How to Tell if Your Brakes Need Replacing

Posted Sunday, Aug 01, 2021

Your vehicle’s brakes play an important role in keeping you safe on the road – and yet they also often end up being one of the most ignored vehicle maintenance tasks. But allowing your brakes to become too worn can lead to issues with other parts of your braking system, leading to more costly repairs. Many people wait too long to replace their brakes simply because they are unaware that their brakes are wearing out, but there are a few easy-to-read signs your vehicle will give you when your brakes need to be replaced. Read on to learn what signs to look for so you can know when it is time to have them serviced.


Signs of Brake Wear


Being able to tell if your brakes need replacing is quite often as simple as keeping your ears open when you are driving. All brake pads contain a component called an indicator, which is a small piece of metal buried in the brake pad that will rub on your rotors or drums when the brake pads are becoming thin. At this point, the indicator will make a loud squealing sound whenever the brakes are used, which acts as a signal to let you know that your brake pads need to be replaced soon.


If you’re the type of person that likes to listen to loud music or turn your fan on high when you drive, there is a chance that you might not hear the squeal of a brake pad indicator. Instead, pay attention to how responsive your brakes are when you use them. If it takes longer to stop, or if you have to push the brake pedal closer to the floor, these could be signs that your brakes are becoming worn.


Waiting Too Long Can Cause Additional Problems


If brakes are allowed to wear all of the way through the pad, they will no longer squeal when used. Instead, they will make a loud growling or grinding noise, and can also vibrate noticeably when the pedal is depressed. This is because the metal that the pads were mounted to is now grinding against your rotors or drums. At this point, it is no longer just reduced braking power that you have to be worried about, as the metal-on-metal contact will start causing damage to your rotors or drums. This can lead to needing to have the rotors or drums repaired, or even totally replaced if the damage is too extensive. If you experience these issues, it is important to have your brakes replaced as soon as possible.


When in Doubt, Get an Inspection


If you’d like to keep on top of your brake maintenance, or you just aren’t sure if they need replacing, you can always have them inspected. At All Star Motors, we offer free inspections so that you can always have peace of mind that your brakes are functioning properly. So if you’re in doubt about your brakes, call to make an appointment, or set one up right through our website!