Don’t take any chances with the brakes on your car. If the brakes ever fail, a tragic accident might prove unavoidable. Brakes do give off indications they aren’t in good shape. Keep ever on the alert for such signs. The following five red flags will let you know if something is wrong:
1.) The Brakes Make Odd Sounds
When you depress the brakes, there should be any sounds. If the brakes emit a grinding noise, this usually indicates wear. Taking the car in to get the rotors and pads checked should be a top priority the second you first hear such sounds. The longer the brakes go without being checked, the less chance there is for a minor fix. Continuing to drive on worn brakes degrades them further.
2.) The Brake Pedal Goes All the Way to the Floor
A floored brake pedal is both a troubling and dangerous sign. The brakes aren’t working efficiently if the car won’t come to a stop before the peddle hits the floor. In time, the car won’t stop even after flooring the peddle. The peddle hits the floor due to the poor condition of the brakes. Worn brakes don’t get better. They only worsen.
3.) The Brakes Smoke
Several reasons exist behind smoking brakes. A stuck caliper ranks among the common reasons. No matter why brakes start to smoke, anyone who sees smoke coming from underneath a car is sure to panic. Good reason exists for the panic. Smoking brakes aren’t exactly in good shape.
4.)The Car Shakes and Pulls
As you apply the brakes, the car starts to shake. Sometimes, the steering wheel alone may shake. The vehicle may even pull to the side. If odd things happen when you press on the brakes, a mechanical issue likely is present. Why would the vehicle do anything out of the ordinary if there wasn’t a problem?
5.) The Vehicle Takes Too Long To Stop
As you depress the brakes, a car should start slowing down until reaching a full stop. If the car doesn’t stop as quickly as it usually should, there is an underlying problem. Don’t dismiss a slow halt as something minor. Poor stopping capabilities mean the driver isn’t entirely in control of the car. At times, making a quick stop becomes necessary. Imagine if a car cut in front of you or a young child darted in the street. Inefficient brakes can’t be relied upon to avoid an accident.
A little preventive work can go a long way. When the time comes for an oil change, ask for a brake inspection. Request a full inspection involving the removal of the tires. This way, problems can be noted long before the car starts showing apparent symptoms.