How Often Should My Brakes Be Checked?

How Often Should You Have Your Brakes Checked?

Is It Time to Check Your Brakes?

Every driver knows that brakes are crucial, but what every driver might not know is how often their brakes should be checked. Damaged brakes can cause safety hazards for both you and other drivers, so continue reading to learn how often you should have a mechanic check them.

A Primer on Brakes.

Most brakes today are called disc brakes. When the brake pedal is in use, a set of calipers with pads squeezes a rotor (the disc). The pads slow your vehicle by creating friction with the rotor. This hydraulic system is dependent on a steady flow of brake fluid.

If any of these components are flawed, the entire system may fail. However, brake pads are the common culprits of poor braking performance. These should be at least a quarter of an inch thick. Over time, the pads will wear down and can lead to more expensive problems, such as a damaged rotor.

Location Matters.

Traffic is worse in crowded areas. Busy roads cause frequent stopping, starting, slowing and swerving, which can add extra stress on your brakes. Because of this, your brakes will probably need servicing sooner than a vehicle used in less congested areas.

A good rule-of-thumb is to have your brakes checked whenever you rotate your tires—probably every six months. It’s a good idea for more aggressive drivers to check their brakes more frequently, with every oil change, for example. In the meantime, it’s important to pay attention to possible warning signals from your brakes between your regular servicing intervals.

Warning Signs.

When your brake light comes on, this indicates that your brakes need checking. If you notice that coming to a complete stop takes a longer amount of time than before, have your brakes checked as soon as you can. In addition, a vibrating sensation when applying your brakes likely indicates a brake pad issue, but could also point to an alignment problem.

Most brakes include an indicator that squeals or screeches when the brake pads wear thin. This annoying sound can save you a lot of money down the road because if you change your pads when needed, you won’t have to hear that metal-on-metal sound. When you hear this sound, your pads have entirely worn down, causing your calipers to grind against your rotors whenever your brake pedal is pressed down. It can quickly turn a simple fix into a costly issue.

Be Smart. Be Vigilant. Be Safe.

Morganton Honda is devoted to providing our customers with more than a great variety of vehicles—we strive to supply flawless service as well. Our commitment extends beyond the showroom to include our service bays. We want to make sure that you and your loved ones arrive safely at your desired destination, which is why your brakes need to be in great shape. Your friends at Morganton Honda are here to take care of that for you.