The braking system in your vehicle is perhaps one of the most important components of all. When your brakes fail, it can be a serious safety hazard for yourself as well as for other drivers on the road. So, how do you know when your brakes are in trouble? Read on for a few warning signs that indicate your brakes are in need of service as soon as possible.
Squealing, Squeaking, or Grinding Sounds
If you’re noticing unusual noises any time you apply the brakes, it’s a definite red flag that something is wrong. Usually, this is an indication that your brake pads are almost worn. The pads are made of steel, and when they come into contact with the rotor, you’ll notice a high-pitched noise. Grinding noises might simply mean that some rocks have gotten caught up in the calipers. This is an easy fix, but it still requires the help of an experienced mechanic. Your drum brakes may also need lubrication to reduce that awful grinding noise.
Shaking or Vibrations
If your steering wheel seems to shake or wobble when you apply the brakes, your rotors may be uneven. The rotors are large discs that sit inside the wheels. Whenever you hit the brake pedal, the pads clamp onto your rotors and bring your vehicle to a stop. If the rotors become worn or uneven, it will cause that annoying vibration or shaky feeling. Ideally, rotors should be smooth and the same thickness throughout.
Fluid is Leaking
Sometimes, your brakes may feel soft or spongy. This is typically due to a leak within the master cylinder. Just like other components of your vehicle, the brakes require fluid to operate correctly. Check your brake fluid levels and be on the lookout for any possible leaks. Another common cause of “soft brakes” is when air or moisture has gotten into your braking system. Ask your mechanic to perform a full brake inspection so you can be sure you’re not dealing with a leak or a broken component.
Brakes are not something you should leave to chance. The sooner you have them inspected and diagnosed, the better. When in doubt, take your car to us and we’ll perform a thorough analysis of your brake system and offer recommendations for a fix.
For all your automotive service and repair needs, come see us at Dave’s Auto Repair in Goshen, IN or call us at 574-444-0948 to schedule an appointment today!