When it comes to safety in the car, the brake system is your best friend. It is important to know the signs of failing brakes so that you can have them repaired immediately in order to keep you and your passengers safe. Effective braking could be the difference between a serious accident and driving away without a scratch. Here are 5 common signs that your vehicle needs brake repair.
Brakes squeal when applied
Your brakes are designed to squeal or screech to let you know that the pads are getting low. This involves a small mechanism that creates the shrill noise, which stops when the brakes are applied. This is often the first sign of brake failure Be sure to get your car to a local car repair shop right away to get the problem fixed before it turns into a larger issue.
Car vibrates when the brakes are applied
If you start to feel shaking, vibrating or other odd motions abnormal for the car when you apply the brakes there is a decent chance you have warped rotors, which is the part of the wheel where the brake pads grab to slow your vehicle. Warped rotors will greatly reduce the effectiveness of the brake system.
Howling or grinding noise when braking
When you apply the brakes and howling or grinding noise happens it is likely because you have no, or very little, brake pads left causing metal to grind on metal. If this is the case you will likely need to replace your rotors or drums along with the pads in order to restore the braking power of the system to its factory condition.
Brake pedal is soft
If a brake pedal has lots of “give,” meaning when you push on it it takes more distance to push it for you to feel a response then when your brakes are new, it’s probable that your car’s brake pads are worn down. However it could also be a more serious issue with the brake system, such as low brake fluid or air in the brake lines.
Car pulls to one side when braking
If you hit the brakes and your car swerves to one side of the road or the other it likely means there is something wrong with the brake system. Usual culprits include a collapsed brake hose, uneven wear on the brake pads or impurities in the brake fluid. It is important to get the car to a mechanic right away to diagnose the cause and have it repaired.