SRAM Releases Details and Website for Hydraulic Brake Recall – RED 22 and S-700 Rim and Disc Brakes

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SRAM RED 22 and S-700 hydraulic disc brake and rim brake recall. © Cyclocross Magazine

SRAM RED 22 and S-700 hydraulic disc brake and rim brake recall. © Cyclocross Magazine

Last Friday, SRAM announced that it was recalling all its hydraulic road and cyclocross brakes, in disc and rim brake variations, due to an issue with the master cylinder on the Hydro R lever, raising havoc among the early adopters, shops and manufacturers and leaving many cyclocrossers with a lot of questions, especially with series, state and national titles on the line in the next few weeks.

What’s next? Where do I send them? When will we get replacements? Can I keep riding the SRAM hydraulic brakes if I ride in a warm climate?

On Monday night, SRAM announced a website (http://sramroadhydraulicbrakerecall.com) and Google Form dedicated to answering some of these questions and keeping consumers up-to-date on the hydraulic brake recall, complete with a letter from the SRAM President Stan Day offering an apology and the following statements:

[Cyclists and dealers have] counted on us, and we have just disappointed them, shaken their confidence, and disrupted their cycling life or business…

Bike Brands, OEM Factories, Dealers and Consumers are going to be angry and dismayed at SRAM.

We are going to continue to analyze failure modes and we will develop a redesign. At this point, we don’t know when this will be complete.

The cost will be high. There will also need to be compensation throughout the channel for the disruption. We don’t yet know how this will play out.

While Day describes the problem due to seals on the master cylinder not performing “in the extreme cold,” it’s important to note that SRAM pleads that everyone, in any climate, stop using the brakes immediately. “Our analysis shows the cold temperature accelerates the failure of the seal, but that also the sealing could fail in normal temperatures,” the company clarifies.

In their FAQs, they emphasize this further, saying, “We believe there is a possibility that the sealing issue overtime can also manifest itself in normal temperatures.”

SRAM RED 22 and S-700 hydraulic disc brake and rim brake and Hydro R lever are recalled and could fail in normal weather. © Cyclocross Magazine

SRAM RED 22 and S-700 hydraulic disc brake and rim brake and Hydro R lever are recalled and could fail in normal weather. © Cyclocross Magazine

Day reports that failures during the weekend of SSCXWC (in Philly) and the Deschutes Brewery Cup (in Bend) “a bigger alarm went off” as riders on both coasts suffered from brake failures in the cold wave that hit most of the country. “We were able to duplicate the failure mode through testing,” says Day.

Yet in Cyclocross Magazine’s own Cowbell Forums, as early as November 25, before the widespread problems of the December 7 weekend, some were reporting SRAM hydraulic braking problems in the cold, and were encouraged by SRAM to try bleeding the brakes.

SRAM RED 22 and S-700 hydraulic disc brake and rim brake recall. © Cyclocross Magazine

SRAM RED 22 and S-700 hydraulic disc brake and rim brake recall. © Cyclocross Magazine

At the Norcal.cx series finale in San Jose on Saturday, dozens of racers were still seen racing their S-700 or RED 22 hydraulic disc brakes, including on Boo Bicycles demo bikes, perhaps thinking the relatively mild conditions meant the brakes were safe. SRAM’s new website makes it clear that such a cavalier attitude is strongly discouraged.

To stay up-to-date on this recall, fill out SRAM’s Google Form here, and visit their recall website at sramroadhydraulicbrakerecall.com, and stay tuned to Cyclocross Magazine for all the details on this development.

Please note: With the rash of recent product recalls, especially disc brakes, we now have a new recall section on our website under cyclocross tech, for the easiest way to stay safe and find out what has been recalled. 

 

 

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8 comments
craigmacintyre
craigmacintyre

Hydros on mountain bikes have less problems because weight/size are NOT an issue.  They still have problems.  I have had a seal blow and just lose a brake.  That is not an issue that plagues cable actuated brakes of any type (more or less).  The push to trickle down this technology has been an interesting show and we are seeing both the good and the bad.


From my perspective there are some distinct conditions where discs work better for me but most of the time it is a non-issue.  I would never go back to rim brakes on my mountain bike but it weighs 30lbs so whatever.


If I was adding another single speed I think it is a toss up but a geared race bike - canti's win hands down right now.

JohnRiedel
JohnRiedel

good thing disk is the wave of the future !

Gregory Dyas
Gregory Dyas

Being a non-pro, my mechanicals are a snap to adjust & repair. I've never complained of not having enough braking or braking that wasn't very nicely modulated. I've seen others go through fits with pricey hydro setups though. Messy, expensive fits. When I'm shutting down J-Pow on the straightaways I'll think about it. ;-)

John Backhouse
John Backhouse

No just Spyres and the reply I had from the shop was its a voluntary recal due to a possible fault when pads are worn which could result in a ramp bearing slipping and the brakes stopping to work. However...I was then told that I can send them back but given its a flaw in the design there is no idea on if there will be a spyre mk 2 to fix the issue and they recommended swapping them for bb7s...the brakes I had sold on to get the spyres...and the brakes that are heavier with a wider profile. ..hence me selling my bb7s to get the lighter and smaller spyres. I also have a set of hy/rds on my cross bike.

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