Brake Repair and Service in Wilmington and Millsboro
How Do I Know If My Brake Pads Are Worn Out?
Brake pads are made of high friction material, usually ceramic or a combination of ceramic, asbestos and metal, meant to last for thousands of miles without any issues. There are a few noises or conditions that can alert you when your brakes are in need of service.
The most tell-tale symptoms are:
- Brake noises like grinding or squealing.
- Excess brake dust.
- Longer and longer stopping distances.
- A Warning light will come on the dash.
- Low Brake Fluid is an indicator of wearing brake material
Why do my brakes make noise when I stop?
One of the reasons could be that your brakes have worn themselves in to the brake rotors causing you to have a very violent grinding sound when stopping. This is caused when the friction (brake pads) have worn past their material and now the rotor is contacting the brake pad backing plate. "Metal to metal" is a very common term used to describe this condition.
Seized brake calipers can also be a cause of premature brake wear. Calipers are basically like a hydraulic press that operate when you press on the brake pedal. Brake fluid is pushed to the caliper pistons to "squeeze" the brake pads against the brake rotors. This causes you to stop. When a caliper doesn't release that pressure, brake pads may continue to contact the rotor (which is always turning) and wear down. This causes excessive heat, drag and loss of fuel mileage.
Brake Hoses. These are used to feed the brake calipers the fluid they need to press the brake pads and allow you to stop. As these hoses age, they have a tendency to become clogged (like an artery) and will restrict the pressure to be released from the caliper. In this scenario, the brake pads are in constant contact with the rotor and therefore allowing premature brake wear to take place.
Brake / Caliper Hardware. Good clean and well lubricated Brake hardware is critical to a proper brake system. They might be small parts, but they play a big role when it comes to squeaks and squeals when braking. Brake hardware includes springs, clips, shims, pins and in the case of drum brakes, cables and adjusters. When the hardware is properly cleaned and lubricated, they reduce friction of the pads moving within the slides of the caliper. Remember, all brake material must move fluidly to have them last longest.
It's recommended that at least once a year your brake system (calipers, hoses, springs, hardware and retainers) should be inspected, cleaned and lubricated for proper maintenance and good braking.
Brakes are nothing to fool around with. They are the only thing stopping you from an accident and harm. Brakes can seem simple to replace and there are numerous online tutorials to show and advise you how. However in today's newer models, there are procedures you must complete first just to service the friction. Even the use of specialty tools could be necessary to complete the repairs. That's why it's so important to allow a professional make the correct repairs and assure you of your and your other's safety.
If you have squeaks, squeals, thumps or any other noises coming from your brakes, call us today or schedule your appointment online. We even have a few coupons on this page to help with the cost.