From the time you get behind the steering wheel of your car to the time to reach your destination, your brakes play a pivotal role in keeping you safe. However, if you ignore the signs that your brakes need to be repaired or replaced, you won't be able to count on them to help you slow your vehicle's speed and prevent an accident. Even if you only drive occasionally, it's beneficial to learn about some indicators that reveal the need for a professional to service your brakes. When you notice any of all these of three signs, you'll be able to visit an auto shop in a timely manner so that your brakes will continue to keep you safe.
More Pressure Needed
It might initially seem difficult to assess, but try to evaluate whether you're having to apply more pressure to your brake pedal than usual in order to stop your vehicle in a timely manner. The more you drive, the easier it will be to notice this issue, but any driver should be able to tell if he or she is having to really push down on the pedal to slow the vehicle's speed. This symptom is a key way to tell that your brakes are lacking responsiveness, which indicates that they need to be serviced.
Brake Pads Look Thin
It's beneficial to take a look at the thickness of your brake pads from time to time. Unlike some other parts on your vehicle, even the amateur can visibly tell if the pads are nearing the end of their life. Peek through the spokes of your wheel to find the pad and estimate its depth. Brake pads can have various thicknesses, but the common factor to remember is if the pad itself appears to be down to 1/8-inch to 3/16-inch thick, it's time to get them replaced. If you can't picture these measurements in your head, hold a ruler or tape measure in one hand and evaluate the pads against the measurement.
Noises While Braking
Your brakes will customarily alert you to their condition. Healthy brakes make no sound when they're applied. As they begin to wear, you'll detect a clear squealing sound as the brake pad rubs against the rotor. This squeal should alert you to the brakes' condition and prompt you to visit an auto shop. A grinding sound as you apply the brakes is more serious as it indicates there's very little life left in your brake pads.
For more information, contact Covey's Auto or a similar location.