Brake pads are a crucial component of any vehicle, and there are some clear indicators of when it’s time to replace them.

Vehicles require a ton of maintenance over their lifetimes, including oil changes, fluid top-ups, tune-ups, tire changeovers, and filter replacements. Some components will wear down over time and need replacing, too, such as your brake pads.

It’s vital to keep your car’s brakes in working order because they’re responsible for stopping the vehicle. The problem is that the braking system is actually a complex network of parts that come together to keep you safe.

Your brake pads are right in the thick of the action. They sit on the inside of the wheel’s calipers and apply friction to the rotors to slow and stop the vehicle. When brake pads wear out, they won’t create as much resistance, and the brakes won’t function at optimal levels.

As a result, keeping an eye on the state of your pads is essential because it can prevent significant problems and keep you safer whenever you operate your vehicle.

Here’s a look at five tell-tale signs it’s time for new brake pads for your vehicle. 

Key Takeaways

  • Your brake pads are an essential vehicle component
  • You’ll need to maintain and replace them periodically
  • There are some clear signs your brake pads need attention
  • Conducting regular car maintenance before shipping is advisable

1. You feel vibrations

One of the first signs you might notice when your brake pads wear down is a vibration whenever you press on the brake pedal. 

Your brake pads contain a resin that binds their various parts together. When the pads wear down, this adhesive comes into contact with the rotor, causing the resin to heat up, melt, and spread onto the rotor. 

Ideally, this adhesive will spread evenly, and you won’t even notice that it’s melting. But this isn’t always the case. A resin that spreads unevenly will cause vibrations when you press the brakes because it creates an irregular surface on the rotor. 

This scenario could mean you need new brake pads to alleviate the problem. If you address it early enough, though, there’s also a chance that some basic maintenance can save your brake pads.

2. There’s a grinding noise

In situations where you’re driving along and hear a grinding or growling sound when you apply your brakes, it could mean new brakes pads are necessary. It could also signal that your brake pads have so much wear that they’ve damaged the rotors, which is a more significant repair.

The grinding noise is usually the sound of metal contacting metal. In this case, it means your calipers are making contact with your rotors because your brake pads are nearly gone. 

It’s impossible to miss this grinding sound, so keep an ear out as you drive and get to a mechanic right away if you notice it.

3. You hear squealing

If you notice a squealing sound while you’re driving that goes away when you apply the brakes, it could signal an issue with your brake pads.

This noise originates from a built-in safety feature in new brake pads that notifies you that your pads are eroding to dangerous levels. It comes from a metal tab located near the top of the brake pad that scrapes the rotor to warn the driver of the problem. 

A squealing sound that disappears whenever you push on your brakes is a sure sign you need a mechanic to inspect your brakes to diagnose and repair the issue.

4. The car doesn’t stop as quickly

In some cases, your vehicle won’t stop as quickly when applying the brake when it’s time for new brake pads. This issue is called brake fade, and it’s often the result of continually using the brakes over long distances without coming to a complete stop. 

Think about how you apply the brakes when coming down a hill. You’re using your brakes but aren’t stopping the vehicle. This action is incredibly hard on your brake pads and can cause premature wear because it makes your brake pads and rotors contact each other over long periods. When this happens, both components heat up, and the pads eventually lose their ability to generate friction as they wear down.

You’ll notice that your brakes aren’t as responsive in this situation, so you’ll want to have a technician have a look to see if brake fade is causing your issues.

5. The vehicle pulls to one side when braking

Your brake pads won’t wear evenly on both sides of the car, as one side is sure to thin out before the other. When this occurs, you could feel the car pulling in either direction as you brake. 

This scenario can cause issues because it strains other vehicle components, like the steering knuckles, ball joints, wheel bearings, and the steering rack. These can all potentially lead to significant repairs down the line.

Keep in mind that worn brake pads aren’t the only problem that can cause your car to pull. It could also mean you have a faulty wheel bearing, uneven tire pressure, or an issue with the brake calipers.

It’s best to take your vehicle to a certified mechanic to diagnose why it is pulling to one side while you brake to ensure you take the proper steps to repair it.

Shipping your car

It’s a good idea to check your brake pads and other vehicle components before hiring a car transport carrier to ensure it’s in drivable condition upon arrival. That last thing you want to do is ship your vehicle a long distance only to realize you need a mechanic to install new brake pads before you can safely use it.

