- April 16, 2021
- Posted by: Spectra
- Categories: Blog, Brakes
We’ve all been there: you brake at a stoplight and hear an awful noise. You look around for an old jalopy with squeaky brakes to explain the noise and realize it’s your vehicle. Squeaky brakes, grinding brakes, or chirping brakes: all sounds to make you shudder. If you hear your brakes making noises, you should have them serviced as soon as possible. Ignoring new noises from your vehicle could lead to lasting damage and costly repairs.
What Causes Brakes to Squeal
Squeaky brakes can be caused by several things. You can narrow down the culprit by paying attention to the pattern and duration of the squeaking. However, you should never diagnose your car problem yourself instead of having it serviced by a professional. Safety should always come first.
You might notice that your brakes are noisy just for the first few minutes of your morning commute. Especially if the weather has been wet or snowy, this is most likely just a result of moisture and dirt building up on the rotor. If the sound goes away after you brake a few times, there is no need to worry. If the noise continues for your entire drive or occurs every time you apply the brakes, you should have your car checked to make sure it is not a more serious problem.
A continuous squeaking sound that doesn’t stop after you drive for a few minutes is a key sign that your brake pads need replacing. It is usually caused by the “wear indicator” in the brake pad. This is a small metal tab underneath the surface that causes a squeaking noise after the pads wear down. The tab may be in contact with the rotor surface only when you press the brakes or continuously.
Squeaking caused by a wear indicator will be consistent and follow the same pattern. If you notice this type of brake noise, call your mechanic to schedule a service appointment. In the meantime, your car is safe to drive.
Chirping or Warbling Brakes
If you notice the sound your brakes make changes, it is most likely due to an unevenly worn rotor or brake pad. The warped surface prevents even contact between the rotor surface and brake pad. This causes vibrations during braking which, when coupled with the brake pad wear indicator, make your car sound like a bird.
Rattling or Grinding Brakes
By the time your brakes are making a grinding or rattling sound, the brake pads are likely completely worn down. The pads’ metal backing plate will be in direct contact with the rotor surface. This is what you want to avoid by heeding the early warning sounds. At this point, you will likely need to replace the rotors along with the brake pads.
Having Your Brakes Serviced
At Spectra Auto Services Inc., we take your safety seriously. That’s why we’re the top choice for brake repair and service in Maryland. Whether it’s squeaking, grinding, or a delay in braking, you know it’s time to come in. Make an appointment at Spectra and our team of expert technicians will get your brakes back in good shape.