Efficient and effective brakes can be a difference between a safe journey or a fatal accident. Any neglected symptom of brake failure can prove fatal. Most of brake failure cases occur as a result of our negligence towards brake maintenance and some unusual symptoms being surfaced by the braking system. Here we are going to discuss some important symptoms that can lead to brake failure.
Any unusual sound, feel or smell should not be neglected at any cost. It should be inspected from the grass root level.
Poor braking performance:
Braking performance says a lot about the condition of entire braking system of your car. If there is a loss of braking performance to some extent, it indicates some kind of wear in your braking system. It is the earliest stage of brake failing process. Gradually, the force required to stop the car starts to multiply. Heat due to excessive wear and tear causes the brakes to become hard and lose its effectiveness to grab and stop the rotation of rotors or brake drums. Soft braking material is used to ensure that it grabs the drum or rotor effectively to stop the car. Furthermore, loss of engine vacuum can cause loss of braking power from the brake booster.
Unhealthy braking system often surfaces some unusual noises. Noises of clicking, squealing or grinding during braking can be significant symptoms of failing brakes. Squealing noises may also be caused by excessive dirt jammed in brake pads. But most importantly, none of these noises should be overlooked.
Such noises indicate worn or glazed brake pads. When the brake rotor comes in direct contact with the wear indicators it causes squealing noises due to worn out brake pads. Do not wait for the grinding noises, get your brakes inspected at once. The cost of repair and replacement will keep on multiplying gradually if you do not visit the mechanic in early stages of brake problems. Once you start hearing grinding noises, be prepared for an expensive repairing bill from the mechanic. It is highly recommended to get your rear brakes checked every six months because of no wear indicators on the rear brakes.
Pulsation of the brake pedal:
If the brake pedal goes long way down on applying brakes or you feel an increase in paddle travel, it might indicate excessively worn out brake shoes. In most cases, excessive pedal travel is the final most stage of brake failing. This problem should be addressed at once to avoid any severe loss. Sometimes, this problem is caused due to leakage of brake fluid and a failure in a brake hose or rust in brake line. But the primary cause of this problem is heat and wear. The brake rotor or the drum goes thin due to mechanical wear and heat which results in warping. The warping results in excessive pedal travel or pulsation. Less often, a worn out wheel cylinder or master cylinder could also cause this problem.
Pulling or grabbing to one side:
Numerous reasons can be a cause of this problem like fluid leakage, rusted or frozen hand brake cables, oily or greasy surface of brake shoes or pads. Get them checked as soon as you start facing such behavior from the car.
Clicking noises during braking:
Clicking noises during braking has been one of the earliest problems with disc brakes. Front disc brakes of Daihatsu Coure with automatic transmission had this problem as well which was later admitted as a manufacturing fault by Daihatsu.
The brake pads of disc are held in a particular position by pressure against the brake rotor from the caliper. The movement of the brake pads is prevented with the help of anti-rattle devices which reduces or stops the clicking noises. Anti rattle device is a spring steel material. Worn out anti rattle device breaks which ultimately displaces the brake pad causing clicking and rattling noises while braking.
Excessive drag during acceleration:
Excessive drag has much to do with hand brakes. Frozen emergency brakes owing to rust prevents it from releasing. Not using your hand brake for long enough is a simple cause of this problem.
Lit ABS light:
An illuminated ABS check light says it all. Any problem with your braking system will result in an illuminated ABS check light on your dashboard unless the the wire of your check light is unplugged. Just make sure all the check lights on your car’s dashboard are working.
Maintaining and inspecting your brakes periodically is highly recommended. Delaying the periodic inspection means putting your and your passengers’ life at risk. Life is precious, do not risk it!