Mercury Auto Transport is a car shipping broker that can assist as you move your vehicle from point A to point B. We’ll provide you with quotes from FMCSA licensed and insured carriers, allowing you to select the option that best suits your needs. Contact Mercury Auto Transport today to receive your free vehicle shipping quote.

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FAQs

We feel it’s important for you to know how we determined your quote. Quotes are based on what the market demands for cars to be moved at a given time. Each quote is compared with the current rates on the National Load Board before being sent to our customers and will be reviewed periodically through the process.

Other companies might offer you a lower price to obtain your business. This method is ineffective because if the car does not pay the correct amount of money, it will run the probability of not getting loaded or transported on time. You will not get this information from our competitors. Truck drivers always take the loads that pay the most first, leaving the loads that are mispriced to be moved last or not at all. We try very hard to avoid this with our customers by quoting a fair but realistic quote up front. Visit our How we determine your quote page for more information.

Understanding auto transport insurance is important and we think it’s valuable to explain how it works. As part of providing a great car transport service, it is our job to guarantee that the carrier we assign to pickup your vehicle is licensed and insured. Click here to check out our license.

When you go with Mercury to ship your vehicle, you can rest assured that the carrier assigned to move your car is fully insured and licensed with the FMCSA (Federal Motor Carrier and Saftey Administration).

Your vehicle is covered by the carrier’s insurance policy that is doing the shipping. Depending on the type and size of the truck/trailer that is shipping your car, the insurance policy can cover from $100,000 to $1,000,000 of damage.

We have also provided a checklist to explain what you need to do at both pickup and delivery in case there are any issues so, you can file a claim and know that everything will be taken care of.

It is rare but, time-to-time there may be accidental damage while in transit and it is good to know that your carrier’s insurance will protect your auto shipment in that event.

To view a sample BOL (Bill of Lading) and learn what to do in case of accidental damage, please check out our Condition Report and Procedure checklist.

When comparing auto transport companies, keep in mind that low-priced quotes often result in delays in getting your vehicle loaded. Choosing the right broker is vital to getting a reputable carrier for the lowest price possible.  

We feel it’s important for you to know how we determine your quote.

When you’re looking for a car shipping rate, you want to understand how auto transport works. Prices are based on seasonal market demands for cars to be moved at any given time. Each quote is prepared based on the season and the current national rates.

When comparing auto transport companies, keep in mind that low-priced quotes often result in delays in getting your vehicle loaded. Choosing the right broker is vital to getting a reputable carrier for the lowest price possible. Not all brokers are created equal in this talent.

Mercury does a thorough background check with each carrier for every shipment. We verify their ratings, references, and in addition, we obtain a certified copy of their insurance certificate, directly from the government agency that it is on file with.

You can have peace of mind knowing that the carrier shipping your vehicle is the very best and that there are no surprises guaranteed.

Mercury Auto Transport is licensed, Bonded and Insured. Our FMSCA Motor Carrier Number is MC647319.

While we do our best match your auto shipping needs with the most responsible carriers with the best track records, from time-to-time there may be accidental damage while in transit, it is good to know that the insurance of the carrier we locate for you will protect your auto shipment in that event.

Shipping a vehicle can be stressful if you don’t know what to do.  This is why we believe it is paramount to have our highly trained agents be your main point of contact from start to finish.

They will go over everything you need to know so you can relax.  In the meanwhile, we prepared this checklist.  This includes everything from pickup to delivery and how to make sure your car is ready for pickup.

When it comes to car moving, we want you to be ahead of the game!  For any questions and further assistance our agents are standing by, (800) 553-1828.  Please read our checklist to prepare your vehicle to learn more.

There are several ways you can ship a car.  The options include enclosed trailer, open carrier transport, flatbed truck, door-to-door shipping services, and to or from a terminal as well.  The most popular of the options is a 7 to 10 car open carrier.  These large trucks can accommodate almost any size vehicle including carsSUVstrucksjeeps, and vans.

Open car transport, door to door is also the best way to get the cheapest auto transport rate possible.  To learn more and see what transport method is best for you, please fill out our free quote form and one of our representatives will respond to you within minutes.  You can also call us at (800) 553-1828.

We present offers from FMCSA Licensed and Insured Carriers. When you accept an offer, we send your service agreement that guarantees the price, door-to-door service, and 100% bumper-to-bumper insurance. There are never any hidden fees or charges, guaranteed.