You do not care about your brakes. This is just a fact of life—your brakes are not your kids, your spouse, or your dog. Those are what you really care about. The only investment you have in your brakes is what they can do to protect your kids, your spouse, or your dog. Pro Automotive knows this and respects it.
And because we know this, we know that you do not want a college lecture on cars. You do not want to or need to know the intricacies and nuances. That is for your mechanic to know. What you want and need to know, in order to keep the people and animals you care about safe, is what you need to look for.
You need to know what the warning signs of faulty or failing brakes are. You need to know the broad strokes of what is happening so that you can take it in to get it fixed before it becomes a problem. That is what this brief guide sets out to do: Arm you with three things to watch out for that indicate your brakes have problems.
• Squeaking When Braking
This is the most obvious and the most frequent thing you will notice with your brakes. This can make it seem like it is not a big problem. In particular, if you have been driving used cars your whole life, you might just think this is how brakes sound. But this innocuous sound hides the potential for serious complications.
Squeaking when you brake is an indication that while your brakes are not going to give out at any given moment, they are prone to stress. This means slamming on the brakes might cause them to give out. Anything that might result in them suddenly failing is a problem, so get this check out fast.
• Shaking on Braking
This is an interesting one because it is actually a problem some models of cars have right out of the factory. That’s right: You can buy a brand new car and run into this problem. That is because it is not a problem with the brakes themselves, but how the brakes work with the rest of the car.
Still, it is something your mechanic can rectify easily. It will usually not result in a failure of the brakes, but it is a brake-related issue that can lead to other problems, like a brief lessening of control when braking.
• Rubber Odor
This is a sign of things becoming worn out in a car. This can actually have a few different sources, and it will usually only happen in older cars. But when it happens, it might mean the brakes are getting old.
As such, if you are worried about your brakes or have been having other problems with your brakes, then it is likely time to take your car in to have your brakes looked at.
These are just a few of the ways brakes can signal to you that they are having issues. This is to say nothing of your brake light itself. If that turns on, take your car in immediately, no questions asked.