As a first-time car owner, you should be able to recognize and troubleshoot brake problems before a total failure of the entire system occurs. Being proactive saves you from the risk of potential accidents, which might be fatal, especially on a dangerous stretch of road. Therefore, what are the signs that you should look out for to avoid untimely brake repairs? Here are some useful warning signs to look out for when your car needs brake maintenance.
Brake Pad Notification -- Most modern cars have on-board computers that alert users through a light or message prompt of the need to replace brake pads. Through sensors, the computer warns you to check the brake system for potential issues. The brake light on the dashboard, also known as Anti-Lock Braking System (ABS) is a reliable alternative to the squealing sound that you often get when the brake pads have taken quite a beating. However, to ensure that the automatic notification does not give a false alarm, you have to maintain your sensors every time you swap the pads.
Excessive Vibrations -- When driving your car, you might be forced to brake excessively at some point, for instance, when descending a mountain. When the frequency of such braking increases, the heat generated because of friction can lead to warping of brake rotors. As the surface of the rotors wears off and become uneven, vibrations set in. Consequently, the outcome will be a diminished braking power. If you experience these strange vibrations, then it is time to call your vehicle mechanic.
Unusual Pulling – At times, a car might behave as if it has a mind of its own. For example, when driving on a straight path, a car can turn on its own even when you do not engage the steering wheel. If you notice the usual pattern, then your braking system might have malfunctioned. One common cause of this problem is a stuck auto brake caliper, which prevents the brake rotor from disengaging from the brake rotor surface. It means that you will be driving with the brakes somewhat applied throughout thereby forcing the car to pull to one side. Try touching the wheel/rims of your car to detect excessive heat caused by friction. A technician will disassemble the system to repair or replace the calipers.
Average Stop Time -- A properly functioning brake system will allow the car to halt flawlessly without applying much pressure to the brake pedal. If you discover that you have to apply extra pressure for the vehicle to come to a complete stop, then you need a brakes repair service. Faulty brake pads can cause the vehicle to take too much time before stopping, which can easily cause an accident.