Without proper brakes you run the risk of a serious accident that can not only be costly, but also dangerous. That’s why it’s necessary to know the proper warning signs, such as strange noises or unusual driving dynamics. If you notice any of these signs, it’s important that you take your car to a dealership for brake service as soon as possible. Call us at Titus-Will Ford in Tacoma, WA if your brakes are showing any of these signs. We’ll have you safely back on the road in no time.
Sounds When Stopping
If your car makes squealing or scraping sounds when you push the brake pedal, odds are you need to replace the pads and/or rotors. The brake pads have a built-in warning strip that will rub against the metal of the rotor to let you know it’s time to replace the pads. If you notice consistent high-pitched squealing or grinding when you come to a halt, take your car to a mechanic for brake service.
Bad brakes will also create tactile warning signs, such as vibrations or pulsing in the pedal. If when you hit the brake pedal you notice that your car vibrates as it decelerates, this could be a sign that the brakes are worn. Additionally, if the pedal pulses as you stop, you could have warped rotors — a serious problem that can affect your ability to stop.
While most brakes wear evenly, there are some instances where your brakes may only fail on one side. This happens when the brake lining is going bad, which can lead to odd driving dynamics. In particular, if your car pulls to one side while you’re driving, it can indicate that something is seriously wrong with the brake system. It can also indicate that water has seeped into the system — check the brake fluid for milky coloration to see if there’s too much moisture.
Poor Response Time
One seemingly obvious indication that your brakes are bad is that your brake response time is not as good as it used to be. While it can be hard to notice stopping time if you drive every day, if you notice that you need to press the pedal harder or for a longer period of time than usual, consider bringing your car to a mechanic to have the brake system inspected.