All motorists know how important their car’s brakes are, but many are surprisingly lax in their attitudes towards maintenance. Brake parts are one of the most crucial safety systems in your car. They’re responsible for creating the necessary friction that helps slow your car. As braking is needed in day-to-day driving as well as emergency situations, replacing your brake pads when they are worn out is of paramount importance. Join us as we learn some of the key signs that tell you when your car’s brake pads need to be replaced.
Modern brake pads can be constructed from a variety of different materials such as metal, ceramic, organic compounds, or a composite of these materials. Each time the brake pads are used, microscopic amounts of the material that make up the pads are lost. This loss builds up and becomes more noticeable over time, leading to the pad thinning. The reduction in surface area caused by this results in a loss of friction, which means that stopping times take longer than in a vehicle with new brake pads. Given enough time, brake pads will wear out entirely.
Modern and high-end cars typically utilize brake pad sensors, which are designed to notify the driver of excessive pad wear. When the pads become excessively worn down, the sensor will trigger a warning light on the dashboard of your car.
Your car will also audibly inform you about the status of its brake pads. When the brake pads are worn down, you’ll hear screeching or squealing noises that are caused by a metal scraper. This is a simple safety feature connected to the brake pads which comes into contact with the brake disk when the pads have become too thin. The screeching sound is unpleasant and hard to ignore, so there really is no excuse for drivers to put off brake pad replacement when confronted with this!
The most worrying sign you may notice indicates that the brake pad has failed entirely. If when egnanging your brakes, you notice not a screeching sound but grumbling or even a grinding noise, then one or even all of your brake pads have completely failed. This means that the safety of your vehicle is greatly compromised, and that the overall health of your car is in jeopardy. In an ideal world, brake pads should be replaced before this eventuality ever comes to pass.
To remain driving a vehicle that is safe and roadworthy you need to be proactive about brake pad care and replacement. Ideally, you should aim to change out your brake pads before they exhibit any warning signs. For an accurate inspection schedule, you should either consult with your car’s owner’s manual or speak with your mechanic. Most manuals will recommend a full inspection of the brake pads with each oil change, as the rate at which the part deteriorates is highly dependant upon the habits of the driver. Brake pads will need to be replaced if they drop below 0.1 inches.
Brake pad replacement is usually a job that is best left to experienced professionals because the part is so integral to the safety of your car. Rolling the dice and chancing DIY repairs on such an integral part just isn’t a smart move unless you have prior automotive experience.
When confronted with the symptoms of failing brake pads it is imperative you don’t delay in seeking replacements. The warning signs your car displays should never be viewed as guidelines that action may need to be taken in the near future, and should instead be seen as an immediate and severe warning that action needs to be taken as soon as possible.
At Rowlett Motorwerks we urge you to only seek professional repairs when it comes to your brakes. We’re ready and waiting to help drivers of the Garland, Rockwall, Rowlett, Sache, and Wylie, TX areas ensure their vehicles are as safe as possible. We understand that the sudden need for part replacement can be a pain, which is why we always work quickly to resolve the problem, allowing you to get on with what matters to you. Call our customer service team today to schedule your appointment.