Skip to content

What are The Signs of Worn Brake Pads?

Signs of Worn Brake Pads

Knowing the signs of worn brake pads is essential for almost any driver because continuous driving with worn pads could cause harm to other components of the brake systems and the vehicle. So what are the signs of worn brake pads? Keep reading to learn more.

Brake warning light

Most cars have a brake warning light on the dashboard. When this light turns on, it’s an indication that something is wrong with the brake pads and you will need to produce an appointment along with your mechanic the moment possible.

Pungent smell

If you see that your tires are emitting a pungent smell after driving for a while, this is a sign that the brake pads are worn-out and need replacement. Continuing to drive under these circumstances can be very dangerous. It is advised that you make regular stopovers each time you detect the smell until you get to a spot where your brake pads could be inspected.


One common sign that the brake system isn’t functioning normally is the vibration of the steering wheel. They can also be felt on the brake pedal and they are as a result of the rotor and the caliper grinding against each other.

Malfunction of the brake pedal

This sign of a worn brake systems doesn’t occur that always, but if you learn that you’ve to use extra pressure on the brake pedal so as to stop or slow the automobile, you need to have your brake pedals changed the moment possible. This really is since there is a likelihood that the brake pedal can become functionless because of the continuous application of force on the pedal.

How to Protect your Brake Pads

Whether you are driving a classic or new vehicle, it is important to guard your brake pads to stop damaging other parts of your vehicle. You are able to boost the life span of your brake system by;

·Emptying the trunk

Most of us keep un-necessary stuff in our trunks and the overloading causes the brakes to strain. Removing stuff that you do not need can help to increase the life span of your brake pads.

·Aggressive Driving Habits

If you prefer your brake pads to serve you longer, you will need to stop aggressive driving habits such as sudden breaking that cause excessive heating to the wheels and rotors.

·Speed Limits

Observing the speed limits for every given road is one tested and proven way to steadfastly keep up your brake system in good condition. This is because when you are within the speed limit, you can have enough time and energy to decelerate making the friction between the caliper and the brake pads minimal.

How do I know when my brake pads need changing?

The most typical method of knowing whenever your brake pad needs changing is by looking and listening. You look by inspecting the brake pads through the wheels for almost any signs of wear and tear as well as the thickness levels. If the brake pad looks thin then it must be replaced.

Another method is listening for almost any screeching sounds produced each time you press down on the brakes. In the event that you hear the high-pitched sound often, it is advised that you take your car or truck to a mechanic for a check-up and repair if need be.

Is it hard to replace brake pads?

Replacing brake pads isn’t as hard because so many people think. Actually, you are able to do it by yourself without assistance from a mechanic. All you want is to have these simple tools

  • Jack
  • Tire Iron
  • C-clamp
  • Screwdriver
  • Wrench

The first faltering step in changing your own brake pads is raising the automobile utilising the jack so as to have the ability to easily access the rotors as well as the brake pads. You need to ensure that you’re parked in an even ground before raising the car.

Once the automobile is raised, proceed to remove the wheels utilising the tire iron and you will be able to see the brake pad. Make use of a wrench to remove the bolts that contain the caliper in place. Once the caliper is out of the way, you can proceed to remove the brake pads.

If the rotor is damaged, you should consider replacing it alongside the brake pads. This can be achieved through the use of grease on the rotors and employing a screwdriver to produce them loose. Before placing the newest rotors, make certain that you clean the top with brake cleaner to eliminate any residuals.

After the newest rotors come in place, you can proceed to restore the brake pads and put the wheel back in its place and you are good to go. It is advised that you add apart about three hours to have the complete job done. Obviously, you can change in the pads in a shorter duration of time but you want to give every single component full attention. Should you feel this involves a lot of work, you can always ask your mechanic to help.

Can worn brake pads cause damage?

Worn brake pads could cause a lot of harm to other components of the automobile which can make repairs to become more expensive. Some of the components that are affected by worn brakes include;


Rotors are the first to have the impact of worn brakes. This is because once the brake pad and shoe aren’t able to effectively stop the automobile when you step on the brakes, the pressure is used in the rotors. With time, the rotors become cracked and replacing them can be very costly.


Calipers are an essential component of the brake system as they serve to connect the rotor and the brake pad. When you press down on the brakes, the calipers transmit the pressure to the rotors to reduce the rotating frequency of the wheel. If the brake pads are worn-out, there is no buffer between the caliber and the rotors which leaves the 2 metals grinding against each other.

·Suspension system

The suspension system is accountable for cushioning critical car components from the force of bumping caused by hitting potholes or riding over a ball at high speed. Exhausted brakes make a difference the suspension system over time by making it misaligned. For this reason it is advised that you replace brake pads regularly to steer clear of the damage of other critical components of the vehicle.


Once the braking system isn’t functioning well, the wheels are affected because the automobile doesn’t stop because it should. If not corrected, this could cause the deteriorating of rubber on the wheels requiring you to obtain a new pair of wheels.

How to check brake pads

Knowing the status of your brake pads is essential since you count on the functionality every time you press down on the brakes. Checking the thickness of your brake pads as well as any signs of wear and tear is among the steps of guaranteeing a secure journey for the occupants of the car. But how do you know how to check brake pads? Worry never as checking the status of your brakes is extremely simple. Just follow these easy methods.

·Inspect the wheels

Ensure that you haven’t used your car or truck for 30 minutes before commencing the inspection. This is because the brakes become very hot when you used even for a quick distance. Continue to inspect the brake pads without removing the wheel. If you see that there’s no build-up of dust on the brake pads, this is a sign that you’ll require to go to the mechanic for a far more professional diagnosis.

A worn-out brake pad will even look thin when observed through the spaces on the wheels. In the event that you can’t view it well, consider getting a torch for a much better view. If it seems thin with any signs of wear, it is approximately time that you had it replaced.

In the event that you can’t see the brake pad well with the wheel in position, consider employing a jack to remove it to obtain a closer look. This technique is very efficient as you get to inspect the brake pad as well as brake lines and caliper. Any signs of wear and tear on these components are an indication that your brake pads are worn-out and require a replacement.

Plugging a Car Tire

·Dashboard Light

Some vehicles have a warning light on the dashboard that turns on once the brake pads need replacement. Browse the manufacturer’s manual to ascertain if your vehicle has that light so that you can be looking for the indication that your brake pads have to be replaced.

Suggested reads

Avoid These Driving Mistakes

Experiencing Any of the Braking Symptoms?

Have you experienced the signs highlighted above? If yes, there is a likelihood that your car or truck has braking problems. An in depth inspection of the brake pads through the wheels should enable you to produce a conclusion on the status of the brake pads. You should also consider visiting the mechanical so that he can have a consider the braking system.