If you’re asking, “Why do my brakes squeak?” chances are that your brake pads have worn down to a point where they’re no longer safe to drive with and need to be replaced.
Our mechanic shows you what brakes that squeak or make other terrible sounds look and feel like, and explains why you should avoid letting your brakes get to that point in this video:
Really Bad Worn Out Front Disc Brakes Sound Terrible – Dangerous
Why do my brakes squeak? What do squeaking brakes mean?
Squeaking brakes are typically a symptom of seriously worn brakes that need to be replaced ASAP.
As our mechanic says in the video, he wanted share his experience with terrible sounding brakes to demonstrate “what you should not do—how far you should not let your brakes go. You should never let your brakes go as far as the brakes went on this truck.”
He then turns off the truck and coasts down a hill so we can hear what he describes as something he never wants to experience with brakes: “the sensation, the sound, the grinding.”
What causes squeaking brakes?
Normally when you press your brakes, you shouldn’t hear anything. Brakes squeak when your brake pads have thinned to the point that their wear tabs rub against or grind into your brake rotors. Those wear tabs are meant to alert you that your pads have worn and need to be replaced.
In the case of the truck our mechanic shows us, its squeaking brakes barely have any pads left, which means what is left has been grinding away at the brake disk. That’s dangerous, because if too much grinding happens, your brakes can actually lock up.
When there’s barely any pad left, you can also experience brake fade, so even if your brakes don’t lock up, you’ll lose stopping power quickly.
Why you need to take brake maintenance seriously, and when you should replace your brakes:
To reiterate, letting your brakes go so long that they squeak and grind away is not safe. You should check your brakes as soon as you hear any squeaking or squealing, but we also recommend replacing your brakes at regular intervals—our mechanic recommends about every 10,000 or 15,000 miles.
Check out this video for help replacing your squeaking brakes:
Need to replace your brakes? Shop now:
Related blog posts and articles
Up next: Read these blog posts and articles:
- When Should Brake Pads Be Replaced?
- How Long Do Brakes Usually Last?
- Different Types Of Disc Brakes
- Why are my brakes grinding? [Expert advice to diagnose & fix]
- Brakes Squealing? It’s Probably Time for New Brake Pads
- Car Diagnosis By Sound: Certain Sounds and What They Could Mean
- TRQ brake parts buying guide: Save time and money with quality brake kits