When Brakes Go Bad

Your mission when you drive is to get from Point A to Point B as quickly, comfortably, and safely as your car – and legal speed limits – will allow. Although speed and comfort vary between makes and models of cars, the safety of your vehicle must be of the highest standard possible.

Friction between your tires and the road are what speed up and slow down your vehicle. Your brakes – the vehicle’s most critical safety feature – are what stop your tires in a controllable way. Tires and brakes receive the most wear-and-tear on your car, so it is vital to keep up with maintenance and replace them when necessary.

To determine whether or not your brakes are in good working order, here is a list of indicators to watch for:

  • Sounds: Grinding, squealing, rubbing, metal scraping sounds or any unusual noise could all be indicators of worn out pads and rotors.
  • Response: The car pulling to one side, vibration or pulses in the pedal or steering wheel, or the brake pedal feeling “mushy” and being pressed further than normal could mean there is a brake system issue.
  • Smells: Brake fluid and hot metal create a noticeable odor that indicates immediate service is needed.
  • Fluids: The need to add brake fluid between service calls or finding brake fluid on your tires are trouble signs.
  • Light: Dashboard indicators include one for your braking system. If the warning light comes on, bring your car in to make sure your safety is not compromised.

Don’t wait to bring your car in for a brake inspection if you are experiencing any of the above indicators. Car ownership comes with the responsibility of keeping up with proper maintenance to ensure safety not only for the passengers in your vehicle, but also for everyone else on the road.

Brakes can get expensive to maintain if you let problems go too long, but there are ways to prolong the life of brake system components like pads and rotors. Incorporate these good driving habits to improve safety and the life of your brakes:

  • Don’t “ride” your brakes when braking isn’t necessary.
  • Cruise with the flow of traffic. Conservative driving also conserves your brakes.
  • Don’t tailgate. Leave enough room so you can decelerate instead of always braking forcefully.
  • Avoid aggressive driving (which therefore reduces aggressive braking).
  • Empty your car of unnecessary items that may have accumulated in the backseat or trunk weighing down your vehicle. Heavier cars take more braking power to slow down.

you have a regular, reliable mechanic like Kwik Kar who keeps ongoing records of your car’s service and maintenance needs, you can rest assured your brakes, along with other critical safety features, are being regularly checked and maintained. We also ensure the highest standard possible when it comes to taking care of you, your vehicle, and your safety.