When Do I Need New Brakes?

When Do I Need New Brakes

When you hit the brakes, do you hear squeaking? Squealing? Ominous grinding noises? Does the pedal require extra pressure to engage the brakes?

Listening to and feeling brake performance tells you a lot about the condition of your braking system. Still, a trusted repair shop can tell you more about what’s wrong and what needs to be fixed. Hopefully, you have been paying attention and are hearing these noises for the first time. Here are some of the conditions you might encounter:

  • Temporary squeaks and squeals:
    When the vehicle sits overnight or on a dirt driveway, moisture, dirt, grime, or even light surface rust causes noisy brakes the first few times you apply the pedal until the debris is cleaned from the rotors or drums.
  • High pitched scraping sound
    This could be the pad-wear indicators letting you know its time to get your brakes fixed. The best option is to bring the vehicle to us so we can inspect the entire system, including the rotors (or rear drums on some vehicles); the friction material that squeezes against rotors or drums, called the brake pads; the calipers and other hardware; and the master brake cylinder and fluid lines going to each wheel.
  • Excessive brake pedal travel:
    When it seems like it takes more effort to get the brakes to engage, it could mean worn pads, low brake fluid, or something else. We can determine the cause and make sure it gets fixed right the first time.
  • Red brake warning light:
    This means you may have missed the early signs of brake wear. We recommend you come straight to us before brake system failure makes your car unsafe for you, your passengers, and others on the road.

Full System Examination

By examining the entire system, we can give you a detailed analysis of the condition of your brakes and advise you on what and when to address it. For example, manufacturers have different recommendations for brake pad replacement. We keep up to date on these specifications and will never ask you to do unnecessary work or advise you to put off work that will cost you dollars down the road.

Brakes wear out slowly, making it difficult to notice when you have less stopping power. We suggest routine maintenance so that we can keep tabs on the condition of your brakes. When you come in for a regular oil change, for example, we take a look at your brakes and give you a heads-up that you’ll need new pads or rotors within the next few months, giving you time to save and choose when we do the work.

Of course, we do more than just brakes, our highly trained mechanics perform nearly every service, including AC repairradiator repair, and transmission service on most makes and models. We also know how disruptive automotive repair can be, which is why our skilled customer service professionals get you back on the road with a perfectly-running vehicle, usually on the same day. Using the right parts, fluids, and equipment enables us to offer a 24-month/24,000-mile warranty on all work.

Hearing a squeal, scrape, or whine? Schedule an appointment online, or call Bender’s Auto Care at 626-332-3022 today!