Thursday, August 3, 2017

5 Signs Your Brakes Need to Be Replaced

DURAND, Mich., – Brakes are some of the most crucial components of your vehicle that the ensure safety of not only you and your passengers but other cars out on the road as well. Yet, brakes are often overlooked in terms of routine maintenance by the average driver, and their repairs and replacement aren't always seen as a priority. Well, we're here to tell you that your brakes and brake pads are some of the most important components in your vehicle and they need to be maintained and inspected regularly. Otherwise, you run the risk of an accident happening or serious and costly component break down. We've compiled a list of 5 signs your brakes need to be replaced to help you tell when it's time to bring in your vehicle to a service center.

5 Signs Your Brakes Need to Be Replaced

How can I tell if my brake pads need replacing?

That is always the big question. You can start by searching for brake pad wear by looking through the spaces between your wheel's spokes. You will see the outside brake pad pressed against a metal rotor, and the pad should be at least 1/4 inch thick. Any less than 1/4 of an inch and you should have your brake pads inspected to see if they need to be replaced.

Typically, you should have your brakes checked about every 5 months or every 5,000 miles. If you drive in stop-and-go traffic a lot or make hard brakes often you should get your brake pads checked even more frequently. You can always ask our technicians to take a look at your brakes the next time you're at a service center for an oil change just to be safe.

Signs your brake components need replacing:

Grinding or Squealing

If, when you brake, you hear a loud metallic sound, it means that your brake pads have worn down completely, and are most likely beyond replacement. The grinding or squealing noise you hear is caused by the two pieces of metal (the disc and the caliper) rubbing together, scratching your rotors and creating an uneven surface. If this happens, your mechanic will likely tell you that the rotors need to be resurfaced or replaced.

Reduced Responsiveness 

If your brakes aren't reacting to your foot, are less responsive, or if the brake pedal sinks all the to the floor when you press on it, there may be an air or fluid leak in the braking system. An easy way to check is to look for a small puddle of brake fluid underneath the vehicle when it's parked. Brake fluid has an appearance very similar to fresh motor oil.


If you find your vehicle pulling to one side while you're braking, it may be time for a brake adjustment or to get your fluid drained and replaced. When your vehicle pulls during breaking, it's usually a sign that the brake linings are wearing down unevenly or that there is debris or foreign substances in the brake fluid.


If you feel a vibration on the brake pedal when you're applying your foot to it, this can either mean that the rotors have become warped or that your wheels are out of alignment. Warped rotors are caused by severe braking for long periods, and the vibration is felt because the brake pads are not able to grab the surface evenly.

Shaking Steering Wheel

Warped or thin brake rotors can also cause your steering wheel to shake and vibrate as well. This is because the rotors aren’t able to disperse the heat. If you’re experiencing this issue, it’s important to have your brakes looked at and repaired so you’re safe on the road.

If you are experiencing any of these 5 signs that your brake pads, rotors, or other brake components are wearing down or need to be replaced, it's very important you get them looked at right away. Our experienced and skilled team at the Graff Chevrolet Durand Service Center can address and fix any issues you may have. The sooner you get these issues taken care of, the better. Putting off these repairs can compound the damage and affect other components in your vehicle making for a costly repair bill. Plus, you're putting yourself and others on the road in danger by driving with compromised braking ability. So schedule an appointment today to ensure that your vehicle is top working order.

Located at 9009 East Lansing Road in Durand, MI 48429, Hank Graff Chevrolet Durand wants to revolutionize your car buying experience. We’ll bring all the transparency and customer satisfaction you need while making the buying experience fun! If you have any questions be sure to contact us at (989) 288-2657 or head over to our website at! We are proud to serve Durand and the surrounding communities of Owosso, Flint, Genesee Charter Township, Swartz Creek, and Corunna.

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