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Four Signs You Might Need Brake Repair

by Jacob Scott

Brakes are a very important part of the car, as without them it isn't possible to stop or slow down quickly. You don't want your foot hitting the floor when you push down on the brakes and the car refusing to stop to be the only time you realize you need your brakes repaired. There are a number of signs that the brakes in your car are starting to go and need to be repaired or replaced.

Screeching Sounds

Some types of brakes have a metal shim that makes a high-pitched screeching sound whenever someone applies the brakes once the brake pads have started to get worn down. If your car has recently been exposed to water, it could have gotten a thin layer of rust on the brakes which could also cause a squealing noise the first few times you brake, but if the sound lasts longer than this, you should get your brakes checked. Hearing a growling or grinding sound, however, means the brake pads may be completely worn down and you may need more than just a brake repair. In this case, you may need the brakes totally replaced. These sounds may be hard to hear if you've got the radio on loud, so drive without the radio from time to time so you can listen for these warning signs of brake issues.

Takes Longer to Brake Than Usual

As the brake pads get worn down, it takes longer to stop. This is a gradual process and can be overlooked by a driver for quite a while. If you realize that your foot is sinking further to the floor than usual when you hit the brake pedal to try to stop the car, this is another sign that you could have either a leak in brake fluid or an air leak in the brake hose. On th other hand, if it's hard to push down the brake pedal, the brake line could be obstructed or there could be something wrong with the vacuum system.

Pulsing When You Push the Brake Pedal

Feeling a vibration or a pulsing when you push down the brake pedal could also be a sign that the rotors are warped and the brakes need repairing. This pulsing feels a bit like when the anti-lock braking system engaged, so watch for this in multiple stops to make sure you aren't just feeling the anti-lock brakes. A pulsing like this could also happen if the vehicle isn't in proper alignment. 

Pulling to the Side

If your vehicle seems to be trying to pull to one side when you hit the brakes, you may need to have the fluid replaced due to it being contaminated with a foreign matter or your brakes could be wearing unevenly and need to be adjusted. This pulling could also happen due to issues with the tires being worn or unevenly inflated or a problem with the car's suspension or alignment.

For further assistance, contact a local brake repair shop, such as Covey's Auto.