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How Do I Know I Need New Brakes?

As a vehicle owner, one of the golden keys to ensuring the safety and longevity of your car is to maintain your brakes. Interestingly enough, brakes are one of the most overlooked areas of vehicle maintenance, a frightening prospect when you consider the potential dangers of ignoring this all-important aspect of vehicle performance. So how can you know when it's about time for you to get new brakes? 


Below are some of the most common signs that indicate a need to get your brakes inspected and/or potentially replaced.


1. You feel pulsing or vibration when you apply the brakes.

Vibrating or pulsating brakes typically indicate worn out brake pads, a condition that definitely needs to be remedied in short order. The more pronounced the vibration is, the more likely it is that your brakes are on their last leg.

2. You hear a squealing, screeching or "metal-on-metal" noise when you apply the brakes.

This is one of the first indicators that your brake pads are beginning to wear down. This high-pitched, annoying sound is generated by a small metal shim (incidentally called an "indicator") that is built into the brakes to alert drivers that the time is near for a brake pad replacement. You can typically hear this sound when the windows are closed, but it will probably not be audible if your radio is up too loud.

3. Your brakes are making a grinding or growling sound.

This is one of the more serious noises that you really never want to hear coming from your brakes. If you're hearing an unpleasant grinding or growling sound when you apply the brakes, this basically means that your brake pads are all but gone, and now the metal calipers are grinding against the metal discs. If left unattended long enough, you stand a good chance of "scoring" your rotors (i.e., leaving deep grooves in your rotors), which means that they will need to be resurfaced or replaced altogether, which isn't cheap.

4. You have to push harder and harder on the brakes to get the car to stop.

If you feel like you almost have to put your foot through the floorboard just to put enough pressure on the brakes to stop the vehicle, that's a good sign that your brake pads have worn too thin. What's happening is that the brake pads are so worn down, it's requiring more and more pressure for them to clamp down sufficiently on the rotors to get the car to stop. This is a telltale sign that you need new brakes.

If you're experiencing any one of the above conditions with your vehicle, more than likely it's time to get new brakes. You can bring your car for a brake check or brake repair and a professional technician will be able to assess the issue and make qualified recommendations. Whatever you do, don't delay--your safety is too important to leave this issue unattended.


Read More About Brakes Here


Want to Learn More About Auto Repair? Click Here

*Always check your owner’s manual for your vehicle model’s specific instructions before attempting any type of vehicle repair. Copyright Riverside Automotive www.riversideautomotive.biz

Copyright Riverside Automotive - Morgantown, Virginia 2015 



Written on Thursday, December 24, 2015 by
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