Other than taking longer to stop, there are other tell-tale signs that your brakes need attention.
It’s important that you listen and feel for any of these changes in your braking – not just to save on expensive repairs but because it could save your life.
Please note: Brake problems shouldalways be fully diagnosed and repaired by a qualified mechanic.
The information provided in this article is intended as a guide only, is not comprehensive and all changes in your brake system should be discussed immediately with a professional.
Probably the most obvious of all the symptoms that your brakes need attention. The brake warning light means get your brakes checked immediately. It could be a leak in the brake fluid causing low levels, the brake pads need replacing or a faulty speed sensor in ABS brakes. Whatever reason behind the light – if you see it light up contact your local Repco Authorised Service centre for a diagnosis today.
Squealing or grinding noises from your brakes are generally a sign that you need a brake pad replacement.
The high pitch squeal can be from special indicators which are built in to your brake pads to warn you they are ready to be replaced. If you hear a grinding sound this definitely means you should get your brakes inspected.
Grinding means your brake pads could be so worn they are starting to damage the rotors or disc which means the longer you leave it the more expensive the repairs will be as well as being extremely dangerous. Get your brake system inspected immediately. You will need a brake pad replacement and you might require a rotor or disc resurface or replacement.
You should always pay attention to the way your brakes ‘feel’ when you apply pressure. Your brake pedal should feel firm and the brakes should feel solid and apply gradually when you apply pressure to the pedal. Any changes in your brake pedal feel should be discussed with your service centre immediately to avoid dangerous situations and expensive repairs in the future.
If your car pulls to one side or swerves when you apply pressure to your brakes – it means one side of the brakes is creating uneven force. It could be a faulty caliper, uneven brake pads or even problems in the brake fluid hoses. Cars pulling to one side can also be symptomatic of other issues in your vehicle not related to your brakes at all such as tyre pressure or wheel alignment amongst other things. Regardless, it's an issue you should be discussing with a technician directly.
Vibration, shaking, shuddering or pulsing when you apply the brakes could be a sign that you need a rotor or drum resurfacing or replacement. Vibrations caused by other car components could be mistaken as a brakes issue – it might be that you need a wheel balance, or your suspension system should be checked for worn components. We recommend a safe-t-stop brake, alignment and suspension test.