Sometimes, car problems are virtually undetectable. Other times, like in the case of squeaky brakes, they scream at you. It goes without saying that your vehicle’s brakes are critically important to your safety, and this is not a problem you should ignore. Learn about the four most common reasons brakes start to squeak, how these issues could impact your safety on the road, and when it’s time to scream, "I need brake service near me!"
Worn brake pads
Believe it or not, the people who designed your brakes actually want them to get squeaky at some point! There are metal tabs within your brake pads that hit the rotor when your pads have worn thin. These tabs were put there to create the squeaking noise – they serve as a warning that your brake pads are ready to be replaced. If you ignore the squeaking, your brake pads can wear out completely and you’ll start hitting metal to metal when you try to brake.
Brake rotor rust
The rotor can lose its smoothness over time, which is another big reason for squeaky braking. Rust, as well as other types of debris, can cause that unpleasant, shrill sound. A technician can determine if this is your problem by removing the tire and inspecting the rotor surface. This rust can typically be filed off during a visit to your local Tires Plus.
Sometimes you have no choice but to slam on the brakes, whether someone pulls out in front of you or you’re a bit late to notice stopped traffic. Not only does this hard braking cause your brake pads to wear down more quickly, but it can also generate heat and warp your brake discs and rotors – all of which can cause squeaky brakes.
Long-life brake pads
Today, many vehicles have long-life brake pads that are semi-metallic and harder than other types. While these wear down much slower and have superb stopping power, the metal shavings in the pads have been known to create a squeaking sound. The louder squeaking may stop or lessen after the first few stops of your drive, but a bit of noise can sometimes be normal with these brake pads.
Most often, brake noise is a sign that it's time for a brake inspection and service. When your brakes aren’t working at their best, the results could be truly disastrous. Visit your nearest Tires Plus location for a free brake inspection and professional brake repair service so you can drive with confidence, knowing that because we do our job, your brakes can do theirs.