Your brakes are a vital part of your car, but you don’t need us here at Buckeye Complete Auto Care to tell you that. Vehicle safety is a top priority, and if your brakes are having trouble, your ability to stop your car could be seriously compromised. As such, it’s important that you know how to recognize brake trouble so that you can get the problem fixed as soon as possible. Here are signs of problems.
1. Squealing or Squeaking Sounds When Braking
You might hear sounds from your brakes occasionally, like when they’re brand new or wet, but if you’re suddenly hearing sounds from your brakes every time you apply them, that’s a problem. You might also smell something hot at the same time, which is another sign that your brakes are in trouble. Squealing accompanied by a hot smell signal the brake pads are glazed and the brakes are overheating.
2. Vibration When You’re Trying to Stop
When you apply the brakes, your car should stop without jerking, vibrating, or pulling to one side. If you notice any of these situations, there could be a number of potential problems. Jerking or pulling could indicate a stuck caliper. Vibration often signals worn brake pads and/or warped rotors. Stopping your vehicle should be smooth, and you shouldn’t notice any changes in your braking distance, either.
3. You’ve Got Brake Fluid Leaking
It’s always a good idea to look under and around your car on a regular basis, especially if you park in one particular spot. Look for any kind of greasy substance, especially around the wheels. This could be brake fluid leaking from the master brake cylinders or the brake lines underneath the car, and your car cannot stop without brake fluid, so have the leak found and fixed as soon as you can.
4. The Brake Pedal Has Little or No Resistance
You know how your brake pedal feels when your car is operating normally, so basically, anything beyond normal is a reason for you to be concerned. If the brake pedal falls quickly to the floorboard, you may not have any braking power at all and you should not drive. Sometimes this happens because of air in the brake lines, but it’s never something to take a chance on.
5. Your Car’s Brake Light Is On
As always, pay attention to your dashboard alert lights. These come on when you start your car as a system check, but they should all turn off again quickly. If any of them stay on, in this case your brake light, that indicates an issue. Check first to make sure that your parking brake isn’t on, just as a troubleshooting measure. If it isn’t, you have a brake problem.
Call us at Buckeye Complete Auto Care in Columbus, OH, if you suspect your brakes are in need of repair.