Is It Time to Service Your Car's Brakes?

Posted on: 16 February 2021


How do you know when it is time to service the brakes on your car? You may know that this system contains degradable parts and that they are designed to wear down, but you may not know when the time has come or if it is okay to continue driving until something happens. Your vehicle will need a full brake service from time to time, but you need to know when to take action.

Taking Note

If you buy a new vehicle, the manufacturer will tell you when to take the car in for a service, based on your anticipated annual mileage. If you don't have a friendly manufacturer or dealer for this type of advice, you can be on the lookout for some tell-tale signs instead.

Worn Pads

You may notice that the vehicle begins to pull to one side gently when you depress the brake pedal. This signifies that the brake pads have started to wear down to such a point that they are not as efficient anymore. Typically, they may wear down more quickly on one side than the other, which could mean that one part of the braking mechanism is more efficient than the other. This is why it pulls to one side.

You may also notice a high-pitched squealing when you apply the brakes. A tiny pin is built into some brake pads when they are made that is designed to give you an early warning alert. When the friction material wears down sufficiently, it will expose the tip of this pin, which will rub against the brake disc. Again, this is your prompt to book the vehicle for a full service.

Piston Issues

You may also notice that performance is inconsistent. Sometimes, the car will decelerate as normal, whereas at other times, you may have to push the pedal a couple of times to get things going. In this case, debris or dirt may have built up around the piston mechanism within the brake calliper. As the piston activates when you depress the brake pedal and pushes the brake pads against the disc, any foreign bodies get in the way.

Deficient Brake Fluid

Inconsistent action may also be due to brake fluid that has seen better days. Over time, tiny particles of moisture may find their way into the system and will be absorbed by the hydraulic fluid. When the system gets hot, the moisture may actually begin to boil, and as it does so, this will reduce hydraulic pressure. Here you may notice a soft, spongy brake pedal or may have to pump to slow the car down.

Taking action

In an ideal world, take the vehicle in for a service before noticing any of those symptoms. Make sure that you take action immediately.

To learn more, contact a brake repair shop.