Have you ever wondered how to tell if you are in need of car brake service? At Green Valley Automotive we can help you troubleshoot squeaks, squeals, and pulling brakes to help you get this very important safety feature of your car back in tip-top condition. Let's take a look at what you need to know about your vehicles brakes.
Look and Listen for brake wear
First you can check for wear on your breaks by looking closely at the brake pads between
the spokes of your tire. The outside pad should be pressed against a metal roter. You should see at least 1/4 inch of a pad. If there is less, then you should bring your car in to have the brakes inspected so your rotors aren't damaged (which leads to more costly repairs.)
If you hear a high-pitched screeching sound when you apply the brakes that is another indication of worn brakes that should be replaced. The noice is caused by a smal metal shim, called an indicator, which is providing an audio signal that the brake pads need attention. If you hear this sound regularly, then be sure to give your auto mechanic a call for a brake inspection. Please note that you may hear this sound when the brakes get wet due to rain puddles. This is normal and no cause for alarm. Only if the sound continues when the brakes are dry should you be concerned.
Here are some indications of other brake problems. If you experience these, then call your local auto mechanic, preferably us here at Green Valley Automotive!
Reduced brake responsiveness or fading
If you aren't getting the stopping power out of your brakes that you used to, then this could be an indication of a brake fluid leak. Look for a small puddle of fluid underneath the car when parked. Brake fluid looks similar to fresh motor oil, but with a less "slimy" texture.
If your car tends to pull to one side while braking, then the brake linings may be wearing unevenly. You may also have foreign matter in the brake fluid which is inhibing proper application on one side. An auto mechanic can help you resolve this situation to keep your car safe.
Grinding or growling brakes
If you hear grinding or growling from your brakes then unfortunately the pads are probably beyond replacement and the rotors have likely been damages. This will most likely require that the rotors are machined in order to even out the rotor surface.
Vibration in brake pedals
If your brake pedal tends to vibrate or pulsage, then you may have a case of warped rotors or an out-of-alignment situation. This may feel similar to the feedbak in the brake pedal during a panic stop in a vehicle equipped with anti-lock brakes. Warped rotors or alignment issues will require an auto mechanic to repair safely.
Remember that your brakes are one of the most important safety items in your car. If you experience any of the issues discussed above, please give us a call so we can provide you a free estimate on repair of your car's brakes.