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How Can You Tell When Your Brakes Are Failing?



When braking, all you have to do is step on your car's brake pedal. But a lot more goes into bringing your car to a halt. The caliper, rotor, and brake pads are some of the main parts of your braking system. All these components have to work synchronously to slow down or stop your car once you step on the brakes.


Each part of the braking system also has to remain in top working condition to prevent accidents. A proper braking system ensures the driver's safety and other road users as well.


But brake parts may wear off over time. If you can identify the following signs of a failing brake system, you will not have to worry about your safety on the road.


1. Grinding or Squealing Sounds


A high-pitched squealing sound when you step on your brakes is often a good sign of trouble with your brake pads. When they begin to wear out, the bare metal presses against the rotors and produces a high-pitched metallic sound.


If you continue to ignore these screeching noises, you might completely wear out your brake pads. You can expect a metal-on-metal grinding sound that can only get worse. Unfortunately, worn-out pads not only weaken your braking system but can also damage the rotors. The repair costs can quickly add up if you do not act quickly.


Do not risk further damage to your braking system by completely wearing your brake pads out. Once you notice a sharp noise when you press the brakes, reach out to a reputable auto service specialist immediately.


2. Poor Braking Performance


When your brakes start to fail, your car may take longer to stop. Unfortunately, even a slight braking delay can quickly get disastrous, especially on high traffic roads.


If you notice that your car takes too long to stop, the brake pads could be near the end of their life. Your car's brake fluid levels could also be too low to allow for effective braking.


To be sure, ask your auto mechanic for a more in-depth analysis of your car's braking performance. You may need to get help as soon as you can before your car completely loses its braking ability.


3. Car Pulling to One Side


A problem with your braking system can make your car seem to pull to one side when you step on the brakes. The most likely causes may include the following:


  • Worn-down brake pads. If your brake pads wear out, they become too thin and eventually get worse at their job. The pads may wear out unevenly, which makes your car pull to one side when braking. Usually, this symptom may also have a sharp squealing noise.

  • Brake hose failure. Your car's brake hose may collapse and cause uneven caliper movement. You may feel the pull for a short while, but if the caliper does not release, the pull can take longer.

  • Stuck caliper. When you press on the brake pedal, one of your bare calipers could get stuck and make your car pull to the side. You may need to replace the caliper before your car can return to normal braking performance.


Leave brake-related issues to an experienced professional. Do not attempt any DIY repairs if you are not sure what to do.


Faulty brakes are a huge liability on the road. If you can't stop when you need to, you might cause a serious accident that places you and other motorists in harm's way. Experienced service experts from companies like Windermere Sustainable Car Care can help solve any problems you might have with your braking system. Call today.

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