5.6 million+ car accidents take place due to brake pad failure. (Source)
That equates to over 5% of the total accidents caused due to mechanical failure.
Don’t let that number scare you. This can be avoided in two simple ways:
- Knowing when to change the brake pads
- Knowing how to change those brake pads
Decision - Do You Really Need To Change Your Brake Pad?
Before you decide whether or not you should change your brake pad, here's what your brake pad does. Brake pads are flat discs that provide pressure and friction to the brake rotors when you push the brake pedal down.
This mechanism of applying pressure leads to the halting of a vehicle. So, with faulty brake pads, your vehicle is at high risk of a collision.
5 Signs of a bad braking pad
1. The dashboard brake light is on
Modern vehicles have much better integration with technology. So when they alert you about any mishappening, then you should absolutely not ignore it.
The dashboard brake light turns on when there is something wrong with the braking system. So, if you see the alert light flash, be quick to inspect
2. Squealing sound
Any mechanical component is bound to go through rigorous wear and tear upon functioning.
Brake pads are one of the most worked around components. Whenever you apply pressure to that brake pedal, the brake pads exert pressure on the brake motor to bring your car to halt.
Over time, the pads accumulate dust and settle on the distorted and worn out areas.
So when you press the brake pedal and there is friction between the brake pads and brake motor, you’ll hear a squealing sound.
And if that sound persists, consider it the time to change the brake pads.
3. Extravagant vibration
Worn brake pads or warped rotors can cause extravagant vibration when you press the brake pedal.
If you ignore it for a fair bit of time, it will end up damaging your braking system.
When you experience this vibration, make sure that you have a thorough vehicle check-up.
4. Thinner than usual
If you clean your car and the brake pads appear thinner than usual from behind, give it a more careful inspection.
Either they might’ve deteriorated due to prolonged use or there might be some component exerting extra pressure, which may have accelerated the friction and its thinning.
5. Delayed response time
This is one of the most common issues. If you apply pressure to the brake pedal as hard as you could and your car takes a few seconds to come to a halt.
That is not normal!
If you feel this has been happening consistently, it’s time to give those brake pads a new life.
Action - Here’s How To Change The Brake Pad!
So if you’re certain that the brake pads need to be replaced, here’s a 5 steps process.
Step 1: Gather the required materials
This is quite self-explanatory, but important nonetheless. You’ll need materials like:
- Rotor (if required)
- Brake Pads
- Brake grease
- Brake cleaner
- Lug wrench
Step 2: Remove the wheel & caliper
This step needs your utmost care. Make sure that the car is parked on a flat surface. Then loosen the lug nuts before installing the jack.
Now slowly install the jack and lift up your car. Then refocus your attention on the lugs.
Start from the bottom and then go upwards in the process.
Step 3: Remove the brake pads
To remove the brake pads, you need to open up the caliper. Unbolt this caliper to get access to the brake pads.
Be careful with the brake line. Do not leave the caliper hanging on those.
Have careful look at the brake pad mechanism before removing them. See all the components and their placements. This will be handy in the assembling phase.
Now with some help from a hammer, remove the brake pads. Be patient with the process.
Step 4: Installing new brake pads
If you watched the brake pad mechanism closely in the disassembly phase, you’ll have a clear understanding of the components and their placements.
But before installing the new brake pads, make sure you apply the required lubricant to the inner components. This will increase the overall lifespan of the vehicle.
Install the brake pads in the original orientation.
Step 5: Reinstalling the caliper & wheel
The final step is reinstalling the caliper and the wheel.
This is an easy process. You just need to focus on the right alignment and keep the bolts tight.
Then tighten the lugs after you reattach the wheel.
While this process is fairly easy, it does come with its own set of consequences. So if you want an expert to have a look at your brake pads and handle your auto repair in Doylestown, A&G Customs is your go-to place.
Call us at- 215 669 3072 and we’ll help you with any auto repair trouble you’re stuck with.