How Do I Know When My Brake Pads Need To Be Replaced?

There are few parts that are as important to replace as brake pads. These crucial auto parts have the friction pad that presses against your brake rotors and stops your vehicle. Find out how to spot the signs that it’s time for a new set of car or truck brake pads today before ordering replacement parts online.

Visual Inspection

The clearest sign that it’s time for new brake components is a visual inspection. Look between the spokes of your wheels to find the brake caliper positioned around the rotor. The brake pad should be more than 1/4-inch thick. Less friction material than this is a good sign that your brake pads have reached the end of their life.

Look for unusual wear patterns as you inspect your brake pads. If you notice the interior, exterior or one side is thinner, then you may have to adjust your brake calipers. The wear pattern should be reasonably uniform. Otherwise, you may be wearing through brake pads quicker than normal.

silver porsche 911 parked on parking lot during daytime

Squealing and Sounds

Press down on your brake pedal and listen as your car slows down. In normal conditions, you shouldn’t hear any sound from within your car. Squealing, scraping or metal-on-metal grinding sounds are common signs that your brake pads are wearing thin. These sounds could also be caused by moisture between the brake pad and caliper, so it’s a good idea to confirm the brake pad thickness before replacing them.

Warning Indicator

Newer vehicles include brake pad sensors. These convenient devices monitor your brakes and offer you a warning when they reach the recommended replacement thickness. Don’t assume your vehicle has this indicator, but check your owner’s manual for more information. Search for performance brake kits online to find one that matches your make and model of vehicle when it’s time to swap out brake pads.

Even without a warning light, you can still estimate the lifetime of your brake pads. Most vehicles require new brake pads every 50,000 miles. This is only a rule of thumb, but it can help you determine whether your pads are wearing out too soon. Early wear can be a sign of sticking calipers or other issues.

Vibrating When Braking

Treat this warning sign seriously. It could be caused by extremely thin brake pads, or it could be caused by damaged rotors. You may also have an issue with your brake fluid. It’s best to inspect your entire brake system if you notice any vibrating when you push your pedal, particularly if it’s combined with slower stopping power or difficulties stopping your vehicle. Stop as soon as it’s safe and try to replace your brake pads before driving again. Losing braking power is obviously a dangerous situation, so better to be cautious and make sure your brakes are fully restored.

Replace Your Brake Pads Promptly

Keep your car safe and driving efficiently with replacement brake pads. Whether you need an entire kit or affordable brakes for cars, shop online to find everything you need. A reputable online store can help you easily match brake components with your make and model of vehicle.

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