wheel hub bearing.
 
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