Vehicle Safety: Brake Inspection & Tell Tell Signs

Brakes are the most used and the most important safety device on your car, therefore it’s important that all car owners check their discs brakes and pads for damage and wear at least once every few months.

It’s important you check your brakes as they can help to protect you from fatal road accidents. On many cars you can check the brakes without even having to remove the wheel. If your car has alloy wheels with spaces then you can assess your brakes by looking through the spaces at the brake pads and discs. If you don’t have a clear view of this then you may need to take the wheel off.

 

Inspecting Your Brakes

1) Remove your wheel if necessary

If you can’t see your car’s discs and pads through the wheels then you may need to remove the wheel. Removing the wheel will make the visual inspection a lot easier, just ensure that you use proper safety instructions before removing the wheels.

2) Inspect the Disc Brake

The disc brake facing you should be shiny however slight visible lines could occur due to normal wear. You want to be looking out for any rough spots of obvious grooves, if you do spot one of these then you may need to replace your disc brakes. Remember to replace the discs in pairs to ensure maximum safety of your vehicle.

3)  Inspect the Brake Pads

You’ll find the brake pad facing the disc brake. You may have to look up a little to inspect the brake pad as you have to be able to see the thickness of the pad. If your brake pads are 1/8 of inch thick or less, then it’s important you replace them.

 

Signs Your Brakes May Need Replacing

1) Different Noises

If you brakes start to squeal or make grinding noises when you use them then it’s a sign they may need adjusting or replacing. A grinding noise can indicate that your brake pads are worn so you will need to check them and replace if necessary.

2) Brake Warning Lights

If the brake or Anti-Lock Braking System (ABS) warning light on your dashboard flashes up, it could mean you’re running on low brake fluid. Usually low fluid means that there’s a leak somewhere in your brake lines.

3) Pulling

If you apply the brakes and your car starts pulling to one side then it could mean your brakes are out of place, there is brake fluid leakage, or your brakes are worn out and need to be replaced.

4) Unusual Vibrations

If your brake pedal, steering wheel or car starts to shake or vibrate then you apply the brakes, it could suggest that your brake rotors are broken and will need replacing.

 

Need to replace your brakes?

Your brakes will get checked at least once a year when you take it in for its annual MOT and service, however if you do start to experience unusual changes in the braking system then don’t just wait until your next MOT.

If you’re not sure on how to check your brakes yourself then take it into a garage and get them to check it for you. As brakes are the most important safety feature it’s crucial you keep them in a good working order.
 

Get a Free Brake Check with Protyre

We understand that checking brake health is an essential part of any vehicle's management plan. That's why Protyre offer free brake checks to all our customers to identify brake issues at an early stage before they become a problem. Click on the button below to book your today!

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About the author

David Sholicar

David is the National Retail Operations Manager for Protyre. One of David’s areas of responsibility and expertise is dealing with the DVSA and MOT’s for Protyre. As the Authorised Examiner Designate Manager ( AEDM ) David deals with applications for changes to the many Vehicle Testing Stations ( VTS’s) including managing the growth of the Number of MOT testing stations that Protyre operate, allocating MOT tester roles, and monitoring the MOT Test logs to ensure that Protyre MOT standards are maintained as the best in the industry. David handles the relationships with our parts suppliers to ensure that Protyre only fit the best quality servicing parts, brake parts, and other aftermarket quality parts at the right price. David is also involved in ensuring that all technicians are trained or assessed to carry out the work completed in all centres, and that Protyre has a robust Quality control ( QC) Procedure in all centres. David is also involved in developing the customer service standards and customer service training for all Protyre team members to ensure that all Protyre customers can expect the highest levels of customer service. At Protyre we believe we have the highest levels of customer service excellence that can be found, not only in the garage industry, but also when compared to other retail organisations. Another area of expertise is David’s involvement in developing Protyre Operational, Environmental, and safe working procedures. David has worked for some of the UK’s best retailers and this expertise has been a key component in helping develop Protyre into a highly respected company within the fast fit industry. David’s mission is ensuring that Protyre is the local garage that you can trust.

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