Brakes are one of the most important safety features of any vehicle. It is therefore important for you to detect and take action as soon as you notice a problem with the brakes of your car. This article discusses some of the brake problems that you should address immediately.
The brakes of your vehicle can grind for two major reasons. First, the rotor disc may be in contact with the brake caliper when you step on the brake pedal. This grinding noise stops once you take your foot off the pedal. Such grinding noises often start when one has allowed the brake pads to wear out excessively without replacing them. It can also happen when rotors are worn.
Secondly, the brakes may emit a grinding sound when a foreign object (a stone, for example) gets stuck within the brake caliper. Grinding due to a foreign object continues as long as the car is moving. You can dislodge this object by driving backwards and forwards several times. Visit a repair shop if this DIY approach doesn't work.
Car brakes can reduce in effectiveness due to overheating resulting from their prolonged use in challenging conditions, such as when you are driving downhill. You will begin to notice that you have to step harder on the pedal in order to notice significant braking power. You can rule out other brake problems by pumping the brake pedal several times when the vehicle is stationary. The pedal will become more firm as you pump it. Brake functioning will return to normal if you stop and allow those pads to cool. Future episodes of brake fade can be prevented by downshifting to low gears so that the speed of the vehicle can be controlled using the engine and the transmission system instead of using the brakes alone.
Have you ever heard your brakes rattling as if someone is shaking an empty can of paint? Such noise usually occurs once you remove your foot from the brake pedal. Brake pads that don't have anti-rattle shims can rattle once in a while. Brakes that rattle even when the driver's foot is on the pedal should be checked immediately. This is because a bigger problem could be developing in that system.
You should never downplay any abnormality that you notice in your car brakes. Visit a brake repair specialist quickly so that the defect can be fixed before it worsens and compromises your safety as you drive.