Most vehicle owners and drivers don’t think much about what happens when you push the brake pedal. When we talk about a car’s braking system, we are often satisfied by not hitting the guy in front.
This is because auto maintenance is not attractive to many people, and most of us don’t wonder what happens under the hood unless there is a problem.
How brakes work
First, you need a little theory to help you understand how your braking system works, so you know what you need to look and listen for if there is an issue.
There are two different types of brakes found on modern vehicles: drums and discs. They both use friction material pressed against a rotating surface to bring your car to a stop.
Now, brake pads press together to stop the rotor that spins in the middle when it comes to disc brakes. These pads will eventually wear out, and it ideally happens before the rotors do. Drum brakes are also quite similar, with brake shoes pushing against a drum that surrounds the rotor.
How to tell if you need to get your brakes replaced?
In most cases, the majority of all modern cars tend to have discs on the front. While some vehicles have drums in the rear wheel, some have discs.
To give you clarity, most of what we will discuss today will be in terms of symptoms and signs that apply to a disk braking system, mainly since your front brakes will do most of the work. They tend to wear out quickly, asking for a replacement or servicing more often.
This does not mean that your rear brakes are not going to wear out because they will. When your rear brakes wear out, it results in less brake degradation, and you can get them replaced along with the front to be on the safe side. But it does not happen as often.
However, if you are not confident with any automotive advice, it is always better for you to ask a mechanic. If you live in Irving, Texas, and are looking for a professionally trained automobile expert, you need to get in touch with Express Auto & Tires today!
How to tell if you have worn brakes?
There are two ways you can check for any wear on your disc brakes: By either looking or listening closely.
What you need to look for
Go to your car, kneel next to the wheel and look between the wheel spokes. Notice a round thing behind them? That’s your brake rotor. Now around the rotor, you need to look for a huge metal thing that looks like it is clamped around the rotor. That is your brake caliper.
If you look closely, you will find some things pressed up against the rotor, that is, the brake pad. You will notice one on either side, but you can only see the one towards you without taking the wheel off. Under ideal circumstances, your brake pads should wear evenly.
The same goes for your outside pads. Remember that there needs to be at least 1/4 of the pad. If you find out that it is less, you need to make an appointment with our professionals at the earliest.
What you need to listen to.
Next time you’re driving your vehicle, you need to do this: Turn off the air conditioning, turn off the radio and roll down your car windows. Can you hear a high-pitched screeching sound every time you apply brakes?
That is an indicator built into your braking system, a piece of metal embedded into the pad. When the pad gets worn enough, it starts to rub against the metal rotor, making an annoying noise that informs you it’s time to get your brakes replaced.
However, there is an exception. If your car is exposed to rain or water from a recent wash, it may cause a fine layer of rust to accumulate on top of your rotor.
Other signs that suggest an issue
If you have been experiencing any of the following problems, you need to get in touch with Express Auto & Tires professionals to make an appointment as soon as possible.
Lack of responsiveness
If your braking system does not seem to have the same responsiveness as it used to, or if you have to “floor” the brake pedal every time to stop the car, the chances are that you have a leak in your braking system. Either your brake fluid is leaking, or air is getting in.
Growling or grinding noises
You may also hear grinding or growling noises coming from brake pads that are entirely worn out. This happens when the metal backing plate of your pad starts to rub against the rotor. It is best to get this looked after immediately since it may cause extensive damage to the rotor.
Get in touch with Express Auto & Tires today!
If you feel like you have a braking issue and wish to get it checked by professionals, then you need to book an appointment with Express Auto & Tires at once! Our team has years of experience and training to give you the best results.