How To Assess Car Brake Condition

14 December 2017
 Categories: , Blog



Your braking system is one of the most important safety devices of your car. As such, you need keep a keen eye on it to ensure it is in proper working condition, both for your safety and peace of mind.

Check for Brake Pulsation

Drive the car at 31 miles per hour and step on the brake pedal. Check for brake pulsation. Next, find a convenient place then test the brakes at highway speed. If there is pulsation, your rotors are warped and should be machined or replaced. If your brakes feel soft, your brake pads may be worn and need to be replaced.

Warning Lights

If your car is fitted with wear sensors, your warning lights will alert you when your brake pads are worn. The brake light or ABS light will come on.  Some cars will even sound an audible alarm.

Sound Check

One of the obvious signs of a faulty brake is a screeching or grinding sound when you step on the brake pedal. Take your car to a brake repair shop for further exam.

Visual Check


A good disc will be shiny and even. Look out for rough spots or grooves, uneven wear due to contact with metal parts, or raised edges due to general wear and tear. Also look out for cracks as a result of overheating.

All these signs indicate that your disc is worn and should be replaced.

Once cool, you can feel the disc with your fingers for roughness.

For a more accurate exam, use a micrometer to verify that the disc thickness is within the levels recommended by your car's manufacturer.

Brake Pads

Check above the disc to see the brake pads. Measure the thickness of the brake pads with a compass. A thickness of I/8 of an inch or less means it's time to replace the brake pads.

Check the outside and the inside of both pads. Replace both brake pads at the same time for greater efficiency.

Brake Hoses

Rubber hoses should be soft and pliable. If they are hard and cracked, they need replacing. Check metal hoses for corrosion. Replacing the hose is more technical, so unless you are sure about what you are doing, you may need to hire the services of a brake repair technician.

For safe driving, check your brakes regularly and have any issues fixed as soon as possible. This will save you serious problems and money in the long run.