Your brakes are one of the most important systems in your vehicle. Brakes that are in good condition will help you to safely bring your vehicle to a stop, even if you give them little notice.

What usually happens, though, is the brakes get overlooked in comparison to other parts of the vehicle when it comes to standard maintenance. People tend to be more concerned about engine maintenance and the other parts that make the vehicle go, rather than those that make it come to a stop. The brakes are often out of sight and out of mind.

You should know, however, that a failure to stay up to date on brake service in Corpus Christi, TX can result in dangerous brake failure. But what are the most common signs that you could be dealing with brake failure? Here’s a quick overview:

  • Increased stopping time or distance (it takes longer to bring the vehicle to a stop)
  • Grinding brakes or other unusual, troublesome noises, such as squeaking or squealing
  • A phenomenon referred to as “brake grabbing,” which results in the vehicle pulling to one side or the other
  • Your antilock brake system (ABS) warning light comes on
  • A “soft” brake pedal that requires you to push farther down to the floorboard of the car than you typically would have to with good operation
  • A throbbing or pulsing sensation that arises in the brake pedal when you apply the brakes

All of these are common symptoms of brake failure in Corpus Christi, TX, and each one should prompt you to take your vehicle in for service to a maintenance professional who can inspect and repair your brakes.

Crystallization on the brake shoes or brake pads may be to blame. As brakes age and experience extended usage, they will heat up from the friction. This results in them hardening and being no longer usable, or able to “grab” as they are supposed to.

There are other issues within the vehicle that can lead to these or other problems associated with brake failure. For example, leaks in the front transaxle or rear differential can cause oil to spill out on to the brakes, which can inhibit their operation. In addition, using the brakes too much can result in them developing “hot spots.” This is especially common in mountainous regions, when people ride the brakes down the mountains. The excessive heat generated from the constant friction being applied when going downhill can result in damage to the brakes and a loss of braking capability.

Make sure you include brake repairs and inspections during your regular service appointments. If you do a lot of your own vehicle maintenance, make sure you know how to check the brake pads and other parts of the brake system. Even if you don’t do the repairs yourself, it’s still important for you to know what you’re looking for.

For more information about signs you need brake service in Corpus Christi, TX, we encourage you to contact Coastal Diesel Injection today.