Brake pads are a crucial component of your vehicle’s disc brake system. When you push the brake pedal, it activates the hydraulic pump to exert pressure through a series of brake lines to the caliper located near the wheels. The calipers hold a pair of brake pads sandwiched around a metal disc known as a brake rotor. This brake rotor is attached to the wheel and when the vehicle is moving, this rotor spins along.
When you apply pressure on the brake pedal, the caliper pushes the brake pads against the brake rotor, creating heat and friction. The brake pads contain friction material that wears away with time. When this happens, you have to replace the brake pads. Here are the signs that it is time to replace your car’s brake pads:
If you hear a buzzing or squealing sound that does away when you hit the brakes and returns as soon as you take your foot off the pedal, it is likely the wear indicators on your brake pads trying to warn you. These metal tabs are located near the top of your brake pads and create a screeching noise when the pads are badly eroded. When this happens, do not wait any longer to replace the brake pads.
Grinding sound when braking
If you hear a grinding noise when you push the brake pedal, it is a sign that you need to replace your brake pads as soon as possible. If you ignore the noise and allow the brake pads to continue grinding, it can cause extensive damage and the vehicle may need costly repairs.
Increased response time
If your vehicle is taking longer than usual to come to a complete stop, it is a sign that your brake pads are worn out. When the brake pads are worn to the extent that it is affecting the response time, you need to replace them immediately or it could prove dangerous in an emergency.
Brake pads are visibly eroded
You can visually inspect the brake pads and see if they need to be replaced. However, you may have to take off the wheels to be able to get there. Check the caliper or brake assembly holding the brake pads. The friction material on the brake pads should be at least a quarter inch thick. If not, it is time to replace the brake pads.
Indicator light on the dashboard
Some models of cars come with a sensor in the brake pads that trigger when the brake pads erode. When the brake light turns on, it could be a sign that it is time to get new brake pads. Take the vehicle to your auto mechanic to take a look at the brake pads.
Vibrating brake pedal
If your brake pedal feels unsteady to vibrates when you press it down, it could be a sign that your brake pads are worn down. A vibrating brake pedal is a sign that you should never ignore. You should have your vehicle checked right away to prevent further damage or a potential crash.
Metallic grinding or rumbling
In case you hear a noise that sounds like a rumbling growl or metal grinding, it is a sign that the brake pads are worn out and also that your discs and calipers are making contact. Metal-on-metal contact can cause serious damage to the brake system so get the repairs done immediately.
These are just some of the signs that your brake pads are worn out. If your vehicle is showing any of these signs or you are facing any problems with the brake system, schedule an appointment with us right away.