General Question

Funkmonk's avatar

Do squeaky car breaks indicate a majour problem with them?

Asked by Funkmonk (100points) December 21st, 2007

Do squeaky car breaks mean there is a dangerous problem with them?

Observing members: 0 Composing members: 0

11 Answers

GeauxTigers's avatar

Yes and No.

More importantly – when does it happen? Slowing from fast speeds, slow speeds, any time you hit the breaks, only when you slam on the breaks?

And are they dealership-installed breaks or generics?

Funkmonk's avatar

Normally when coming to a stop, not when moving fast, just when pulling up slowly to a stop. Not saure only just got the car a few weeks ago, my first ever car too. They have probably been replaced at some point because it’s 8 years old but it did just pass an M.O.T.

churchill2001's avatar

May well just be brake dust. My Ford Focus used to suffer from it. Makes sense really, all that braking wears down the pads, and the dust accumulates inside the drum. Took it to a brakes and exhaust place to get it checked out, they took off the wheels, checked the pads, dusted them off, and put it all back. 10 minute job and not too pricey.

Cardinal's avatar

I agree with churchill2001. If the rear brakes (or front for that matter, but usually on the rear) are drum type brakes with brake shoes, not disk brakes. It more then likely is brake dust and not a big deal, just annoying. Disk brakes are kind of like whats of a 10 speed bicycle. Drum brakes are similar to what was on the kids bikes when you pedaled backwards to stop.

Funkmonk's avatar

Hmmm well today it has been rainy and less cold, the squeaking seems to have stopped thankfully ^_^ Maybe it was just the cold weather?

Ronamo's avatar

Many brands of brakes have pieces of aluminum embedded into them which cause the squealing sound while braking after enough of the other material has worn down to an unsafe point.

Some brakes are just naturally squeaky for some reason, even though their stopping power is fine. Check with your mechanic if the stopping power seems off.

no4cloz's avatar

Most “brake squeal” from disc brakes comes from the high pitched vibration generated by the metal backing of your brake pad as it sits against your brake caliper and piston.
To remedy this, most brake pad manufacturers include with their replacement pads a semi-hardening silicone gel which is to be applied to the back of the brake pad prior to installation. This rubber absorbs the vibrations generated by the 2 metal surfaces (brake pad backing and caliper) that contact one another and thereby dampens the vibration which eliminates the squeal or squeak. It is not uncommon for this step to be skipped by some mechanics to save time resulting in the sound you hear.

Zaku's avatar

I had squeaky breaks from the time I had them replaced, for several years, during which I asked two good and seemingly exceptionally honest and well-intended mechanics who both said there was nothing to be done except replace the brakes (which otherwise were fine), and even then, the new brakes might squeak too.

THEN, a few weeks ago, a different (very clever and experienced) mechanic took a look and applied some rubbery noise-reducing (vibration-absorbing) goop to the back of my two front brake pads, and they don’t squeak any more.

soundedfury's avatar

Since it seems to have lessened with a change in climate, it’s most likely just brake dust or lack of gel on back of the brakes. If you hear a grating sound along with the squeal, you should get it checked. As the brakes grind down, they have a squeaker pad that alerts you to the fact that they need to be changed. Once you get past that pad, they will squeal and grind, which will damage your rotors/drums.

JuJuBe's avatar

Question: I have a ‘97 Honda Accord that squeaks as soon as it hits the road. Took it to a mechanic for a check up. He said the brakes have 30% usuage and that the rotors need to be replaced. The brake pads had several cracks and that, according the mechanic, is the reason for the squeaking noise. Quote for repairs is rather steep. Is the mechanic’s deduction sound or am I being taken for a ride, sort a speak. Thanks in advance for reply.

Zaku's avatar

@JuJuBe – I’d get a second opinion and estimate.

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