Making sure your brake pads are working properly is essential to safely and effectively travel in your vehicle. This is why knowing when to replace brake pads is an important question and we’re happy to assist.
Brake pads and brake rotors are parts of any disc braking system typical of most vehicles on the road today. When you press your brake pedal, the brake pads clamp down against the rotors to slow or stop your vehicle. So, they’re kind of a big deal.
While brake pads of course wear down naturally over time, paying attention to the wear patterns can help prevent more costly repairs down the road. By the time you hear squealing (and especially grinding), your pads have likely worn down to the point where they're impacting the brake rotors. So, in order to avoid brake rotor repairs, you’ll want to make sure you’re regularly having your brakes inspected.
You can generally expect brake pads to last between 30,000-35,000 miles. However, that number will vary from vehicle to vehicle and from driver to driver. If you’ve got a lead foot, you might need new pads sooner! Also, drivers dealing with heavy traffic who use their brakes more often than those in more rural areas can expect to get less mileage life out of their brake pads.
When brake pads need to be replaced, you may notice your car shaking or pulsing when you press on the brakes. That might sound fun, but we can promise you, it’s not! The pulsing and shaking while braking could also be caused by a warped rotor, so it’s best to get all of that checked out during any brake job.
Squealing or screeching noises (we all know this unpleasant sound)
Thin or worn brake pads (look through your wheel spokes and locate the pad against your rotor – if it’s less than 1/4 inch thick, it might be time to change)
Grinding and growling (this is a definite past-due sign)
Just look – and listen – for the signs and symptoms of worn brakes, or stop by your nearest location and have our experts check ‘em out (for free). If you know you need brake service, be sure to check our brakes coupons to save on your repairs!