Car Brakes Dunedin – Brake servicing is one of those routine maintenance chores you just cannot ignore. Brake parts have a life span and they do need to be regularly serviced and sometimes replaced to work properly.

Fortunately, your car or truck usually gives you some clear signals that your brakes are due. Sometimes they’re harmless noises that don’t require repairs or have simple fixes. Other times not.

Your brakes are one of the most important safety components in your vehicle. So if you notice any of the following common warning signs of brake issues, it’s time to get a professional to check your car, truck or SUV pronto. You’ll drive safer and head off more expensive damage.

1. Brake Light On

When one of the red or yellow brake indicators on your dashboard lights up it may mean you’re just due for an inspection. It could also be your vehicle’s smart electronics alerting you to a problem. An engaged parking brake could also cause the light to go on. Be sure it’s fully released to confirm that’s not the issue.

2. Squealing, Squeaking or Grinding Noises

Hearing a metallic squeal while you’re in motion? If you start hearing a high-pitched noise that stops when you apply the brakes that’s likely the sound of the brake pad wear indicators. They’re made of steel so they make this sound when they start contacting the rotor.

They’re letting you know that your pads are worn out and need to be replaced before you get rotor damage, which can be an expensive fix.

3. Wobbling, Vibration or Scraping When Braking

Shaking in the steering wheel or vibration when you apply the brakes may be the result of an uneven rotor.

Brake rotors are big discs that sit inside of the wheels. When you hit the brake pedal, the brake pads hug the rotors, slowing them and your vehicle. You want rotors to be smooth and completely even in thickness.

4. Leaking Fluid

If you’re experiencing a soft brake pedal, have a service technician look for fluid leaking from the master cylinder or elsewhere in the brake system.

The master cylinder is the unit that creates the power for your brakes. It has a reservoir like the one for your wiper fluid that contains brake fluid. When you apply the brakes, this fluid is pushed through thin piping, creating hydraulic pressure. If fluid is leaking from this system, there may not be enough power to force the brake pads to clamp hard to the rotors.

5. Car Pulling to One Side When Braking

This could be caused by a brake hose gone bad or a caliper problem. One brake caliper may be applying more or all the pressure during braking, resulting in unbalanced stopping.

6. Burning Smell While Driving

A sharp, chemical odor after repeated hard braking on steep roads is a sign of overheated brakes or clutch. Pull over immediately in a safe place, check your parking brake to make sure it’s fully released and allow the brakes to cool. If you don’t, you risk heating up the brake fluid to boiling, which can cause brake failure.

If there’s any smoke coming from a wheel, it may be a stuck brake caliper and possibly unsafe to continue driving on without repairs.

7. Bouncing Up and Down When You Stop Short

If your vehicle rocks or bounces with sharp braking, it’s probably not a brake problem at all. Your shock absorbers may need to be replaced.

Not every brake noise or symptom is going to cost you. It could be a harmless squeak from certain types of material in brake pads. There may be dust or moisture somewhere in the braking system that isn’t causing damage. You may just need to add new brake fluid.

But you need to be sure.